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Antique Woodworking Planes
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RARE and UNUSUAL tools from my own collection
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In this NEW gallery section of my web site I have put together a collection of RARE and UNUSUAL tools from my own collection. I hope you enjoy looking at some of these items. I hope to add more items to this section as time goes by but for now you can content yourselves with the entries below. None of them are for sale by the way !!!!!

My Collection

Here we have an EXTREMELY RARE Scottish late 18th century beech plough by STEWART of Edinburgh. This has the rare feature of a brass thumb screw adjustable fence. It works by having hollow arms with a threaded rod inside. It is the same design as the plough plane found in the Seaton tool chest by Gabriel and pictured on page 32 of the Seaton book. As far as I am aware this is the only named 18th century Scottish example of this type of plough plane known.

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Left Small Frame EXTREMELY RARE Scottish late 18th century beech plough by STEWART of Edinburgh Right Small Frame
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Inchmartin Tool Bazaar Picture of Man Using a Square

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Here we have a tremendous and RARE triple iron complex cabinet moulder by A. MATHIESON & SON of Glasgow. It is a very complex mould and is basically unused. Not only is the plane stamped on the front as usual but every iron is also stamped Mathieson.

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Left Small Frame RARE triple iron complex cabinet moulder by A. MATHIESON & SON of Glasgow Right Small Frame
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Here we have a REAL RARITY. This is an early patented rosewood and brass inclinometer level by A. MATHIESON & SON of Glasgow & Edinburgh. It is stamped No. 56C and has Queen Victoria's patent symbol on one side. There has only ever been two of these offered for sale which just goes to show how rare they are. This example I saved from oblivion having been about to be thrown away. This was when I was an apprentice and long before I knew anything about tools, I just thought at the time it looked nice.

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Left Small Frame REAL RARITY. This is an early patented rosewood and brass inclinometer level by A. MATHIESON & SON of Glasgow & Edinburgh Right Small Frame
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Not as rare as a lot of people would like you to think but un-common enough we have here a STANLEY, RULE & LEVEL Co. USA No. 101 1/2 bullnose thumb plane. Never published in any Stanley tools catalogue and now highly collectable. This example is in pretty good condition and has its original iron

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Left Small Frame STANLEY, RULE & LEVEL Co. USA No. 101 1/2 bullnose thumb plane Right Small Frame
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Probably the nicest miniature plane in my collection, here we have a Superb 2 5/8" long miniature boxwood thumb plane. A beautiful piece of boxwood with lovely scroll design wedge and thick parallel iron. Unused condition. What a beauty !!!!!

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Left Small Frame Superb 2 5/8" long miniature boxwood thumb plane. Right Small Frame
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Here we have seven various miniature boxwood planes all by the famous maker EDWARD PRESTON & SONS of Birmingham. All are around 3 1/2" long and include 2 radiused rebates, 3 compassed rebates, a quarter round and a tiny hollow. As you can see I love miniature boxwood planes.

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Left Small Frame seven various miniature boxwood planes all by the famous maker EDWARD PRESTON & SONS of Birmingham Right Small Frame
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Here we have six various miniature planes by A. MATHIESON & SON of Glasgow. Most of the Mathieson miniature planes are rare and do not appear on the market very often. Included here we have the rare brass fronted bullnose plane, a small block plane, an unused 3 1/2" long by 5/8" wide rebate, a compass rebate, a very rare round both ways rebate and a very rare 6" long boxed side snipe.

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Left Small Frame six various miniature planes by A. MATHIESON & SON of Glasgow Right Small Frame
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Here we have a fabulous quality large 10" long Scottish gunmetal parallel sided smoothing plane. Has gunmetal lever cap and very nice over-stuffed dark mahogany infill. It is in near unused condition. It is a lovely coppery colour of gunmetal. A real quality Scottish smoothing plane.

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Left Small Frame A real quality Scottish smoothing plane Right Small Frame
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Here we have another Scottish gunmetal smoothing plane but this time much, much earlier and smaller being only 7" long. It is more the traditional Scottish pattern with the curved moulded cove front and curved rear. This one has a typical Scottish shaped lever cap with a lovely knurled tightening screw. The infill on this plane is superb, it is a lovely almost burr walnut, the shaping to the rear handle is perfection itself. The rear infill is also decorated with scratch carving which includes a fish on both sides of the handle. The time that must have been spent on making the infill for this plane almost defies belief in today's times. Probably my favourite Scottish plane.

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Left Small Frame Scottish gunmetal smoothing plane Right Small Frame
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Here we have an EXTREMELY RARE small rebate plane by SPIERS of Ayr. It is only 6" long by 1/2" wide and is of dovetailed steel manufacture. It has rosewood infill with original snecked iron. This is the most un-common of all the Spiers rebate planes with only very few having been found

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Left Small Frame EXTREMELY RARE small rebate plane by SPIERS of Ayr. Right Small Frame
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Here we have a real SPIERS of Ayr rarity, many of you who have been to our shop will have seen this plane. I still use it every day being such a joy to use. It is a RARE specially made lighter model 25 1/2" long dovetailed steel jointing plane with gunmetal lever cap and rosewood infill. It also has its original Spiers parallel iron and back iron. For a plane of this length it only weighs 8 Lbs which is considerably less than a normal 25 1/2" long jointing plane. It was specially made in the 1920's for use in a paper mill in Fife for truing up the edges of certain types of paper, obviously not 1 sheet at a time, that would be impossible but bundles of sheets mainly larger sheets for architects use. I swapped a 17th century oak coffer for this plane some years ago and am certainly glad I did so.

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Left Small Frame SPIERS of Ayr rarity Right Small Frame
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Here we have another un-common SPIERS of Ayr plane, this time a very early example of their improved pattern mitre plane. Dovetailed steel construction with screwed sides and tongue and groove jointed sole. Has the earliest shape long gunmetal lever cap and rosewood infill. Also has its original snecked iron. Again this is a plane I use on occasions as there is nothing better for difficult grained woods.

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Left Small Frame SPIERS of Ayr plane Right Small Frame
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Here we have a magnificent example of early Scottish plane-making. It is a 13 3/4" long cast panel plane with nice shape gunmetal lever cap with chamfered decoration. The walnut infill is one of the best infills I have ever seen. The shaping is superb and must have taken ages. It has a full length thick parallel iron by Mathieson and is very heavy. A number of other tools dealers don't share my enthusiasm for this plane but you have to be a skilled craftsman to appreciate the work that has gone into shaping the infill of this plane to such a high standard.

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Left Small Frame magnificent example of early Scottish plane-making Right Small Frame
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Here we have another RARE Scottish cast plane. This time an early extremely low angled mitre plane. This plane has the feature of a separate dovetailed in mouth piece to the sole which is a feature found on quite a few Scottish cast planes as it would have been near impossible at the time to cast a smaller enough mouth opening especially on a plane of this low angle. Has gunmetal lever cap and very nicely shaped walnut infill. Also has full length original blade. Again another plane I use quite often, because of its very low blade angle it is superb on tricky woods.

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Left Small Frame RARE Scottish cast plane Right Small Frame
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Here we have a lovely example of an early traditional shape Scottish cast smoothing plane. It has the curved cove front and curved back with the usual nice shaped Scottish gunmetal lever cap. The infill on this plane is mahogany and is a lovely shape especially the rear part. It has a near full length thick parallel iron by Mathieson. This was the first wood in-filled plane I ever bought shortly after I started my apprenticeship, I was so impressed with it I couldn't get rid of my modern Stanley bench planes quick enough. So this was the one that started it all !!!!!!!

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Left Small Frame Scottish cast smoothing plane Right Small Frame
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Although when returning to Scotland after my apprenticeship I had accumulated a few wood filled planes for using I was never all that bothered about trying to acquire Norris planes preferring Spiers planes. That was until I purchased this handsome plane. It is a very early NORRIS of London No. 17 steel based gunmetal coffin-shaped smoothing plane with gunmetal lever cap, rosewood infill and original Norris thick parallel iron and back iron. I have to confess now that this is the smoothing plane I use all the time, I can't heap enough praise on it, it just goes to show that when Norris first started they did make top quality planes which would rival anything. Since purchasing this plane I have always been on the look out for an adjustable version but with today's valuation on such planes I will just have to be grateful with this non adjustable version.

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Left Small Frame NORRIS of London No. 17 steel based gunmetal coffin-shaped smoothing plane Right Small Frame
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Here we have the real star of the show so to speak and without any doubt the best piece in my collection. It is an EXTREMELY RARE specially made NORRIS of London No. 20E steel soled gunmetal shoulder plane. It is adjustable having the patented 1913 adjustment system which is rare enough in one of these planes but it is also SKEW mouthed. Not only that but it is also COMPLETELY UNUSED retaining all its original lacquer to the gunmetal and to the wood and has its original green felt bag. The infill on this plane is EBONY and the blade is obviously full length and original. I have never seen another one of these planes with a skew mouth and certainly none in this condition. I believe it to be unique, obviously having been specially made for someone with an awful lot of money at the time. I have never used it bit would imagine it would be un-surpassed even to a Holtey.

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Left Small Frame Star of the show so to speak and without any doubt the best piece in my collection  EXTREMELY RARE specially made NORRIS of London No. 20E steel soled gunmetal shoulder plane Right Small Frame
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Now we are back on miniatures again but this time metal ones. To start with we have this incredibly rare early cast Scottish bullnose chariot plane by D. GALLOWAY of Edinburgh. Gunmetal lever cap and over-stuffed walnut rear infill. This particular pattern of bullnose chariot plane is in my opinion a Scottish design and although not particularly un-common up here this is the only one I have ever seen with a rear infill like a smoothing plane with an enclosed handle, they usually just have a shaped block at the rear. The size of this plane is 4 1/2" long by 1 3/4" wide.

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Left Small Frame Scottish bullnose chariot plane by D. GALLOWAY of Edinburgh Right Small Frame
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Here we have a RARE dovetailed steel chariot or block plane by A. MATHIESON & SON of Glasgow with gunmetal lever cap and original thick parallel iron. As is not unusual for Mathieson planes the lever cap is not stamped but it is stamped STEEL along the front edge of the base and the iron is named which is definitely original. Only Spiers and Mathieson made this particular design of plane.

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Left Small Frame RARE dovetailed steel chariot or block plane by A. MATHIESON & SON of Glasgow Right Small Frame
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Here we have another miniature Scottish cast bullnose chariot plane but this time a really early example with one of the nicest long shaped gunmetal lever caps I have ever seen on a miniature plane. It has lovely moulded shape rosewood rear infill and original thick parallel iron. The size of it is 4 1/2" long by 1 5/8" wide.

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Left Small Frame Scottish cast bullnose chariot plane Right Small Frame
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Here we have a RARE cast metal bullnose chariot plane by EDWARD PRESTON & SONS of Birmingham No. 1348 in their 1909 catalogue. It is a quality plane with adjustable mouth, gunmetal bridge and lovely grained rosewood wedge. Comes complete with original thick parallel blade. It has a very fine mouth. The size of it is 3 1/4" long by 1 1/2" wide.

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Left Small Frame RARE cast metal bullnose chariot plane by EDWARD PRESTON & SONS of Birmingham No. 1348 Right Small Frame
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Here we have a VERY RARE and early miniature steel based gunmetal chariot plane by JOHN MOSELEY & SON of London. It has an adjustable mouth with lovely shaped gunmetal lever cap and original early Ward blade. The size is 3 1/2" long by 1 1/2" wide and again has a very fine mouth.

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Left Small Frame VERY RARE and early miniature steel based gunmetal chariot plane by JOHN MOSELEY & SON of London Right Small Frame
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Here we have another VERY RARE miniature gunmetal chariot plane this time by ISAAC GREEN of Pimlico in London. It has a gunmetal bridge with a very nice shaped ebony wedge and original thick parallel iron by Ward. Considering this does not have the steel sole and the difficulty of casting at the time this has a tremendously fine mouth. The size of it is 3 1/4" long by 1 1/2" wide.

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Left Small Frame VERY RARE miniature gunmetal chariot plane this time by ISAAC GREEN of Pimlico in London Right Small Frame
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A bit of fun this time we have a Scottish gunmetal miniature chariot plane with a delightfully shaped boxwood wedge carved to look like a mans head. The casting is not the best of qualities but the wedge is superb. The size of this one is 3 1/2" long by 1 1/2" wide

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Left Small Frame Scottish gunmetal miniature chariot plane Right Small Frame
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Here we have a VERY RARE set of 4 gunmetal violin makers planes all by EDWARD PRESTON of Birmingham. In this set we have 3 round both ways examples including the very rarest smallest size 1" long one and one flat soled one. All have the original Preston blades. These are the first miniature planes I ever bought some 15 years ago and I have been hooked ever since.

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Left Small Frame VERY RARE set of 4 gunmetal violin makers planes all by EDWARD PRESTON of Birmingham. Right Small Frame
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Here we have a SUPERB boxed set of STANLEY, LONDON boxwood scale rules in completely original un-touched condition. The original box is mahogany with oval brass inlay to top. Has original key and most rarely of all has the original key envelope. This is the most complete, original set of these I have ever seen, I have never seen another set with the key envelope. These date from around 1870 to 1880.

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Not a tool as such but a very interesting piece none the less. We have here a Scottish Mauchline piece in the shape of a coffin-shaped smoothing plane. This is quite a rare shape for mauchline ware. The picture on it is of "CRAIGSIDE" and is the earlier printed type picture.

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Here we have a very nice and rare 19th century dovetailed steel soled gunmetal chariot or thumb plane. No makers name visible but a really well made plane, the dovetails are really good especially where the back piece of gunmetal has been dovetailed into the sides and base. Has a steel bar with a wooden wedge. The wood infill is rosewood and is all original. Also has a very nice thick parallel iron by Buck which is original. The size of the plane is 4 3/4" long by 1 5/8" wide and it has a very fine mouth. This is achieved by the base being in two pieces and tongue and groove jointed at the mouth as with early Spiers mitre planes.

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Here we have another one of my RARE factory made miniature brass planes, this one being a NORRIS of LONDON No. 28 steel soled brass chariot plane. One of Norris's earlier pieces. This example has been quite well used but still remains in pretty good condition. The size of the plane is 3 1/4" long by 1 1/2" wide. The wood infill is rosewood and it has a wide curved shaped bridge which has Norris London and number 28 stamped on it. It also has its original Norris London parallel blade. One of the more difficult Norris miniature planes to find.

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Here we have a lovely quality miniature steel based gunmetal rebate plane. 4" long by 1/2" wide. A lovely shaped casting with original nice shape ebony wedge. No makers name but a really well made plane with a very fine mouth.

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Here we have another really nice miniature steel based gunmetal rebate plane. This one is an even nicer shape and again has ebony infill. The blade is a Ward and is probably original. The size of this one is 4" long by 5/8" wide.

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Here we have another miniature all gunmetal rebate plane, this one being a bit earlier I think. An unusual shaped casting with a very fine chamfered edge. Original walnut infill and superb thick parallel blade by Sorby. Size of this one is 3 3/4" long by 1/2" wide

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Here we have one of the first small gunmetal planes I ever bought which sort of started me off so to speak. It is a lovely quality early Scottish gunmetal bullnose plane. Really nice shape with a chamfered edge to the gunmetal, original dark rosewood wedge and really thick parallel iron. Although there is no makers name visible I am pretty sure this is a factory made example as the quality of it is much higher than normal. It is very heavy and has a really fine mouth. It is probably either a Spiers or a Mathieson plane.

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Here we have two very small miniature brass rebate planes. Firstly a very small 2" long by 5/16" wide compass soled rebate with ebony wedge and original blade. Lovely curved shape of casting. The other one is a slightly larger 2 3/4" long by 3/8" wide bullnose rebate plane. Has rosewood wedge and what looks like the original blade by E. Preston of Birmingham. I am not sure whether Preston actually made this plane but the wedge is definitely a Preston shape.

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Here we have a VERY RARE small 6" long by 1/2" wide dovetailed steel rebate plane by SPIERS of AYR. This is one of the most difficult sizes of rebate plane to find today by Spiers. This example has rosewood infill and rarely has the original snecked iron. The wedge has had a small repair but that does not detract from the plane at all. Has a really fine mouth as you would expect for a Spiers plane.

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Here we have a couple of more recent planes of incredible quality and workmanship by Steve Chaplin of Nuneaton in the UK. Steve is a trained jeweller / goldsmith and this is reflected in his work . Firstly we have a remarkable, tiny, curved, dovetailed steel soled gunmetal rebate plane . It is almost beyond belief how you could make a plane as small as this of curved form of such high quality. This example is only 2" long by 5/16" wide and is numbered number 36.
Secondly we have a very small 2" long by 7/8" wide dovetailed steel soled gunmetal miniature smoothing plane. Has gunmetal lever cap and very nicely grained rosewood infill. This one is numbered number 58. Steve has not made many infill planes such as these, only about 60 planes in total, as such they hardly ever appear on the market and when they do they command quite a high price.

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Here we have a very nice set of four early 19th century gunmetal violin planes probably of European decent. They have steel bar bridges with nice scroll shaped ebony wedges. The set contains a tiny 1 1/8" long round both ways plane, a 1 3/4" long round both ways plane, a 2 1/4" long round both ways plane and a 2 3/4" long round both ways plane. The set is really well made and are quite heavy for their size.

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For those of you who don't know me I love early Scottish levels of the fancy type and I have quite a few of my own. Here are some of them. This lot we have three examples by MATHIESON of GLASGOW. Two ebony and brass examples numbers 014C and 014D, these are both very beautiful. The other one is a RARE number 8C which is made of rosewood and has a raised brass top.

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Here we have three incredible examples of Scottish level making by BUIST of EDINBURGH. In my opinion Buist made some of the best and most intricate levels of any maker of the time. Dating from the 19th century these three examples are all ebony and are all of incredible quality, there is hardly any gap to be seen between the ebony and the brass.

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Lastly for the moment we have two more Scottish levels. Firstly a SUPERB 19th century ebony and brass inlaid example of real quality. One of the nicest design levels in my collection. It does have a makers name but it is unfortunately indistinguishable. The other level is a very rare example by MacKAY, BURLEY & HEYS of GLASGOW. This is an ebony level again with a revolving brass top part. Every level of this design I have seen has been by Mathieson except this one, I suppose this could also have been made by Mathieson but it is not stamped Mathieson anywhere.

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Inchmartine Tool Bazaar, Inchmartine House, Inchture, Perthshire, PH14 9QQ, SCOTLAND
Tel +44 (0) 1828 686096, Fax +44 (0) 1828 686748