Mini Tool Gloat

My Mother in law has been under the weather the past couple of weeks, so SWMBO and I have been spending a lot of time with her in the hospital
and her husband (at home). The FIL is starting to lose his faculties, so we have to check up on him daily, make sure he gets enough nourishment and generally make sure he takes his meds and bathes once in a while. I often sit with him and "relive" his past. This past weekend, he told me that he wants me to "get those dam tools outa the basement..."I'll never use them so please get them to a good home".....
I expected him to have a couple of "Wen" grade tools, bent screw drivers and claw hammers with broken claws...SURPRISE
When we went down stairs, he took a couple of plastic sheets off of a table that contained the "cutest" little lathe...a 1952 Craftsman 6", with 3 and 4 jaw chucks, a dead center, a steady rest, a couple of mics, a bunch of tooling, a couple of gear sets, pulleys, and a box of stock (brass, "tool steel", rods and shafts, bushings, and aluminum....
If seems that he was a "Bowling Alley Mechanic" from WWII until he retired in the 70's and he bought the lathe to make bushings and shafts for the pin setters he had to keep running. He made a lot of the parts because he couldn't see paying AMF or Brunswick 50 cents for a bushing he could make him self..... Over the past 25 years or so, it has been sitting in his basement waiting for a new home. He hasn't run it since it left the bowling alley, but it has been lubed. Each year when he changed the batteries in the smoke detector, he went down to the basement and slopped oil on the ways, the gears and just about anything that got in his way. Through the years, the oil has built up and dried out so that It is just about like Cosmoline... Sticky and gooey. I cleaned the bed with "Brake Kleen" and it is flawless. Like wise the chucks, steady rest,ect. The tooling was wrapped in the rust resistant paper and all looked new.
As I was marveling over my good fortune, he dragged me over the the other side of the basement and uncovered a set of shelves with a great collection of wooden hand planes, chisels and funny little tools that I still have to figure out. It seems that my MIL's grand father was a cabinet maker and these are his tools, and he inherited some of them from his father and grandfather (both cabinet makers). I haven't brought the wood working tools home yet, but I expect them to have been cared for just like the lathe.
I feel like a kid in a candy store....
I know that I won't be "running with the big dogs", making the big chips like many of you with big iron, but I does feel good to "get off the porch" and be able to make little chips with my little lathe.
Greg Postma
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Very cool! Depending on the model of the Sears lathe, you could have a very fine machine. Some of those old planes could be worth some money to collectors! Lane
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"Just Me" <notreal at nowhere dot com> wrote in message

and
often
he
them
with
retired
he
make
slopped
other
from
just
very
And a right bastard he would be to sell them, too.
Fourth generation tools are not supposed to be sold just 'cause they are worth some money.
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On Thu, 7 Jul 2005 19:58:08 -0300, "jtaylor"

No point in keeping tools one would never use if another might appreciate them and use them well. I agree that they should go to the "best user", not necessarily the highest bidder. That kinda rules out Ebay.
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Don Foreman wrote:

Seems He already was given very specific instructions . " get them to a good home " , no confusion I can see . The gentleman loved his tools and wants them in the hands of someone who will work them with respect . Isn't that the way we all feel ? Ken Cutt
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jtaylor wrote:

Yes, I am a right proper bastard and thank you for noticing<G>.
How ever, I do agree about 4th generation tools. When my grandfather moved to Florida in the 1960, he gave me his tools. He also was a cabinet maker and never owned a power tool. He was a pattern maker at Pullman Co. from the 1920's til he retired in 1960. I still remember this tool box, flat black and butt ugly on the out side and cherry, mahogany and rosewood on the inside. A place for ever thing and every thing in it's place. I got married, moved about and when I went back to my folks place to collect the tool box after I bought a home, I found out that the tool box and tools were badly damage by a flood in the basement and my Dad tossed the whole works out. I was heart broken. I now have a second chance at owning experienced tools. I hope that my hands will someday be as good as the hands that once owned these tools.
Greg
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snip-------

Yep! Sometimes you have to appreciate things for what they are, and what they represent.
Harold
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Just Me wrote:

Lane, I think that the Craftsman lathe will suit me fine . I don't plan on doing any thing with tolerances to close. Mainly just learning the craft. As for the planes, my beloved and I were at dinner tonight and she was trying to figure out how old the WW tools might be. She figures some of them might be from the 1840-1850 era. I plan on using those which are usable and displaying those which are not. She even offered to let me put "the prettiest one" in the display case with her Royal Dalton figures. Gotta love the woman......... In any case, I don't believe that they will leave my grubby little hands until I pass them down to one of our sons.
Greg
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Greg Postma wrote:

Damn!
All I ever got from my FIL were a lot of requests to fix broken stuff for him.
Some guys have all the luck. <G>
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia

(W1BSV + Brass Rat '57 EE)
  Click to see the full signature.
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Jeff Wisnia wrote:

Jeff, After my FIL gave me the tools, He asked my to help change his Depends, so I guess things even out.
Greg
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Yeah... When my FIL died, he had hundreds of tools... All 99-cent "pocket-buster rack" stuff with the blades bent, rusted, and not worth the gas to take them to the dump. He owned no less than six broken electric drills, all of a quality that cost at least $7.95 at retail.
Good stuff is a remarkable find.
LLoyd
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Lloyd E. Sponenburgh wrote:

My father in law had some pretty nice tools. Which is as it should be, as he was a toolmaker who worked for L.S. Starrett. He started working there full-time in 1941 and, except for a couple of years at the end of WWII, worked there his entire career. He was still putting in 40+ hour weeks when he died in 2001. His son, however, inherited his things, which was fine with me as I already had most of the hand tools I need.
My great grandfather was a cabinetmaker, and I have his tool chest and many of his tools - some of which may very well come from his father or grandfather. Plus, I have my grandfather's tools. It's when I work with those that, if I take my time, I can often hear the tools talking to me and feel their hands guiding them along with mine. I'll sometimes surprise myself with how well I do something, then realize that I had help.
Not much soul in a broken electric drill, but a hundred-year old plane or gouge or micrometer is a different matter.
John Martin
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On Thu, 07 Jul 2005 19:09:52 -0400, Jeff Wisnia

Never had a FiL - he died when SWMBO was a year old; but I did rent a room from an older couple for 12 years when I refused to move my family to regional office. Before the husband passed away he passed on a few favoured items as something I might be interested in, latter, the wife passed on more things including several coins from a great aunt who had taken a fancy to her "young man". Two weeks ago, my youngest son was married and into the brides shoe went an 1893 silver sixpence from this collection. The elderly lady (87) attended the wedding and was pleased about the sixpence. I just talked to her and will be visiting Saturday to install a ceiling fan in her kitchen. She has now been a member of our family for 23 years and hopefully many more. Gerry :-)} London, Canada
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Jeff Wisnia wrote:

My FIL sold off all his tools right before I met his daughter. Had a nice collection too, from what I heard.
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Great finds! I hope you put them to good use, as tools should be.

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"Greg Postma" wrote: (clip) This past weekend, he told me that he wants me to "get those dam tools outa the basement..."I'll never use them so please get them to a good home".....(clip) ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ There is a part to this story that you are not telling us, either because you don't realize it, or because you are too modest. That old man may be losing his faculties, but he has known you for years, and he must realize how you will respect and value those tools. Your reaction shows me that those tools are going to the right person.
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There is just a great sense of satisfaction in working with the hand tools of your ancestors, it is as if the tools know what to do.
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I find that when using my FIL's tools I use them in a way that would respect him. The tools that I buy I will use if I'm going to abuse the tool. lg no neat sig line

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Cool.. Very cool.
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Hey, I was going to say that!
It really is cool!
I have a few of my father's tools, a carpenter that died in '69. No value placed on them.
Harold
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