L. & I. J. White


Tool Stories

  Could I say no? by John Krau


This past weekend, I played hookey from work.  There was a large swap meet in easy driving distance, and it was rumored to harbor a considerable number of old and more primitive type tools.  Thinking of Michael Field, and how next year may be too late, decided to pump in some high priced gas and just go.  I sure wasn't disappointed.

Some of you would have been though, as there were only about two vendors out of 50 with planes, but nearly everything else was well represented.  Those planes, and scrapers were in the 30-40dollar range anyhow. 

First off I was offered a Kennedy carry tool box, with a dozen items inside, for 3 bucks.  Could I say no? 

Best thing I did, as that toolbox was perfect for carrying treasure to the car.  I dug a very nice Disston 12 from a pile of saws, struck a deal then got the rest of the pile for a dollar.  Could I say no? 

Some fellows had quite an array for a one day meet, others just had a few items on the tailgate.  What is a guy to do when you spy one thing, and get a sob?  Story of how he's giving up his storage locker and doesn't know what he'll do with the rest?

When the vendor is 70+ and is offering things for a dollar per?  Cause he's moving to an assisted living soon because of wife's health?  Yankee's, Goodell drills, PH screwdrivers, dollar, your choice, tool box is getting heavy, already unloaded at the car twice.  Should I have said no?

Just walked on, ignoring the box of egg beaters, or the Pexto brace for a dollar?  Or a tenon cutter for five?  I can't afford to go to another of these this year, which is good as its unlikely there'll be anything like this, out here on the plains of Nebraska. 

So, would anyone else here be steadfast enough to walk on, and not keep stuffing things into the ever heavier toolbox?

John in Nebraska
May 2007

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