Stanley Sweetheart 9 1/2

I must say that when I first read about the Stanley’s Sweetheart line I was a bit apprehensive.  When thinking of a Stanley I normally think of what your everyday box store carries or an old plane I might find at a garage sale and not a high end woodworking tool. 

I needed a new block plane and thought why not try the Stanley Sweetheart 9 1/2.  Out of the box the plane has a nice weight to it, feels good in your hand, and looks great.  The thick A-2 iron cut better than I thought out of the box and cut really well after a little honing.

After reading a few other reviews most of the complaints I read about were of the inside housing being skewed.  After taking mine apart I did notice a little but not enough to cause the iron to not sit properly.  The biggest complaints that I have is in the lateral adjustment.  If I have the blade advanced to far forward I have to turn the lateral adjustment knob back two and a half times back to get the blade to withdraw and then another two and a half turns to get the blade to start advancing again, that is just way to much play.  The other complain I have is that although you can adjust the mouth very easily it does not adjust enough.  Trying the plane on a piece of slightly figured oak I kept getting tear out that I think would have been resolved if I could have closed the mouth up tighter to the blade.

All in all I am pretty happy with the plane and although I will not be replacing my other planes with the Sweetheart line anytime soon, I do see the plane getting used in my shop.

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2 Responses to “Stanley Sweetheart 9 1/2”

  1. High Rock Woodworking
    May 20, 2010 at 6:44 pm #

    I usually read a lot of review before I purchase anything but ultimately I decide what I like based on the product itself. Althought the plane is not one of my Lie-Nielsens or Veritas, there are a number of things that I do like about it and am not just going to jump on the hater bandwagon because everyone else is. It's not perfect but it is decent.

    Thanks for the comment!

  2. robert
    May 19, 2010 at 3:51 pm #

    I have read other reviews about the sweetheart planes that weren't so good, and like yours that were pretty positive. I'm not sure if that is indicative of a difference in quality control over all the inspectors or extremely critical reviewers. I would like to hope it's the latter considering there are some people you just can't please. If I can buy a nice tool for a decent price that does the job it is supposed to do, then I am happy.

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