Just a mini post today, to keep things active. Sorry – I’ve been quite busy with work and family stuff lately.
These are several of my antique cast iron file handles. I’ve cleaned up many of them with some black enamel – some of these were japanned or enameled, while others appear to be left raw. They’re magnificent little things. I love the ability to swap out files quickly and easily, then to get a really good grip on the files for working. These will handle a variety of file sizes, from little saw files to the big boys. They were also sometimes holding early soldering irons.
These were made by a variety of makers, notably Durbin-Durco and EC Stearnes & Co. When I buy them, I like to pay less than $10/ea (preferably more like $5/ea), but I often see them going for a lot of money on ebay (for no real reason that I can see – they’re not super rare – probably just ignorant sellers who think they have a treasure).
If you buy them, try and inspect the grip webbing for cracks, first. As they are a cast metal tool, they’re prone to being cracked when dropped on hard surfaces or if the user is a gorilla and cranks down too hard on them.
The loop-looking handle at the top is a pad saw handle. Atkins Handy Tool was one of several makers of these (not sure if mine is by them). These handles could be used for holding keyhole saws, but also came with putty knives and screwdriver attachments as well – they were an early multitool!
The half-moon shaped tool on the right is a hand saw jointer. It holds a little flat file (with no tang) horizontally as it is run across the tips of the teeth to level them prior to sharpening.
I’ll probably follow up with a more comprehensive post on these, since they’re a topic of interest to me. I’ve got some web-scavenged photos of various brands and designs that I’d like to share. Until then, hope you enjoyed! Comment below if you found this post interesting.
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