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Measuring Tools

Explanation of Our Condition Grading System

Frequently Asked Vintage Tool Questions

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

ME150386 Brown & Sharpe MFG Co. This is a 7" vernier caliper made when Brown & Sharpe was the best of the best. The knurled thumbscrews alone say it all. This tool reeks of quality. It is still in its original fitted case, which is wood with real leather covering. There is a spot where the leather is gone on the left front corner of the case. I am guessing that this tool is about 1900. A gem. G++ Sold


ME150333 Dividers A set of crisp 7 1/2" steel dividers. This tool has patchy surface rust, but appears to have seen little if any use. They are quite tight and need oil and come light cleaning. A quality set of English dividers with nice chamfer work. G+ Sold

C. Nurse & Co

ME150335 C. Nurse & Co A crisp and little used bevel, but it has some light rust on the blade, which otherwise still retains its bluing, and the ebony stock has light tool box rash. G+ $29

Planel Gauge

ME150341 Panel Gauge A as found applewood panel gauge. Craftsman made with some elegance to it. The stem is about 20 1/2" long. There is one spot on the head where something fell on it and damaged the wood. This doesn't impact its use at all, but kept me from adding another +. G+ $59

Dring and Fage, Makers, #20 Tooley St. London Bridge Dring and Fage, Makers, #20 Tooley St. London Bridge

ME150295 Dring and Fage, Makers, #20 Tooley St. London Bridge A 6 fold, 60", boxwood wantage rule that is as found with lovely patination. Accordign to Jane Rees's book, the maker's were at this address from 1820 to 1882, so that does not pin it down too well. It certainly looks earlier than later to me, with what appears to be hand stamped markings. It is marked "Imperial Gallons". A very nice example. G+ Sold

E. Preston and Sons, Birmingham

ME150298 E. Preston and Sons, Birmingham A Preston depth gauge with a 4" rule. Marked No. 101. Most of the nickel is gone. The tool is well used but not abused and is still a nice looking tool for a collector or a user. Good Sold

Watkins & Hill, Charing Cross, London Watkins & Hill, Charing Cross, London Watkins & Hill, Charing Cross, London

ME15038 Watkins & Hill, Charing Cross, London A pair of boxwood rules in a fitted mahogany case. These rules are just over 6" long. Nice as found condition. I assume that that they are for working out scale in drafting but I am not sure. Fine Sold

Unmarked Unmarked Unmarked

ME150312 Unmarked An early version of the Disston all in one square, this square is unmarked but appears to be a Philadelphia made square and relatively early. It has level vial in the stock and a scribe in the base. The blade is 8" to the brass face of the stock. The brass is patinated but made have been slightly polished by a collector at some point in the past. Not a pristine tool, but a nice one and a rare form. G+ $119

Wm Marples & Sons

ME150243 Wm Marples & Sons A very lightly used number 2154 combination marking and morticing gauge in the original box. Very similar to a Stanley #77. Only the marking side of the fence shows any wear at all, and that is very little. The box shows normal wear but is intact. The brass is still bright with original lacquer. The rosewood also retains most of its original lacquer. Probably 1960s but I am not sure. Fine- Sold

Hall & Knapp, New Britain, CT

ME150253 Hall & Knapp, New Britain, CT A 4 1/2" cabinetmaker's square. The blade and the brass trim our in wonderful condition. I would rate this tool much higher but for tool box rash to the surface of the rosewood. The rosewood still has its original finish, but that finish as extensive light scratches from a tool box. This is really a nice example with the eagle mark about the maker's name. A collector's piece or a good user for a very discerning craftsman. G+ Sold

L.S. Starrett

ME150268 L.S. Starrett A crisp and about unused 4" sliding square. I am not sure of the age, but it is not recent production. Fine Sold

Tidgewell & Co. Middletown, Ct

ME150271 Tidgewell & Co. Middletown, Ct An as found 18" cabinetmaker's square that will need some heavy cleaning. This is not a TBT grade tool, but it appealed to me because these large American squares are pretty scarce, especially in untouched condition. It does still have the hanging tab. This part alone is worth what I am asking if you need one. With care this will be a decent looking tool and a good one to practice your cleaning skills on. Good $36

J. Dobie, 205 Argyle St. Glasgow J. Dobie, 205 Argyle St. Glasgow

ME150212 J. Dobie, 205 Argyle St. Glasgow A very scarce brass framed morticing gauge in boxwood. These Ultimatum style gauges are nearly always in ebony, just like the braces. This one is in as found condition, never polished, with traces of original lacquer on the brass, which shine like traces of gilding against the patinated brass. The body has better than 80% of its original French polish, although there is significant surface rash. The pins are sharp and ready to use. This tool has been in my own collection for nearly 20 years. I found it in a rural antiques shop in New Hampshire. An important piece to the right person. G++ $245


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 $49

Plumb Bob

ME150239 Plumb Bob A particulary elegant and attractive little plumb bob. It is marked 2, which I think is 2 ounce. It is just over 2" high. The screw top has lovely hand cut knurling and the form really perfect. The brass has been polished and there is some old pitting on the point. A personal favorite. G+ $65

C. Nurse & Co, Invicta Works

ME150241 C. Nurse & Co, Invicta Works A classic Brass stemmed ebony morticing gauge with a full brass face. This was the common high-end gauge. This one has never been polished and has full length original pins. It shows very little wear and would rate fine but for some tools box wear to the polish on the ebony. A light cleaning with wax and it will look wonderul. G++ Sold

J. E.. Brown J. E.. Brown

ME15012 J. E. Brown A hand-wrought carpenter's framing square. According ot the EAIA directory of American tool makers, J. E. Brown made squares around 1841, but nothing is reported about him. The E. on the mark stamp is damaged. This is square is a usable square, and I have personally used it on a recent bathroom renovation project, but it has been cleaned overall with steel wool. It has pitting overall and a medium patina. The closeup photo gives a good idea of the surface, as it looks the same overall. Signed American squares of this vintage are not at all common. Good $59

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

French Curve

ME15018 French Curve This is a craftsman made oak French curve. These were common in British tool chests and they vary widely in both original quality and condition. This one is superbly well made and in wonderful untouched condition. A real gem. Fine Sold

I Sorby, Punch Brand

ME141223 I Sorby, Punch Brand A 6" cabinetmaker's square with the punch logo on a decal on the rosewood stock and on the blade. Probably from the 1930s - 50s. I Sorby is of course a different company than Roberty Sorby, who's products we sell new. I. Sorby is now gone. The brass trim has been polished by an English dealer. This of course hurts any collector's value it might have had but it is still a nicer user. G+ Sold

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


ME141239 Brookes A pair of hand-forged iron dividers. I have not looked him up but I recognize the maker and I believe that Brookes was an early 19th Century English maker. Signed examples like this are quite scarce. These do look like they have been cleaned a bit. G+ Sold

Woodrough & McParlin Woodrough & McParlin

ME141162 Woodrough & McParlin A rare graduated cabinetmaker's square by this scarce Cincinatti saw maker. The blade is acid etched with graduations and the maker's name, all very clearly legible. I have never seen a square marked using the sawmaking technique of acid etching before. Similarly, the blade is made from spring-steel saw stock and is more flexible than a square would normally be. Both sides are graduated. The stock is applewood, also unusual on a square, but that is what they used for saw handles so it makes sense. This tool is as found. The brass is crisp and untouched and the escutcheons still have quite a bit of lacquer left on them. The wood has nice color, and not too many marks on it, but there is a lot of old glue and other things on the wood that would probably be very hard to remove without damaging the surface. I would just wax it and leave it alone. This is a rare and wonderful tool. G+ $189

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

W & W. Cresson, Makers, Philadelphia

ME14128 W & W. Cresson, Makers, Philadelphia A very scarce 18" square in the classic Philadelphia style. The stock is mahogany. It has a brass lined hang hole that is so neatly done that it could be original. The little lug that allows it to hold itself up is still present. The brass was hand polished by a collector a long time ago. The rest has only been properly cleaned. The blade has some light surface pitting, primarily on the left side, that is the marked side, which has a sticker on it in the photo. The worst thing on this square is that the mark is very poor. In 30 years I have seen less than 10 squares by Cresson, not counting bevels, which are more common. G+ Sold

Upson Nut Co. Unionville, Ct

ME141120 Upson Nut Co. Unionville, Ct A 10" bevel with the Star patent screw lock that does not get in the way of your work. The rosewood stock is also marked, "Mulligan, 229 Federal St., Boston". I am not a hundred percent sure that the name is Mulligan. The stamp is light. the wood and brass are in lovely condition. The blade has has some light and some medium pitting, but still has a nice patina and will work fine. This is a nicer example than it sounds and will make a great user. G+ Sold

Disston & Morss, Philada, Warranted True

ME141140 Disston & Morss, Philada, Warranted True A crisp and wonderful mahogany stocked 10" mitre square. Shows normal surface wear from being in a tool box tray, but is about as nice as they come. American mitre squares of this style, and period are quite scarce. It is in the English style, but with an definite American interpretation. All of the Philadelphia mitre squares that I have seen are similar. There is hole in the bottom of the stock that probably once contained a hanging hoop. Highly recommened. G+ $129

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

Plumb Bob

ME141045 Plumb Bob A simple but elegant cast iron plumb bob, weighing approx. 18 ounces. Traces of old paint but mostly nicely patinated iron. G++ $45

L. S. Starrett

ME14102 L. S. Starrett A pair of 3" Fay patent calipers in their original box, and still in their original individual celophane packets. The box was for 2, and both of them are stil in the box. The rear corners of the top are torn out and some of the red paper is missing from the top where some fool had put a price tag and it was torn off. Not by me. If ths problem ever confronts you, try using a hair driyer. It will usually loosen the glue so that tape or stickers will come off harmlessly. The Fay patent is of course the quick release feature that allows them to be set very quickly. I am not sure of the age, but certainly older than I am. Fine+ $75


ME14108 Unmarked This is a Howard's Patent bevel in 12" size, as made by Star Tool Co., but it is not marked. Nice as found condition with a very clean blade. Would rate higher but for very light tool box rash on the rosewood. A great user. G+ Sold

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

W. Cresson, Philada

ME140934 W. Cresson, Philada A 4" cabinetmaker's square by a scarce Philadalphia saw maker that was bought out by Disston early in the days of Philadelphia saw making. The brass trim has a nice patina, as does the blade. The rosewood looks like it may have been rubbed with fine steel wool. I am not sure. The mark is a bit faint. This is a rare tool, and I rarely call any tool rare. G+ $109

Star Tool Co.

ME140830 Star Tool Co. A ten inch Howards's patent bevel. It is marked with the patent date and Star Tool Co. but it is feint. The brass has been polished and lacquered. The blade has been "cleaned" with some kind of abrasive. It will make a great user for the buyer on a budget. Good Sold


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

Thurston, 14 Catherine St. London Thurston, 14 Catherine St. London Thurston, 14 Catherine St. London

ME140626 Thurston, 14 Catherine St. London This is a 17" Mahogany billiard table level Thurston began at the Catherine St. address in 1822 and by 1833 he had a royal warrant, becoming the supplier of choice for game tables to the nobility. There is an original invoice from 1833, for the deliver of a billiard table to Windsor Castle, which shows a spirit level as among the supplied accessories. While it would be nice to speculate that this is that level, it is more likely that a spirit level was a standard option for tables supplied by Thurstons. Lovely original condition. Thurston seems to have left the Catherine St. address in 1840, but the reference book that I have is a bit ambiguous about that. The only tool of this type that I have ever seen. G++ $185

Unmarked Mortice Gauge

ME140644 Unmarked Mortice Gauge This is an unmarked, as found rosewood morticing gauge in the style of S. A. Jones. It is mid-19th Century and American. The pins are sharp and ready to use. G+ $50

Dated Square

ME140613 Dated Square This is a fixed square with a 3 3/4" blade. It is dated 1878 on the stock. It is a really handy pocket sized square and somebody with the initials JB probably really relied on it. It looks like it has been cleaned with steel wool and has no patina left. A nice little tool for a reasonable price. Good $45

Iron Plumb Bob

ME140521 Iron Plumb Bob This is an impressive iron plumb bob, 8 3/4" long and around 2 pounds. It has a lovely untouched patina and is of an elegant, elongated form. I particularly like this piece. G++ $189

Disston & Morss, Philadelphia Disston & Morss, Philadelphia

ME140527 Disston & Morss, Philadelphia An as found rosewood morticing gauge. This tool has a lovely patina on the brass but needs a light cleaning with wax for the rosewood. The pins are worn down but still fine to use. These old gauges did not start life with big tall pins like the gauges today. Big tall pins that look like nails don't actuall work as well as the fine pins on the old gauges. An old tool working better, no surpise there. G+ $49


ME140374 Unmarked This is a scarce brass-framed 9" bevel square in untouched condition. The wood insets are rosewood rather than the more common ebony. A nice user or collector's tool. Not pristine, but I have not seen many that were even this good and I have never seen a pristine one. G+ $98

John Rabone & Sons

ME140322 John Rabone & Sons A 6" machinist's level with vials in both directions. In the original fitted box and in pristine condition. I would guess that it dates to the 50s or perhaps 60s. Fine $89

Kelvin-White Co. Nautical Insturments, New York and Boston Kelvin-White Co. Nautical Insturments, New York and Boston

ME140141 Kelvin-White Co. Nautical Insturments, New York and Boston A most clever idea, this is a nautical compass that is integrated with a flash light, creating a hand held compass that is self illuminating. Comes in a fitted wooden box. The paint on the maker's plaque is peeling, the tool is otherwise really superb and would rate higher. Unique in my experience and a great piece for the nautical enthusiast. G++ $165

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

L.S. Starrett, Pat. Jan. 6. 1885

ME131160 L.S. Starrett, Pat. Jan. 6. 1885 This is an early Starrett caliper, 12" high. It has a quick set adjustment feature, to allow you to return to the same spot consistently. One thumscrew locks the caliper in place, and the other locks it and also acts as a stop, to open it and then return to the same spot. This is invaluable for work where you must take a measurement and then remove the caliper over a thicker spot. Nice condition but clearly showing some use. G+ $58

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

Angus McLean, Paisely

ME131116 Angus McLean, Paisely A 10" rosewood level wth brass face. Nice unpolished brass patina and a scarce mark. Angus McLean was a tool merchant in Paisely who traded from 1882 to 1915. I have my friend Derek Harley to thank for this information. A nice honest level that has only been lightly waxed by a collector. G+ Sold

Brass Plumb Bob

ME1310100 Brass Plumb Bob A 5" long brass plumb bob, about 12 ounces. It has been polished and the steel tip has some scratches and light pitting. A good user. Good $29

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

Stanley, Great Turnstile, London W.C. Stanley, Great Turnstile, London W.C.

ME130815 Stanley, Great Turnstile, London W.C. This is a cased set of three drawing tools. First is a dividers, then a matching compass to work with a lead tip, and another to work with an ink tip. All three are fitted to a blue velvet lined black naugahyde case. The outside of the case shows some wear and only rates G+, but the tools are really superb. Fine $59


ME1306115 E.G. A 10" brass level that has it is original lacquer and is truly pristine. Never cleaned in any way. The fitted box has been waxed with furniture polish, and smells of it. The box is made from some kind of exotic wood. Marked E.G. with a crown. Fine $95

Cook, Maker, London

ME130412 Cook, Maker, London A boxwood double slide rule, 9 1/4" by 2" body. Calibrated on both sides and the edges. I don't claim to understand the use of these slide rules, but this one is in lovely condition, and Cook is a good early London maker. G+ $179

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

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


ME120718 Unmarked A 7 1/2" brass stocked Philadelphia square of a form most commonly made by Disston and Morse but earlier made by Johnson & Conway. The blade has a dark patina with some spots of light rust. The brass stock has a nice unpolished patina. The top and bottom of the stock double as a mitre square. 49 G+ $49

Panel Gauge

ME120693 Panel Gauge An elegant craftsman made panel gauge with a rosewood shaft and wedge, and a mahogany head. 24" capacity. Nice untouched condition. G+ $79

Moore and Wright

ME120697 Moore and Wright A 1" hub micrometer in an unusual fitted box. I have not seen this style of Moore and Wright box before. The tool is inserted through the hole of pulley, sheave, wheel, casting, etc. for when the overall outside diameter precludes the use of a regular frame micrometer. Lovely untouched condition. Fine Sold

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+ $175

Dancing Leg Calipers

ME120584 Dancing Leg Calipers An elganly formed pair of dancing leg calipers with a much more nicely made hinge than is usually seen on this traditional craftsman made form. 4" high. Probably cleaned by a collector at some point, but nicely done. I would date these as being 19th Century. A much better than averate example. G+ $175

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++ $99

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+ $79

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 $35

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++ $99

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++ $95

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++ $1695

Brown & Sharpe

ME120485 Brown & Sharpe A number 13RS 1 " satin finish micrometer in the original box with the instruction sheet. The owner has neatly engraved his name on one side. Fine $49


ME120437 Unmarked A very small, 5", bevel square. While not marked, this bevel is immediately recongizable as a 19th Century New England made tool. The brass has lovely patina and the rosewood still has it is original French polish. Totally as found, it just needs a light waxing. A real gem for the connoisseur. Fine- $79

L.S. Starrett

ME120365 L.S. Starrett A machinist's belt speed indicator. Nice as found condition. G+ Sold


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++ $98

Henri Joliot, Paris

ME120373 Henri Joliot, Paris A lovely 16cm capacity precision caliper. I am not sure of the age but I assume that it is 19th Century. The numbering is very elegant and may be hand engraved. The surface is a bit dark and the brass has some tool box dings, but this is still a tight and accurate tool. An elegant tool. G+ $95

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++ $35

L. S. Starrett L. S. Starrett

ME120250 L. S. Starrett This is a Starrett Builder's Combination Tool number 439, with the original 24" rule, which is marked #439. I think that this is a pretty early example, but I don't know how to date them accurately.. Somebody has carefully painted it green over the original black paint, which you can still see. They have then initialled it, R.C.C. in black paint. The blade is elegantly engraved "D. L. Fernald" in a flowing script. I wonder if R.C.C. was some kind of organization that Mr. Fernald was associated with. This is a nice honest example of a scarce tool. G++ $229

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+ $295

Kersha Bros, Cleve. Kersha Bros, Cleve.

ME120111 Kershaw Bros, Cleve. A large size, 12", Eagle cast iron bevel. This is the design that became the famous Stanley 18. This one is marked on the blade, "Pat. Appl. For" and is presumably a quite early example. It has been very lightly cleaned in an inappropriate way, so the surface has a slightly frosted appearance in spots. I stress that this is very light, and only in spots. This is still a very nice example. G+ $95

S. Tyzach & Co, 543,545 Old St. E.C

ME120117 S. Tyzach & Co, 543,545 Old St. E.C A lovely 9" cabinetmaker's square with the original lacquer on the stock and the bluing on the blade. There are a few marks on the stock, and a few spots on the blade, but this is about as good as they get. From my personal collection. G++ $75

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ME1112250 Unmarked An unmarked but Disston made small sized bevel square, the blade is 6 inches overall. Totally as found and crisp, but there is some pitting on the blade which impacted the condition, and made it cheap. Still a great user with nice untouched patina. Good $35

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ME1112221 W. Cresson, Phlilada A 10" bevel square by the early American saw maker, William Cresson. Any tools marked by this early Philadelphia sawmaker are scarce. The brass trim on this bevel has been hand polished and the rosewood, which is nicely figured, has moderate tool box rash. The blade is nicely patinted and retains much of the original blueing, which has faded to brown. G+ $69

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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+ $189

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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+ $198

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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. $285

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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 $1895

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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

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ME11055 William Slater, Bolton A complex boxwood rule that was made for engineers setting up spinning machinery. William Slater was the inventor and they were made by a few different manufacturers. This one is not maker marked. It is a 24", two fold rule with a brass slide-rule. A lovely example that has never been buffed or cleaned in any way with a great patina on both the brass and boxwood. G++ $265

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ME110457 Slater & Eldridge Co, Phila A very unusual mitre square, being set at 50 degrees. I have no idea why and I have never seen another example like it. The maker is also very rare. The mark is not super clear, but I can make it out. It looks like a typical Philadelphia mitre square until you check the angle. The blade is 8 inches across the top. The blade has some pitting on one side, near the end. This is mostly on just one side, as shown in the photo. The brass has a nice patina. This tool has only been properly waxed by a collector. For the advanced Philadelphia collector. Good $185

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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

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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++ $45

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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 $149

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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- $195

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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+ $275

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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+ $995

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ME101155 J. Stevens A & T Co, Chicopee Falls Mass USA A rare fine adjust inside calipers by the famous gun maker, which also made precision tools. They measure just over 3 inches in height. Superb quality consistent with fine New England arms making. Lovely original surface. G++ $95

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ME100830 Engraved and Dated Level A 12" rosewood stocked level that has been engraved "J. Reid, 1869" with floral decoration. Beautifully done. The level shows honest wear from use and the brass has been hand polished. Good $169

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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+ $189

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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++ $159

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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+ $365

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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+ $195

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ME100433 Rota-Meter Map Distance Measuring Tool I can't remember the proper name for this tool, a sign of my age. I am sure somebody will tell me. 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 $149

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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++ $229

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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+ $165

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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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ME90140 F. Curtis, Stockbridge, Mass. This is a boxwood mortising gauge by an extraordinarily rare American maker. It is as found and needs a bit of work. It has brass plates on the top and bottom, and some of the brass pins that hold them on need to be reset. The head is also plated and a fool has put dent in the head resetting the pins. The head is currently on backwards. The boxwood is untouched. There is a small chip near the thumbscrew. The knurling is very fancy, althought it shows wear. The pins are nearly worn out. This can be carefully restored to be a nice example of a rare maker's work. Good $129

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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. Highly recommended. G++ $645

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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++ $179

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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+ $295

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ME70921 I&D Smallwood This is an advertising rule for the I&D Smallwood factory of Birmingham, one of the last makers of fine rules and levels in Britain to finally succumb to the march towards mediocrity that we are all on. This rule looks like it is mid 20th Century. A nice graphic piece of advertising and a functional 12" rule as well. Fine $85

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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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