Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Tool Guys - Is this stuff any good?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by noah330, Jan 12, 2018.

  1. noah330

    noah330 Friend of Leo's

    Feb 10, 2009
    I was at the pawn shop and I bought one of those Craftsman roll around tool boxes. It's three pieces and all ball bearings, etc.... I paid $70 for it and it was full of tools.

    A lot of the stuff I understand what it's for - taps, dies, tiny drill bits, etc....

    However, there were a bunch of compasses and these measuring tools in there.

    I was wondering if anyone could let me know if these are worth keeping for a non-machinist like myself (once in a while I'll tap a hole or something) of if I should bring them to Savers or something.

    The brand on the micrometers is L.S. Starrett Co. in Athol, Massachusetts. This is kind of cool because I'm from MA. They claim to be the "World's Greatest Toolmakers" so I figure that they must be pretty good.

    The calipers, which I can use, are Brown & Sharpe and Etalon. The former say Swiss made, again that usually means stuff is good when it comes to precision things The second pair are also Swiss and say Made by Roch in Switzerland. I figure either pair are better than my Harbor Freight calipers, right?

    The two dial things are Alina and also say they're Swiss. Maybe the guy who pawned the stuff was Swiss or something.

    DonM likes this.

  2. dsutton24

    dsutton24 Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

    Dec 29, 2010
    You easily got your $70 there, but none of it is very valuable. Somebody will want the indicators. Micrometers that are corroded like those aren't worth much, getting them cleaned and calibrated would be costly, but for hobby use they're fine. It seems that nobody knows how to read Vernier calipers any more, but they're certainly useful things. You'll probably get more use out of the drill bits and taps than anything.
    noah330 likes this.

  3. noah330

    noah330 Friend of Leo's

    Feb 10, 2009
    Thanks man. I'll keep the calipers and bring the rest of the stuff to Savers. Still going through the drawers so I appreciate the help!

    As for the calipers, am I wrong to assume that the bottom is centimeters and that the lines of 10 are millimeters?

  4. corliss1

    corliss1 Friend of Leo's

    Sep 13, 2008
    Lansing, MI
    I have that exact set of micrometers, from a machinist for Chrysler back in the 50s. The digital stuff we have now is easier/cheaper but those are still nice. Mine are also pretty corroded, and like dsutton says, probably not worth the hassle of playing with much.
    noah330 likes this.

  5. 3fngrs

    3fngrs Friend of Leo's

    Oct 30, 2017
    Starrett is first rate! Big bucks. I've been a professional machinist for 25 years and that is my favorite tool brand.
    Browne and Sharpe is also really good.
    noah330 likes this.

  6. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity

    Jul 18, 2010
    Western Connecticut
    I'd keep the Starrett stuff. Might be past it's prime, but indeed, it's the best, and quite expensive new. Those items might sell well on eBay, I'm not sure of that market.
    bparnell57, noah330 and 3fngrs like this.

  7. bottlenecker

    bottlenecker Friend of Leo's

    Dec 6, 2015
    My favorite metrology stuff today is swiss or japanese, and swiss has always been good, and popular.
    Starrett is still some of the best for micrometers and some other things, but their calipers are the worst.
    Browne and Sharpe is owned by the same company that owns Tesa (swiss makers of the best dial calipers and dial indicators), and the Etalon name. Etalon was originally french, and used to be the very best. My newish Etalon calipers are made by Tesa.
    This stuff looks pretty old. This is good stuff, but being old may be worn. Worn calipers are inaccurate, because the contact surfaces of the jaws are no longer orthogonal. Micrometers can usually be adjusted if they're not bent and the movement is good. Old indicators (those dial things) are neat, and still useful, although work is a little slower with them than with a current indicator. I can't read the dial, but at least one of them looks like it's a starrett "last word" indicator.
    The calipers are vernier (not dial or digital), which you won't see used by many machinists today for reasons of speed. But if they're not worn out, they will be very accurate if you know how to use them. I'd love to have an Etalon vernier caliper.
    The only way to know if the stuff is good is to test it. You should be able to find a local machine shop that can inspect it for you.
    I don't know what all you do, so it's hard to know what's worth keeping for you. A lot can be done with an indicator, and a zero to one micrometer. The larger mics probably won't help you.
    3fngrs likes this.

  8. 3fngrs

    3fngrs Friend of Leo's

    Oct 30, 2017
    Your stuff looks pretty old but should be serviceable. Those old style vernier calipers aren't used much anymore, at least not for under 12".

  9. Picton

    Picton Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Feb 7, 2009
    Reading, Massachusetts
    Starrett is and always has been an industry standard. The rest I don’t know about. But I wouldn’t worry about the quality of the other stuff; a man who buys Starrett is unlikely to settle for cheap crap.

  10. 3fngrs

    3fngrs Friend of Leo's

    Oct 30, 2017
    Yes to this. Nothing much to add.
    bottlenecker likes this.

  11. 24 track

    24 track Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    I could find a use for all of it!
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018

  12. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity

    Mar 2, 2010
    I reach for a micrometer fairly regularly, handy to have a few of the 0-1", and the 1-2" doesn't take up that much space.
    The two boxed micrometers in the pic might be for inside measurement, like measuring a cylinder bore. Can't tell for sure.

    What is "Savers"?
    Place to donate junk and used clothing?
    Place that buys used tools?

    Each item pictured is worth under $10 IME.
    Cost over $100 each new though.

    I'd be more inclined to keep the micrometers and donate dull drill bits and taps, unless there are new or nice sharp cutting tools in the pile.
    Whenever I find machinists tools that are dirty and rusty, all the drill bits are useless.
    Used drill bits are like used socks.
    Or used guitar strings.

    But cool haul!
    I love machinists tools, vintage Starret stuff is beautifully made.
    Course, not everyone likes that sort of stuff, your inclination to get rid of most of it is probably healthy.

  13. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity

    Mar 2, 2010
    Actually what you called "compasses" might be worth more than the micrometers.

    Post pics!

  14. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity

    Mar 2, 2010
    Some of mine have a metric scale and an inch scale but in 10ths rather than 8ths.
    So 10 10ths = 25mm.

  15. dogmeat

    dogmeat Tele-Holic

    Oct 12, 2017
    those mics will clean up. unless somebody did something really stupid they should be fine. you can re-set them easy if they are out of calibration... all you really need is a 2" standard, that will let you set the 1-2 and the 2-3. the zero to 1" you can calibrate on zero. the dial indicators.... hard to see but looks like they were for a special setup. the one on the right more than the other. all that is good stuff you could prolly sell if inclined. the vernier calipers... maybe not. they are good tool but as mentioned, old school tech. I could read 'em if I could see the numbers ha ha.... too friggin old, anyway, they are still useful, I still have one & use it regularly. how about a closer look at the dial indicators
    telemnemonics likes this.

  16. jhundt

    jhundt Doctor of Teleocity

    Mar 23, 2003
    lots of people are saying that the vernier calipers don't get much use these days, and that surprises me because I seem to use mine a lot around the shop.

    Also those micrometer calipers - I have one that I use frequently. It really came in handy when I bought a cheap DIY 12-string guitar kit. It arrived with 12 unlabelled strings all twisted together; it took me almost an hour just to figure what sizes I had, and where they all went!

  17. Mase

    Mase Tele-Meister

    Apr 20, 2016
    Love my vernier calipers, great for marking out as well as measuring.

  18. 3fngrs

    3fngrs Friend of Leo's

    Oct 30, 2017
    We don't use small vernier calipers in machine shops anymore because digital calipers are quicker. I don't even see dial calipers very often these days because they are so delicate.

    On things over 12 inches, vernier calipers are still pretty much the standard up to 6 or 8 feet.

    Vernier calipers are just as accurate but those little lines are hard to read, especially for older eyes. Speed isn't critical for a hobbyist but it's crucial when you're a professional trying to beat a tight quote or trying to make a quota. Literally every second counts.
    telemnemonics likes this.

  19. Armo

    Armo Tele-Holic

    Nov 13, 2008
    I wouldn't turn my nose up at any of that stuff. Should clean up nicely. The micrometers should always be left open when stored so that temperature changes don't damage them. The dial indicators will need a stand. Verniers are very useful, not so much the rest of the gear unless you are into engineering.

  20. 1293

    1293 Poster Extraordinaire

    May 18, 2006
    Is your username related to your profession?
    bottlenecker and 3fngrs like this.

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