This email asks two questions and I thought others might benefit.
I have an old Stanley #4 that I have cleaned up and been using for a while, however the lateral adjustment is very stiff. I am wondering how I would go about loosing it, or if it is even a problem? Also what are your thoughts about using beeswax for plane soles?
I suppose you have applied WD40 or a drop of oil. Sometimes secondhand or old tools are still tools that had almost no use but can look old because of exposure to damp and atmosphere, therefore the parts have minimal use. Often the lateral adj levers on new planes were stiff, one tap too many, but usually loosened up quite quickly; within a few weeks anyway. I would persevere with the stiffness. It should adjust just fine but can result in overcompensating a little. It will loosen soon. I think a plain old wax candle works equally well and so too furniture polish. Beeswax has always been a bit sticky for me. On the other hand, my favourite friction fixer is a 4oz tomato can stuffed with a carefully folded and rolled up teeshirt cloth. Make it about 1/2″ taller than the can and really work it in as tight as you can. Take a can of 3-1 light machine oil and keep filling the rag. Do this regularly and eventually you will only need to top it up once every six months. You can then leave it on the bench, rub the plane over it and it will operate smoothly. I also use this on the side of my saws and other tools. Used this for nearly fifty years.