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Measuring Tools

Explanation of Our Condition Grading System

Frequently Asked Vintage Tool Questions

Kirby & Bro. Makers, 51 Fulton St, N.Y. Kirby & Bro. Makers, 51 Fulton St, N.Y. Kirby & Bro. Makers, 51 Fulton St, N.Y. Kirby & Bro. Makers, 51 Fulton St, N.Y.

ME170434 Kirby & Bro. Makers, 51 Fulton St, N.Y. A rare luggage rule made for Holland America Line and so marked. It is a 4 foot rule with a hook on the end and would be used to calculate the volume of a luggage consignment. Holland America Line was one of the major steamship lines like Cunard and White Star. The rule was appears to be ash and retains most of its original finish. It was used but well cared for. There is a Roman number 6 on the edge which was most likely an inventory mark. There is one sliver missing from the edge, just below and to the right of the makers mark, but it is really nothing to worry about. This is a superb piece with great crossover appeal. Fine- $395

Brown & Sharpe, Providence, R.I., USA Brown & Sharpe, Providence, R.I., USA

ME170440 Brown & Sharpe, Providence, R.I., USA A 1" micrometer in the original velvet lined fitted black case with the 1" standard piece and the wrench. I would think that this is a pre-war example. The quality represents the zenith of American manufacturing. Fine $75

Winterbottom Patent Square

ME170446 Winterbottom Patent Square A Winterbottom's patent combination mitre and square, graduated to 9 inches. This square is from an old collection and has been cleaned by a collector. G+ $69

J. Essex J. Essex

ME170422 J. Essex A standard size 24" carpenter's square. It is marked, Warranted Steel, J. Essex, No. 2". Jeremiah Essex merged his square making business into the famous Eagle Square Co. in 1859 and moved on to other ventures. It is a hand-marked and hand-made square from the mid to early 19th Century. The reason that it rates so low is that it has had the patina removed, probably with one of these bead blasting tools. It is still perfectly usable and the only example of this maker's work that I have seen. Good Sold

S. A. Jones & Co. Hartford, Con.

ME170430 S. A. Jones & Co. Hartford, Con. A scarce 12" cabinetmaker's square with a rosewood stock and fancy escutcheons. Most Jone's squares just have diamonds for the rivets, not the fancy English style escutcheon. The blade has most of its original blueing, which has turned to brown. The brass face on the stock is crisp and has traces of original lacquer. Finding an American square that is this early and in this condition is a tall order. For the serious collector. G++ Sold

Henry Disston & Sons, Philada.

ME17048 Henry Disston & Sons, Philada. A really crisp and nice 4" graduated square. This square is untouched with pefect brass trim and a nice patina on the blade. The rosewood stock has a nice grain. It is marked "NO. 1". Superb, connoisseur grade. G++ $59


ME170414 Unmarked This is an absolute gem of a marking gauge. It uses a serrated wheel to do the marking. It is locked with a tiny thumbscrew that has a great form. It measures 6 inches overall and the head is 13/16" in diameter. The details and proportions of this diminutive tool are all perfect. It has a pleasing untouched patina. Probably not manufactured, I would think that it was made by a master crafsman for his own use. For the connoisseur. G++ $98

L.S. Starrett, Athol Mass

ME170354 L.S. Starrett, Athol Mass An early Starret 1885 patent calipers. I don't really know what the cut in the leg is for on these. The later ones don't have it. I think that these might be put together wrong now, but not understanding them well I can't say for sure. They are as found with a bit of scattered surface rust but mostly nice surface. G+ $19


ME170314 Unmarked A Darling, Brown, & Sharpe patent square, but it is not maker marked. I does have the owner's initials engraved on it in a most artistic manner. The blade is about 6 1/2" long to the stock. Lovely condition as appropriately cleaned by a collector. G+ $69

Elliott & Sons, Opticians, 56 Strand

ME170323 Elliott & Sons, Opticians, 56 Strand Elliot was one of the premier London makers of drafting tools. I am not sure what this tool is for but it is in the original fitted leather case, which is marked, and handle still has its delicate end turning intact. The tool itself is not marked but it is clearly original to this case. Superb. Fine Sold

T. Tillottson & Co, Sheffield T. Tillottson & Co, Sheffield

ME170259 T. Tillottson & Co, Sheffield A nice as found 12" cabinetmaker's square. It is as found with a pleasing patina. The rosewood stock has a fancy escutcheon with perfect color. There is a chip in the end of the stock near the maker's mark and there are some dings on the blade out towards the end. There is also one small spot of heavy rust on the right side out near the end. It is hard to find 19th Century squares as nice as this one. G+ $65

Panel Gauge

ME170262 Panel Gauge Made by a craftsperson for their own use, this is a nicely made tool in as found condition. It uses a boxwood wedge to lock the head. It is longer than most with a capacity of around 25 inches. I think that it is walnut but I am not sure. It is dirty and needs cleaning with a rag and wax but after cleaning should rate G++ $65

Clark Wilson & Co., New York Clark Wilson & Co., New York Clark Wilson & Co., New York

ME170239 Clark Wilson & Co., New York A 9" cabinetmaker's square with a rosewood stock. I have never seen this mark before and I could not find it in the EAIA directory. The tool looks American to me, as opposed to a tool imported from England and marked, but there is no way to know for sure. It is certainly a rare survivor. The blade has a nice patina. The brass plate on the stock has been hand polished, as were the escutcheons at one time, but they have a nice tone now. G+ $99

Houghton-Butcher Mfg Co. Ltd

ME170217 Houghton-Butcher Mfg Co. Ltd This is a trough compass in a fitted mahogany case. I have this information from a friend, " A trough compass is used in land survey work. Normally mounted into the surveyors plane table. In these application all the surveyor needed was an indication of magnetic north." The lid has a strip of brass laid in, that I also can not explain. It is as found except around the mark where the brass was lightly polished to make the mark more legible. The box is 6 1/2" long. The quality is clearly very high. It appears to be from the first half of the 20th Century. Fine- $145

John Rabone & Sons, Manufactuers, Warranted Correct

ME170182 John Rabone & Sons, Manufactuers, Warranted Correct A 9" ebony level with the sliding brass covers to protect the vial. It retains most of the original French polish on the wood and a majority of it in the brass as well. The mark, as is always the case on these, is light. Ebony is too hard to mark deeply without risking cracking the level. This one is from my collection and is the nicest one that I have ever found. I have had it for around 20 years. Fine $129

Warranted Correct Warranted Correct

ME170137 J.W. Mitchell, Newington Causeway A delicate 6" ebony level in lovely untouched condition. Great patina on the brass and original finish on the ebony. It is marked, but the mark is very faint. I believe that J.W. Mitchell was the retailer. On the other side it has what is probably the maker's mark, but I can only make out a few letters, and the below that, "Warranted Correct". It also has another mark that I can't read at the other end. Ebony is very hard to mark and this is not uncommon. If the had struck it hard enough to mark it clearly, they would have damaged the level. A small gem. Fine $65

E. Preston & Sons

ME170141 E. Preston & Sons A small fixed square. The blade is 3 1/4 overall including the stock. Nicely cleaned by a collector. G+ $45


ME170144 Unmarked This is an English copy of the common Stanley Number 90 marking gauge. It is only marked "Made in Sheffield England." Clearly pre-War, but I don't know who made it. G+ $36

H. Tower, Millbury, Mass

ME161249 H. Tower, Millbury, Mass A 10 1/2" bevel in lovely as found condition. The blade retains much of the original bluing. The brass trim is crisp with a nice patina and the mahogany body has only very minimal marks on it, much better than usual for a mid-19th Century bevel. There is a flat gound on the curved end of the blade. This must have been done for some unknown reason, but it does not detract from what I think is a great tool. G+ $79

Unmarked Unmarked Unmarked Unmarked

ME16123 Unmarked A rare and unusual 48" boxwood folding rule. This rule is all hand stamped and made to a very high standard with 9 leaves in the hinges. I would think that it is early to mid 19th Century. It seems have all of the pins, although some of them have enlarged the corresponding holes due to usage. The condition is untouched, showing considerable wear, but not excessive wear. There is some iron staining around a few of the hinges, although it is only bad on one of them. The only rule of its kind that I have seen and clearly a rare survivor. G+ $289

Lufkin Lufkin

ME161213 Lufkin A crisp boxwood caliper rule No. 372 (36 12/). One side has about all of the lacquer and on the other side much of the lacquer has come off of the hinge and the brass has tarnished were the lacquer is missing. A very nice example. Fine- $49

J. Rabon & Sons, Makers, Birmingham J. Rabon & Sons, Makers, Birmingham

ME161217 J. Rabon & Sons, Makers, Birmingham A boxwood combination rule, pumb, and level, in the orginal fitted leather case. Dated 1918 and with a broad arrow inspector's mark, you must wonder how in 1918 they could justify buying a fancy French polished tool like this for the military. It retains nearly all of its original polish and is gorgeous. From my personal collection and for the connoisseur. Fine $119

Hard & Robertson, Union Works, Canton, Mass

ME161167 Hard & Robertson, Union Works, Canton, Mass A rare 12" cabinetmaker's square by a maker that is l have never seen before. This maker is listed in the EAIA directory, but with no information. The blade has a dark but smooth patina. The rosewood stock has considerable tool box rash and the maker's mark is difficult to read. The escutcheon is very unusual in form and quite attractive. This tools is not in great condition but is in very honest condition and is a very attractive and rare tool. Good $129

W. Burkinshaw

ME16113911 W. Burkinshaw A patinated boxwood slitting gauge with a graduated stem. Burkinshaw was a mid-19th Century American maker who is primarily known for making gauges in the same style as this slitting gauge. I don't recall seeing a slitting gauge by him before. This one is as found with a dark, rich, patina. There is one paint spot near the locking screw. The fence shows significant wear but it will still make a great user or a collector's piece. G+ Sold

Craftsman Made

ME161139 Craftsman Made An attractive owner made slitting gauge with a rosewood head and contrasting stem. I am not confident to name the wood used for the stem but it might be satinwood. It has a boxwood wedge for locking the head. The slitter is formed by shaping a large in to form a knife edge at the tip. French polished overall with much of the original finish remaining. G++ $69

David Flather, Sheffield David Flather, Sheffield David Flather, Sheffield

ME161110 David Flather, Sheffield A rare etched cabinetmaker's 12" square made for the American market. This square has an elaborate acid etching on the blade that includes visual motifs and text. For example, it reads "The Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.". Nothing like opportunistic marketing. When these squares were new, the blade was blued and then it was acid etched with a wax resist that left the blued parts bright and made the etching pop out. This one has lost nearly all of its bluing and while the etching is intact, you can only read it by holding the square at the right angle so that the light reflects on it. Sadly the striking he affect is lost. I have only seen 4 other examples of these, two that were in the Don Wing collection and two others. This is the fith one to surface. One of Don Wings, which still had a bright etching, sold for around $1500 recently in an auction. This is also a nice working square in as found condition with a medium patina G+ $145

Mitre Square

ME161022 Mitre Square A classic English 12" mitre square. The blade still retains some bluing and the rosewood retains quite a bit of original French polish. It has been cleaned a bit but the brass was not polished and retains most of its original lacquer. A nice tool for a collector or a user. G+ $59

S.A. Jones & Co. Harford - Con.

ME16095 S.A. Jones & Co. Harford - Con. A scarce 12" bevel by S.A. Jones, one of the most important makers of his time. Jones morticing gauges are not hard to find, but his other tools really don't turn up often and I don't recall seeing a large bevel like this before. The rosewood stock has numerous small dings. The brass has not been polished and has good patina with some traces of original lacquer. The blade has a nice medium patina. G+ $95

Brdige City

ME160811 Bridge City A Bridge City MS- Miter Square that appears to be unused in the original box. It included the singe page instruction sheet. There is some minor corrosion on the brass, mainly along the seam with the wood body, but the tool is crisp like new and clearly wasn't used. Fine- $89

H. Tower & Co

ME160815 H. Tower & Co A classic 8 1/2" bevel with brass trim and a rosewood body. Most Tower bevels have a mahogany bevel. The mark is light and the blade has light pitting in spots. Shows honest wear but no abuse. Good $35

Disston & Morss, Philadelphia

ME160464 Disston & Morss, Philadelphia An as found 10" bevel square that has some light surface rust on the blade but also has much of the original bluing. Needs some careful cleaning but underneath this is a pertty crisp example. G+ $49

H. Tower

ME1603111 H. Tower A 10 1/2" bevel. It has not been polished, but somebody has put a light coat of shellac, or similar, over the wood and brass. I would wipe that off. Otherwise a nice early American bevel. This has the earlier Tower mark, which is more like a planemaker's mark. Good $35

Brown & Sharpe Brown & Sharpe

ME16035 Brown & Sharpe A 2" - 3" micrometer in the original fitted case with the 2" reference disk and the wrench. The outisde of the box is well worn and the mic has been well used but also well cared for. The catch is broken on the case. Still a great working tool for a fraction of the cost of a new one. Probably dates from the somewhere around the mid-20t Century. G+ $39

Ultimate Plumb Bob Ultimate Plumb Bob Ultimate Plumb Bob Ultimate Plumb Bob Ultimate Plumb Bob

ME160327 Ultimate Plumb Bob In a world where most fancy plumb bobs are modern fakes, this is the most oustanding example of a genuine period plumb bob that I have seen. The form is perfect, including the acorn finial. It is dated, 1876, and marked with the owner's name, J.K. West. The original string reel is with it, and that engraved to the highest standard, some of the best engraving that I have ever seen on a tool. It also has the owner's name incorporated into the engraving, confirming that it is original. The weight of the plumb bob is about 37 ounces and the height is 6 1/4". The patina is as perfect as it gets, never polished and with that mellow color that collectors love. This is the only fancy plumb bob in my personal collection, and the best one that I have seen in 30 years of collecting. For the person who must have the best. Fine $1595

Geo. Wheatcroft, Newark, N.J.

ME1602100 Geo. Wheatcroft, Newark, N.J. A typical Wheatcroft rosewood morticing gauge This gauge is in nice as found condition, except around the mark, where a collector has rubbed to try and bring out the mark. The mark is faint and he did it no favors rubbing on it. The pins are worn down quite low, but are still usable and would probably last most amateurs the rest of their lives. The the very end is rounded over a bit. I am not sure why, but probably to give clearance for some particular application. A classic mid-19th Century American morticing gauge. G+ $69

J.S. Slocumb, Prov. RI

ME1602123 J.S. Slocumb, Prov. RI A 1" Slocum micrometer in the original covered mahogany box . Also includes a 1" reference disk by Brown & Sharpe that has been with this mic since its original period of use. It is in nicely cared for condition, but the paint and the box both show that it has been used. G+ $45

Extraordinary Calipers Extraordinary Calipers Extraordinary Calipers

ME16023 Extraordinary Calipers These are handwrought calipers that can be used for inside or outside measurements. This tool is truly a work of art. The legs terminate if feet, and by moving the legs past each other, you can change the tool from measuring insdie to outside. The hing is made from old copper coins, and you can read "United States of American" around one side of the hinge joint. The head is about 1 1/16" in diameter, so unless they reduced the size of the coins, that was their diameter. The overall height is about 12 1/8". The surface is fantastic, with the original dark color and surface that they would have left the forge with. These came from a good collection and are in wonderful condition. I am assuming that they are early to mid 19th Century. For the connoisseur. Fine $285

Early Coin Scale

ME16027 Early Coin Scale An apparently 18th century English coin scale in the original tin case. There is a label in the lid, but I susepct that it is a facsimile. The brass pans have been polished at some point. There are weights with it, I don't know enough to confirm that they are original to it or not, which is why I priced it so low. G+ $99

H. G. Fulton, Patd July 17-88

ME160217 H. G. Fulton, Patd July 17-88 A nice as found example of this scarce gauge. Somebody with the initials AEE has scratched them into the gauge in two spots. I have no other complains. A nice honest example. G+ $59

Schmalcalder, 82 Strand, London Schmalcalder, 82 Strand, London Schmalcalder, 82 Strand, London Schmalcalder, 82 Strand, London Schmalcalder, 82 Strand, London

ME160220 Schmalcalder, 82 Strand, London A circular protractor in its original fitted mahogany case. Inside the lid is written in fading ink, "1829, Joseph Cadman, xxxxxxxxxxx" with the xxxx signifying a word that I can't read, but is presumably the place where Joseph lived. Also in ink, but appearing to me more recent, is "H. J. DuPont". The tool has been lightly hand polished a long time ago, but the color has come back nicely. It still has areas of lacquer in protected areas. An idiot has put a serial number on the reverse side with an electric pencil. This is visible in the photo of the back side. This is a high-grade London made instrument in a fine case. G++ $795

St. Johnsbury Tool Co.

ME160229 St. Johnsbury Tool Co. This is the small sized St. Johnsbury patent bevel in the scarce all steel version. The blade is 5 7/8" Very nice clean untouched condition, just as it came from a tool chest. It is lightly owner marked, "R. J. Reynolds", an interesting name but surely just a coincidence. I personally use one of these, in this size, and it is my favorite bevel. I used it just last night to do a sliding dovetail. G+ $289

I. Sorby, Sheffield

ME151082 I. Sorby, Sheffield A rosewood and brass level with original French polished finish on the rosewood and an untouched surface on the brass that includes traces of original lacquer. This level is a bit larger and heavier than most levels of this kind. It is 12" long and 1 3/8" high. It would rate higher but for light tool box rash on the French polish over the wood. It is a much better example than we usually see and is still a very nice level. G+ $79

Plumb Bob

ME151041 Plumb Bob An interesting and attractive plumb bob with a steel tip that screws off. The height is 2 3/4" and the diameter is 1 9/16". About 9 ounces. Nice original patina. G+ $69

Comparator Calipers

ME150956 Comparator Caliper A delicate, late 18th or 19th Century caliper, that is graduated with three measuring systems, Sachsen (Saxon), Rheinl. (Rhineland), and Engl. The English scale runs to 3 1/2". This is presumably a hand made German tool of superb quality. It has been cleaned by a collector. Highly recommended. G+ $99

Brown & Sharpe MFG Co. Brown & Sharpe MFG Co.

ME150979 Brown & Sharpe MFG Co. A large caliper with micro adjust. Measures about 24" overall. Also marked "Tempered". I am not good at dating these but I certainly think that they are pre-war. They have an even light patina as one would expect on a well kept machinist's tool. The only complaint is that a former owner ground off another owner's name and stamped his in its place. Fine $99

Dancing Leg Calipers

ME15071 Dancing Leg Calipers This is a craftsman made double calipers, where the dancing legs are the inside calipers and the other end are outside calipers. They are 6" overall. They are totally made from brass, even the hinge, and it has taken on a medium patina. With dancing legs, the elegance of form of the legs is everything, and I only buy them if they are well done. These certainly meet that criteria, the legs have a lovely and realistic form that symbolizes well the natural beauty of the female form. G++ $159

Ornate Calipers

ME150661 Ornate Calipers These are the only calipers of their kind that I have ever seen, and certainly among the most ornate tools that I have handled. They are 6 3/4" high and are made to a very high standard of quality. I don't embrace the practice of assuming that anything with a modicum of style about it is undoubtably 18th Century, but I would not be surprised to learn that these were 18th Century. A cutter has been incorporated into the design, which I am assuming is for clipping off the ends of cigars. It may be a later modification but it looks like it was part of the design. A tool for the true connoisseur. G++ $745

Brown and Flather

ME150429 Brown and Flather An 8" rosewood level with brass face that has never been polished. Given the British propensity to polish, this is lucky survivor. The screws show some oxidation and are no longer perfectly flush to the brass. The brass has a lovely color. Just a nice honest example for a reasonable price. G+ $65


ME150234 Smallwood A 4" saddle rule that is marked with the Air Ministry A.M and a crown, and dated 1937. Just think, this tool may well have played its small part saving the Western world in the Battle of Britain. It has a good surface, with a light patina, but there are a few scattered spots of deep pitting. Just a few, but enough to hold the condition grading way down in my eyes. This is one tool though that definitely looks better in person than in the photos. Good $39

W. Cresson, Philada

ME15017 W. Cresson, Philada A 10" cabinetmaker's mitre square in the classic Philadelphia style with round brass washers on the rivets and a walnut or mahogany stock (I am not sure which.) The blade has a dark but pleasing patina. Nice honest condition for a very scarce tool. Very few of these survive and they should command higher prices than they do. G+ $245

E. Preston & Sons

ME141233 E. Preston & Sons A rosewood 12" level with a brass face and an iron sole. The top is engraved, "Tom Ratcliffe, New Mills". I love personalized pieces like this and can't resist them. This one has had the brass polished by an idiot (misguided sole in modern sensitive terminology), but it such a wonderful object that I bought it anyway. Good $119

Patented Bevel Square

ME141193 Patented Bevel Square A 9" bevel square that locks with a thumbscrew at the base simliar to a St. Johnsbury or a Stanley 18. It is only marked "Pat. Applied For" on the blade. I don't recall seeing one like this before and it really intrigues me. I showed it recently to my friends Clarence Blanchard and Patrick Leach. Patrick said that he had seen one before and that it was a very early example of the Sargent patented bevel square. Pat is not one ot BS so I accept that as being correct. It is a lovely tool with a rosewood stock and brass trim. It is absolutely untouched as it came out of an old tool chest. The stock is much thicker than one expects for a bevel square but this would allow it to register more decisively on the edge of a board. A rare and superb piece. G++ $345

E. Preston & Sons

ME141053 E. Preston & Sons An ebony and brass 10" level that was polished at one time and is staring to color again. G+ $69

Millers Falls

ME141068 Millers Falls A 9" torpedo level, number 590, in the original box. The level is very clean, with just some freckling to the plating on the level top. The box is OK but shows wear. The bottom of the level is marked "Rowland Tomkins & Son." A Google search reveals that this firm was a construction company that was indited for bribery by the government. I presume that they gave out these levels as a gift to customers, presumably before they went to more generous offerings. Fine- $48

Acorn Finial Plumb Bob with Reel

ME140961 Acorn Finial Plumb Bob with Reel A lovely 1 pound brass plumb bob with an acorn finial and the original string reel. The brass has been hand polished by a collector. An elegant from and a lovely example G+ $119


ME140675 Rich-Con. This is a new old stock handle for a carpenter's claw hammer with a rule built into the handle. It is graduated to 6 inches. I didn't rate it fine only because it is a bit dirty with a few stains. It would probably improve with a cleaning with my usual wax and rag. I have not seen one like this before. Measures 14" overall. G++ $35

Fisher Fisher

ME140122 Fisher's Patented Bevel Square W. T. Fisher, Patd June 23rd, 1868. An overcleaned example that has had the brass polished. The blade has a nice patina and is untouched. Priced to reflect having been polished. Good $379

Samuel Auxer, Lancaster, PA

ME131152 Samuel Auxer, Lancaster, PA A classic Carpenter style marking gauge, made by one of his apprentices. Nice as found condition. Graduated to 10 inches. G+ $119

J. T. Slocomb Co.

ME131027 J. T. Slocomb Co. A Slocomb 5" to 6" micrometer in the orignal box with the original instructions. The box has been taped with masking tape, which sometimes you can get off with a hair dryer. The tool is pristine. Fine $49

Brown & Sharpe Mfg Co Brown & Sharpe Mfg Co Brown & Sharpe Mfg Co

ME130937 Brown & Sharpe Mfg Co A magnificent 24" caliper with micro adust and pre-set. The pre-set feature allows you to open the calipers to remove then from a workpeice, and then close then again the set-thickness. This is a critical feature for measuring wall thicknesses that are thinner where yiou are measuring than where the caliper most cross over to be removed. Pre-War, connoisseur quality. Lovely untouched patina. The only minor complaint is that a previous owner's mark was ground off and Cox put has name over the ground spot. For the true connoisseur. G++ $98

Boxwood Tailor

ME130426 Boxwood Tailor's Square This square is 18" on each leg. In my experience, tailor's squares are not usually symmetric. This one has lovely color and comes from a good collection. Fine- $79

Craftsman Made Panel Gauge

ME130239 Craftsman Made Panel Gauge A nice magohany cabinetmaker's panel gauge. Properly waxed by a collector and suitable for a collector or discerning user. G++ $75

Dancing Leg Calipers

ME13013 Dancing Leg Calipers A 3" high dancing leg calipers that are genuine antiques and nicely made. They are thinner stock than is typical, so they are quite light. Nice as found condition. G++ $95

Stratton Brothers, Greenfield, Mass

ME121263 Stratton Brothers, Greenfield, Mass A superb 6 1/2" fully-bound rosewood level. This level is untouched with perfect patina. If you want just one example of one of these levels, this would be a good choice. This is my kind of condition, and it is in a very desirable size. This is just a level, not a plumb and level. The plumb and level combination is more common in my experience. Highly recommended. Fine- $365

Mathieson, Glasgow

ME120931 Mathieson, Glasgow A 9" torpedo level in connoisseur condition. This level has the original lacquer on the brass trim and on the wood, with the original label on the wood as well. The label has some wear, but is still quite nice. The brass cover over the vial is slightly bent down at the center, on one side, but this is hardly noticable. This type of tool is normally found completely buggered up by British dealers. Finding one in this condition, and untouched, is a real find. G++ $95

Midland Saw & Tool Co Ltd Midland Saw & Tool Co Ltd

ME12092 Midland Saw & Tool Co Ltd A 15" rosewood level with brass top and bottom in superb as found condition. The French polish on the wood is intact and still bright. The brass has a lovely light patina. It has portholes on the side side for viewing from the sides. The only reason it got a minus was a few light scratches on the French polish. This piece is connoisseur grade and scarce in this size. Fine- $145


ME170353 Turner's Calipers A quality 6" caliper that has some rust on the arms but is mostly bright and clean. Probably early to mid 20th Century. Free to the first person who orders them and spends $75 on old tools. Good $0

E. Preston & Sons

ME120756 E. Preston & Sons An as found 10" rosewood torpedo plumb and level. Finding one of these that is not all polished up is not easy. This was is fresh from a tool box. It has the initials HC carved on each side, small but not well executed. A nice G+ $69

Roofing Square Roofing Square

ME120746 Patented Roofing Square This tool is marked only "Pat. July 11, 1911". I assume that it is for making measurements in roofing. It is nickel plated and in nice as found condition. G++ $145

Early Square

ME120571 Early Square A lovely as found brass square with rosewood stock. This type of square is typically assumed to be 18th Century, but the anachronistic nature of British tools makes it dangerous to make that a firm assersion. I do think that this one is liely to be 18th Century. It has a lovely molded tip. lovely color, and good honest wear. One of the nicest of its type that I have seen. G+ $165

Edward Preston

ME120585 Edward Preston A lovely Preston brass machinist's level measuring just over 5" long. It looks like it was lightly cleaned with steel wool or something. It still has patina, but it doesn't have that untouched look that connoisseur's crave. G++ Sold

Wm. Marples & Sons, Hibernia

ME120532 Wm. Marples & Sons, Hibernia A lovely unpolished mitre square in the scarce large size, 12". Rosewood stock rather than the more common ebony. The blade is patinated with some scarttered and very minor surface rust. A very nice example of a scarce tool. G+ $75

Book:  Starrett Tools, 50th Anniversary Catalog

ME120547 Book: Starrett Tools, 50th Anniversary Catalog Catalog number 25, from 1930. 380 pages. The cover is detached. An invaluable reference. It amazed me how much of this stuff is still made today. Good $25

S. T. Taylor 816 B S. T. Taylor 816 B

ME120518 S. T. Taylor 816 B'Way, New-York A 13" by 24" folding maple tailor's rule. There are 4 clips on the outer edges that I don't really understand the use of . They would be for holding fabric, but I don't see how they were used. Nice untouched condition. There is one sliver of wood missing from the outer edge of the longer leg at the hinge. A rare example in nice condition. G++ $89

Unmarked Unmarked

ME120519 Unmarked A very unusal 45" takedown rule. Maple and clearly American (based on the wood.) It has a center scale in fractions of a yard and I assume that this was for measuring out fabric. Lovely untouched condition. There are two spots where paint dripped onto it, as show with arrows. G++ $85

Figural Calipers Figural Calipers

ME120474 Figural Calipers This is an example of a tool truly transcending utility and reaching a high artistic artistic plain. The tool is a caliper, graduated to 8 inches, but who cares, the form is everything. There are two horse heads facing away from each other that form the top of the tool. The patina is lovely. There are two different owner's marks, but it looks like the original owner's mark was ground off on each side. This is patinated now and not noticable. A masterpiece tool that will be in the top tier of any collection. Provenance: Dr. Ronald Pearson collection. G++ $1495


ME120372 Driver's Rule Works, Manchester A 24" by 18" folding boxwood square. There is a bit of chipping where the alignment pin chewed a bit on the side of the rule by being pushed together out of alignment, but otherwise this is a very clean and nice example. G++ $78

Brown & Sharpe

ME120376 Brown & Sharpe A dial indicator in the original box. The intermal foam is deteriorating in the box. The tool has a serial number written on the side with an electric pen. Otherwise it would rate fine. The action is a bit sluggish because the oil has thickened from sitting around. It needs to be lubricated. The box has some of the surface torn off, probably where something was taped to the box. Priced to sell. G++ $25

Full Female Body Calipers

ME120129 Full Female Body Calipers A 5" pair of brass calipers, with the legs formed as a woman's body. Dancing leg calipers are far more common than this type, which captures the entire essence of the female form in profile. These have been cleaned a bit carelessly and the patina is a bit blotchy. They are dead genuine. Many of the ones I see are fakes. G+ $245

Antique Tool

ME1112226 Winslow's Patent Face Gauge A used but well cared for example of this scarce patented morticing gauge. Only about 10% of the nickel remains, but the metal has a pleasing patina. No issues, just moderate use. Bargain priced compared to a pristine example. G+ $149

Antique Tool

ME111230 Engraved and Dated Level A 12" rosewood level with brass face, engraved, "B. Cook, 1869," The brass has been lighty hand polished but still has original patina. The wood shows some moderate tool box wear, but not like a level that was knocking about in the bottom for years. This is a nice piece, and hand engraved and dated tools are not common. G+ $175

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ME11098 Darling, Brown, & Sharpe, Providence R.I. A rare 3" caliper rule that was probably used in the Remington Arms Factory. The owner's initials are superbly engraved, "A C L". The last letter might be an S. I am not good with highly stylized engraving. Below that it is stamped Ilion N.Y. with a stamp that I believe was a stamp used by Remington to mark gun barrels. The engraved side rates fine, the opposite side is more like G+. The tools is nickel plated, and the nickel has an unven surface on the one side. I am not aware that DB&S nickel plated tools, but Remington certainly nickel plated guns. I wonder if the tool was plated at the Remington factory. $245

Antique Tool

ME110847 Masterpiece Surface Gauge This is a craftsman made surface gauge where the adjustable arm is in the form of a woman. I have never seen a machinists tool of any kind, portraying a woman's body, where the proportions and form were more accurately or elegantly executed. This tool was made by a man who really knew women, and was a true artist. In short a masterpiece example. The base and top are also wonderfully formed with a very elegantly molded base and an acorn finial. The very tip of the acorn is a bit rough and it is possible that the very tip of the acorn is damaged. The tool is nickel plated, with some light wear to the nickel from honest use. Stands 12 1/2" high. A true folk art masterpiece. Fine $1595

Antique Tool

ME110713 E. Preston & Sons A 24" boxwood shrink rule for iron and brass. NIce patina, but there is a big chip at one end, a lengthwise crack of about 8 inches, and some kind of varnish on it. Still an attractive piece. Good $25


ME170319 Template This is some kind of a mahogany template but I don't know what it was for. It came to me with a load of tools from one old workshop. It is approximately 7" by 4 3/4". Free to the first person who orders it and spends $100 on old tools. G+ $0

Antique Tool

ME110468 Marsden Brothers, Bridge St. Works, Sheffield A 9" rosewood level with brass face. The rosewood is fine with all its original finish and nice grain. The brass top has been hand polished, which held the condition down a grade. If that doesn't bother you, this is a super piece. G++ $95

Antique Tool

ME110434 Starrett 50th Anniversary Catalogue 1930 384 pages of the finest American made machinist's tools. Printed on the back, Elizabeth Hardware Co, 137 New Brunswick Ave, Perth Amboy, N.J. Not stamped, but actually printed for this company. G++ $25

Antique Tool

ME110436 J. Watts, Boston A boxwood morticing gauge by a rare Boston maker. It has seen some use, and the brass has been polished. There is also a hang hole in the shaft. It is still usable with plenty of the pins left, but such a rare gauge belongs with a collector. Good $129

Antique Tool

ME110441 Craftsman Made Trammels A superb pair of cabinetmaker's trammels with a pencil holder, in untouched condtion on the original beam. The beam is marked J Gellan and the brass pencil holder is engraved J G. The beam is mahogany but I am not sure about the trammels and the wedges, maybe satinwood, but with the heavy patina I can't tell. The beam is 16 inches and the trammels are 2 5/8" high. These are connoisseur grade all the way. Fine- $165

Antique Tool

ME110449 P. L. Fox Pat. Oct 2, '88. This is a combination square and bevel. In my personal experience this is a rare tool. This one shows wear but no abuse. The blade has been cleaned and shows very light pitting overall, but the mark is still clearly legible. A good honest example. I saw a similar one sell recently at auction for much more. G+ $225

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ME110415 Young & Stoudinger, New York This is a precision measuring tool of a form that I have not seen before. It has been in my collection for 20 years waiting for me to find out more about it, but I haven't. It looks to be very well made, and probably mid-19th Century. I have found nothing out about the maker. The tool is a sort of combination protractor and depth gauge. The protractor only goes from 45 degrees to 90 degrees, with solid stops. The style of marking has a European look to it, but it is graduated in inches and was presumably made in New York. It is very finely made, to scientific instrument standards. Highly recommended. G+ $495

Antique Tool

ME100658 Wood's Pat. Level by Tower & Lyon This is a Wood's patent sighting level with the pop up sights, that retains its original label on the side. It is 26in size. It has some tool box marks but it is as found and unmolested. There can't be too many of these that still have the label on the side. G+ $129

Antique Tool

ME100540 Driver's Rule Works, Manchester An unusual 18" by 24" folding boxwood square by a maker that I have never heard of. There is one tiny chip around one of the pin holes where it was probably closed with the pin not being properly aligned. Other than that it would rate Fine. A lovely piece. G++ $139

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ME100514 Winslow's Pat Adjustable Marking Gauge A clean honest example of this rare gauge in used but cared for condition. Totally as found, just like I like to get them. G+ $295

Antique Tool

ME100480 Sholl Pat Gauge This is a crisp as sound example of the 4 stem rosewood gauge. The brass trim still has much of the original lacquer on it. There is an old repair to the head, where it piece was chipped off and glued back on. Of of those "Oh S..." moments I am sure. Anyway, you will hardly notice this and the price is a steal. G+ $189

Antique Tool

ME100433 Rota-Meter Map Distance Measuring Tool An eposimeter, used to measure route distances on a map. The dial is in feet and inches. It has a horn handle and measures 4 5/8" overall. English and presumably from around 1900. Perfect as found condition. Fine $99

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ME100218 Pocket Scales This is an 18th Century set of pocket scales, complete, in the original metal box. They are sa found, with nice patina on the brass, nice rust free patina on the scales. The case was fitted for two weights, both of which are still there. They are marked with a lion symbol. There is also a later Victorian weight in the box. The box retains the original coarse cloth on the botoom and paper in the lid. The exterior paint is about 70% with the remainder pleasantly patinated. One of the best examples that I have seen. G++ $199

Antique Tool

ME100151 D. M. Lyon & Clearman A nice untouched rosewood morticing gauge by a rare New Jersey partnership. In 25 years this is the first example of this maker that I have found and I must assume that it is quite scarce. One pin is a bit shorter than the other, but both are a decent length. Shows only moderate wear. G+ $149

Antique Tool

ME91149 American Patent Sighting Level This is a well known patented American sighting level, but it is not marked and I can't remember the maker. It is one that Don Rosebrook knows about and has cataloged. I priced it cheap to save me the hassle of looking it up. Nice clean as found condition, it still has the original price of $1.75 on the end, along with a price code. Great patina on the brass trim. The 12" long body is laminated cherry. A very nice example. G+ $145

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ME80835 Early Calipers This is superb early calipers. They have the large facetted head with a double leaf joint that is associated with 17th and 18th Century examples. These are not marked but they are in superb original condition and are as nice an example as one could want. The detailing is wonderful. They are brass with steel or iron tips keyed into the brass arms. They stand 6 1/8" high. Highly recommended. G++ $495

Antique Tool

ME71257 Dancing Leg Calipers This is a nicely made pair of dancing leg calipers that are neatly marked by the maker, F. Miller. Measuring just under 3 inches, this is a small but elegant set of dividers. G++ $159

Antique Tool

ME71240 C. Sholl This is the 4 stem rosewood version of this famous patented gauge. This one is in nice as found condition with only light tool box wear and only light wear from useage. If you want one nice example for your collection, this could be it. G+ $259

Antique Tool

ME70343 Decorative Trammels I have never seen any trammels before quite like these. They have a very pronounced decorative chamfering. The beam is mahogany, but I am not sure about the heads. One point is broken off. They are as found and would benefit from a waxing. A superb example of the artistic expression of the workman as expressed in his own tools. Good $99

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