I know this isn't strictly blacksmithing, but the metalworking group seems pretty dead.
My dad gave me an old, old metal shear this afternoon, and I'm fairly consumed with curiosity about the sucker.
It's a Stanley Unishear, No. 16-A. It's a wacky looking machine, but it's still running well. All I could find out about it was that the company (Stanley Electric Tool Div.) was founded in 1930- and this thing looks to be old enough (style-wise) to be one of the first things to roll off the assembly line.
As always, when I stumble across something that is this old, I'm interested in learning it's age and whatever other tidbits of information about it I can uncover. I know there is an old woodworking machinery website, but could not find a similar site for metalworking tools.
So, here's a description of the thing, in case anyone on the list has seen one of these before, and can tell me anything about it.
It's a hand-held electric metal shear with a maximum 16ga. capacity (iron) that looks and feels like it is entirely cast from grey iron. It has a universal motor whose casing is molded right along with the gear box, and a handle that resembles an old gent's saw that extends from the back end of the motor to near the front of the shear, and has a diamond pattern moulded into the handle where the grip is. The logo is a cast fish with the word "UNISHEAR" on it. Overall, it just looks like something from the 30's or 40's.
The writing on the plates is still easily legible, and is as follows:
On the motor, the plate contains this information:
Stanley Cap. 16ga. Type 16A volts 115 Amps 3.0 Ser. U321871 RPM no load 2500 RPM load 1800110-120 Stanley Electric Tools New Britian, Conn. Made in USA
On the Gear box, it has this to say for itself:
No Universal Motor Stanley Unishear Stanley Electric Tool Div The Stanley Works New Britian, Conn Made in USA Pat 1796812 1848655 Pat 1321918 1765313 1765317 1848147 Re 17739 Gt Britain 299044 Canada 293620 No 16A Capacity 16 USA gage 0.062 Iron
As noted above, the thing is still running like a champ, and I'm thinking about polishing it up and putting it to work- But, sometimes old stuff like this needs careful handling when restoring it if a guy wants to preserve it's value. It's got a little surface rust on the shear foot, and it appears that it used to have black paint on some areas that has almost entirely worn away.
So, anyone know anything about this sucker? Is it some ultra-rare find, or just an old junker that happened to survive?