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Occupy Woodworking

comments (28) December 22nd, 2011 in blogs, videos

kenstonge Ken St. Onge, Associate Editor
thumbs up 87 users recommend

There's No Place Like Here: Liberty Tool from Etsy on Vimeo.

Video Length: 3:30
Produced by: Etsy.com


I just came across this video mini-profile of Liberty Tools, a used and antique tool store in Central Maine, on the Etsy blog. The clip is noteworthy both for its well-done visuals and the interesting philosophy of its founder, H.G. "Skip" Brack, who scours the region buying used and antique tools that he resells at affordable prices all with the goal helping local craftsmen and supporting a "sustainable" economy, Brack says.

"The nice thing about the tool business," Brack says in the video, "is that there's large quantities of miscellaneous hand tools available at a very reasonable cost if you take the time to drive around and go tool picking. So that's what I do, (I'm) the tool picking department."

Sounds like a fun job.



posted in: blogs, videos


Comments (28)

latheman latheman writes: I concur with the previous comment! Worked my way through college, started out at an annual salary of $5,200 per year, and worked my way up from there. We'll make it as a country IF we continue to learn to work with our hands. Thanks for the video...inspiring!
Posted: 6:34 pm on January 8th

BluhminOnion BluhminOnion writes: So glad there are still places like this left in this our happy republic. As for the negative comments about the occupy movement: what rational being could take an honest look at our unsustainable consumer economy and the concentrations of power in our large corporations and in Washington and not feel some measure of outrage?

I'm a civil/structural engineer in a very busy practice, and paid my own way through college while working full time, so I have no axe to grind about the economy or the lack of jobs, as business is booming, and my hard work has been rewarded. Yet I can't in good conscience condemn those who are taking to the streets, as disorganized and clumsy as they are, simply because the widespread injustice of our time has been in my favor. Forget about superpacs or bailouts or Bush tax cuts or whatever baggage we bring to the table and try to justify a CEO that earns 475 times what his employees earn, or a large corporation that pays lobbyists more than it pays in taxes.

I have daily contact with the absurdities of government bureaucracy in my profession, but frankly find them preferable to destroying the middle class, believe there is more to life than "I got mine Jack, go get your own", and believe that an act of protest does not indicate a lack of effort, morals, decency, etc. "A difference in opinion is not a difference in principle." Thomas Jefferson
Posted: 11:39 am on January 7th

BluhminOnion BluhminOnion writes: So glad there are still places like this left in this our happy republic. As for the negative comments about the occupy movement: what rational being could take an honest look at our unsustainable consumer economy and the concentrations of power in our large corporations and in Washington and not feel some measure of outrage?

I'm a civil/structural engineer in a very busy practice, and paid my own way through college while working full time, so I have no axe to grind about the economy or the lack of jobs, as business is booming, and my hard work has been rewarded. Yet I can't in good conscience condemn those who are taking to the streets, as disorganized and clumsy as they are, simply because the widespread injustice of our time has been in my favor. Forget about superpacs or bailouts or Bush tax cuts or whatever baggage we bring to the table and try to justify a CEO that earns 475 times what his employees earn, or a large corporation that pays lobbyists more than it pays in taxes.

I have daily contact with the absurdities of government bureaucracy in my profession, but frankly find them preferable to destroying the middle class, believe there is more to life than "I got mine Jack, go get your own", and belief that the act of protest
Posted: 11:33 am on January 7th

OtherPeoplesTrash OtherPeoplesTrash writes: I was in Maine last week and my brother a timber framer tried to take me by liberty tools but they were closed. Quite a coincidence that this email would be in my in box when I returned home.
Posted: 11:58 am on January 6th

RKWIII RKWIII writes: There are a whole series of videos on ETSY that have this same feel. You can find them on You Tube as well. I highly recommend the handmade sword video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSZKGzGqOt0&feature=relmfu

Posted: 1:03 am on January 6th

Paratrooper34 Paratrooper34 writes: Oops should say "absolutely amazing PLACE"
Posted: 7:36 pm on January 5th

Paratrooper34 Paratrooper34 writes: I am originally from Maine and last time I visited my folks, who live about 45 minutes from this place, I went there. It is an absolutely amazing plane. You can find some really nice user quality stuff there for fair prices. I bought a very nice Millers Falls-Goodell Pratt miter box with the saw (sharp) for 56 dollars. I cannot wait to go back there.
Posted: 7:34 pm on January 5th

bruceclarke1949 bruceclarke1949 writes: Great place takes me back to when I was young in England and
my father used to take me to a yard similar to it, I would look around for ages.
Bruce.


Posted: 5:44 pm on January 3rd

sailor68 sailor68 writes: I had a side trip there last summer. What a spot we extended our trip by a day so I could search the halls of Liberty tools!!!! If you go try to get to the basement, the shop clerk it's scary down there I don't go down there but be careful if you do. Neat spot. Don't forget to check out the other building across the street an old service station full of STUFF. All the best in the New Year Cheers from Nova Scotia.
Posted: 8:43 am on January 1st

lclement4 lclement4 writes: Excellent video production and wonderful philosophy. I am a beginning woodworker and the satisfaction and pride I get from using hand tools is only surpassed by the wonder and joy I get from learning about them.
Posted: 3:04 pm on December 31st

oldfraz oldfraz writes: A man after my own heart, having been in the tool business for over 44 years. Last year (2010) I was in Maine visiting friends, visited the Lei-Neilsen factory in Warren, bought a
low angle block plane, wish I had known about Liberty Tools, would love to meet Mr. Brack someday.
Posted: 2:06 pm on December 31st

jamie5245 jamie5245 writes: Looks like a great place to visit, but it's a little far from Chicago...Fortunately, there's a website!

http://www.libertytoolco.com/index.html


Posted: 1:39 pm on December 31st

something_vague something_vague writes: I live in Maine and am a weekly customer at their location in Bar Harbor, Maine. Is an absolute gold mine for someone like me. All my user antique tools, saws, planes, brace, bits, etc. come from this place. Thanks to Skip for traveling the country to make these tools available to us Mainer's. Would not be the woodworker I am today without the Tool Barn. Please help support Skip and his endevour to make these tools available to us.
Posted: 11:26 am on December 31st

treg4057 treg4057 writes: Reminds me of a great hardware store my father took me to as a kid....had everything and no one asked you if you had your rewards card. Places like this are a gem....looks like this year on my maine vacation I have a new destination.
Posted: 9:21 am on December 31st

srtjase srtjase writes: I live in Maine but have not yet been to this place.
My neighbor says it iextremely impressive and is well worth the trip. After seeing this video, I think I'm going to have to toss him in my pickup and take a ride up.
Posted: 9:10 am on December 31st

spartoon spartoon writes: A real gem of a video. Guess I'll have to schedule a trip to check out the tools and maybe some of that good-doin' lobster they're famous for up that way.
Posted: 8:23 am on December 31st

Vorut Vorut writes: Been there several times and it's three floors jam packed with goodies. A good side trip but it's kind of a hike and not near anywhere. On the good side there are at least two other attractions. The Davistown Museum a kind of history of tools museum and Liberty Graphics which sells the most amazing tee shirts. While their shirts can be pricy they have bins and bins of shirts on sale for very little. Between the three you can bring the family.
Posted: 8:15 am on December 31st

KevinSChair KevinSChair writes: To reference Occupy with anything Working (woodworking) disgusts me. Excellent video – However, you should have listened to what was said.
Posted: 8:07 am on December 31st

GrandaddysBaileyNo5 GrandaddysBaileyNo5 writes: Apropos 27Bstrokes on the "Occupy" comment: I hope St. Onge meant it as an ironic contrast with the so-called Occupy Movement whose odd notion of the meaning of "occupation" is to squat on someone else's property while eating food paid for by someone else, and complaining that their $150,000 education doesn't mean anything to an employer who's looking for people who can actually do something. The nice footage of the occupation of woodturning alone is an eloquent refutation of the Occupy Movement.
Posted: 5:19 pm on December 29th

WOODSRUNNER56 WOODSRUNNER56 writes:

AMEN TO 27BSTROKE6 THANK FOR THE GREAT COMMENT.GOD BLESS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR.
Posted: 3:22 pm on December 28th

JayPierce JayPierce writes: I could have watched a few hours of this, myself. Probably would have spurred a road-trip that would have landed me a lengthy sentence in the doghouse, though.
Posted: 8:14 pm on December 26th

27BStroke6 27BStroke6 writes: Good video, but why slime the man with a reference to the occupy crowd, a pretty disgusting lot if you bother to do a little objective research.
Maybe Ken's just being "cool". But I'd like to think Fine Woodworking would be the one place I could go in this day and age without having someone's ideology shoved in my face.

Merry Christmas

Posted: 12:05 pm on December 26th

nathan_hayes nathan_hayes writes: I used to go there as a little kid, just looking at all the neat tools all of which I had no idea what they did of course. Will have to make a stop by soon since I've started woodworking.
Posted: 3:47 pm on December 23rd

Antondeg Antondeg writes: That is awesome. Now time to go to my workshop.
Posted: 10:33 am on December 23rd

G5Flyr G5Flyr writes: Outstanding video! I wish I lived closer to Maine than I do. I'd spend my Saturday mornings picking through Skip's "stock". Major League kudos to Ken St. Onge for producing and posting this video. My one and only criticism is that it is too short. I could have watched a good two hours of this. Let's have some more.
Posted: 5:54 pm on December 22nd

pcoleman525 pcoleman525 writes: Great video. Expertly done. Great subject matter and visually stunning. FWW.com needs to hire these guys to do features on woodworkers.
Posted: 4:11 pm on December 22nd

WiseGuy81 WiseGuy81 writes: This really brings home the need to buy local and not just out of the big box stores, not to mention the money that can be saved through buying used. Great article, thanks for reposting.

~Alan
Posted: 12:47 pm on December 22nd

RalphBarker RalphBarker writes: I've been picketing my (home) shop for not having all the tools I want for weeks, now. I was going to set up a tent in front of my garage, so I could protest more hours in the day, but it's supposed to snow today. ;-)

Posted: 12:02 pm on December 22nd

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