|Project by toolchap||posted 05-28-2010 08:22 PM||2548 views||4 times favorited||19 comments|
This story started back in 1998 as I remember, when I had found a second Stanley no.1 in the most unlikely of places. My first had been an 1892 patent and the second was a 1936. Sitting looking at them, I marvelled at the beauty of the lines, the patina and an era past. I tend to cling to a quality largely reminiscent of bygone days and this little plane moved me. The idea came to reproduce a miniature version and this gave birth to what I call the Stanley no.1/2. Obviously some clever chap came along and asked me if there was a Stanley no.1/4! Damn! I had to build another.
Then last year on my birthday, a client walked into my shop and looked at a panelplane I had built for myself and wanted to buy it. I said it was not for sale as I used it. He asked whether I would build him one and after a short discussion, I saw him to be serious. This was one of those beautiful experiences in its entirety. I had not thought of building handtools for commercial use as I had kept this strictly part of my soul. Upon delivery however, Andy stood with the plane in his hands, tears in his eyes and said that it was the most beautiful thing he had seen. There was a gentle passion in those moments which I will never forget and most of us craftsmen are usually to be satisfied with the money as payment. Andy gave me a piece of his soul in that trade and what followed. I have a working museum of old tools here with a much unnapreciative audience in general in our culture except of course if there is a fiscal value to be attached. He wanted to buy a few of my tools and we traded some more to the satisfaction of both. Having shown him my little no.1/2 is what led to the comission of the little plane and a quiet joy in building something special for a good soul. It now being finished, I have a quiet happiness to see it go to a good home.
ps. He has just commisioned me to build a no.1/4.