Simonds Saws USA, LLC


Tool Stories

  Another Saturday Auction by John Krau


There was an auction near me last Saturday.  Since I work most Saturdays, the moon must of been in the correct phase as I had the day off. 

I arrived with enough time to look things over, but it seems not early enough.  Got my bidders number first thing and headed for the shop. 

Most auctions here start at the shop with all the accumulation is laid out on hayracks, or handed out of the building to the rack. 

I spied some old tools in another row but mentally calculated it would be 3 hours or so till they came up.  I contented myself with working my way around the hayrack, checking the boxes, tool chests, and assorted fencing and welding tools.  There was a whole box of saws, 3 planes in another, and a very interesting old S&K machinist tool box. 

A good hour into the sale, after I missed out on a pair of items that went beyond my budget, the box of saws was held aloft.  First bid was by a mature woman behind me.  I had my hand up immediately.  I glanced back at her, and spied some bits of blue and green paint droplets on her sweatshirt, omg, a saw painter?

The bidding continued fiercely, now $6, now $7!  A second glance saw the vague outline of barns, and cows in her eyes.  No, not a reflection of the barnyard we were standing in, nay, she WAS a saw painter!  My hand shot up again, $8.  Mentally recounting my funds, I held on, and at last, Once!  Twice!  Sold! Another box of saws saved.

That box was heavy too. They had even thrown in the one handle drawknife.  Seems like there had been more saws, but still, a quick count showed 8 handsaws, further down were 3 meat saws, each a different length.  Why the man had 6 hacksaws, with the oldest in the best shape is a puzzle. 

Then at the bottom were 4 keyhole saws, from nice to poor.  A new bundle of hacksaw blades, and two corn knives, (machete to those east of the Mississippi). 

Putting the box down before it completely disintegrated, I watched the S&K box go right up beyond my cut off level, darn it was in nice shape.  Whole fistfuls of rakes, hoes, and various shovels went for the dear price of $6 to $8. 

Then they lifted up a very nice two hand scythe, plus two more in much worse condition.  The paint lady was bidding again, but I snagged them for $6.  Ever try to keep a heavy box of sharps between ones feet, and try to hang onto 3 long scythes with blades, doing my best to pay attention to the sale and not draw blood from my neighbors?  Finally the rack was empty, and the crowd moved on around the shop. 

I should have followed, as a fellow showed me a Stearns hollow auger he had pulled out of a box of tractor parts.  I had to make two trips to the truck, keeping the box of saws behind me when I spied the paint lady again. 

Having promised to get home soon, I did stop to admire the wood stoves, found the forge, which I immediately decided I didn't want.  Then watched as a young man emptied nuts bolts etc, from an antique ammunition box, which he then sold, and spied this little iron post drill. 

Figuring it was his as it was in the pile he was carefully restacking, asked if he had need of it?  Nope, you want it? I'll go $5, as its kinda rusty on that end.  Deal!

Another trip to the car, and got out of there.  Just back in the house from cleaning saws, found one of them is a Pennsylvania Saw Co. 1960's.  And have a pre-1928 Disston D8 crosscut, with near perfect handle. Time to build some tills.

This Thursday is another auction, after work, retired bachelor's holdings, been in the same house since 1918.  Give me strength.

John Krau
July 2007

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