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Forum topic by kocgolf posted 04-16-2018 02:11 AM 2243 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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408 posts in 2953 days

04-16-2018 02:11 AM

Topic tags/keywords: chisel router blade clamp plane

A friend of a friend of a friend is looking to sell his father’s lifetime collection of antique hand tools. The pictures I am posting don’t even do it justice. These are maybe a quarter of the tools available, but I’m told they are most of the best. Now, it’s not a holy grail kind of collection, but it’s seriously impressive. I do not have the space or budget to purchase much of it, but he’s letting me take a look before he makes an effort to unload the whole thing. I want to offer on a few things, and probably have a budget of 150-200, and that is my absolute top end. I don’t even want to tell my wife I am thinking THAT high:)

He doesn’t know much about the tools, woodworking or pricing. He and I both are going to do a little research and see if we can come to an agreement on a few items. Besides ebay, what other resources should I be looking at to help determine some fair pricing?

14 replies so far

View CaptainKlutz's profile


3177 posts in 2269 days

#1 posted 04-16-2018 05:32 AM

Looks like fun project.

TheBestThings offers appraisal services, and has large collection of antique working tools for sale.

Old Tools also sells large number of wooden tools and will give an idea of retail pricing.

There are other antique dealers that specialize in wood working tools available via Google.

FWIW – There is large pricing gap between retail prices of individual items found on WWW and collections. Collections usually sell at wholesale prices, bought by resellers. Example – A ‘lot’ of dozen wooden molding planes will sell for $10-20 each, while rare wood planes will fetch $50-100, or even more for a plow, fillister, or infill plane. Condition and rarity are everything.


-- If it wasn't for bad luck, I wouldn't have no luck at all, - Albert King - Born Under a Bad Sign released 1967

View Breeze73's profile


102 posts in 1456 days

#2 posted 04-16-2018 05:35 AM

I would make him an offer on the whole thing… or ask what he wants for all of it. He might give you a good price to unload all of it quickly. There looks to be some nice pieces in that collection.

-- Breeze

View JohnDi's profile


81 posts in 2208 days

#3 posted 04-16-2018 09:34 AM

I think that if there is any way possible for you to buy all of it, that’s the way to go. If you get a good price for all of it, you may even break even by selling off the items that you don’t want to keep.
I’m with you about not having piles of cash around for something like this, but if you do your homework On pricing you can justify to yourself and your wife :) buying it all and selling some off.
Since the seller doesn’t have have experience with selling items like these, make sure that if you are using Fleabay as a guide that you look at completed listings for what the items actually sold for and not what some people are asking.
Good luck!
Show us what you get!

View kocgolf's profile


408 posts in 2953 days

#4 posted 04-16-2018 11:34 AM

Believe me, if there were any way to justify the money or the finding the room to stack the boxes, I would try to take it all. I mean, I haven’t even seen what is IN about 5 large wood tool boxes. That drives me nuts! But I do restore work to put things to USE, and I hardly have time for that and woodworking itself. The last thing I need is one more huge project in the way of actually getting to build things. Thank you for the tips and additional resources for pricing. I will definitely post pics if I actually do manage to acquire some things.

View BorkWood's profile


14 posts in 827 days

#5 posted 04-16-2018 12:07 PM

Looks like a great collection. After you agree on purchasing the tools you want, at least try to get a deal on the tool boxes. They are difficult to ship anyways and I just have a thing for old wooden tool boxes, haha!

-- Matt, Woodworker based in NC,

View dhazelton's profile


2839 posts in 3071 days

#6 posted 04-16-2018 12:44 PM

He has about 12 marking scribes in that one box – there is a lot of multiples in that ‘collection’ that you would be spending a lot of time trying to resell. I say focus on what ever tools you think you need and procure them one at a time at yard sales this spring and summer.

View JayT's profile


6402 posts in 2985 days

#7 posted 04-16-2018 01:05 PM

You might try posting some of the items here on LJ as individual pieces, especially those that would be good users for the hand tool crowd.

I, for one, would be interested in the shoulder plane that is in the last pic.

You might also consider contacting a MWTCA (MidWest Tool Collectors Association) member or group. I believe they have sales at some of their meetings and it’s the right target audience. There are quite a few LJ’s that are members and may be able to get you pointed in the right direction.

-- - In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice, there is.

View Tim's profile


3859 posts in 2736 days

#8 posted 04-16-2018 01:10 PM

People have given good answers on finding the value. Beyond that, since it’s a friend you can help by finding the parts and putting together complete tools. For example I see a plough plane on a shelf and some of the irons in a spot in one of the tills. A plough with a complete matched set of irons goes for a lot more than a plane without irons. Though unfortunately they sell for even more parted out as the plane and then the complete set of irons.

I agree there are a lot of duplicates there such as multiple dividers. I’d love the set of molding planes in the one chest. Heck I’d love it all, but couldn’t justify it either.

Also agree to get top dollar for each tool would require lots of hours of research and listing each item separately, etc. That’s a lot more work and time than people realize. They think they should be able to sell the whole lot for top dollar for each piece but it doesn’t work that way.

You could post more detailed pictures and information here and I’m sure some people would be happy to identify and value some of the ones you’re looking at buying.

View kocgolf's profile


408 posts in 2953 days

#9 posted 04-16-2018 01:54 PM

It’s a bit of an odd situation as it’s not someone I really know, but just a connection. I have until the weekend before he has a trip to Arizona planned when he has a contact to help him sort it out and sell. It’s really a short notice tease, so I’m just doing the best I can! I only had a half hour with them and I doubt I will get much more time than that once more.

Here is a list of some of the items I may offer on. Bear in mind I want to USE tools, not really collect them. BUT…does anyone see anything that I simply should NOT pass up?

Stanley bullnose plane $15-30
Small Infill Shoulder Plane (no brand) ???
Stanley Bevel Nickel $5-15
Stanley Bevel Rosewood $10-20
Stanley Bailey 7 (needs restoration) $50-75
Slick Chisels (rusty or missing handles) $15-30
Compass Dividers $5-15
Calipers $5-15
Stanley 45 (missing pieces) $30-50
Marking Gauges $5

Wooden Plow Plane (has many of these)
Moulding Planes (again, many many of these. I don’t know what to start with. Maybe try for a couple)
Wooden Compass/Coffin Plane, Stamp on blade is (cracked)

Wooden Coffin Plane Blade

View kocgolf's profile


408 posts in 2953 days

#10 posted 04-16-2018 02:05 PM

Here is a little closer look on the small infill shoulder plane. I really want this piece, but no idea on what it is or what to offer. No markings, and I took a bad picture to boot. This little guy alone could be more than I really want to spend, or the guy might take 40 bucks for it. I just don’t have a good read on the seller. He doesn’t seem too concerned with top dollar, or too knowledgeable, but it’s his dad’s stuff and he definitely isn’t going to just give it away.

View gargey's profile


1013 posts in 1550 days

#11 posted 04-16-2018 02:27 PM

New moulding planes cost a trillion dollars, so I’d give the moulding planes a look. If they’re in working condition they’d be a good find.

View JayT's profile


6402 posts in 2985 days

#12 posted 04-16-2018 02:42 PM

From the one pic, the shoulder plane looks in pretty good shape, so unmarked, a fair price IMHO would be $75-100. If the maker was known for sure, it could double or triple the value. If he’s willing to sell it for less to be sure it is going to a good home where it will be used, go for it.

-- - In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice, there is.

View Tim's profile


3859 posts in 2736 days

#13 posted 04-16-2018 05:18 PM

That wooden brace can be quite a find and worth a lot depending on the maker or not worth much if it’s not in good condition and no name. It certainly looks to be in good condition.

I’d skip the Stanley bullnose if your budget is tight since it’s not that critical as the other things.

The molding planes seem likely to be hollows and rounds and or some dado planes. Hollows and rounds are worth more in a complete, half, or quarter set with a matching hollow and round for each size. Sets in the size 6-12 size are useful for furniture, but if you don’t plan to use them they are expensive shop decoration. The condition of those is important such as straight soles and complete with the matching iron. The one underneath the wooden brace looks very worn unless it’s shaped that way for a purpose that I don’t know.

Nothing I see besides the possibility of the brace is a must have if your budget is tight

View LittleShaver's profile


676 posts in 1394 days

#14 posted 04-16-2018 05:24 PM

The time to but it is when you see it. I’d be tempted to buy as much as I could afford.
The coffin smoother looks to be missing the wedge. As is, $10.
I’m also not crazy about the slicks, too big for the work I do.
Everything looks to be of reasonably good quality and pretty well cared for. Should be a great set of users.
I do love the look of the braces and I could not leave them there. One or both would definitely follow me home.

-- Sawdust Maker

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