Peter McBride

Antique and Old Tools
Updated :- Tuesday, 24 August 2010  

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Metal cutting Smith's Plane by Jonathon Cawdron, Norwich.
 in the style of Holtzapffel

This plane asks more questions than it answers.  It is very similar to pictures of Holtzapffel planes I've seen, which is drawn and described by him here in his Turning and Mechanical Manipulation, 1856. He calls it a "smith's-plane for use on brass, iron and steel". He does not claim it as his own design or invention, but more reports its existence and use. That is, with a cutter grooved on it's face for roughing-out work, and with a smooth-edge cutter not exceeding 5/8 inch to1 inch wide for finishing.

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The infill looks like a very fine grain Beech or possibly Sycamore.
The cast iron body is 12 1/4 inch. long, 1 11/16 inch wide and 1 13/16 inch high. The throat opening is 1 inch wide x 3/16 inch. The blade is a fraction under 1 inch wide and is 7/32 inch thick and ground at about an 80 deg bevel. The plane is 13 1/8 inch long over all, and 6 1/4 inch high. It weighs just over a hefty 3 Kg ( 6 lb 10 oz.)
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The plane is stamped Norwich, (curiously hidden under the front infill when it is in place) with a name engraved above which is hard to read....I. Cawdr* 
The blade is stamped IC.
Thanks to Paul Womack for the lead to the next gem of information....The Hines family of Ornamental Turning Lathe Makers were in Norwich. 
From the web page.
Charles Hines (?-1896) – The Hines business was established in 1820 at the Griffin Works in St. Margaret’s, Norwich by Charles Hines, although the Hines catalog says the original company was setup in 1802 by Jonathon Cawdron at Duke Street, Norwich.
Jonathon Cawdron is listed in various Norwich Directories, in 1836, Whitesmith. 1842, Turner in Wood ( Lathe and Tool Maker), Whitesmith.
1845, Iron and Brass Founders, Turner ( Lathe and Tool Maker), Whitesmith.1852 as a Turner, Millwright, Engineer, 
It is too much of a coincidence for the name on the plane to be anything other than J. Cawdron, Norwich.
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The front infill is removable and is the blade holder, when the front capstan head screw is wound into the body. There is a brass disk inserted into a small recess in the front of the wooden block for the screw to bare against. The blade has a hole that engages with a post on a threaded block ( RH thread)  that raises and lowers the blade, which is held vertically against a cast gunmetal frog.
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Two pictures of Holtzapffel planes, the first as seen in Handcraft in wood, John Hooper 1952 on page 28, and described as "made for planing, with a scraping action, the long joints in metal organ pipes". (organ pipes are an alloy of lead and tin and were often worked, including planing to thickness, with small mitre planes, seen here)
 On the right from the Tony Murland 1998 Auction catalogue.
Copyright © Peter McBride 2010