For the last three years, I’ve been writing a column on modern hand tools for the Fine Tool Journal, an excellent quarterly publication out of Pownal, Maine. The Journal is a thick slice of hand tool heaven with articles about long-forgotten ways of working, vanished corporate tool-making empires, vintage power machinery and old tools for sale.
Editor Clarence Blanchard and his staff also run Brown Auction Services, and so the Fine Tool Journal includes listings of auction items and tools you can buy with just a phone call or e-mail. The prices are quite reasonable.
For my part, I write reviews of modern tools and profiles of their makers. And now, Clarence has graciously agreed to allow me to post the older articles on WKFineTools.com, an online hand-tool magazine run by the industrious Wiktor Kuc.
If you haven’t been a visitor to WKFineTools or the OldToolsShop.com site (its sister site), visit now and bookmark it. There is a wealth of writing there. People sharing their experiences with hand tools, old catalogs of tools you can download for free, some plans for projects, plus links to other valuable resources for the hand-tool user.
This week, Wiktor has posted my story about scrub planes. This article compares the two modern versions available: The Lie-Nielsen and the Veritas. But that part of the article isn’t what gets people’s blood boiling. It’s the theory of mine that scrub planes are more of a carpentry tool than they are for fine furniture-making. I’ve discussed that theory a bit here on the weblog, but this is the full-on crackpot theory.
Many thanks to Wiktor and Clarence for allowing us to republish these stories. We have about 10 more in the works right now for the coming weeks, including in-depth profiles of saw maker Mike Wenzloff and Konrad Sauer, the planemaker behind Sauer & Steiner. So check back.