Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Vanished tool makers: AST, Germany

I rescued this rusty wood chisel recently.  I could just make out a trademark and the word "Germany" under the dirt and corrosion:

Below, cleaned up.  It was made by AST:

I already owned an AST mortising chisel:

The chisels were made by Albert Steup GmbH & Co. of Wuppertal, Germany.  There's very little information on this toolmaker.   The trademark was registered in 1953, but I suspect that the company's roots go much further back than this.

Source:  http://www.alte-beitel.de/steup_albert.html

Rear seat position in British cars, 1937 to 1967

Robert Ireson.  The Penguin Car Handbook, Revised Edition.  Penguin Books, 1967.

Sitting right over the rear axle must have made for a bumpy ride for the passengers.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Reading Aero Battery

Tonka tractors

Lead mask X--ray study

David Chatterton (Editor).  The Mind Alive Encyclopedia.  Technology.  Chartwell Books Inc., 1968, 1977.
Who volunteers to be in these tests?  Hopefully, this isn't a picture with the lead mask removed!

Vickers Swallow

Laurie Lee and David Lambert.  The Wonderful World of Transportation.  Garden City Books, 1960.

A Barnes Wallis design.  It never saw production. See Tails Through Time:  "This design would eventually evolve into the world's first production swing-wing combat aircraft, the General Dynamics F-111 Aardvark."

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Indian Sport Scout 45 for 1934

The Motorcyclist, November 1934

It looks to me like adding a rider would seriously disrupt that streamlined air flow.  Unless the rider was very, very short.

Albion Engineering Co., Philadelphia, and the humble caulking gun

Everyone is familiar with using smooth rod drive caulking guns.  I picked up the one above because it was so retro.  Turns out, it's design was the first of the kind.

According to the company's website:

F. Karl Schneider purchased Albion Engineering Company in Philadelphia in 1929. At the time, the company consisted of a machine shop that built keg washers for Schmidt's Brewery and elliptical gears for the local knitting mills. The machine shop was on the second floor of a wagon wheel garage, powered by overhead drive shafts. 
In the early 1930s, F. Karl Schneider designed a caulk dispensing gun for Calbar Paint & Varnish Company who manufactured paint and putty in the first floor garage Albion owned. In 1936, F. Karl Schneider was awarded the patent for the smooth rod drive caulking gun. The development of the first smooth rod drive caulking gun launched Albion into the dispensing tool market. In 1937, Albion patented a trigger-actuated grease dispensing gun, with design features still in use today.

In 2005, the company moved out of Philadelphia and into new premises in Moorestown, New Jersey, a half hour east across the Delaware River.  In 2012, Newborn Brothers of Virginia filed a lawsuit, alleging that Albion has misled customers by claiming their products are made in the U.S. when they're actually made in Taiwan.  Newborn also alleges that Albion’s owner’s guide has the phrase, “All Albion products are made in America,” on the cover. In addition, Newborn claims that certain Albion products are stamped with the abbreviation, “Phila., PA. USA.,” when a news release from the company claims that the Philadelphia location closed in 2005. Other products allegedly have a “Made in Taiwan” geographic origin mark hang tag on the handle. Although I assume the case has yet to be settled, the allegation is sad.

Carden Lloyd machine gun carrier

TEric Morris, Tanks, Modern Military Series, Octopus Books 1975
After building the monstrous tanks of World War 1 the British changed their design direction to focus on light armoured vehicles like the Carden Lloyd machine gun carrier shown here, being carried on a factory transporter.

Sidecar Sunday

The Classic Motorcycle Oct 1993

Saturday, May 20, 2017

E type Jaguar at Mosport, 2013

Lohner No. 1

Larry Milberry, Aviation in Canada, McGraw-Hill Ryerson 1979

School Laws, 1906

J.L. Nichols,  A.M.  The Business Guide; ...or...Safe Methods of Business.  Standard Edition. Naperville, Illinois:  J.L. Nichols & Company, 1906.  First copyright 1886.

Early 1930's Delta Scroll Saw

Patrick Spielman.  Scroll Saw Handbook.  Sterling Publishing Co., Inc., 1986.

Cushman Chucks, 1921

No longer in Hartford, but still in business today;

Friday, May 19, 2017

1965 Honda CB-160 Road Test

Whatever its other virtues, only in 1965 could a 16 hp motorcycle be described as "torrid."

ACCO, Ogensburg, New York

I found this two-hole punch at a thrift store.  I already have a two-hole punch (actually, I have several) but for $2 I couldn't resist the art deco logo.  (I supposed if you used it all day long, it would leave a mirror-reversed impression on your palm, good for additional advertising when giving the high-five!)

ACCO was founded in 1903 in Long Island, New York by Fred J. Kline as the American Clip Company. ACCO became the official company name in 1922.   It created a presence in Canada and Great Britain in the mid-1920's, and eventually acquired Rexel.  In 1987 it was bought by American Brands before being spun off as  ACCO Brands in 2005. In 2017, it acquired Esselte, which itself had absorbed Leitz, Germany's largest office supplier (Louis Leitz invented the lever arch file in 1896) and the Rapid stapler company. ACCO Brands now offers products in more than 100 countries, and more than 20 top brands, including Swingline and Wilson Jones.  It's headquartered in Lake Zurich, Illinois and had 2016 sales of $1.56 billion, making it the world's largest supplier of branded office products.

ACCO's presence in Ogdensburg, New York began in 1946.  In 2010, the company announced that it had extended its lease until 2020 on the Canadian Brampton plant, where it manufactured and distributed products in Canada, employing 285 people. The Canadian VP and General Manager said, "Our lease extension signals our continued commitment to the Canadian office products market, as both a manufacturer and a supplier."  However,  in 2013, the plant in Brampton, Ontario was closed, eliminating 95 hourly and 30 salaried jobs.  Those jobs went to Ogdensburg, which became the distribution center for the northeastern U.S. and all of Canada..  Good news for New York, not so much for Ontario.  The same year, the company was given the Made in USA Foundation Hall of Fame Award for more than one hundred years of paper clip manufacture.  At that time, ACCO Brands was making more than five billion paper clips per year at its Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin plant.  Perhaps they could spare one of those paper clips to add a note that they're not likely to win a Made in Canada award.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Ariel trials bike

A7V land Fortress

Eric Morris, Tanks, Modern Military Series, Octopus Books 1975
British tanks were first deployed in September in 1916 at the Battle of the Somme. The German reply didn't come till 1918 and was in the form of this giant, the A7V Land Fortress. Twenty were constructed before wars end. They were not considered a success, weighing 30 tons with a 17 man crew and being top heavy and underpowered. The armour was sufficient to repel only rifle and machine gun fire.

Soviet sailors, 1980

Sentinels of Peace.  The Soviet Armed Forces.  Moscow:  Progress Publishers, 1980.
Gotta love the 'stache and mutton chops!

Electro-Voice Diamond Needles

I found this phonograph needle organizer at a thrift store.  It brought back memories of having to buy new cartridges to keep the vinyl records sounding good.

Founded by Lou Borroughs and Albert R. Kahn in South Bend, Indiana in 1927, Electro-Voice pioneered a number of important audio technologies.  During World War II, they came up with differential noise-cancelling, which they licensed to the U.S. government for free.  In 1946, they began manufacturing phonograph pickup cartridges.  They were also big in the microphone and speaker markets.  The company was bought and sold a number of times, and is now part of Bosch Security Systems.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Three in a row

RZ 500s at Barber Vintage, 2010

Harley Davidson KR

Harley Davidson KR being ridden by National rider #5 John Gibson, 1960

Robert Sorby tools, Sheffield, England

I've only ever stumbled across three tools by this very old British firm.  Above, a 1-1/4" chisel that some previous owner adapted by making a steel handle, securing the tang with grub screws.  On one side is the Sorby name and Maltese cross trademark:

On the reverse, their whimsical kangaroo trademark (Even their telegraph address was "Kangaroo, Sheffield"):

Secondly, a Robert Sorby mortising chisel:

The third tool I own is an old wooden plane with the iron made by the Sorby company:

The company's roots go back more than 200 years, and it continues today under the Spear & Jackson corporate banner.  For a full history, read Robert Sorby and Sons.