Hand Tool Journey #35: Stanley SW #358 Miter Box Restoration #1.. Here we go again..

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Blog entry by Airframer posted 06-23-2014 03:21 AM 3504 reads 1 time favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 34: Stanley SW #246 Miter Box Restoration #7.. Done Finally.. Part 35 of Hand Tool Journey series Part 36: Stanley SW #358 Miter Box Restoration #2... Partapalooza! »

This is a project that has been waiting long enough. I actually started tearing down this one months before I got my #246 in but had to wait on some replacement parts before continuing on.

Here is what we have to work with.. a very rusty (as in every single freakin’ screw/bolt whatever is rusted frozen on the darn thing) Sweetheart No 358 Mitre Box with a broken and “fixed” swing arm assembly.

During my initial attempt to tear this thing apart I broke off the threaded portion of one of the uprights on the back side so that almost sealed it’s fate. After some trolling of fleeBay I was able to find a cheap”ish” newer #358 that had a usuable swing arm and uprights along with all the accessories that would be needed to get this thing complete including another Trip!

So today it was off to the races so to speak.

First thing after finishing the teardown was to remove the nameplate to protect it from the restoration process. If you have a box with the name plate on the degree arch this is pretty simple… if it’s on the side of the box it is not coming off and you just have to be careful with it.

The name plate is held on with 2 blind twist rivets that can be popped out from the backside with a hammer and a small punch.

Next was to give the base a good scrubbing with a wire brush and some Simple Green just to remove all the years of crud off it so the stripper can do it’s job.

Strangely after it’s cleaning I discovered that what I though was black japanning is actually a very dark blue!

I had played briefly with the thought of trying to color match it but have decided to go with black and call it good.

Then everything went into tubs and the base was coated liberally with Citristrip and the rest got an Evaporust bath. I wasn’t as careful separating everything this time around. I have taken apart 3 of these now and am pretty intimate with where everything goes now. If it is your first.. bag and tag everything with photos! trust me.. it is a bit of a jig saw puzzle.

There are actually 2.5 boxes worth of parts in there. I decided to go ahead and clean EVERYTHING I had this time around just in case lol. Hopefully that doesn’t come back to haunt me later.

Stay tuned!

-- Eric - "I'm getting proficient with these hand jobbers. - BigRedKnothead"

5 comments so far

View Brit's profile


7396 posts in 2892 days

#1 posted 06-23-2014 03:59 AM

That looks like a lot of work Eric. Can’t wait to see the finished assembly once you’ve got her back together again. Good luck!

-- - Andy - Old Chinese proverb says: "If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it."

View ToddJB's profile


8044 posts in 2180 days

#2 posted 06-23-2014 12:57 PM

Man, those things do not look that complicated until you see all of those little pieces in tubs.

-- I came - I sawed - I over-built

View Airframer's profile


3043 posts in 2002 days

#3 posted 06-23-2014 01:46 PM

Yep, there are a lot of little screws and parts in these seemingly simple boxes. That tub has 2 and a half boxes worth of parts in it so if you are doing one it will be slightly less but still kinda daunting at first lol.

-- Eric - "I'm getting proficient with these hand jobbers. - BigRedKnothead"

View AnthonyReed's profile


9793 posts in 2490 days

#4 posted 06-24-2014 05:12 PM

A huge job AF but if it comes out half as nice as your last one it will be well worth it. Looking forward to seeing the progress.

-- ~Tony

View Armyguy's profile


2 posts in 472 days

#5 posted 04-19-2017 06:10 PM

Sir, Can you please send me a PM? I was going to send you one, but I need at least 5 posts before I can send messages. I had some questions about this project. Thank you.

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