Last night, when I checked the forums I couldn’t help noticing this one posted by poopiekat about a mega batch of woodworking tools at an estate sale in Tucson. Well since Green Valley is just south of Tucson I made up my mind to go.
I don’t do the garage / estate sale circuit and have no idea how it works so I looked at the outing as an adventure that would be worth the time even if I came up empty. I called the company that was running the sale and found that they handed out numbers at 6:00 AM and the the doors opened at 8:00. I got up at 4:00 ( if you’re going to do it, you might as well do it right) and was at the sale venue at about 5:05. There were about a half dozen cars there but no one lined up at the door the way they do in Green Valley so I just sat and waited for a half hour to see when the lineup would start.
Then I learned something about these events that I didn’t know. I saw a fellow drive up and walk up to the door of the house and leave something so I got out of the car and asked him about the way these sales operate. He said that people arrive early and leave an item on the step in order behind any items already there and go back to their cars. ...... Oops, didn’t know that so I put down a golf tee from my pocket and returned to my car.
At about ten to six people started to gather near the door so I went up and met the early birds. The guy who had the little bucket at the head of the line got there from Phoenix at 11:30 last night and slept in his car. There were about six other guys, all there for the tools. My golf tee was 9th or 10th. At six o’clock the organizer showed up and handed out numbers, I got #16, not bad but the person who got #20 got almost an hour more sleep than I did.
After going off for some coffee and breakfast I returned and the gates opened at 8:00 and an orderly file, by number were allowed in. I went straight to the tools and to the wooden molding planes I had seen in the photos. I glanced over to where I had seen the round sided Bedrock near them and saw that it was gone.
I know little about the value of these hand tools but there were several there who knew a lot and the consensus was that most of these tools would go after 11:00 when the prices came down. There were good deals but there were a lot of planes at eBay prices and not at all cleaned up.
I only bought things that I would like to play with and based my choices on what their value was to me so I may have got some great deals or I may not have but here’s what I did manage to squirrel away for $46.
Was it worth it ? As an adventure and a learning experience …... priceless, wouldn’t have missed it for the world. As time well spent acquiring tools at great savings …. I think not so much, but at least I have a steel combination square now in my Green Valley shop and I can retire the aluminium one from HF that I’ve never really trusted as square.
Thanks for looking in.
-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees. http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/