what tools to look for this summer(yard sales,fleamarkets)???

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Forum topic by mhein68 posted 02-16-2011 04:28 AM 2338 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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62 posts in 3021 days

02-16-2011 04:28 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question chisel clamp plane

Hey all, With summer coming up I thought I’d pick a brain or two… What would/do you look for at yard sales , estate sales and flea markets.. What I’m thinking is what chisels a person might find to look for ( I heard Stanley 16-903 chisels)?? What would you pick up and what would you pass on? I have seen alot of chisels but didnt know which is good used and which is not? What about other tools to buy used( planes,saws ect)? I guess this is just a conversation question(?)... Thanks!

-- Mike, Southern IL

11 replies so far

View Loren's profile


10403 posts in 3649 days

#1 posted 02-16-2011 04:34 AM

Look for chisels with some length on them. I know some guys like the
short “butt chisels” but with old ones sometimes the short chisels have
just been ground down to stubs, past the good steel.

Chisels are pretty interesting and it’s hard to go too far wrong buying them
on visual inspection (checking for cracks, pitting and distortion).

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671 posts in 2693 days

#2 posted 02-16-2011 04:42 AM

I personally have a thing for old hand tools. They just don’t make things that good anymore and I’ve learned from my power tool purchases.

-- Who can I block now???????????????????????

View Mike_C's profile


6 posts in 2846 days

#3 posted 02-17-2011 04:30 AM

I don’t look for anything specific, either that or I have a really long list. I usually go for hand tools but I’ve gotten some great power tool deals, like a Milliuake sawz all, a little battery powered trim saw, and an old dewalt belt sander for $25. Once I hit an estate sale hand tools for $1.50, brand new hands saws, come a longs, etc… of course I’m still kicking myself for that $25 delta mortiser that I didn’t grab…. what was I thinking

View mcjibbin's profile


44 posts in 2688 days

#4 posted 02-17-2011 05:09 AM

Last summer, I found a whole cardboard box full of planes for $15. Mostly block planes, but also three No. 4’s and two No. 5’s. 22 in all. Mostly all Stanley. Heck-of-a-deal.

I’m also a sucker for chisels, well pretty much any old hand tools, and cheap newer power tools. There are certainly bargains to be had, as long as you have a decent idea of value…

View Vrtigo1's profile


434 posts in 2992 days

#5 posted 02-17-2011 05:19 AM

I look at any tools they happen to have. You can’t really go in to that situation with a shopping list, because you probably won’t find anything you’re looking for, and you’ll probably find a lot of stuff you can use that you didn’t think to put on your list. What I like to do is if something catches my eye, I’ll search for reviews on it using my phone and base my decision on that. If it’s something I think I can use and the price is great, I’ll buy it and research it later.

Normally I only bother with reviews for stuff that’s over 20 or 30 bucks, or if it’s something I don’t really know much about.

View Lochlainn1066's profile


138 posts in 2778 days

#6 posted 02-17-2011 09:30 AM

I always look for chisels and planes. Clamps can occasionally be found for a good price. Handsaws around here go cheap, except for backsaws, which I don’t see many of.

The best thing to do is know who the good manufacturers are of old tools. Names like Shapeleigh, Keen Kutter, Stanley, Marples, Sorby, and Buck Bros. in old chisels. Disston for saws. Stanley, Record, Diamond Edge, Keen Kutter for planes.

Examine your find for damage carefully! You can sometimes find great deals, but the hardest part is sometimes knowing when to walk away from the price, maker, or condition. Lots of internet research available, read!

-- Nate,

View CoolDavion's profile


434 posts in 3825 days

#7 posted 03-14-2011 07:16 PM

I’m always on the look out for planes and clamps.

-- Do or do not, there is no try!

View Tedstor's profile


1643 posts in 2634 days

#8 posted 03-15-2011 07:49 AM

Saws. I responded to a CL ad for a vintage craftsman bench grinder. Seller also had ads for a few other machines as well. When I arrived at the house, I came to find a VERY well-stocked home woodshop. Lots of hand tools hanging on the wall. The tools belonged to a recently deceased gentleman, and the seller was a family friend that was looking to unload the stuff quick and easy. I only brought $50 with me on top of the $25 he wanted for the grinder. I walked out with a copy-paper box full of stuff for that $50 (files, vise, etc). The best of which was a Tyzack Tenon saw, Tyzack dovetail saw, and a Disston back saw. All meticulously sharpened and maintained. I also got a 26” Vintage Craftsman Kromedge panel saw that I’ve come to really like. Bottom line is I plan to snatch up anything that catches my that can be had cheap. But I’m definitely looking for more saws. Specifically a rip saw.

View brianinpa's profile


1812 posts in 3724 days

#9 posted 03-16-2011 03:25 AM

I pretty much look for anything woodworking and buy the things that catch my attention. Sometimes that gets me in trouble with the wife, but making up is just as much fun as getting the tools.

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.

View nicksshoppe's profile


16 posts in 2653 days

#10 posted 03-16-2011 03:36 AM

Yard sales are hit and miss. I myself am a bit of a tool nut. I to also get… “how many of those do you need?” Have fun

-- nicksshoppe

View idigjars's profile


40 posts in 2630 days

#11 posted 03-16-2011 01:35 PM

I’m sure I’m like alot of you guys. I love tools and if the price is right I buy as much as I can. I would buy the tools in the best shape first if there was a wide variety. Good luck to all finding items in sales this coming summer. Best regards. Paul

-- Take your time and do it right once.

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