The little things

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When I’m not reaching for a pencil I’m likely to be reaching for one of the little tools sitting on a slice of reclaimed mahogany that I use more than all the tools on Oddly enough, I only bought a few of them.

It’s interesting how some of the tools I appreciate the most I didn’t anticipate owning. Certain tools, like the odd-shaped blade with the dark wood handle, find their way into your shop and take a favorite spot.

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That odd-shaped blade with a wood handle is a nineteenth century ink erasure and quill sharpener made by Miller Brothers Cutlery Company between 1872-1926. I own two of them and find them dangerously useful.

With an individual X-ACTO Knife in different specialty toolboxes, two are always within reach. (Picking up the X-ACTO Blade Dispenser was almost as smart as buying the Stanley Utility Knife Blade Dispenser.)

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Swiss Army Knives:
If you saw what happened when TSA tried to take away my mother’s Swiss Army Knife you’d know she wasn’t the one who tossed her son’s Victorinox Camper in the jobsite dumpster. Since I found this one in the garbage, I don’t mind abusing it. Over 34 years ago I received my first Swiss Army Knife (a Tinker) and couldn’t count how many Victorinox knives I own today.

Unfortunately for the Victorinox Classic without scales, it was on the keychain that I left on a scorching stovetop burner for 20 minutes. I still haven’t come up with the $400 they want to replace my truck’s keyless entry. Scales or not, I still find this ‘classic’ useful.

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Beauty & Health:
Something every woodworker knows well about is the tweezer. Here, amongst my most reached for tools are three pair. The Tweezerman LTD Point Tweezer I HIGHLY recommend owning. These are precision ‘point’ tweezer, so sharp you can slice your skin to get at the intruder. (When these are too small, I use Uncle Bill’s Sliver Gripper Tweezers that didn’t make the photo.) The other set shown is rusty and barbaric and I use them for projects. The last thing they did (yesterday) was hold a battery contact while I soldered it back in place.

Two vintage health and beauty aids including a Revlon Stainless finger nail file and a small vintage screwdriver are also among the frequently used workbench tools in my shop.

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