The clone wars (part iii) – A tale of three planes

The fun part of rhykenology is the puzzle solving. I was looking through one of my “block plane parts” boxes. I came across one I had discarded. Here’s the top of the blade.

capewell

This is a case of *very little information* available – online anyways. The blade says:

CAPEWELL
MADE   Ω   IN USA
CAPEWELL MFG CO.
HARTFORD CONN

It seems this plane was made by Capewell Horse Nail Co., hence the crossed horseshoe on the blade. The company originated in 1881 for the purpose of manufacturing horse shoe mails using machines. Here is a later company logo.

capewell_logo

Interestingly, it is almost an exact clone of a PEXTO plane made by Peck, Stowe, and Wilcox (plane in the background) – which by chance I had in my collection. A little bit more digging reveals that Peck, Stow & Wilcox manufactured planes for Capewell.

capewell_PSW

Dig even further, and I notice that the “WORTH” block plane I have is extremely similar to the PEXTO as well. WORTH was a trademark used by Bigelow & Dowse Hardware Co. Boston, made for them circa 1925-1945 by none other than Peck, Stow and Wilcox. Here are the three planes in components view:

pexto_clones

The only real differences exist in the shape of the top of the blade and the lever cap screw on the WORTH plane.

Digital resources are very scarce on clones – it is often challenging to find information, short of examining the planes themselves, and snippets from catalog pages. Eventually I’ll get around to restoring these planes, well at least the CAPEWELL and PEXTO, because the WORTH is quite nice.

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