Buying Old Tools
A user's guide to quality hand tools at affordable prices
Synopsis: The used-tool market is a fertile place to find quality hand tools for affordable prices. Furniture maker Matthew Teague offers a road map to those just dipping a toe into the used-tool market, where everyday tools such as basic bench planes, chisels, spokeshaves, and marking and measuring devices can be found in abundance. You may have to remove a little rust and do some tuning up on old tools, but dollar for dollar, they are hard to beat if you know what to look for and what to avoid.
If you’re in the market for decent hand tools, you have two options: Pay high prices for top-of-the-line new tools (such as those made by Clifton, Lie-Nielsen, or Veritas), or start searching the used-tools market. You may have to remove a little rust and do some tuning up on old tools, but dollar for dollar, they’re hard to beat.