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A Pause For Thought, Stewart Spiers

Ken Roberts
(author and publisher of “Some 19th Century English Woodworking Tools”)

For what reason are the designs of the metal dovetailed line of planes made by THOMAS NORRIS of London so similar to those made by STEWART SPIERS of Ayre Scotland? Did the former copy those of the latter? Is it possible that THOMAS NORRIS when a young lad first observed Spiers’ planes at the London Crystal Palace Exhibition in 1851 and admired their graceful design? In any event, it cannot be denied that STEWART SPIERS made such planes at least twenty years previous to THOMAS NORRIS.

In this writer’s opinion, if the NORRIS plane products are superior to those of SPIERS, which is indeed questionable, it was principally due to the advancement in machining technology in the early twentieth century.

Appeared 1995 – Toolshop Auctions Catalogue

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