Sunday, October 4, 2009

Tools of the Trades

Some New-Old Tools

It's Sunday afternoon and I spent the morning out in Pickering, Ontario at the Tools of the Trades Show. It's a really nice gathering of vintage and antique tool dealers peddling their wares to wood geeks like me! I would have posted some info on the event sooner but I only found out about it myself this past week. Oh well, for those that missed it you can catch the Spring session in April.
I went there this morning with nothing in mind really, I don't actually have a short list of tools I currently 'need' or even 'want'(imagine that). Once there though I found many, many tools I would have loved to acquire but my wife would have shot me if I came home with a truck load of new-old tools!
Anyhow, I did make two small purchases- the first is a small little oil can; I wanted one of these for awhile now and this one fit the bill perfectly. I'll use it to keep my Jojoba oil in. Jojoba oil is a natural, non-toxic oil product I use on my tools to keep rust at bay. It's similar to the camellia oil you may find for sale at places like Lie Nielsen Toolworks. The main difference is it's a little heavier but easily found off-the-shelf at health food stores while camellia oil is a little more rare(at least it seems to be in Toronto). The little oil can is copper or brass I believe and will live nicely above my work bench.

The second treasure I stumbled over is a beautiful example of a 1930's Stanley No.22 Transitional Smoother. If you're familiar with transitional planes you may have read reviews about the problems they seem to have with the rear totes moving and becoming loose while in use. One big plus about the No.22 is it doesn't have a rear tote, problem! For anyone that isn't familiar with transitional planes they were wooden bodied planes that had a cast iron frame screwed into the body which was usually made from Beech. This perticular model has a kind of squat, mushroom shaped knob that's a little beafier than the taller, slimmer styles found on Stanley's metal planes. I like this 'robust' little front knob and find it fits my hand quite nicely.
Stanley claimed that "Every Carpenter needs two or more wood planes in his kit, for rough outside work" and the transitional plane was the answer for it. For a wooden bodied smoother, I really like the feel of this model and the fact that it doesn't have the rear tote adds to the comfort while in use. This model was also the first with a lateral adjuster. If you'd like some more information about transitional planes or any other Stanley hand planes for that matter, check out Patrick Leach's web site. It's an incredible resource of information.

This one is in beautiful shape with the original chip breaker and iron, a near-perfect condition lever cap and very-very few marks on the sole. Having the original chip breaker and iron with the added bonus of the Sweetheart logo still clearly visible was a nice touch indeed but that said, I'll rip them out of it as soon as I can and replace them with new ones from Ron Hock! What can I say I'm a worker, not a collector!

So these were my finds, small treasures on a nice Sunday morning surrounded by vintage tools and friendly people. If you were there you know what I'm talking about, if you missed it then maybe you can make the next one in April.

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