Gimlets. Who know and who use these wonderful and inexpensive small tools

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Forum topic by b2rtch posted 12-22-2013 01:44 PM 2157 views 0 times favorited 24 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4847 posts in 2886 days

12-22-2013 01:44 PM

When I immigrated from France thirty years ago last week, I took with me a number of things.
To this day I do not know why I took what I took.
I took a Bible when I was not a Christian and I did not read it then.
I took a Stanley 55 (made in England) that I bought years before and Ihad never used yet.
I took a set of Aurioul rifler, that I never had used and a hand stitched raps.
And I took a set a gimlets.

I never saw any mention of gimlets in the USA.
Many tools that we use in the USA , we do not use in France and vice versa.
I do not think that gimlets are well known and/or popular in the USA.
I have two sets: one I took from France with me and another set that I bought from Garret Wade here:

I use mine very frequently.
For example I have made 6 sets of book rest and each one has three small hinges.
I have been using them to make the small holes to start the screws.
They are fantastic small tools and very convenient and easy to use and no battery going empty on you every time you need the tool.
Buy one set, you will not regret it ( I do not work for Garret Wade and I get no commission but I think that I should get one!!)
All gimlets that I ever saw are Made in France (please help the french economy, it really needs your help)

Merry CHRIST-mas to you all

-- Bert

24 replies so far

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Mainiac Matt

7462 posts in 2166 days

#1 posted 12-22-2013 03:02 PM

Tanks for teaching me something new today Bert. They look very handy for starting small screws.

-- Pine is fine, but Oak's no joke!

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7724 posts in 1845 days

#2 posted 12-22-2013 03:12 PM

Hmmmm, and here I always thought a gimlet was a drink made with gin! :-)

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

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#3 posted 12-22-2013 03:20 PM

They are very handy

-- Bert

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116583 posts in 3415 days

#4 posted 12-22-2013 03:25 PM

I’ve had a set for years ,they can be very useful.

Merry Christmas Bert

-- Custom furniture

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4847 posts in 2886 days

#5 posted 12-22-2013 03:26 PM

Merry Christ-mas JIM

-- Bert

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#6 posted 12-22-2013 04:03 PM

Learn something new everyday.

Thanks, Bert

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272 posts in 1461 days

#7 posted 12-22-2013 07:19 PM

I only have one gimlet (if I even still have it); it’s a cheap one that came included with some kind of kit furniture or something to drill the required holes.

-- Malcolm Laurel -

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380 posts in 2444 days

#8 posted 12-22-2013 07:21 PM

Have had a set of for a long time use them a lot on small jobs when only doing a few screws work great

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3112 posts in 2618 days

#9 posted 12-22-2013 07:48 PM

Most of mine are Marples, as in Sheffield England, they’re the (the tool, not necisarily by country of origin) very handy, like you say, for starting screws etc. An often overlooked tool and not that expensive !

-- Glen, B.C. Canada

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4847 posts in 2886 days

#10 posted 12-22-2013 08:10 PM

Thank you all for your reply

-- Bert

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1643 posts in 2471 days

#11 posted 12-22-2013 08:59 PM

I have a few and use them often.

View LakeLover's profile


283 posts in 1778 days

#12 posted 12-22-2013 10:09 PM

In custom shoes we used gimlets to start holes in leather soles and heels for attaching ice blade to skates. And tap dancing ” Taps” on shoes.

They are a great tool.

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4847 posts in 2886 days

#13 posted 12-22-2013 10:16 PM

If you do not already have one, get a set for Christ-mas

-- Bert

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#14 posted 12-22-2013 11:57 PM

+1 amazingly handy. Garret wade has gotten more hit and miss over the years, but this was definitely a hit!

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555 posts in 3120 days

#15 posted 12-23-2013 12:10 AM

I use gimlet bits often but I use the kind that fit a brace. There are a number of patterns and I can’t use those with a lead screw like Bert shows. I need the “Swiss” or “half-twist” pattern to avoid splitting wood and to get the ability to initially steer the bit. The brace, type of holes (upper half of the stock after cutting for showing a wedge mortise being started) I need to make, and bit:

The important shape of a Swiss pattern gimlet:

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