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Forum topic by NicholasS posted 01-07-2013 06:41 AM 1707 views 0 times favorited 20 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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23 posts in 2377 days

01-07-2013 06:41 AM

There are a number of companies making quality hand tools of various types. Saws and planes are the two types of tools that most companies seem to be focusing on and therefor, there are a lot of options to choose from. But then there are other tools that no one seems to make anymore or what is considered by most tool experts to be the “best” version of these tools are no longer being made and now must be found at auctions or on Ebay. Two examples that come to mind are the 42X saw set and the Miller Falls No.2 hand drill. What are some hand tools that you think have been ignored by modern day tool companies or that the absolute best version of that tool is no longer being produced?

20 replies so far

View gawthrrw's profile


207 posts in 2470 days

#1 posted 01-07-2013 07:30 AM

How about coping saws…

-- Rob, Dallas TX

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584 posts in 2383 days

#2 posted 01-07-2013 09:07 AM

actuallly coping saws are still being produced. Now the bit brace on the other hand …

View gawthrrw's profile


207 posts in 2470 days

#3 posted 01-07-2013 10:19 PM

I mean a good working coping saw lol…

-- Rob, Dallas TX

View DocBailey's profile


584 posts in 2383 days

#4 posted 01-08-2013 12:18 AM

Hi Rob
Just for the sake of discussion, I had something like this in mind when I said they were stilll being made.
Then if you want something that will put a vintage coping saw to shame, there’s always this.

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Nicholas Hall

352 posts in 2129 days

#5 posted 01-08-2013 12:43 AM

How about holdfasts? I’ve heard that 99% of holdfasts are junk, and even gramercy holdfasts are only just passable. Quite a few folks say you need to find a blacksmith to get a decent one made. I’m all ears if anyone knows of a commercially available holdfast that you’d recommend for under $100. The Veritas ones with the screw tops don’t count nor do other screw based variants, I mean a proper holdfast that you whack with a hammer to tighten.

-- Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. -Groucho Marx

View Wally331's profile


350 posts in 2048 days

#6 posted 01-08-2013 01:10 AM

I would have to say I really want some new auger bits at a fair price, also decent miter boxes , and moulding planes!, ones that don’t cost 150$ a piece.

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23 posts in 2377 days

#7 posted 01-08-2013 01:56 AM

Wally331, I was thinking the other day that it would be neat if someone brought back “Whitehouse’s Patented Unbreakable Bits” that are described in Work magazine No.39.,%201889

I’ve never used them before so have no idea if they are actually any good but they are unique and no one has made anything like it since.

View gawthrrw's profile


207 posts in 2470 days

#8 posted 01-08-2013 03:29 AM

I have seen the knew comcepts saw… Very nice, and very expensive..

-- Rob, Dallas TX

View sikrap's profile


1121 posts in 3382 days

#9 posted 01-08-2013 03:35 AM

@Nicholas Hall- I know of a guy that is making holdfasts for $25 per pair. They probably aren’t the prettiest you’ll find, but everyone that has them loves them.

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

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1986 posts in 3487 days

#10 posted 01-08-2013 04:01 AM

I’m in for the holdfast as a forgotten and necessary tool. I made two sets of three for myself and my brother in law. I think they work great but I’ve never tried what is considered “a really good one.” After some use and watching a couple being used by Roy Underhill and his guest, I made a few modifications and they work even better with less chance of marring the wood.
I know holdfasts are adaptable enough they are also used in anvils for smithing. I made a quick one a few months back and it makes quick work of being a third hand on hot metal. Just my two cents.

-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


15368 posts in 2641 days

#11 posted 01-08-2013 04:13 AM

$25 each, I have a pair and love them.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

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11771 posts in 2403 days

#12 posted 01-08-2013 05:43 AM

2nd the auger bits. Really with our modern manufacturing ability and materials available, how do they not make the most awesome tools of all time? Sometimes I buy something cheap on the premise of ‘how could they screw this up?’ And yet they do. I have one new auger bit, it looks good, feels sharp, but sucks compared to my old vintage Irwins. Or coping saws? I bought a cheap one thinking it’s just a blade under tension but I hate using the thing.

-- Rick M,

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9350 posts in 2315 days

#13 posted 01-08-2013 05:46 AM

3rd on Auger bits. Auger bits, that fit a traditional brace… not the hex ended auger bits that fit in modern drills.

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN - -

View oldnovice's profile


6896 posts in 3391 days

#14 posted 01-08-2013 07:22 AM

Nicholas Hall, how about these holdfasts?

I think David Craig also posted a good one!

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

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David Craig

2137 posts in 3132 days

#15 posted 01-08-2013 11:24 AM

Here is the review that Hans is referring to. Gramercy makes holdfasts that are not cast iron. They came up with an ingenious substitute utilizing a heavy wire so the fasts can be mass produced at an affordable price.

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

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