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Explanation of Our Condition Grading System

Frequently Asked Vintage Tool Questions

G.E. Wood Everlast Chisels

CH170435 G.E. Wood Everlast Chisels A pair of Everlast patented chisels that were made before Stanley bought out the firm in 1911. These are not a matched pair. The first is 1/4" wide and 8 3/8" overall. The maker's mark is on the bolster although it is not well struck and is not fully lebigle. The second is 1/2" wide and 7 7/8" long. Both seem to have been very lightly cleaned with steel wool but still have some patina. G+ $129

Howard & Sons, Brentford, W.

CH170441 Howard & Sons, Brentford, W. A very attractive 1" bevelled paternmaker's paring chisel with a boxwood London Pattern handle. The handle has a lovely rich patina, but the ferule has been polished and there are two shrinkage checks on the handle. The checks are no big deal and not uncommon on old boxwood handles. The blade has been cleaned but is still quite nice. The mark is that of a tool dealer, but this tool would have been made by a good Sheffiled maker. Measures 14 1/2" overall. A very nice example of a very desirable form. G+ Sold

Wm. Marples & Sons

CH170445 Wm. Marples & Sons A matching set of 8 carving tools that would make an excellet starter set for a cabinetmaker. The set includes: #1 1/4", #1 3/8", #2 3/8", #5 1/2", #14 1/4, #21 1/8", #28 3/8", & #39 1/4". The handles are all ash. They are in nice as found condition and at less than $29 each are a steal for quality pre-War sheffield carving tools. G+ - G++ $229

W.M. Ash & Co

CH170417 W.M. Ash & Co A quite appealing set of 5 19th century cabinetmaker's gouges with matching handles in what I believe is hickory. The ferules are steel. These would have been handled in the US, probably by the original owner. The sizes are 3/8", 1/2", 11/16", 13/16", and 15/16". Nice untouched condition, it pains me to sell these. G++ $195

S. J. Addis

CH170424 S. J. Addis A 3/16" size number 21 spoon chisel in superb untouched condition. It has a lovely applewood handle that would have been installed in the US when it was new. Most Addis chisels originally sold into the American market where imported without handles. I am not sure why. A gem. Fine $45

P.S.& W.

CH170432 P.S.& W. A good 7/8" socket firmer chisel. It is a bit overcleaned but it has a good edge and will make a great user. I have always found Pexto chisels to have about the best steel of any. Measures 12" overall. G+ Sold

J. Frost, Norwich

CH170370 J. Frost, Norwich A nice as found boxwood handled 5/16" paring chisel that would be perfect for dovetailing or other fine work. G+ Sold

Jas Swan Co. USA

CH170382 Jas Swan Co. USA A 3/4" medium sweep out-cannel gouge. There is some slight deformation to the top of the handle. Nice as found condition. G++ $36

S. J. Addis

CH170390 S. J. Addis A matching set of 4 Addis carving tools, all with boxwood handles that have a British Registration mark, "Rd. 42972". They comprise a #16 swept gouge, a 1/2" #15 swept gouge, a 3/4" #14 swept gouge, and a 5/8" #27 spoon gouge. The spoon gouge has had the shank bent, near the bolster. This appears to have been intentionally done and I would think that it could be bent back as the steel should be soft at that point. These are all in nice clean as found condition and would rate a grade higher but for a check in the handle of the largest gouge and the bend in the spoon gouge. There is corrosion on the brass ferule of the smallest gouge and two of the gouges have steel ferules. Price to be a bargain for top quality Addis carving tools. G+ Sold

Jas Swan Co, USA

CH170393 Jas Swan Co, USA A 1/4" light morticing chisel in very clean as found condition. I gave it the negative because there are some light stains on the blade. Fine- $39

Greaves & Sons/ Buck Bros

CH170346 Greaves & Sons/ Buck Bros This is a set of 4 gouges, all from the same owner and with matching American handles. Three are by Greaves and one is by Buck Brothers. The ash handles are magnificent, with an original French polished finish and the ferules are untouched. The three Greaves gouges have all beeen sharpened with some bevel on both sides and are very sharp for paring. The Buck Brothers gouge is in-cannel. The sizes are: 1 1/8", 1 1/4", 1 1/2" for the Greaves and about 15/16" for the Buck Brothers. Remember, quality chisels and gouges were hand ground and are not exact in measurements. There is some old dried grease on them but if you clean it off they should rate better than the current G++ $159

J. B. Addis, Prize Medals 51, 62, 70, & 71

CH17037 J. B. Addis, Prize Medals 51, 62, 70, & 71 This is a group of carving tools, 6 J. B. Addis and one by Herring, that came together and were owned by the samer craftsman. They all have 19th Century American handles. English chisels were often sold in the US without handles and then handled by the buyer. 2 of the handles are of a slightly different style than the other 5, and one tool has never had the handle installed. I have the handle and it is not even drilled yet for the tang. The tools are: #7 gouge, 3/4", by Herring. #11 gouge, 1/16", missing the ferule on the handle. #15 swept gouge, 5/16". The end has been modified on this one to reduce the width and the handle has insect damage. This is the only one with an issue. A #29 spoon gouge, 5/16". A #44 spoon V parting tool, 5/16". And finally the tool that has not yet been installed to the handle is a #41 V parting tool in 1/4". This tool is sharp and may have been used with a different handle at one time. All of these tools are in nice clean as found condition. I would value then individually at $275 putting no value on the modified tool and $30 on the Herring only because it is a common tool. The rest of them are really superb. G++ Sold

Buck Brothers

CH170322 Buck Brothers A very scarce matching set of 8 Buck Brothers turning tools from the tiem when BB was premier quality. The BB factory burned down in 1944 and after that the name lived on applied to tools that I would want to have in my town, let alone my house. These were made long before 1944 and have the classic applewood handles signed with the BB logo. The 4 smaller ones have handles that look like bench chisel handles and not turning handles. I can't explain that but I can tell you that I bought them directly from a descendant of the original owner and tney have not been messed about with by a dealer or collector. There are 4 skews and 4 turning gouges. I see later BB turning tool sets, but I just don't see ones like this. At less than $30 each they are cheap. G++ $239

Frost, Norwich

CH170227 Frost, Norwich A #6 3/8" straight gouge in nice as found condition and with a strking handle, the sapwood and heartwood contrasting in an exceptional way. An exceptional quality tool that was clearly made by one of the best makers. G++ $39

I. Sorby

CH170134 I. Sorby A particularly nice 5/16" wide paring chisel with a London Pattern boxwood handle. As found with a nice light patina, I would not do a thing to it. G+ Sold

S.J. Addis, W&P

CH170147 S.J. Addis, W&P A lovely 1/8" #27 spoon gouge with an exquisite rosewood handle. A fool has polished the ferule, for which I tacked on the minus. A gem. Fine- $48

Wm. Marples

CH170122 Wm. Marples A particularly lovely and delicate 5/16" paring chisel with an octagonal boxwood handle. There is one old chip from the top of the handle that is patinated in. A gem. G+ Sold

J. Frost, Norwich

CH161260 J. Frost, Norwich A very nice as found 5/8" wide #6 straight carving gouge with a boxwood handle. There is minor mushrooming to the end of the handle and the beginning of a split, from being struck with a metal hammer. It will not pose any issue as long as you don't abuse it. A great chisel that was almost certainly made by Addis. G= $28

Frost, Norwich

CH161224 Frost, Norwich A lovely as found 1/2" #3 straight gouge with traces of staw finish. The handle indicates to me that this chisel was surely made by Addis. G+ $35

J. Frost

CH161233 J. Frost An attractive boxwood handled bench gouge, 5/8" wide and with about a #5 sweep. Nice untouched condition. G+ $29

T.H. Witherby

CH161130 T.H. Witherby A 1 3/4" wide heavy beveled firming chisel. It has what looks like the original handle but it has also been struck with a metal hammer without the handle installed and the top of the socket is deformed a bit. It is also covered with light suface oxidation. It will clean up and make a good user but it is not a TBT grade tool. Good $29

Marsden Brothers

CH161089 Marsden Brothers A 1" gouge with a very shallow sweep, similar to a number 3 sweep although this is not a cabinetmaker's gouge. I think that it was a patternmaker's gouge. It has a particularly nice octagonal handle. It does need a good cleaning and has surface rust overall, but it is well worth the effort. G+ $29

John Green

CH161019 John Green A very scarce 18th Century woodturner's skew that is only 1/8" wide. Such a narrow skew is very scarce, an 18th Century turning tool is very scarce, and chisels by John Green are scarce, so really this is a rare tool. The handle is a later owner made replacement. The blade is 5 1/4" long to the handle. This tool was for very fine work in the hands of a highly skilled turner. G+ $59

Wm Brady & Son, Mount Joy, PA

CH160542 Wm Brady & Son, Mount Joy, PA A 3/8" socket firmig chisel. The handle is a modern replacment but quite attractive. The mark is very feint and it is only because I know the mark that I can read it. A nice clean chisel by a scarce American maker. G+ $29

W. Butcher

CH160320 W. Butcher A very scarce, long and delicate paring chisel measuring 5/32". These chisels were all of course hand ground and this was probably sold as a 1/8" size. People didn't measure the width of chisels with a micrometer the way they seem to now. We get new chisels returned because they are not exactly the width specified, but in the days of high-class work and hand-ground chisels, nobody cared. It measures 11 3/4" overall with a nice original octagonal handle. There is some scatterd light pitting on the blade but none that impacts its functionality. A scarce form by a great 19th Century maker. G+ Sold


CH160299 Unmarked An as found 3/8" morticing chisel with very light surface oxidation overall. The handle is a nice old handle. This chisel has lost some of its original length due to use, but is still a good user that only needs a light cleaning. The blade measures 6" back to the start of the handle. G+ $25

Robert Sorby, Kangaroo Brand

CH160194 Robert Sorby, Kangaroo Brand This is a matching group of 2 gouges and a paring chisel, that are all also marked by the retailer G.T.L. (Gauranteed Tools Ltd.) The gouges are out-cannel, 5/16" and 3/8", and the paring chisel is a fat 1/4". Clearly once part of a larger set but still a very nice little group of tools. They are as found with a nice light patina on the bare metal and nice handles. The GLT decals vary from very good on one to largely gone on one. GTL was in business in the 20s and folded during the Great Depression. G++ $79

T. J. Gardner, Bristol

CH160135 T. J. Gardner, Bristol A 3/8" morticing chisel with a boxwood handle. There is a slight warp to the handle and it goes off to one side. Nice as found condition. G+ Sold

C. Hunt

CH150930 C. Hunt This is a hand-forged American corner chisel by a maker that I am not familiar with, and of whom I have found no reference. The tool is in nice condition, with a good original handle, but the hoop is missing and somebody has taped a new replacment on that neither fits well nor looks right. It is an eye sore that should be discarded. The tool itself is very well made and probably early 19th Century. The size is 1". It is as found. In my opinion, this is a special piece. G+ $75

James Swan

CH150643 James Swan An original finger jointed wooden box that, according to the label, once held a half dozen 1/2" Socket Firmer Chisels No. 1010. A nice box for a Swan collector. G+ $38

C.E. Jennings

CH150464 C.E. Jennings A 3/4" wide out-cannel socket gouge in nice as found condition. Measures 13" overall. G++ $35


CH15032 Mottram A massive 5/8" morticing chisel in as found condition except for the bevel and the upper edge of the end, which have been recently ground. No damage was done except for removing the patina. The handle looks original but has some splits on the right side that might be hard to glue back down because the deformation to the end that caused them is keeping the wood from going back down all of the way. An early chisel by an imporant maker, in a scarce size. G+ $85

James Cam

CH150311 James Cam A nice clean 7/16" morticing chisel. There is a bit chip out of the top of the ash handle, but otherwise it is a nice G+ $55

T. Shaw

CH150323 T. Shaw A 7/8" turning skew. The handle is an old but later replacement made from some kind of exotic wood. 18th Century turning chisels are quite scarce and this is a nice example. G+ $75

Frost, Norwich

CH170371 Frost, Norwich A #21 spoon gouge in 1/16" size. the steel has been overcleaned and the end is not properly ground. Free to the first person who spends $100 on old tools and asks for it. Good Sold

Hale Bros

CH150289 Hale Bros A 1/2" wide, out-cannel, medium sweep gouge. Pristine original condition. Fine $35

Handforged Corner Chisel

CH140619 Handforged Corner Chisel This is a classic blacksmith made corner chisel. It is not a refined and sophisticated tool, just a very nice example of an American country blacksmith. G+ $59

Buck Brothers

CH120436 Buck Brothers This is a remarkable set of 8 Buck Brother's chisel and gouges, all from one owner, and all is amazing untouched condition. They would all be bright except for old dried grease on the surface. There are four long paring chisels, 5/8", 1 1/4", 1 3/4" and 2. These measure 13 1/4 to 15 1/2". The gouges are of similar length, out-cannel, and measure 7/8", 1 1/4", 1 5/8", and 1 7/8". All but one has the early rectangular border mark, one gouge has the later stag head mark, but it is definitely from the same set. The socket handles are all original applewood handles. They are not marked Buck Brothers, which is consistent with there age, these chisels pre-date. that. One handle is missing and one handle has a split, which can be pulled up tight and glued. Besides this split, the handles and the blades are all Fine Sold

Drummond Bros

CH120245 Drummond Bros A set of 12 special turning tools. The measure about 11 inches overall. All of the ash handles match. I believe that these are for ivory or other hard materials, not for wood. The bevels are very steep and they function as scrapers rather than cutters. They have some old dried grease on them and could use a bit of cleaning, but they are very crrisp and will clean up to at least G++ $199

Antique Chisel

CH1112210 W. Marples & Sons A lovely as found wheelwright's bruzz. Fifteen inches overall and 1/2" on an edge. Fine- $75

Antique Chisel

CH111246 Button Hole Chisel A really nice all metal button hole chisel that certainly looks 18th Century to me. Great untouched surface and still very sharp. One of the nicest examples that I have see of this scarce type of chisel. (Since I originally listed this chisel, it has come to my attention that these chisels, called button hole chisels by collectors, actually had nothing to do with button holes. I feel certain that they were for breaking wax seals on letters.) 11/16" wide. G++ $259

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