My name is Tom Moye.
I signed up on OLDTOOLS a few days ago, and have been enjoying it
immensely. So much so that I unsubscribed to some of my other lists
and delete others lists' messages without reading them.
I am a graduate of the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding ('83) where
I learned to use and even appreciate good hand tools under the watchful
and often critical eye of Bob Prothero, alias the old man. The first
thing he taught (or tried to teach) us was sharpening. One of my first
purchases when I started at the school was a no-name plane with bed and
frog cast as a single piece.Its adjustment screw operation was opposite
that of Stanley. A heavy monster, better for breaking down doors than most
anything else. Anyway, one day the old man decided I needed a lesson on
planing. "Gimme that thing," he said in his gravelliest voice. I passed
over my battering ram, er, plane. He took one stroke and then adjusted the
blade. Took another stroke; got a funny look on his face, and examined my
pride and joy more closely. "Hmmph, works backwards. One time I had a
plane that worked backwards...." (significant pause) "Threw the (expletive
deleted) in the garbage." I have no doubt that he threw it away. He was a
tough taskmaster and a galoot of the worst sort. Once he took a pair of
oars that a student had worked long and hard on, pronounced that they were
the worst pieces of junk that he had ever seen, and proceeded to saw them
into little pieces to feed the fire for our steamer.
I worked in boat repair in Portland, OR for a few years before heading
back to college for a second try. Now I push keys instead of planes as a
software tester/localizer. The last few years I've been living in an
apartment or overseas (Japan), so I haven't been using my tools nearly
enough. Moving to a real house soon so I can set up a shop and make a
nuisance of myself at garage sales and find all the tools I think I need.
My best gloat (remember, I'm a user): I got two slicks at a garage sale, a
no-name with a laminated blade for $10 and a Witherby with the socket
beaten off it for $5. Since I already had a White that I bought for full
fare, I sharpened up the no-name and gave it to a friend. I never told him
how much it cost so he felt obligated to buy me beers for weeks (or was it
months) to show his appreciation. I keep meaning to have someone put a
socket on the Witherby, but I figure I'll never wear out the White in my
lifetime, so I may just let future generations worry about it. Any stories
or recommendations for re-socketing a slick out there Galoot-ville.
Well, I reckon that's enough about me. I'll just mosey over to the side of
the porch and admire the hats.
p.s. I was trying to figure out what galoot stood for before I came across
the origin. I came up with Generally Amiable Lover Of Old Tools. (or was
that greatly agitated l.o.o.t)