This Old Shop ~ Circa 1962 – Shop Tour

Shop Tour -
Added on October 15, 2008

This week’s shop comes from Robert in Boise. Let’s check out what he has to say:

“With all the “new” shops that we have seen, I thought some of you might be interested in a wood shop that was built by my father in the basement of our Long Island, New York home around 1962. I still remember, as a young boy, holding a star drill as my dad manually pounded holes in the concrete basement floor to set the footers for framing the shop walls. I don’t know if I was really “helping” but my dad let me think I was!”

“The first picture shows my dad’s Craftsman table saw in the center of the shop. The saw had a “big” 7″ blade and “gravity feed” dust collection. (Sawdust just dropped into a big drawer in the cabinet base he constructed for the saw.)”

“As you can see from Pic 2, every tool in the shop had a place and my dad could always tell if a tool was not placed back where it was supposed to be! The chisels consisted of a large array of different sized flat chisels and gouges. Along the top were a number of “braces” for drilling holes as well as some antique specialized molding planes and spoke shaves. The “bits” available for the “braces” were located in drawers as seen in the Pic 3.”

“My father was primarily a “hand tool” guy, but did have a few power tools as seen inthe next Pic. Note how all the tools, with the exception of a router acquired in later years, are all constructed with metal casesââ?¬â?no plastic! Other power tools (Pic 5) consisted of a bench drill press, a grinder, a Unimat metal lathe, and a homemade disc sander.”

“In another corner of the shop (Pic 6) you can see a 1930s version of a multipurpose power tool. This combination tool was given to my father when he was a teenager. You can see the wood lathe and a removable “jigsaw” (now called a scrollsaw). This jigsaw could be removed and replaced with a very small table saw when needed. My father was still using this lathe in the 60s and 70s as you can see by the number of turning tools he acquired and maintained. To the right you can see his set of handsaws and block planes.”

“In the final work area of the shop is what he called his “metalworking” area (Pic 7). This area consisted of a variety of rasps, files, metal cutting tools, pliers, and hammers.”

“Many of my father’s older tools were inherited from his high school wood shop teacher. They formed a strong friendship when my dad was in high school and became lifelong friends. Many of these tools were originally stored in a tool chest (Pic 8) passed down from his family. The outside this tool chest looks pretty old and worn. Once opened you can see the entire inside was beautifully constructed of inlaid diamond shaped pieces of wood with the owner’s name dated 1890. Within the chest are several sliding panels and compartments which held an entire set of “wood” molding planes (not shown). The story is that this chest used to be hauled around New York City by wagon for custom cabinet work by the owner.”


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