Yard sales!

Discussion in 'Back to Basics' started by duane, Mar 26, 2016.

  1. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    About the first day of spring and all the yard sales are going on here. Long term survival in my mind requires the use of non powered hand tools. Yesterday I was at one where the grand kids were cleaning out "Pops" old garage and I scored the following items. These items were all in good condition, usually made in USA, with good handles, sharp and often coated with oil to prevent rusting. 2 heavy duty spading forks at $2 each, 2 shuffle hoes, 2 heavy hoes, 2 rakes, 1 pitch fork, one manure fork, one hay fork, 1 garden weasel , 1 old time hand cultivator, 1 sythe handle and 2 blades, all for $2 each. 2 old style good sand shovels, 1 square shovel, 1 railroad pick, 1 grub hoe . 1 good axe, all for $5 each and they threw in a hand brace, box of hand bit augers, a hand drill, a couple of bow saw frames, some garden hoses etc just to get rid of them. All useful and excellent trade goods. They are now in my shed and I know that if I die, my kid will have a yard sale and sell them in a minute. If you were to buy them new, it would be in the $100s from Lehmans or china junk from Tractor Supply or Home Depot. They wanted $25 for a wood bow saw, $20 for a long auger bit with a handle, $100 for an old wood wheeled wheel barrow and such. If it would look good in the yard with flowers or hanging on the wall, it was priced high.
    Caveman Jim, Kingfish, Ganado and 5 others like this.
  2. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    Nice. I envy that you found an axe. I have been looking and haven't found any. One thing I have noticed about old tools verses new ones is the weight. The old fashion ones are heavier. We have a couple of old ones, I have considered changing out the handles to eliminate some of the weight. I know it is not a huge issue but if you are using a rake all day, that extra weight does matter.
    Kingfish and Ganado like this.
  3. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    I hate fiberglass or plastic handled hand tools, moto. First, that flex in the shaft of a hoe or axe, robs you of power. Yes, it is lighter, but it does less work with each swing. Second, most of those plastic type handles are hard to repair or replace. (Ymmv)
    Gator 45/70 and Kingfish like this.
  4. BlueDuck

    BlueDuck Monkey+++

    I seldom pass by a yard sale without stopping. Some are real good and some not so much. But you have to check it out to see.
    Gator 45/70, Kingfish and kellory like this.
  5. tacmotusn

    tacmotusn RIP 1/13/21

    Awesome steal price wise. I am green with envy :D
    Kingfish and Ganado like this.
  6. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    We like yard sales, and sometimes make a day of it.
    They do whole neighborhoods at the same time here. (Announced dates)
    They should be starting up soon.
    Gator 45/70 and Kingfish like this.
  7. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    They sell lighter wooden handles. If I did replace an old heavy handle, I would keep it for future use.
  8. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    I would suggest, a better choice would be to keep your tools sharp, to do the max work per swing. Lighter breaks easier, but your choice.
    Kingfish likes this.
  9. oldawg

    oldawg Monkey+++

    The older heavier handles are denser,stronger grained wood. Those and boiled linseed oil will sometimes,with care,last a lifetime. So yes, be sure and keep them for when the lighter ones break or you just get tired of the feedback to your hands and arms.
  10. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    Methinks most of those older handles are hickory. There is NO adequate substitute for hickory.
  11. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Hickory, and ash make the best handles,
    Well worth reading.....
    How I make axe handles
    Kingfish likes this.
  12. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey Moderator

    I think yard/garage/estate sales are some of the best ways to get prepared with tools, on a budget. You can find everything from yard/farm tools to workshop tools, oil lanterns, chains and so much more, for a fraction of the store cost. Farm auctions are another great place to score useful items.
  13. Kingfish

    Kingfish Self Reliant

    That is how I got most of my hand tools. I also browse the dump here. We have a TRANSFER STATION WHERE PEOPLE BRING THEIR GARBAGE to dump. There is a tub there for metal stuff and lots of old shovels, rakes, axes, silverware etc. end up in that bin. I got a real nice Ontario Bolo knife there. It had a small chip in the blade that I ground out. I use that knife almost every day in the barn. I JUST BOUGHT LOTS OF SPARE HANDLES. You would be surprised what you can fix with a bench grinders, hammer and an anvil.
  14. VHestin

    VHestin Farm Chick

    Love yard sales! That's where I got little treasure chests, throwing stars/knives, and lots of other goodies I can't remember right now. But thrift stores, pawn shops, and yard sales, always good places to shop.
    Gator 45/70, Kingfish and tacmotusn like this.
  15. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    Best wooden handles used to be made out of a second growth hickory and hopefully from the whole small tree, or at least sections split, not sawed. Might not be perfectly straight, but it will flex and doesn't split. Never leave a tool with the head or working edge on the ground. Hang it up as it will either rot or rust where it contacts the ground. Do not store in most basements, usually to damp. I love linseed oil on the handles and cut it about 50 % with turpentine , rub it in and keep rubbing it. Takes a few days and is messy and you well think you ruined it at first. Have a small wooden box with sand and some oil. Clean your tools, then rub tools, shovels, hoes etc, in that to clean and keep from rusting. Always rub a very light coat of oil on axes etc to keep them from rusting and sharpen all tools when you put them away. Have a few good hand tools that I got from my Grand dad and some predate 1900. I guess that would qualify as a long term solution for after TSHTF. With good tools and properly prepared land and proper use, good hand tools are often just as fast and as easy to use as power tools and often,, a grub hoe for example, may not be as quick or as easy, but will allow you to do things by hand that would require a machine that would cost a couple thousand dollars and would be priceless, may save your life, if things do go bad. Yes I admit I have a serious addiction, I am a hand tool junky and the older, more unique, weirder it is the better I love them.

    Have several spoke shaves that my grand dad used to make handles, straight and a couple different curves to plane them to shape and he always kept broken window glass and used the edges of the glass to smooth the handles and fit the heads. Seldom would "waste" a good file on something as simple as a handle. He also had a shaving horse and I don't know what happened to it.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2016
  16. Gator 45/70

    Gator 45/70 Monkey+++

    The handle on my Lowes hoe rotted out So, I bought a 6' joint of 1/2 Galvanized pipe and welded the hoe head inside the pipe.
    Now I'm one hoeing son of a gun!!!

    I hope that came out sounding OK?
    Caveman Jim, Yard Dart and Kingfish like this.
  17. Kingfish

    Kingfish Self Reliant

    Family farm and home has tons of hickory handles. I bought a big pile of them last year. Have lots of spares and know how to make them last.
    Gator 45/70 likes this.
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