Because many more metal planes than wooden ones are sold, the parts market is dominated by spares for metal ones, and in most cases these are relatively easy to find. However, auction websites are useful resources for wooden plane parts.
If you have a traditional wooden plane, the list of parts that might need is actually very short. The wedge and the iron may be all that ever need replacing. Damage or wear to the stock, sole or mouth would mean a repair job – or a new plane.
Stanley Bailey model numbers
If your plane is a standard Stanley or some other make that follows the Stanley / Bailey design, you’re in luck because you should easily find spare parts that correspond to the number of the plane.For instance, they might be described as “suitable for Nos. 3 and 4” (smoothing planes); or “made for size number 8” (a very long jointer plane). Knowing the Stanley model number of your plane, if it has one, is important when finding spares.
Other numbering systems
Manufacturers of other types of plane may have their own numbering systems, or the retailer may have a numbering or indexing system. For instance, a spare part might be described as being “to fit product number 1234”, in which case you need to look up what that product is to ensure it’s the right type of plane.
Individual parts or packs?
You can buy individual pieces, or you can get spares packs, or kits, which typically contain all the parts associated with a particular area of the plane, for instance a front and rear handle kit for several types of Stanley / Bailey bench plane.
Parts may no longer be manufactured for older planes. For these, there’s a thriving market in vintage and obsolete spare parts on auction websites, and at some second-hand and “antiques” stores.
There’s such a wide range of spares for so many different types of plane that it’s impossible to list them all here – a list of spares for just the Stanley / Bailey model number range would take up several volumes!