|Forum topic by Von||posted 08-30-2012 12:30 PM||2151 views||0 times favorited||2 replies|
08-30-2012 12:30 PM
My earliest memories of doin something with wood go back to when I was not much taller than the hand braces my dad let me “play” with while he puttered around the basement making stuff for mom. Dad would be using his electric drill… but I had this neat gizmo that didn’t need power to work. As the years went by, the tools my dad had disappeared, including that awesome bit brace.
Now I have my own shop. And I have been aching to find a brace & bit for some of my projects. Yea, an electric drill can punch a hole. But there’s something about a hand tool that… well… you know. Sometime nothing else quit fits the bill. I ahve actually been looking for a brace for almost a decade. The knock-off stuff these days…. I just can’t justify their prices. And they look cheap. I wanted the real deal. The kind I had my mitts on as a kid.
So last weekend I come to a flee market. An older gentleman is peddling off his old tools on this large 22’ flatbed trailer. And scattered amongs the tools: BRACES!!!! omg 4 of em, and they all work, AND they have matched bits!! The guy lets me have them at a buck each. 0.0 I would later make 3 or 4 more trips to his trailer for other treasures… but I was stoked. I finally had my braces & bits. squeeeeee!
Turns out these things are… how do you say it? ....antiques? ...heirlooms? (well they will be for my kids, for sure)
first shot is a Miller Falls 1710 from 1935 if this had the M/S stamp it would be as new as 1981, but the M/S is missing, hence the earlier date. even if it was the ‘81 vers. I wouldn’t care. It’s gettin put to work anyway!
Next shot is a Mohawk from about the same timeframe
Third shot is a Lakeside, again from the 30’s. can’t seem to find any real info on this company or brace beyond a vague reference.
The last 2 shots are something special: a Vaughan & Bushnell from as early as 1882, to as new as 1921. In 1922 Vaughan bought out Bushnell and the logo and company changed names, location, and tool lineup. Vaughan dropped production of a fair number of tools, this brace was one such product. Research on the logo indicates that this could very well be a pre 1915 model. Some think that the screws in the jaws date it to 1900-1914. Some folks say that pins were used in the heads from the late 1800’s to about 1905. However, some models as old as the late 1880s have been found with screws, not pins. (a couple of museums claim they have such tools in their collections) At any rate, this is the oldest tool, item, whatever—that I own now.