Filister Planes

These planes seem to vary in their spelling..Filister and Fillister.

MARPLES initially made them in all 3 forms, Standing Fillister; Moving Fillister and Sash Fillister.
The Standing Fillister was basically  a Rabbet Plane with a fence cut solid in the stock.
The Moving Fillister plane had a adjustable fence that moved under the stock so as to expose as much of the cutting iron as was needed for the rebate that was to be made.
When working sash timbers the rebates may be cut on either the left-hand or right-hand sides of the wood. The ordinary Moving Fillister can be used for the left side, but for the far side, a Sash Fillister plane is used that has the cutter, stop and spur mounted on the left-hand side of the stock, instead of the right. Thus the fence bears on the face of the work and is carried on two stems like a Plough Plane.  [This description is from Salaman’s ‘Dictionary of Tools’]

These planes are to be found firstly in the 1861 Catalogue:

The 1873 listings are here with item numbers, and it can be seen that the Standing Fillisters are no more [see 1909!]:

We then jump to the 1897 listings which again show new item numbers.
But you will see that the #1003 Sash Fillister image is numbered incorrectly, as in fact #1002 Shoulder Boxed plane is shown. This error was perpetuated until it was corrected in the 1921 Catalogue!

Here are the 1909 listings, again with a new item numbering system and the re-introduction of some Standing Fillister Planes.  [#2935 image is in fact #2934].

Here are the 1921 listings, but with the Standing Fillister planes no longer presented.  [#2934 image is now correct].

1928:  Sash Fillister plane shown as #2935 is AGAIN numbered incorrectly and should be shown as #2934 !


And then on to the last showing in 1959.  At last, again, the #2934 image is correctly numbered:

The last listing to all of these planes seems to be found in November 1963,
as around this time the last craftsman Moulding plane maker employed by MARPLES retired.


Sash Fillister Planes:

Below are 2 Sash Fillister planes, one is Shoulder Boxed and one Dovetail Boxed.

detail of the side:

I have found a variation on the ‘Dovetail Boxed’ variety and so it may be that the example above was also a ‘Shoulder Boxed’ plane that had dovetails securing it. [Shoulder boxed means that the lower left hand edge of the plane was boxwood and this could be achieved by either a dovetail method or a more simple joint as shown.]  The variation I have may be the true ‘Dovetail Boxed’ in that the lower portion of the Filister body has been replaced by double dovetailed boxwood that extended the whole length of the body. But there again it may be that the first example is an earlier version of ‘Dovetail Boxed’ ! See below:

The early Sash Fillister planes show a Patent number  [19943] on the Brass Screw stop thumb turn and the Brass fence itself, and also show that the steel threaded rod of the stop was held in place by 2 brass counter tightened nuts.   I do not know for how long this securing method was used or whether it was part of the Patent.[This Pat. Date was not a MARPLES Patent, so they must have been Licensed to use that Patent.]  The stamped MARPLES mark shows as being c.1880-90 which ties into the Pat. date of 1885:

Here is #2935 from the 1909 Catalogue and with a Boxwood Fence:

Moving Fillister Planes:

The first plane shows the Brass Slip Stop and Tooth [the latter being a single blade which is dovetail fitted into a groove in the side of the body.]

The second plane  shows a Brass Screw Stop and Forked Tooth, Dovetail Boxed:

Standing Fillister Planes:

The plane shown is my only example of a Standing Fillister and I assume that these came in different widths because this one is marked 1/2 on the heel? It does indeed look like a Standard plough plane with an integral fence cut into the sole.




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