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Thread: Your first real tool?

  1. #36
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    A Stanley metric socket set, that I got for my fifteenth birthday. Apart from the ratchet that some b'stard "borrowed", and a couple of sockets that have gone walkabout over the last forty something years, it is all there and in regular use.
    Stanley must have been pretty decent back then, because none of the original parts have ever failed, in spite of several "don't try this at home" moments.

    Pete
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  2. #37
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Quote Originally Posted by Al G View Post
    Its not a real tool if it doesn't have a power cord.

    [Nomad-voice]
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    I've been using a brace-and-bits since helping my Dad with his projects in the 1950s. Carried one on my wheelchair-repair truck for twenty years -- those battery powered drivers always died halfway through a job. Used it to drive screws, as a speedy driver for bolts & nuts, and drilled many a hole through everything from wood to chrome-moly steel. It gives you a much better 'feel' for how tight you're getting your work, and it's champion at breaking loose stuck stuff.

    .
    .

    “What use is a house if you haven’t got a tolerable planet to put it on?”


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  3. #38
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Christmas of third grade I got a wooden tool box with a Disston 8 point cross, a coping saw, two screw drivers, a bevel square, a 16 oz hammer and an egg beater drill with a hollow handle full of bits.

    They are all gone except the egg beater which is now in the possession of my youngest son.

  4. #39
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    All of my dad's tools were mine to use, BUT it was often stated(and well understood)that they were to be returned to the proper place,cleaner and sharper.

    One of my best friends just said to me ,"Man, your dad was great. He let us do whatever the **** we wanted when we were 14-15. Gasoline,chainsaw,tractor,trees,mud. You break it,you fix it."

    The most often used by this feral boy was a 24" bow(Swede) saw.
    R
    Last edited by Ron Williamson; 08-03-2017 at 11:41 AM.
    Sleep with one eye open.

  5. #40
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    When it was built, the house I grew up in had a windmill to supply the domestic water from (1880's to maybe the 1920's). The windmill was over a brick lined "well" about 6 feet deep that contained the well pump. In the 1940's the windmill was long gone and the brick lined well was then filled in with dirt. flash froward to the very early '70's, when I was about ten my brother and I were playing around and found the top of the bricks and got the great idea to dig out the well. Well, we got it all dug out, even found the pump, still plumbed into the pipe for the well point (eventually got the pump working). At the bottom, about 6 feet down I found the rust encrusted remains of an old wood chisel. -- I banged the rust off, cleaned it up on a grinding wheel, and made a handle for it from a piece of English oak from an English oak tree that had been growing in from of the house for 80+ years (until lightning got it).

    I have no idea what kind of steel this chisel is made of but it holds a sharper edge and for longer than just about any other edge tool I have; and I have probably 100 - 150 good quality vintage and antique edge tools (planes, chisels, draw knifes, spoke shaves, etc etc)

    It looks like crap, but gets special care.

    Last edited by nedL; 08-04-2017 at 12:16 PM.

  6. #41
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    can you see if the cutting edge steel is welded to the rest? I would guess that is cast crucible steel forge welded to a wrought iron body and socket.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  7. #42
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Maybe "welling" a tool is a good way to improve the edge holding quality of it?
    If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
    -Henry David Thoreau-

  8. #43
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    can you see if the cutting edge steel is welded to the rest? I would guess that is cast crucible steel forge welded to a wrought iron body and socket.
    Nick, It does not appear to be a laminated tool (I have a bunch of those, and can ID them easily in a number of ways.) I will say this takes a good while on a stone it is just so hard. Unfortunately I chipped one corner (small) of the blade a couple of years ago and just can't bring myself to taking the edge down below that point.

  9. #44
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    I think that I have some "non" laminated chisels stamped "Cast Steel", but that may just be an advertising gimmick used after the cast steel method of production was obsolete. It certainly produced a hard steel, similar to Japanese white paper steel.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  10. #45
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Quote Originally Posted by sharpiefan View Post

    [Nomad-voice]
    ERROR. NON-SEQUITOR. YOUR FACTS ARE UN-COORDINATED.
    [/Nomad-voice]



    I've been using a brace-and-bits since helping my Dad with his projects in the 1950s. Carried one on my wheelchair-repair truck for twenty years -- those battery powered drivers always died halfway through a job. Used it to drive screws, as a speedy driver for bolts & nuts, and drilled many a hole through everything from wood to chrome-moly steel. It gives you a much better 'feel' for how tight you're getting your work, and it's champion at breaking loose stuck stuff.
    I screwed down my roof with a brace and bi with a modified driver before we got the power on. It worked very well. No trouble driving roofing screws into old hardwood battens, a real test for a battery drill less than 18 volts .
    '' You ain't gonna learn what you don't want to know. ''
    Grateful Dead

  11. #46
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    I think that I have some "non" laminated chisels stamped "Cast Steel", but that may just be an advertising gimmick used after the cast steel method of production was obsolete. It certainly produced a hard steel, similar to Japanese white paper steel.
    Likewise, I have a fair number marked "cast steel",.. mid 19th century. Usually an indication of a good quality old edge tool.

  12. #47
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    When i was about five my dad made me a proper minature woodworking bench, it was about 4ft 6" long & stood 2ft high, complete with a little record 6" vice. At first i had plastic toy tools but these were rapidly replaced with real ones, and yes i too got an Exacto tool set in a black bakelite box, many model boats & aeroplanes got built on that bench & then it got used for rebuilding airguns. It is still in my mums shed. I must rescue it!

  13. #48
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    I think that I have some "non" laminated chisels stamped "Cast Steel", but that may just be an advertising gimmick used after the cast steel method of production was obsolete. It certainly produced a hard steel, similar to Japanese white paper steel.
    I haunt junk shops and on line auction sites, buy any old chisels, planes and such that are going cheap, even broken ones or no handles etc. The really damaged planes go in the spare parts box, with the chisels I check them out for the quality of the steel, grind off the corrosion and pitting, turn up new handles and fit them and sell them off as "high grade rebuilds". I do quite well from them, its not really a contribution to my livelihood but is more a little hobby that pays for itself, plus I get to keep the really good ones.

    I got two good Stanley planes this week, a no 3 and a no 4, both really old, both in good shape, $45 for the pair including freight, those will stay with me.
    I'm watching for a no 2, they're really rare.

    John Welsford
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  14. #49
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    "Handy Andy" tool set for my birthday, probably around age 5. I hadn't started school yet. I still have the metal box, in which I keep a couple of drill motors. I think a screwdriver is still around. I use the small carpenter's square. It's a handy size, about a foot on the long leg. I still have the metal block plane, but it's a curio. It never did work worth a damn.
    The small "egg beater" drill is still around, as well. Once in a while it gets grabbed out of the drawer for drilling something small and slow.

    The set had a small handsaw which was quite sharp. It was my first saw... and my first scar. It's still there on my right hand.

    My dad was something of a hobby woodworker. There were always tools around, but some were "hands off" until I got older. My dad didn't have a huge shop, but he did have a drill press, 4" jointer/planer, jig saw (what they'd call a "scroll saw" these days,) a wood lathe, and a 7" table saw, all 1950's King-Seeley/Craftsman cast iron. Over time as was appropriate to my age, starting with the jig saw, he taught me to use all of them. Tool care went along with it. I still have and use them. He'd grown up on his family's cattle ranch in Montana. His motto was, "If you can't fix it, you have no business owing it." He was born in 1910. That motto may have been possible in his youth, but by the end of his life, there were a whole lot of things people had to have, but had no hope of fixing! He was a walking encyclopedia of "how to do it" information. One of the most valuable things he instilled in me was a love of learning how things were made, how they worked, and the value of having tools to get the job done.

  15. #50
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Quote Originally Posted by john welsford View Post
    I haunt junk shops and on line auction sites, buy any old chisels, planes and such that are going cheap, even broken ones or no handles etc. The really damaged planes go in the spare parts box, with the chisels I check them out for the quality of the steel, grind off the corrosion and pitting, turn up new handles and fit them and sell them off as "high grade rebuilds". I do quite well from them, its not really a contribution to my livelihood but is more a little hobby that pays for itself, plus I get to keep the really good ones.

    I got two good Stanley planes this week, a no 3 and a no 4, both really old, both in good shape, $45 for the pair including freight, those will stay with me.
    I'm watching for a no 2, they're really rare.

    John Welsford
    Most of my tools came from car boot sales, and an online tool dealer. Those from the dealer all required restoration, and so were affordable. the car boot stuff was for pennies or less than a fiver.
    Disston saws, Stanley Baily pattern planes, cast steel chisels, and a couple of wood filled cast iron planes.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  16. #51
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    My Dad is not particularly adept with tools, so we never really had much around the house, but I grew up helping the farmer next door from about age 6 on and learned how to use tools from him. At 15, I was hired by a friend of my father's to help out at his business repairing pinball machines, video games and vending machines. I had to use tools as part of the job, so I took my first couple paychecks and bought some basic Craftsman screwdrivers, wrenches, pliers and a tool box. I still have and use all of them, except the toolbox which was crushed by my 1979 Chevy pickup when a jack slipped...
    Bill R

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  17. #52
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    My first real tool was a Boy Scout pocket knife, when I was about nine years old. It may have gotten some use in building my first "boat," a raft made of scrap lumber, that I poled onto a tiny neighborhood pond in a northern suburb of Chicago, Niles.

    The second was an X-Acto knife, when I was ten, bought to work on balsa and tissue paper flying model airplanes that I didn't yet have a motor for.

  18. #53
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    When I was about 8 I got some tools including a Disston saw with a reddish plastic handle, still have it for mostly sentimental reasons, it has some bends in it and the handle is brittle and has some breaks. I also got a brace and about 4 bits. I think I still have one or two of the single flute bits, but I do have the brace. It is rigid, not ratcheted, and makes a great screwdriver.
    Great thread, thanks for starting it

  19. #54
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Quote Originally Posted by David W Pratt View Post
    When I was about 8 I got some tools including a Disston saw with a reddish plastic handle, still have it for mostly sentimental reasons, it has some bends in it and the handle is brittle and has some breaks. I also got a brace and about 4 bits. I think I still have one or two of the single flute bits, but I do have the brace. It is rigid, not ratcheted, and makes a great screwdriver.
    Great thread, thanks for starting it
    The Disston will not be as high quality as a Disston Philadelphia, but if you want to continue to use it some skilled work with a light cross pein hammer will stretch the kinks out of it.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  20. #55
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    A Sandvik was my first saw , I still have it . Dad's Distons are greased and hanging on the wall.
    '' You ain't gonna learn what you don't want to know. ''
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  21. #56
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Used my dad's hand tools as a child. Didn't have much as he wasn't much more than a small repair fix it guy. My first "real" tool, beyond pliers/screwdrivers, etc. was bought by me at the age of..23? It was a Craftsman lathe. A lathe of all things. Who buys a lathe without having a bunch of stuff prior?!?! I wish I could tell you exactly but I think it had something to do with baseball bats. This was followed by a radial arm saw but the first tool.... a lathe. I have branched out substantially now.

  22. #57
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    My circle saw is still going, by the by. It's my "ripping" saw. Set up on a permanent sled and used to rip long pieces of wood.
    Oh, it's been fixed a bunch of times, and has a new foot, but it's still cutting.

    So's my nice worm drive saw, too. It's about 3 years younger.

    Peace,
    Two Saws

  23. #58
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    My Grandfather (from Maine) was a tool "Drummer" (a salesman). He would leave home Sunday night on the Boston Train headed down the east coast with his heavy canvas roll of samples and return on Friday night. (This was before the depression) Consequently we had tools of every description all over the house. There was a wooden dresser in the kitchen with the bottom drawer chock full of tools. (It was warm and cozy in the kitchen, not so much in the barn!) There was a tool cabinet in the barn, there were tools hanging on the walls there long handled tools stuck between the rafters and joists. My father had workshop in the basement and a box of household tools and a box of automotive tools that were gifted from his father. When I was quite young my most special day was a day spent "playing" with tools.
    (Some of the best tools ever made came from the classic manufacturing centers of New England. Starret, and Stevens in western Massachusetts, Brown and Sharp originated as D&S in Bangor, Stanley started in Vermont with the framing square and etc. These were some of the manufacturers that my grandfather represented.)
    I still have a few of those tools, and I definately have the "habit" of collecting tools. It's a sickness, really!

  24. #59
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    I am guessing that your grandfather may have sold American "Buck Brand Chisles". One famous Brittish edge tool maker was "Addis London Steel". The factory was bombed out durning the Blitz and was never re-built. I have several of their carving chisels. The are very very good tools. Mine are forge welded laminates.
    Jay

  25. #60
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    The Disston will not be as high quality as a Disston Philadelphia, but if you want to continue to use it some skilled work with a light cross pein hammer will stretch the kinks out of it.
    I've half a dozen handsaws hanging on pegs in my shop, but for all the use they get these days they are really only decoration. I use my Japanese saws many times a day, the bandsaw, the cordless circular saw, the jigsaw, the bandsaw and the bench saw do the heavy work.
    Things change but I still keep the old tools, they're part of what I am.

    John Welsford
    An expert is but a beginner with experience.

  26. #61
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    Default Re: Your first real tool?

    Likely his customers were mostly hardware stores. Every town in America had a hardware store, and a pretty good one. The only thing comparable today is McMaster-Carr. But perhaps the main thing was that he knew and liked tools and had a collection of his own. Some of the edged tools were English. Rosewood handled pairing chisels and etc. I have a few of those. But there were plumbing tools, boat-building tools, machinists tools, farming tools, automotive tools, you name it. While my grandmother was in her declining years most of it was either discarded at the dump or stolen by my cousins and sold at the local flea market. I have only a few things from him. One is a like new nickel-plated leaf spring spreader, to lubricate between the individual leaves of an automobile spring...
    The first tool I can remember having as my own was a Starrett 0-1" micrometer with a vernier scale. Of course it came with "The Lesson" in how to hold and use it, I was probably in the third grade. I used to keep it in my pocket. Take it apart, count the threads per inch, divide that count into 1 inch to get .025" per revolution and then how to use the vernier scale to further reduce 1 thousandth of an inch into 10 parts. That would be .0001". I can't count the number of friends and employees I have given that lesson to since then. And I still have that little "mike"!
    (Did I mention that his father owned a trading schooner that worked between Boston and Belfast? No telling what tools might have been related to that 1860-80 escapade! He was forbbidden from attending church by getting caught attending horse racing on Sunday!)

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