Results 1 to 11 of 11

Thread: Old chisels from old closed storefront

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Iowa
    Posts
    231

    Old chisels from old closed storefront

    First off, please excuse me for throwing out this real beginners question in this forum. I've been a Creek member for a little over 2 years but I am almost always in other locations - Power tools, shops, off-topic, etc.

    I would appreciate some input from the experts in this forum on my cheap purchase this Monday.

    I went with a client to look at an older storefront building in a small town that is for sale. My client wants to possibly purchase the building to start his own business in it. We met with the current owner and spent most of the day doing a detailed review of the facility conditions. Now to the point.... On a shelf in a storage room I saw a old wax-coated box with some chisels within. The chisels were pretty heavily coated with parafin or some other waxy substance and had wax paper around some of them too. None had any handles.

    I asked the nice owner about them and he said he didn't even know they were there. I asked if I could buy them since it looked like some fun I don't usually mess with. He said, "Sure, but it'll cost ya a lot! Buy me lunch across the street at the corner cafe when we break and they're yours." Sounded good to me. That lunch cost me about $9. (tip included). (My client was going to buy the nice guy lunch anyway.)

    Today I got around to cleaning them up to see what I spent a fortune on. All of the chisels are stamped "Hibbard Spencer Bartlett & Co." and the larger ones say "OUR VERY BEST" and the smaller ones say O.V.B. They range from 2-1/4 inches wide down to 1/4 inches. All are 6 inches long from the front cutting edge to where the shoulder begins to taper in. There are a few really small specs of some surface rust on a couple but no pitting at all.

    Did I find something worth putting handles on or could the experts here tell me anything about them? Thanks again and sorry for the newby question.
    Kev

  2. #2
    Outstanding find!
    Well worth the price paid and then some.
    Make the handles worthy of the chisels as they are excellent and should become the pride of your collection.
    Lucky bloke
    MC
    PS I should have said that they were made by Hibbert Spencer and Bartlett - OVB
    Last edited by Martin Cash; 05-13-2009 at 11:32 PM.

  3. #3
    I agree with Martin. Sounds like you got a super deal. Put handles on them and give them a try. I'll bet you find them to be good, as good as any older chisel will be (like Witherby or Swan).

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Escondido, CA
    Posts
    5,221
    Stanley made Everlasting chisels for "Our Very Best". They are the same as the Stanleys except for the OVB mark.

    (from this site: http://www.antique-used-tools.com/stanleychisels.htm )

    Nice find, dude!
    Veni Vidi Vendi Vente! I came, I saw, I bought a large coffee!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    East Central Illinois
    Posts
    506

    Chisels

    Sounds like a fantastic find of "new" old chisels. Good find. Please post some picks.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    2,850
    "Did I find something worth putting handles on or could the experts here tell me anything about them? Thanks again and sorry for the newby question."
    You have, or at least had, an item that collectors would fight each other over. What matters here is "new old stock", which means the paraffin and wax paper would have to have been retained, as well as the box. If you've removed the coating and did not retain the wrappers, it's debateable whether you'd want to sell them at one of the big tool auctions and buy a high-end set from one of the new makers (with the original packing, they'd be worth more than new ones).

    And yeah - most older chisels are far superior to the lower end ones available today from makers like R. Sorby, Two Cherries, etc... You have to get into the boutique makers like Blue Spruce to get better steel.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Williamsburg,Va.
    Posts
    9,796
    When I lived in Western North Carolina,I went way into the sticks to visit a well known fretless banjo maker. Er stopped at a small old country store. They had hook button shoes in their original boxes still on the shelves. I didn't look around too much,but probably should have. No telling what was in there.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Iowa
    Posts
    231
    I indeed did clean them of all protective coating and the wax paper wrappers are gone too. Sounds like from a collectors standpoint I made a dumb error....

    But then I thought about it some more. I'm not going to sell or get rid of them. (If I did, I'd give the money to the guy that basically gave them to me. I had never met the man before Monday and he was one of those very kind people we all wish we could meet all the time. )

    -----
    My only chisels before now are a set of 5 Irwins and a few other short generic ones. Given the nice comments I received and doing some further searching on the internet, I'm very happy even though I probably shouldn't have cleaned them. (The box they were in was actually an old waxed garden seed box. The box also contained some historic mouse deposits too.)

    This weekend I need to get a replacement XD card for my camera and I will post a pic or two in the near future.

    I do have another novice question again: Did chisels of this era come with or without wood handles? None of these have any handles - (yet).

    Thanks for your comments.
    Kev
    Last edited by Kev Godwin; 05-14-2009 at 10:18 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Western N.Y.
    Posts
    80

    Chisels

    You can kick yourself silly if you want, but I know that I would put handles on them and use them. You have a bit of history and you could have made some money and bought a new set of nice chisels, or you could rehandle some nice chisels and use them. To me it's a wash, and your heirs can worry about the difference. Enjoy them.
    Nice gloat.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Chappell Hill, Texas
    Posts
    4,335
    Great find! We need pictures!

    A few years ago, I answered a classified ad for a sale where a guy was selling all his father-in-law's tools. When I got there, come to find out, FIL was a pattern maker. His claim to fame was making the molds for the Edsel's grill.

    Anyway, there was a few Emmert vises and a few other odds and ends I was interested in, but the guy only wanted to sell the whole lot. He wanted $2500 for the whole lot. I offered $1500. He asked "why so low". I said most people didn't know what most of the stuff was, nor what a pattern maker even was, and he'd be very lucky to find anyone who would want the whole lot. So, he said yes.

    Now, back to this thread... In the deal, I got two boxes of chisels, most of them old Buck Brothers, of most of them crank necked. It was a score. (3 Emmerts too), along with a 16' trailer of all kinds of other stuff.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Williamsburg,Va.
    Posts
    9,796
    Old chisels usually came without handles much of the time.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •