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Searching for info on Witherby chisels and Simonds saws.

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Forum topic by peglegpirate posted 02-04-2011 02:00 AM 2296 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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peglegpirate

2 posts in 2006 days


02-04-2011 02:00 AM

Topic tags/keywords: witherby simonds chisel saw rustic traditional refurbishing hand saw question resource

Being new here I was hoping that someone might be able to help me find some information on some tools I bought the other day. I bought a wooden tool box so I had somewhere to store my saws, ad read that it held some misc. tools as well as a bit and brace set. Once I got home and started going through the box I found three Witherby chisels, they are a tang style with leather grommets on top of the handles. They sides are partially tapered and beveled. I found some info on Witherby online, but not much. All of the chisels I saw were of a socket style and this made me wonder if mine were of a type geared more to the home owner, rather than the craftsman.

Also included were two saws made by Simonds Saw. One is a #72, about 26” long, 8tpi. The other is a handle with multiple blades, one marked as a #83 for use cutting metal, nails, and such, the other blades for that saw are only marked as Simonds Saw, Fitchburg, Mass.

Any information on any of these tools would be greatly appreciated. I am looking to know if I should be cleaning these up and using them, or should I clean them and hang them on the wall to preserve them. I found the saws were probably made before 1926, as that was the last I could find that they made saws. Thanks again for any info you could provide.


4 replies so far

View Loren's profile

Loren

7822 posts in 2393 days


#1 posted 02-04-2011 02:05 AM

Witherby’s are common in the Northeast. I’ve seen a lot up there in
antique stores and at flea markets.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View David Kirtley's profile

David Kirtley

1285 posts in 1743 days


#2 posted 02-04-2011 03:43 AM

The Witherby’s are junk, I’ll save you the embarrassment and dispose of them for you.

Seriously, the Witherby’s are pretty much top of the line. You will be hard pressed to find anything nicer. The tanged vs. sockets? Well, it is more of a style issue. Generally the socketed ones are a bit more general purpose and meant for heavier service and the tanged are generally more for paring and not beating on.

You would be hard pressed to find better chisels.

-- Woodworking shouldn't cost a fortune: http://lowbudgetwoodworker.blogspot.com/

View swirt's profile

swirt

1952 posts in 1717 days


#3 posted 02-04-2011 04:13 AM

Witherby chisels are usually pretty highly prized. You are right, most of the ones I have seen, including the two I have, are socket style firmer chisels. As far as I know, they are excellent steel quality. Those chisels should clean up nicely and serve you better than nearly any chisel you can buy today. As far as the intended audience for the tang vs the socket, I don’t know. My guess would be that we see more sockets because they hold up better and are easier to re-handle. I could picture some people finding a tang chisel with a damaged handle and just choosing to discard it. Often tang chisels are put on lighter duty hand tools as opposed to the socket variety that are typically made for heavier pounding. That being said, yours look plenty solid. The catalogs on Toolmera don’t indicate any different audience for the tangs vs the chisel. (links below)

You’ve probably already seen these but just in case
http://galootcentral.com/membersites/brianwelch/witherby/index.htm
http://toolemerablog.typepad.com/toolemera/2008/01/wither-witherby.html
http://toolemerablog.typepad.com/toolemera/2009/01/witherby-history.html
http://www.toolemera.com/Manufacturers%20%26%20Merchants/Mfg.%20v-z/mfg.witherby.html
http://www.davistownmuseum.org/bioWitherby.html

Simmonds saws are a respected name. And are often compared to Disstons. That’s about the extent of what I know.

-- Galootish log blog, http://www.timberframe-tools.com

View swirt's profile

swirt

1952 posts in 1717 days


#4 posted 02-04-2011 04:15 AM

heh sorry to repeat what David already said. I’m a slow typer. ;)

-- Galootish log blog, http://www.timberframe-tools.com

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