"Rust Huntin" Took A Different Turn

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Forum topic by OleGrump posted 09-28-2019 02:39 PM 429 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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581 posts in 1636 days

09-28-2019 02:39 PM

Topic tags/keywords: humor

Visited my local Goodwill the other day (I have to pass it coming home anyway) for a little rust huntin’. Have found a few goodies in there occasionally, so it’s worth a shot to stop in every so often.
Tool wise, the pickin’s was kinda slim. There were three shorter handsaws bound together priced at $10. May be worth consideration, although one was a pruning saw…..
BUT, next to the tool shelves, they have household goods displayed. Among these items, they seem to regularly receive an array of clocks, most of which are electric or quartz junk. (I recently saw a quartz driven cuckoo clock, with a pretty nicely carved case, but I didn’t want to spend the time and money to install a REAL clock movement, especially since I already have a nice 8 day movement cuckoo, so I passed on it)
On this particular trip, I saw a wooden “school house” clock case, laying on the shelf, and went for a closer look. Thought it was probably a battery driven or electric POS, with a plywood case, but decided to investigate anyway. To my complete surprise, it was a real, mechanical movement (albeit Asian made) clock in an oak case. Looked inside and found the key, pendulum and even the silica bag still in place from shipping. A little tinkering and I saw it ticked and the strike hammer worked. (not hitting the chime spring, but still worked) Flipped it over to check the price as Goodwill can go either way, and the tag read $6.99. Yes, SEVEN bucks. Didn’t put it down again, you can betcha.
Got her home, and began to make a few adjustments. When I went to get the key and pendulum out and remove the silica bag, I was surprised to find a Sakajewea silver dollar up inside the case as well. (making this a SIX dollar clock!)
Found out that clockmakers and collectors consider the movement (which may even be a 30 day) very sturdy and reliable, if more “pedestrian” than Collector Quality clocks. The only complaint noted was that the strike is a bit softer than one would like. Checking the “SOLD” listings on line, they show that these clocks regularly sell between $60 and $75. She’s been put into service and is happily ticking away and yes, a little gently, striking the hour and half hour. I’ve kept the silver dollar as a good luck piece.
Can’t wait to see what I find on my next “Rust Huntin” trip in there…..

-- OleGrump

4 replies so far

View Jeff's profile


553 posts in 4486 days

#1 posted 09-28-2019 02:58 PM

Congrats on your find. Goodwill and Habitat Restore are great places to find surprise bargains and you’re doing a good deed at the same time. I found a set of brand new metal lab cabinets for my garage shop. I know what these things cost as I’ve outfitted several labs in my career. These ones hadn’t even been installed. All the handles and manuals were still inside.

View MrRon's profile


6219 posts in 4535 days

#2 posted 09-28-2019 05:38 PM

I picked up a $38 (Wiremold) 5-outlet extension strip at Habitat for $1. Works absolutely fine; looks like it was never used. I also picked up a doctor’s scale that was used in the VA hospital for around $20; also works as it should. I used to be a dumpster diver and would find fantastic stuff, like light fixtures tossed during a store rebuild. Unfortunately, I am now too old for that. There are fantastic opportunities out there if you know where to look. The era in which we now live in is a “throw away society”. People knowingly throw away things they don’t want despite their cost and young people are so engaged with their I-phone that they fail to recognize a great deal. During hurricane Katrina, the streets were littered with everything imaginable, much of it still in usable condition, but tossed because insurance paid the loss. I picked up about 40 sets of knockdown kitchen cabinets that were sent to the dump from a local big box store. My daughter-in-law was working at the time at the dump and would alert me to such finds. I was able to get a laser leveling system, complete in case in perfect working condition and musical instruments, not just that, but bottles of scotch that were rescued from the destroyed casinos.

View OleGrump's profile


581 posts in 1636 days

#3 posted 09-28-2019 10:23 PM

Hey guys, sounds like we’re living parallel lives. While I do sometimes do a bit shopping at “regular” stores or antique shops, I LOVE to do me some dumpster divin’ (I’ve got four Pottery Barn lamps, a three step oak stepladder, a brand new Vaughn claw hammer and more stuff in just one dive) Also do my share of yard/garage sales and of course, thrift stores. (Got me a nice Stanley transitional i.e. wooden bottomed plane for $2.50 one day, and God knows all the other tools over the years.) Drove the wife crazy bringing this or that home that I’d picked up either real cheap or even better “Free-ninety-nine” as I say.
Enjoyed finding this clock which apparently had never been fully unpacked or used. NO IDEA how the silver dollar got in there. Spent a little time making adjustments to the strike hammer and gong coil. Got a nice, rich tone now, but it’s nowhere near as loud as an antique clock. But still, for what I originally thought was a “peezacrap” I’m pretty happy with my six dollar clock.

-- OleGrump

View corelz125's profile


3909 posts in 2268 days

#4 posted 09-29-2019 01:42 AM

I grabbed some good lumber out of dumpsters myself plus some other things. The throw away society also means a lot of stuff on the curb these days is real junk. Not many people want to try and fix or repair things themselves either they rather toss it and buy a new one.

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