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Forum topic by Don Broussard posted 141 days ago 656 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Don Broussard

1367 posts in 757 days


141 days ago

I’m not really brand loyal to any particular tool maker, but I do recognize that Starrett is a quality manufacturer and is seen as a top brand for its tools. Last week, I picked up a Starrett 12” rule marked “No. 300” and “Tempered No. 4”. It has ⅛”, 1/16”, 1/32” and 1/64” markings and no edges are beveled. Any ideas as to its vintage? I can’t seem to find any worthwhile information on the web. BTW, I gave a buck for it.

Any information from LJ web ninjas is appreciated.

-- People say I hammer like lightning. It's not that I'm fast -- it's that I never hit the same place twice!


14 replies so far

View nwbusa's profile

nwbusa

1015 posts in 791 days


#1 posted 141 days ago

The “Tempered No. 4” might refer to its graduations (4R = 1/8”, 1/16”, 1/32” & 1/64” graduations), and the fact that it is a tempered steel rule. Good buy!

-- John, BC, Canada

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ShaneA

4970 posts in 1103 days


#2 posted 141 days ago

Hmm? Sounds like you may have overpaid. As an act of a kind fellow LJ, I would take it off your hands, and give you the chance to double your money.

Pictures of how the Starrett name appears may reveal some about its vintage.

View alohafromberkeley's profile

alohafromberkeley

238 posts in 909 days


#3 posted 141 days ago

You stole it!

-- "After a year of doing general farmwork, it was quite clear to me that chickens and I were not compatible"-George Nakashima

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Don Broussard

1367 posts in 757 days


#4 posted 141 days ago

@John—I did see the “4R” notation on the Starrett website, but I did not see an explanation of what that notation means. You’re probably right that it refers to the graduations on the ruler.

@Shane—I’m tempted by your kind offer, but I think I’ll hold on to the ruler for the time being. I’m attaching a picture, albeit of poor quality, of the Starrett name. The “No. 300” can be seen to the right of the “Starrett”.

FYI, I did not see this “No. 300” notation on the Starrett website. It appears that 300 refers to a 300 mm (11-¾”) rule. Mine might be a vintage rule.

-- People say I hammer like lightning. It's not that I'm fast -- it's that I never hit the same place twice!

View JustJoe's profile

JustJoe

1554 posts in 543 days


#5 posted 141 days ago

John in Canada explained the numbering system correctly. The machinist rules came in at least nine different scales. The 4R scale has those four edges. Other had different like a 6R has 50ths and 10ths and is marked on both sides ut a #10 is only marked on one side and has 32nds and 64ths.

The 300 is a model #, not a length. Each rule came in one or more lengths – kind of like the Stanley levels. You ordered a rule based on how long you wanted it, what scales you needed, and any special finish or treatment like hardening, tempering, satin etc.

The 300 is listed in the 1936 catalog as available from 1 to 48 inches. It’s not in my 1981 pricelist so it was discontinued sometime before then. Scans of some of the older catalogs are available on the internet.

Edit: There is a guy up in Tucson who has a nice website with tool info, including his attempt to date starrett tools by the logo. His name is JD Pickering. I thought he was a member of this forum, but it might be another one I look at occasionally. Googling might bring up his website and some info on your rule. (I can’t fnd the bookmark right now).

-- This Ad Space For Sale! Your Ad Here! Reach a targeted audience! Affordable Rates, easy financing! Contact an ad represenative today at JustJoe's Advertising Consortium.

View waho6o9's profile

waho6o9

4457 posts in 1082 days


#6 posted 141 days ago

Doubling your investment is a prudent course to take.

Please re consider and accept Shane’s generous offer.

When you have time of course.

Thank you.

View Don Broussard's profile (online now)

Don Broussard

1367 posts in 757 days


#7 posted 141 days ago

@JustJoe—I did find that catalog on the Rose Antique site, and Catalog 26 (copyright 1938) does have the No. 300 as you noted. I looked in the 1948 catalog and the No. 300 was not listed. I also looked for Mr. Pickering’s site—I did not find that site specifically, but I did find another forum (www.hobby-machinist.com) where dating Starrett tools is discussed.

@waho6o9—Despite Shane’s kind offer and your encouragement, I have carefully considered the obscene profit I could make and still decided to hold on to the rule.

-- People say I hammer like lightning. It's not that I'm fast -- it's that I never hit the same place twice!

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JustJoe

1554 posts in 543 days


#8 posted 141 days ago

Here’s a link to his main index.
http://jp29.org/index.htm

-- This Ad Space For Sale! Your Ad Here! Reach a targeted audience! Affordable Rates, easy financing! Contact an ad represenative today at JustJoe's Advertising Consortium.

View darthford's profile

darthford

518 posts in 429 days


#9 posted 141 days ago

A Starrett for $1 that’s just wrong! I have 12” and 24” Starrett rules in satin chrome, awesomeness.

View waho6o9's profile

waho6o9

4457 posts in 1082 days


#10 posted 141 days ago

Another wise decision Mr. Don.

Thank you for entertaining offers and taking us on
your journey of decision making.

View Planeman40's profile

Planeman40

393 posts in 1266 days


#11 posted 140 days ago

A man after my own heart! I LOVE good old tools!

Back in the 1960s and 1970s when I was starting my basement workshop there was a small junky surplus tool place called Clinton Aircraft Tools here in Atlanta, GA on the outskirts of the Atlanta Airport owned by a Delta Airline pilot. He would buy surplus tooling being sold off by Boeing, Lockheed, Northrop, etc. and also The airlines. These were usually sold off in lots. The aircraft manufacturers were required to sell off any remaining tooling that was bought for a government contract when the contract was completed. Some of the tools were never even used and were still in their original packing and boxes! Delta airlines was an account of mine and I would often drop by Clinton’s place to rummage through his stuff to see if he had anything new. It was during those times when I was able to purchase a lot of Starret micrometers, dial indicators, etc, for anything from 50 cents to $5. All was in good working order and some was even brand new! I equipped my metal lathe with this stuff and even found some fantastic woodworking tools like some never used Swan socket firmer chisels for $2 each. I put together an entire set and then assembled a second set as a backup. At that price, why not! By the way, Swan chisels I find are now collector’s items selling for $75 and up each.

God, I wish Clinton Aircraft Tool was still around! Sadly, it went when Wade Clinton went.

Planeman

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View Don Broussard's profile (online now)

Don Broussard

1367 posts in 757 days


#12 posted 140 days ago

@JustJoe—Thanks for that link to the JP29 index. I had seen it in an earlier search but I just glanced at it.

@Planeman40—Sounds like Mr. Wade Clinton was running a grown man’s toy shop! Thanks for the great story!

-- People say I hammer like lightning. It's not that I'm fast -- it's that I never hit the same place twice!

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Planeman40

393 posts in 1266 days


#13 posted 140 days ago

Yeah, Wade Clinton was a really nice fellow. I know he was making a really good living as an airline pilot. I always wondered what he got out of spending time in that old junky place of his. I guess collecting tools was his hobby. I wish I had asked. I know he could have gotten a lot more for his used tools than he asked.

Planeman

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View Ripthorn's profile

Ripthorn

665 posts in 1490 days


#14 posted 140 days ago

Nice find on the rule. I thought I got a steal when I got my first Starrett rule for $6 including shipping, but you take the cake sir!

-- Brian T. - Exact science is not an exact science

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