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Rust Successfully Hunted! A ramble

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Alf

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A rambling, and ultimately pointless, post. You've been warned.

Seems like an age since I went to a car boot and actually came away with something - probably 'cos it is - but not a bad weekend. Small, but cheap; which is about my level these days. :wink: Got a very nice 8", 18ppi dovetail saw by "Clegg" of Uxbridge Road yesterday. Still got to attend to those pesky tiny teeth a bit more, but it cleaned up beautifully. Dates given in British Planemakers for Clegg at that address put it between the wars most likely. The Stanley #wotsit marking gauge I asked about (the one that clamps on the diagonal), was a no-go at £4. Shame, but it was simply covered in plaster dust and I have principles. [-(

But today, I got some real rust. Genuine, scrabble-in-the-bottom-of-the-box, how-much-is-this?, answer-is-less-than-a-quid, rust. Ahhhh, bliss. :D Started off thinking over a 6" sweep ratchetting brace. Very rusty, and the ratchet seemed reluctant to move. So while it was a "good" size, I decided to pass. Decided I couldn't justify the 5 or 6ppi panel saw, although it looked old, and skirted the Canadian Disston c.1970s like it smelt. (It did - the handle on it was Blister City, Arizona). Hmm, that's the third set of dominoes I've seen so far...

Carried on, not seeing much at all. So I dived for the rust box on what my folks call "the chinaman" stall. (Took me ages to relise they didn't mean he had oriental ancestry; he simply has good china... #-o ) Found a wad punch; 11/16", and in reasonable nick. Do I need one? Well not yet, but depending on what he wants for it, you never know, do you...? [-X Scrabble a bit more and lookee here, there's another one. 3/8". Kewl. :D Both with government arrows, one dated 1956, one 1960. They'll go nicely with the 3/4" one that came in The Tool Chest. Not that I'm a c*ll*ct*r... :whistle: Might as well get to the bottom of this box then. No more punches, but, yeauch, an extremely rusty engineer's square. Forget i- Hang on, what's that wing nut? Hmm, not the usual sort. Sort of rings a bell; worth a shot at cleaning it up if the price is right. So to the nitty gritty. How much? 50p. Fair enough. No need to haggle there. \:D/ I move on.

Way over on the other side of the market is a regular. Never bought anything off him 'cos he's never had anything worth having. But he has a box of rust, so I'm going in. Ahhh, an engineer's bevel. At least that's what I'd call it. Thumbwheel seized up, and fairly rusty. Might as well ask, on the off chance it's a reasonable figure. How much? He looks. He peers. He laughs. "Bit rusty isn't it?" It is? Gosh, I hadn't noticed. "Ah, go on, have it. You'll have a few hours to spend to get it working" (said with much hilarity. Evidentally he thinks I'm nuts. He may have a point...) :shock: \:D/ \:D/ I was fulsome in my thanks, while also being dumbfounded at such a freebie. And you thought it was a dog eat dog world out there in rust land. [-X Anyway, here's the 50p haul (sorry, no thumbnails today):



Gotta say, I was beginning to wonder what I'd bought and if I hadn't just facilitated the moving of ferous oxide from one area of Cornwall to another with no visible gain. 8-[ But I set to work. The, ah hum, pedal-powered Dremel made short work of sharpening the punches. :whistle: Nothing would shift the wing nut on the square 'cos the bolt was spinning like a windmill, so again the Dremel was used to make a slot in the bolt for a screwdriver. Managed to get it off, but the bolt and (very crappy) wing nut are a right-off. Ho hum. :( But here's the bevel blade I thought was in there. Huzzah! A maker - HMM Ltd, a country of manufacture - Made in England, and a patent number - 497450. Awarded to Harry Millward in December 1938 for "Improvements in or relating to mechanic's and like squares". He had big ideas, did Harry:
to provide an improved tool which also can be used as a bevel gauge, depth or height gauge, scriber or calliper
Luckily, having found the patent, I also have the description of how it's supposed to do all these things. :roll: :lol: Some wet 'n' dry and a quick scrabble for a replacement bolt and nut and its all ready to go. Funny how I thought I'd seen it before, but I can't find an example anywhere. Odd. The bevel was even easier, having a much better quality thumb screw - there's a lesson for you. The finished result, with the saw and the Tool Chest wad punch:



Not a gloat really, but some more rust saved from oblivion. Which is nice. And I got to look up patents and stuff, which was worth the 50p itself. Nothing like a bit of rust and research to make Alf a happy galoot. :wink:

Cheers, Alf
 

wizer

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very interesting alf!
 

Chris Knight

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Alf,

Quite an object lesson for me! I wouldn't have touched those rusty squares with a barge pole but after your ministrations, they not only look respectable, they look downright attractive! Lovely little saw too. Since I am not really into loading my own shotgun cartridges, you can keep the punches. :)
 

Alf

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waterhead37":1uc4fcc8 said:
Since I am not really into loading my own shotgun cartridges, you can keep the punches. :)
Ah, you say that now, but you'll come back begging when you want a leather washer for a chisel or summat. :wink:

I was surprised how well the square and bevel came up myself; I wonder if the finer milling on the measuring stuff makes for less healthy ground for the rust? Or is it harder so pitting isn't such a problem? Not sure, but a good result in this case. However a word of caution to anyone thinking to restore a metal square; very rarely will it still be square by the time you've finished - certainly not inside and out. Be prepared to get very fussy with a file and drive yourself insane. Usually I leave them, but this was an unusual case.

Cheers, Alf

P.S. Should be write-off, not right-off. D'oh. Well either way it's right off the square. :roll:

P.P.S. I should add a packet of baby wipes or equivalent are essential if you fancy a rust hunt of your own (Bank Holiday Mondays are usually good for Car Boot Sales) - unless you like an orange car interior...
 

Pete W

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Amazing clean-up job - like Chris, I'd never have entertained those.
 

DaveL

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Alf,

I will post you 50p, can you get me the same set of tools please? :wink:
You are a master at reviving old tools, they all now look very usable and desirable. :D

Tony,

Keep trying nice looking tools at a very good price, makes your £5 challenge look over priced. :? :wink:
 

Alf

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Tony":34kyo9ml said:
sounds good Alf, but not getting the pictures!
That's odd; d'you usually have trouble with Uploadit? Hang on, I'll shove 'em into the Cornish Workshop album instead and edit the first post.

Dave, why certainly. I think you might find the P&P charges rather high though... :wink:

Cheers, Alf
 

CHJ

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Alf":1krteikp said:
A maker - HMM Ltd, a country of manufacture - Made in England, and a patent number - 497450. Awarded to Harry Millward in December 1938 for "Improvements in or relating to mechanic's and like squares".

Snap
 

Alf

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Chas,

Hey, cool! Your markings are a bit different from the ones on mine. And you seem to have a better bolt too; pressed steel wingnut? Or a decent one? Have you had it from new, or what? Any info you may have gratefully lapped up. :D And do you use it for all these multitudinous tasks it claims to be able to do?

(Yeah, I know. I'm a sad case. I just really enjoy researching these 20thC tools. Too bad really, 'cos I'd get more respect if I was into 18thC woodies... #-o )

Cheers, Alf
 

CHJ

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Alf":8itep69u said:
Chas,

Hey, cool! Your markings are a bit different from the ones on mine. And you seem to have a better bolt too; pressed steel wingnut? Or a decent one?
No came with a 6BA Knurled nut siezed solid to a Csk screw, (edit; not the original I assume as both sides of the body are countersunk) currently running with similar replacement fitted after I took it apart to form part of a temp. jig.

Alf":8itep69u said:
Have you had it from new, or what?
Cheeky B****r I'm not that old, but I guess they could have still been arround post war. Mine came down to me via an auction off of a deceased colleagues' tools way back in the early seventies (edit; hence his initials not mine centre punched in side).
Alf":8itep69u said:
Any info you may have gratefully lapped up. :D And do you use it for all these multitudinous tasks it claims to be able to do?
He was a machinist/pattern maker in an aircraft research workshop, could easily have had it from new. And no I do not use it to it's intended potential, it just gets lifted off the rack when nothing else would be as easy to transfer an odd angle or suchlike. Just to good to throw away so it has survived.
 

dickm

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For what it's worth, that "square with a bevel" was still being made in the 1950s, 'cos I was given a new one as a present when I first caught the tool bug way back then! It was accurate enough (just) as a square, but I never found much use for the bevel, as it was not possible to tighten the wingnut enough to be sure the bevel would not shift. But it's possibly still lurking unloved somewhere in my odds and bobs drawer.
 

CHJ

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dickm":39a0s1gd said:
For what it's worth, that "square with a bevel" was still being made in the 1950s,
Could be about right for this one I should think, several Moore & Wright squares 2" to 10" in original wooden boxes of about that same era came along with it.
 
A

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This is my first post and to none other to Alf. I saw the square and bevel gage and thought I've seen that before. Sure enough in my latest Ebay purchase, I won 2 Stanley bevel gages, and this cute little square/bevel gage. Mine is in great shape with no doubt the original wingnut and the same patent number. Small world isn't it ? Seems like I paid $4.99 for all three as no one wanted the auction.

I think I'll put it to use making a few planes out of IPE stock of 4x6 that are 10 years old. I see a few jointers and few smoothers in the future.

Cheers,

Mike
across the pond
 

Alf

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CHJ":22dz4h4l said:
Alf":22dz4h4l said:
Have you had it from new, or what?
Cheeky B****r I'm not that old, but I guess they could have still been arround post war.
I wasn't suggesting nuffink by it, guv. Honest. :oops: My thinking was more that if you had, we'd know it was in production really recently... :whistle:

CHJ":22dz4h4l said:
Hi Alf another couple of bits of junk.

Not exactly Veritas standard.

This Ones a Bit older
Junk? JUNK?! Perfectly usable tools. Sheesh :roll: :lol:

dickm":22dz4h4l said:
For what it's worth, that "square with a bevel" was still being made in the 1950s, 'cos I was given a new one as a present when I first caught the tool bug way back then! It was accurate enough (just) as a square, but I never found much use for the bevel, as it was not possible to tighten the wingnut enough to be sure the bevel would not shift. But it's possibly still lurking unloved somewhere in my odds and bobs drawer.
Dick, that's another bit of the puzzle; thank you. Certainly the example I have strikes me as a good idea, poorly executed. I need to dig out the patent specs again and see if it's any good at all these other tasks claimed for it.

maswindell":22dz4h4l said:
This is my first post and to none other to Alf.
Welcome to the forum, Mike. :D

maswindell":22dz4h4l said:
I saw the square and bevel gage and thought I've seen that before. Sure enough in my latest Ebay purchase, I won 2 Stanley bevel gages, and this cute little square/bevel gage. Mine is in great shape with no doubt the original wingnut and the same patent number. Small world isn't it ? Seems like I paid $4.99 for all three as no one wanted the auction.
Good grief, it really is a small world, isn't it? Seems there are more of these about than I ever suspected. And in better condition too... #-o :lol:
Sounds like you got a good deal, too. Of course you can never have enough bevel gauges. Or clamps. Shaves... Chisels... Planes... :wink:

Cheers, Alf
 

Pete Maddex

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Hi,

I found this a couple of weeks ago at my local Car Boot sale and thought it looked familiar, I managed to remember Alf (how could I forget her) had something to do with it so I searched and found this old thread. this one is made by Milmet in England no idea when.


DSCF0015-1 by pete maddex, on Flickr


Pete
 

Nigel

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Hi Alf
great find and clean up job

As Chas says SNAP! boy these squares are getting common

I picked one up at a tool stall at a steam rally last year no idea why I bought it just liked the novelty,I think I paid £1.50

It does have its uses when making small toys and the bevel can be tightened quite securely

It is the same make HMM Ltd and patent number but without the rust
the bolt is not the original as it is a round head bolt in a c/sk,the wing nut is proper type ie not pressed steel,

Cheers Nigel
 

Alf

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Nigel,

Yeah, might have to toss mine as being too common for the select nature of my tool kit. [-( :lol:

Cheers, Alf

P.S. The thread's a bit of an old'un btw. Too much rust-creating rain for hunting at the mo' :(
 
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