Stanley planes by numbers 18  -  A 18  -  S 18   18 1/4

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Stanley 18 block plane aka knuckle joint block plane

offered 1888 - 1950

6"  long with  a 1 5/8" cutter

Improved version of the 9 1/2 The knuckle joint lever cap provides a nice, smooth grip without the hard edges of the 9 1/2 series planes.

Caution: some price guides still list the value of early models aka type 1 or 2 as a lot higher. The lever cap design on those is flimsy - the users have spoken. With all types readily available on eBay the old models have dropped to virtually worthless whilst the good user planes have kept their value.

early lever caps don't work!

Stanley A 18 aluminium block plane

Stanley A18  aluminium block plane

offered 1925 - 1935

6"  long with  a 1 5/8" cutter.

Watch out for deep scratches to sole and make sure the lever cap sits tightly. With the aluminium models the lever cap holding-screw, anchored in the body, can become loose with wear.

Only the plane body is aluminium, all the other parts are nickel plated metal identical to the non-aluminium block planes.  As you can see on the plane pictured here, the plating is often worn and the brass might shine through the front knob, the depth adjuster or the lever cap.

more on aluminium planes see A4


Stanley S 18 steel block plane

Stanley S18 steel block plane

offered 1925 - 1942

6"  long with  a 1 5/8" cutter

Pressed steel block plane of the "unbreakable" variety designed for schools and clumsy woodworkers. Doesn't show up all that often and when it does it's frequently mistaken for a cheap 118. Bargain time on eBay!

more on steel planes see S4


Stanley 18 1/4 block plane

Stanley 18 1/4 block plane

offered 1952 - 1958

6"  long with  a 1 5/8" cutter

A No 18 without the throat adjusting mechanism. A relatively late addition to the Stanley catalogue with a short life span. Some tool dealers offer them for a huge price. If prices keep going up at the current rate there will be more fakes coming up. It's easy to put a knuckle joint 18 cap on a 9 1/4 and make it look like an 18 1/4. Make sure you only buy the ones that have the model number on the side.

looks like the real thing but this actually is a 9 1/4 !