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Steel Squares – Graduation, finish and use 0066


Those who have copies of our former catalogues will notice that we have made quite a change in the matter of Steel Squares. We present here an entirely new line, there being but four styles, while in our earlier catalogues we displayed and priced as many as eighteen, some of which were too low in price to admit of their being even of fair quality, in fact the wonder is, not that the Squares commonly sold in the stores are so poor, but that, considering the price, they are so good.

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The Squares described and priced here are, as regards the essential features, of our own design. Steel Squares, as commonly made and sold, have not been changed in any particular in nearly twenty years, and for some time past we have had ideas of improving them, which we have now carried into effect.

AS TO GRADUATION —It will be understood that we do not look for the same degree of accuracy and refinement in a carpenter's steel square as in a fine, high-priced machinist's square. Still we must have practical accuracy, and the graduations on our Squares will not vary more than 6/1000 of an inch. As a rule, they will be found correct.

AS TO FIGURES AND TABLE S—The Tables and Figures on our Squares will be found clearly and plainly marked. Fig. 3489 shows a half-tone engraving taken direct from a photograph of a portion of a No. 1000 Square. Fig. 3490 shows a corresponding section of one of a number of socalled firstclass Squares that were bought by us in open market. The Square that this is taken from, is known to the trade as No. 100, is the highest priced and presumably the best. It will be noticed that not only is the marking wretchedly bad and indistinct, but Incorrect as well. Under the figure 4 notice that the figures 314 and 318 are transposed. An error of this kind in the marking of the board measure on a Square might In a single instance result in the loss of enough to purchase one hundred Squares.

Editors Note: I am confident that todays squares, being computer designed and machined are marked with more precision than any carpenter can possibly use.

Steel Sqaures on sale at Ebay. More old tools text follows.

AS TO FINISH —When we come to consider the question of finish, we are strongly reminded of the story of the Frenchman who had been in this country but a short time, and whose knowledge of English was somewhat limited. He asked,

"Vet is ze name of ze leequid drink zat is Contradiction."
" What do you mean ? " asked his friend.
" Ze gentleman puts in ze viskee to make cot strong and ze votaire to snake eet week, ze lemon to make eet sour and ze sugare to make eet sweet, and zen he says `here's to you', and dreenks eet heemself."
"Oh l You mean Punch?"
"Oui, Paunch; zat ees eet."

The finish that Square makers put on their goods is "Contreediction." A Square like our No. 1000 has 2571 graduations and rulings, and 870 figures. These graduations and figures are intended to be read by the mechanic, and yet all Square makers defeat the purpose by putting as high a polish on Squares as— they can afford to, and in the nickel plated Squares the polish is increased and intensified.

In our judgment, this high polish is a defect, especially. in an article like a steel square which is largely used out-of-doors and in the sunlight.
The nickel plating is intended —in a large measure —as a preventive of rust, but this object is defeated when —after a thin coating of nickel is applied to the Square —it is buffed and polished to an extent that removes a considerable portion of the nickel, and as a rust preventive amounts to nothing.*

Our Squares are furnished in three styles of Finish: First, the Plain Finish, which is a high but not a polished finish, quite similar in appearance to finish on Darling, Brown & Sharpes' rules, squares and other small tools. Second, the Plain Nickel Finish; this consists of a *One manufacturer has lately brought out a line of Squares with a "Blued" finish, the graduations and figures being filled with a white composition. It is an attractive finish, and, if permanent, would for this class of tool he most excellent, The trouble is that a blued finish rusts almost as easily as a bright finish; emery cloth must be used to take off the rust , the rust and dirt are ground into the white figures, and there you are.

The above illustrations speak for themselves. Fig. 3489 represents a Square taken out of our stock Fig. 3490 represents a corresponding section of .a Square bought in open market, and of a concern who "warrant them in all respects." In this Square, out of 76 figures 10 are missing, 11 are totally illegible, and the most of the remainder are indistinct to a greater or less extent. Pretty tough, isn't it ? The graduations are reasonably accurate, but very rough.
Illustrations are obtained by photographing the squares after filling in the lines with a white composition, both Squares being treated precisely alike.

Steel Squares - Graduation, finish and use