Grooving Planes

These planes were basic to any woodwork shop and can be found as far back as the 1861 Catalogue:

I am unsure what ‘with open eyes‘ and ‘with loose fences‘ mean but the latter may be an early term for Moving Grooving planes. It seems that even at this stage these planes were always of necessity sold in pairs [one for tongueing and one for grooving, in other words ‘matched‘].
The 1873 Catalogue shows that a numbering system had been introduced:

The 1897 Catalogue shows these entries with newly assigned numbers:

It should be noted that the sizes given above for the Match Grooving planes are for the width of the edge of the boards on which a Tongue and Groove joint is to be enacted. Each of these planes has, according to edge width, a fence cut into the base against which the board is in contact throughout the cut. The inch markings on the Heel are therefore not the width of the actual Tongue or Groove.  The width of the Tongue or Grooving cutters is set at close to 1/3rd the board edge width.

And by 1909 we see this [different item numbers again!] and note the introduction of the Double Match Grooving plane, which could perform both of the functions of the individual planes  [i.e. Tongueing AND Grooving].

Here is the 1921 entry showing little difference to 1909:

1928 shows that #2944 stays the same number, whereas the Moving Grooving planes now are numbered #2947 and are also now called ‘Match Grooving Planes with Moving Fence‘; the Drawer Bottom Grooving Planes are now #2948 and the Double Match Grooving Planes become #2949.  As shown here:

1938, note the reduction in variety offered, the Double Match Grooving is de-listed as is the Drawer Bottom Grooving plane:

1959, offering the same planes as in 1938:

The last listing for these planes appears to be November 1963 when #2944 were 39/9d per pair and #2947 were 63/- each


The ‘Grooving Planes for Drawer Bottoms‘  first appeared in 1861, when it is noted that they were ‘Boxed’.  They went through many Item # changes …#884 in 1873;  #1011 in 1897; #2945 in 1909 and #2948 in 1928. They are not seen in the 1938 Catalogue.  In none of the Catalogues is an actual picture shown, but I am assuming that the two planes shown here are ‘Grooving Planes for Drawer Bottoms’. The cutters are 1/4inch wide but I cannot fathom out why there should be 2 ‘mirror image’ planes for this task!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email