Is this really a Disston?

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Blog entry by Doug posted 04-06-2022 08:54 PM 1217 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hello everyone,

As is usual for me, as of late, I went antiquing, and came across this mortising gauge;

As I inspected the gauge further I noticed this;

After fiddling with it a bit to make sure that everything worked, I made the decision to buy it ($19.00 +tax). I felt that this was fair.

When I got home I began to research this Disston No. 90 mortise gauge. I couldn’t find anything about this mortise gauge. The closest I got to the one I have is this one;

This one was listed on Worthpoint as a “Vintage and in very good condition !!!. Up for bid is a early 1930’s H.DISSTON & SONS PHILA mortise marking gauge !!!. Completely 100 % original with no repaired or broken parts , excellent working condition , brass and applewood construction , measures 8” , from a collector’s estate !!!

It’s the only one I’ve seen that has an oval fence like mine. All the other have a more square fence.

The lack of information about this mortising gauge causes me to doubt that it is a Disston product. The beam looks like many other Disston marking gauges I saw, but the fence has me wondering.

So, this leaves me with some questions. First, did Disston ever make a No. 90 mortising gauge? And second, did they ever make a marking/mortising gauge with an oval shaped fence?

If you know anything about Disston marking/mortising gauges that could help me solve this mystery, I sure would appreciate the help.

I will be disassembling this gauge and cleaning it up a bit, so watch for me to post a video about it on my YouTube channel.

That’s it for now. Take care.

-- Doug

4 comments so far

View Knappen's profile


71 posts in 3400 days

#1 posted 04-09-2022 03:29 AM

I found this image with an oval marking gauge, but the number isn’t 90 but 80½.

-- Knappen aka Ole - I have to try everything at least once.

View Doug's profile


1305 posts in 4255 days

#2 posted 04-09-2022 11:21 AM

Knappen – Thank you for taking time to help me. Also, thanks for the information. Take care.

-- Doug

View mafe's profile


13872 posts in 4583 days

#3 posted 04-20-2022 08:34 PM

I don’t know, but it’s lovely.
Big smile, lucky you.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

View Doug's profile


1305 posts in 4255 days

#4 posted 04-23-2022 11:34 AM

Mads – Thanks. I need to clean it up a bit. What seem to work best for you when you clean up old tools like this?

-- Doug

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