I purchased this plane for $30 a few years ago and my only regret was not getting it up and running the day I bought it. Not that it needed much work.
The plane was made by D.R. Barton & Co. in Rochester, NY. The label stamped on the blade and the plane date it to about 1874-1880, at the end of Barton's life and business.
The overall condition of the plane when I purchased it was great. The handle needed a little work and the blade needed to be sharpened but that was it.
I first want to say something about the blade on this plane. This plane has the original plane iron. Now, not that this is always the case, but many old irons sharpen better than anything you can buy today. I am not a supper knowledgeable person when it comes to the finer points of metal, but I have read enough to know this is very common. With this blade it is very very true. I have never had a blade that stayed as sharp or got as sharp as this one. It can cut your eye just by looking at it. I believe it is one of the main reasons why I love this plane so much. Paired with the fact that the plane is so light and smooth, it makes it quick at any job I put it up against.
The only major issue with the plane when I bought it was that the handle was just a little loose. So, I just used the plane until the handle popped off one day. Then I started the clean up. It looked like a couple people had tried to fix the handle and failed. So first thing I needed to do was clean out all the old glue and do a little sanding. In the pictures below you can see the process I went through. I used finish nails as guide pins for setting locations for pegs. Once I lined up the pins and cut them shorter I smacked on the handle to make marks in the mortise. With those marks I could now drill holes in the body of the plane and in the handle. Being supper careful not to drill all the way through the thin part of the handle. Once that was done it was time for some pegs and glue. Since the fix the handle is nice and tight and will not come off every again.
This plane has become my go to plane when it comes to ruff stock removal because it glides so smoothly over the material, is supper light weight , and the blade gets supper razor sharp. I would encourage anyone out there to try a good old wooden plane, if you haven't already. They are easy to fix up and fun to use.
Any questions or comments feel free to ask. Thanks for stopping by.