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Old Mortice Gauge

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promhandicam

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I was given this at the weekend.






I gather from the stamp that it dates from between 1860 and 1871 which was when Samuel Tyzack was at 8 Old Street. Interesting that the stamp actually says Old St Road - nice to see that people cocked things up 150 years ago and just put up with the mistake.

My question is what should I do to it. I don't intend using it on a daily basis for sentimental reasons as it belonged to my great grandfather, and I don't intend selling it either. It is in pretty good condition and if it wasn't for the surface rust on the screws I'd be tempted to leave it as it is but am wondering whether to clean all the metal work up and give the whole thing a coat of wax to protect it. What do people think?

Steve
 

Dee J

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Mortice gauge surely? the best preservation is frequent handling and use - otherwise just rub a little wax in and buff well. Serious cleaning will wipe out all the character and history and leave you with a bland lifeless object.

Dee
 

promhandicam

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Dee J":2l25t284 said:
Mortice gauge surely? the best preservation is frequent handling and use - otherwise just rub a little wax in and buff well. Serious cleaning will wipe out all the character and history and leave you with a bland lifeless object.

Dee
My mistake, mortice not mitre - title edited accordingly.

Steve.
 

woodbloke

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It needs to be used, but I think I'd give the brass work a gentle going over with Brasso and try and clean up the worst of the rust on the screws...then a good coat of wax all over - Rob
 

jimi43

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RENAISSANCE WAX (freely available on Amazon or FleaBay) is considered by museums (including the British Museum), to be a restoration and protective product for woods and metals without giving an over-cleaned look or destroying the patina.

I have used it on all my antique infills and I agree...and if it's good enough for the BM...then it's good enough for me.

This is an infill with bronze/gunmetal lever cap....with only a clean with Renaissance wax




....as you can see...this is also a Tyzack!


I also cleaned up a very similar gauge to yours which Douglas photographed in his cutting gauge comparison...



It's the middle one.

Renaissance wax will provide a beautiful "clean patinated" look.

Cheers

Jim
 

Benchwayze

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I'll get some of that Renaissance wax Jimi.
D'you think it might help with my 'crows-feet'? :lol: :lol:

Maybe Rob's got the right idea though, and a gentle clean wouldn't come amiss. But it would be a shame to lose the colour in that gauge. (hammer)
 

Cheshirechappie

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Use it!

Some of my favourite tools are ones I've inherited. They tend to be good performers, and there's an extra pleasure in using something with a family connection.

Besides, it would be interesting to see how it's performance compared to a modern one...
 

dunbarhamlin

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What an awfully sensible design. After all, how many mortise chisels do we have? (Alright, alright, you don't have to be truthful.)
Set it once, and it's good for its working life. Would like a modern equivalent.
 

promhandicam

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dunbarhamlin":ka7gtd4b said:
What an awfully sensible design. After all, how many mortise chisels do we have? (Alright, alright, you don't have to be truthful.)
Set it once, and it's good for its working life. Would like a modern equivalent.
You are right. No knobs or wedges to get knocked - a screw in the end to adjust the width of the two pins and a screw to fix the the position of the fence. Just over 6" long and a tad under 13oz (160mm and 360gm in new money) so it fits nicely in the hand but has some weight behind it. Lee Valley / Veritas take note!

Thanks to everyone else for their input. Looks like I will be ordering some renaissance wax and then putting it to use. I'll set it up for marking out the mortices on external doors as both the size of the timber and the size of the mortice are standard.

Cheers,

Steve
 

jimi43

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AndyT":3gc0frqz said:
Just use it and look after it as your grandfather would have done - so no Brasso!

Incidentally "Old Street Road" was not a mistake - this is from the first old London map that I had bookmarked:

http://booth.lse.ac.uk/cgi-bin/do.p...=16547&b.p.y=6680&b.p.w=500&b.p.h=309&b.p.l=1

I've not seen that map comparison with the old Booth one. Amazing stuff Andy...especially an A-Z of class!

Thanks for sharing that!

Tyzack have a lot of historical information available...when I was doing some research for the old infill smoother there was plenty of stuff available over the years until today. An amazing family business indeed....on par with the Sorby clan!

Cheers

Jim
 

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