The depth stop itself must have been quite loose as some past owner has driven a
small cut nail against the side of the stem, and also placed a small wooden shim
in the mortise.
These crude repairs have in actually worked well as the stop moves up and down
very smoothly with no play.
There is also two scribed lines on the underside of the stems. These correspond
to forming a rebate in 1 3/4" stock for sashes.
I have also noted a feature on this plane that has made me examine other stemmed
planes in my collection. The rear stem has a small radius worked on the inner
lower corner. This is repeated on the mortice running through the stock of the
plane, and also worked into the brass cap at the end of the stem.
The reason for this detail is to make the stem more cofortable for the fingers
to curl round while using the plane. I had not noticed this subtle detail
before, but having checked other ploughs and fillisters, I have found a number
of them share this design feature.
The plane has at least 4 owner's stamps and I thought it might be nice to try
and track them down. The earliest looking stamp was "R Gleam". I managed to find
a carpenter called Richard Gleam from Godstone in Surry He took two apprentices
in 1774 and 1776.