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Dating vintage Starrett tools

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jamesicus

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TomG wrote:

.......... The Lufkin information might be a good addition there since James probably doesn't want to "pollute" his with non Starrett stuff ..........
Maybe the following will assuage your apprehension that I am too "Starrett biased", Tom.:)):))

Lufkin rules: The Lufkin Rule Co. was long renowned for the excellence of the measuring devices they produced. I particularly liked their No. 117x series folding steel rules - especially the 72" (No. 1176) model.

00lufkin01.jpg
Lufkin 117x series folding steel rules

I also used the comparable Starrett No. 451 folding steel rules, but preferred the Lufkins due to their lighter weight, more positive lock-up and larger, more easily read, numbers.


Starrett 451 folding steel rules

00lufkin01.jpg
 
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sambo

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:think1:
TomG wrote:


Maybe the following will assuage your apprehension that I am too "Starrett biased", Tom.:)):))

Lufkin rules: The Lufkin Rule Co. was long renowned for the excellence of the measuring devices they produced. I particularly liked their No. 117x series folding steel rules - especially the 72" (No. 1176) model.

00lufkin01.jpg
Lufkin 117x series folding steel rules

I also used the comparable Starrett No. 451 folding steel rules, but preferred the Lufkins due to their lighter weight, more positive lock-up and larger, more easily read, numbers.


Starrett 451 folding steel rules
 
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sambo

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Hi, I'm new to this thread, but have been collecting B&S and Starrett precision tools for decades. To date Starrett micrometers I not only refer to my catalogs but also patent features and markings. Sometime during WW1, patent dates were eliminated from micrometers and the April 1900 ratchet was changed to the B&S type. Knowing this helps break down, within several years, the manufactured date of pre WW1 mikes. After that, many standard models were made unchanged for decades until after WW2 and the satin finished models became standard. I have noticed that the logo "L.S.Starrett - Athol,Mass.USA" was used up to about 1907 on mikes, when the knurling pattern was changed. The logo "The L.S.Starrett Co. Athol, Mass. USA" was used exclusively after that. Patent drawings of 1906 and 1907 show the full knurled thimble. Starrett seems to have had at least four patents for spindle locks on early mikes. Some were never used, but the patent date appears one some models anyway. Probably the only way to know this is to disassemble the mike. You can't have too many around for examination, and even if you have all the catalogs and patent drawings you can't be too positive about any date.
 

steamguywilly

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over here in Blighty i have a starrett 1"-2" mike No 213 on the body, 212 on the extension part and Pat apr 12 1908 on the thimble, it was £1 at a car boot sale. It states The L.S.starrett co ...Athol Mass USA on the body, When is the last date it could have been made ? I have no carbon dating facilities unfortunately !!. On the reverse it says Pat May 4 1897..........Pat Dec 10? 1907. any info will be appreciated.
Regards
Robert. P.S How does one attach photos to the posts ??
 

sambo

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:whiteflag::whiteflag:
over here in Blighty i have a starrett 1"-2" mike No 213 on the body, 212 on the extension part and Pat apr 12 1908 on the thimble, it was £1 at a car boot sale. It states The L.S.starrett co ...Athol Mass USA on the body, When is the last date it could have been made ? I have no carbon dating facilities unfortunately !!. On the reverse it says Pat May 4 1897..........Pat Dec 10? 1907. any info will be appreciated.
Regards
Robert. P.S How does one attach photos to the posts ??
Hi steamguywilly, sounds like you have a really nice Starrett. Dating these early mic.s is not an exact science, but lets see what we can do. In the British catalog no. 18, dated 1909, it lists your no. 213 micrometer as reading in ten thousands, for 1/11/3. The two inch attachment, no 213, as probably ordered with the mic. as an extra option and sold for 8/4. Do you still have the original 1 inch standard? The May 4th 1897 patent (#582,154) was the patent that defined Starrett micrometer design construction from then until the present time. The spindle lock shown in the patent was changed a few times since, that's what the patent date of Dec. 10, 1907 (#873,627) is for. I have many Starretts with these dates stamped on them. I odd thing about these, is that if you disassemble them, you can see that they actually used a later patent of July 20, 1909 (#928,889) on all these. Probably the earlier patent was harder to manufacture. I would say that your micrometer was probably made between 1909 and about 1915. During WWI, the pat. stampings were eliminated as a time saving move and never came back. It would be interesting to know if your instrument was originally purchased in the UK. Starrett was quite prolific there. As far as posting pict.s , someone with a little more expertise may be able to help us both!!
 

sambo

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:man::whistle:
:whiteflag::whiteflag:
Hi steamguywilly, sounds like you have a really nice Starrett. Dating these early mic.s is not an exact science, but lets see what we can do. In the British catalog no. 18, dated 1909, it lists your no. 213 micrometer as reading in ten thousands, for 1/11/3. The two inch attachment, no 213, as probably ordered with the mic. as an extra option and sold for 8/4. Do you still have the original 1 inch standard? The May 4th 1897 patent (#582,154) was the patent that defined Starrett micrometer design construction from then until the present time. The spindle lock shown in the patent was changed a few times since, that's what the patent date of Dec. 10, 1907 (#873,627) is for. I have many Starretts with these dates stamped on them. I odd thing about these, is that if you disassemble them, you can see that they actually used a later patent of July 20, 1909 (#928,889) on all these. Probably the earlier patent was harder to manufacture. I would say that your micrometer was probably made between 1909 and about 1915. During WWI, the pat. stampings were eliminated as a time saving move and never came back. It would be interesting to know if your instrument was originally purchased in the UK. Starrett was quite prolific there. As far as posting pict.s , someone with a little more expertise may be able to help us both!!
P.S. If you look a little closer at the spindle patent you will see it is actually Apr. 17, 1900. This covers the ratchet stop design, that was phased out about 1916 for a simpler design.
 

steamguywilly

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:man::whistle:
P.S. If you look a little closer at the spindle patent you will see it is actually Apr. 17, 1900. This covers the ratchet stop design, that was phased out about 1916 for a simpler design.
Thanks for the info, The item is actually in really poor condition though,....... but still works as clamp [sorry]
I think that is why it was so cheap. there is no box for it, but it still zero's at zero
Robert {willy}
 

sambo

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:thinking:
Thanks for the info, The item is actually in really poor condition though,....... but still works as clamp [sorry]
I think that is why it was so cheap. there is no box for it, but it still zero's at zero
Robert {willy}
A lot of the old Starrett's I've seen that come out of the UK have seen severe service. I guess two world wars and Nazi bombing took it's toll.
 

steamguywilly

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here are two more items in my starrett stable. One is a combination set that has a repair near the 60-120 degree place, it is a number 7. then a 2"-3" micrometer that is missing its thimble ! 100 years has been rather traumatic for tools over here in blighty......2 world wars etc etc etc. also a picture of the 1"-2" mike that we have already talked about....The photos have not come out very sharp.. The mike is a No226 and the reverse says Pat 10 march 1891 and May 4 1897.combo tool with repair on 60 & 120 degree mark.jpgcombination tool No7.jpgmicrometer last posts.jpgmike 3''-4" missing thimble.jpgmike missing its thimble.jpgand May 4 1897.

combination tool No7.jpg combo tool with repair on 60 & 120 degree mark.jpg micrometer last posts.jpg mike 3''-4" missing thimble.jpg mike missing its thimble.jpg
 

sambo

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here are two more items in my starrett stable. One is a combination set that has a repair near the 60-120 degree place, it is a number 7. then a 2"-3" micrometer that is missing its thimble ! 100 years has been rather traumatic for tools over here in blighty......2 world wars etc etc etc. also a picture of the 1"-2" mike that we have already talked about....The photos have not come out very sharp.. The mike is a No226 and the reverse says Pat 10 march 1891 and May 4 1897.View attachment 76281View attachment 76280View attachment 76282View attachment 76283View attachment 76284and May 4 1897.
Nice picts. steamguywilly. At least you didn't over clean them, and ruin their patina, like many I've seen. Too many vintage antique tools are wire brushed and shined to ruination, damaging the markings and removing the original edges.
 

steamguywilly

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I found this tool today at the car boot sale and i could not find it in my brown and sharpe ,or buck and hickman cats. Iknow it is not L.S.S. make but it is american !! Is it something to do with the drill angle?? If anybody knows it would be interesting to find outgoodall 1.jpggoodall.jpg

goodall.jpg goodall 1.jpg
 

awander

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That's a Whitworth-Standard Adjustable-Notch Center Gauge. Looks like it is missing the locking thumbscrew.

Goodell-Pratt Adjustable Notch Center Gauge.jpg

Goodell-Pratt Adjustable Notch Center Gauge.jpg
 

steamguywilly

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That's a Whitworth-Standard Adjustable-Notch Center Gauge. Looks like it is missing the locking thumbscrew.

View attachment 77184
Thanks for that information, i thought it might have been something to do with the Whitworth thread system. the mark that said 550 had a small zero with a line under it. I thought that might been the catalogue number. Yes there is a small tapped hole for the thumbscrew and it is threaded 8BA, Do you have a date for your illustration? Did L.L.S make a similar item or was it patented.
Regards
Willy.
 

awander

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Sorry, I should have mentioned, that was from a 1926 Goodell-Pratt Catalog.

L.L.S? Do you mean L.S.S. or L. S. Starrett?

I haven't seen a Gauge like this in any of the other toolmakers' catalogs.
 

steamguywilly

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Sorry, I should have mentioned, that was from a 1926 Goodell-Pratt Catalog.

L.L.S? Do you mean L.S.S. or L. S. Starrett?

I haven't seen a Gauge like this in any of the other toolmakers' catalogs.
Thanks for the info, Yes i did mean Starrett. Thinking about TPI's were there any rulers made with 14 and other divisions produced. I have never seen any, but if you wanted to draw whit worth threads accurately with paper and pen how would one go about it ? Just wondering
Regards
Willy.
 

awander

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The table below is from my 1938 Starrett catalog. As you can see, 14 divisions was available in the No. 1 graduation option, but I have never seen one of those.

Starrett Rule Grads 1938.jpg

Just curious-why would you need to draw a 14TPI thread?

Starrett Rule Grads 1938.jpg
 

steamguywilly

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The table below is from my 1938 Starrett catalog. As you can see, 14 divisions was available in the No. 1 graduation option, but I have never seen one of those.

View attachment 77229

Just curious-why would you need to draw a 14TPI thread?
I have never drawn a thread, I always write what the thread is after drawing the symbol for it. I suppose if you were designing some piece of machinery and you wanted to show the actuall thread relationships with other dimensions on the componant, you may wish to draw the thread to see if there was enough space ,room,strength and so on for the item to work satisfactorily. It is interesting to see that these rulers do exist though. Thanks for all this info, and sharing it with everybody.
Regards
Willy.
 

jamesicus

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Continuing to update web page - all input welcome.
 
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steamguywilly

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Continuing to update web page - all input welcome.
Over here in blighted sorry blighty i have a lot of english tool catalogues with Starrett entrys that i could post if you want, although a lot of the entries don't have illustrations for some reason ?
regards
Willy.
 
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I'm trying to date this Starrett Protractor.All the ones I have seen don't have the small locking lever next to the thumb wheel. There is no model number that I can find but it shows this Pat date May 10 1898.*****************************************************
******Thanks***************Gator********************************************



Rust Test 006.jpg
 

Silverbullet

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James,

I may have a few vintage Starrett tools and I know I have a couple of early 1900's catalogs. The web site is a great idea, I wish someone would start one for Lufkin as I have a rather extensive collection of their tools.

Tom
I like lufkin too. Have quite a few of them , I look for the ww2 green paint mostly.
 

waynecuefix

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Somewhat off thread but someone here might find this interesting. I had acquired an old Starrett 64A indicator in the wooden box with accessories. It was the second one I bought but it didn't work. I played around with it and found it was fine. Apparently when stored away the previous owner had relaxed the spring. Having no instructions as to its use I wrote this "instruction manual" which basically makes some assumptions but expresses my findings. May be of use to someone.
STARRETT TEST INDICATOR SET 64A USER INSTRUCTIONS (by Wayne L. Hester)
This unit will not work when the spring is in the relaxed state (preferred for long storage).
Locate the wheel under the indicator pointer arm which controls a delicate wire spring. This wheel has a locking screw at its axis which locks and unlocks the wheel. It is stored unlocked so the spring is in the relaxed (neutral) position to improve the longevity of the spring wire during long storage.
To ready the indicator for use make sure the spring adjust wheel screw is loosened enough so the wheel is unlocked.
With indicator arm to one side turn the spring adj. wheel with the thumb to the same direction to apply spring tension against the arm for that direction. With ample tension hold the wheel and tighten the screw to lock the wheel and spring in that direction.
With the spring locked move the indicator arm manually and release it and it should return to the set direction. If not more spring tension is needed so repeat the process with more spring tension.
This allows the indicator to indicate in the direction of the spring setting. For the other direction repeat the process tensioning the spring in the other direction by thumbing the wheel in the other direction. For long storage release the tension by loosening the wheel screw slightly to release the spring to relaxed state.
This instrument is very adequate for indicating center or detecting errors on work chucked in a lathe. While it has been replaced by modern clock style gauges, it did an amazing job for machinists of old and still does if properly used.

STARRETT 64 A 3.jpg
 

Silverbullet

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I h
Good morning, James and all --

Here are a couple of pictures of a Starrett double protractor (see page 41 in the catalog link posted earlier). It was in the same box as the level and has a patent date of Dec. 27, 1904. The id stamp is just L.S.S. Co. and is one I didn't see on your site, James.

This is all good fun and thanks again for all the work you've put in on it.

Keith W

Ive the same double square protractor in my box. Even the blades for it. It's in very good condition , I got it in the 1970s , last one I saw on eBay sold for over $400. By itself. I saw another odd one awhile back ill try to put picture I saved. Nope won't load oh well.
 

Bob Korves

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Somewhat off thread but someone here might find this interesting. I had acquired an old Starrett 64A indicator in the wooden box with accessories. It was the second one I bought but it didn't work. I played around with it and found it was fine. Apparently when stored away the previous owner had relaxed the spring. Having no instructions as to its use I wrote this "instruction manual" which basically makes some assumptions but expresses my findings. May be of use to someone.
STARRETT TEST INDICATOR SET 64A USER INSTRUCTIONS (by Wayne L. Hester)
This unit will not work when the spring is in the relaxed state (preferred for long storage).
Locate the wheel under the indicator pointer arm which controls a delicate wire spring. This wheel has a locking screw at its axis which locks and unlocks the wheel. It is stored unlocked so the spring is in the relaxed (neutral) position to improve the longevity of the spring wire during long storage.
To ready the indicator for use make sure the spring adjust wheel screw is loosened enough so the wheel is unlocked.
With indicator arm to one side turn the spring adj. wheel with the thumb to the same direction to apply spring tension against the arm for that direction. With ample tension hold the wheel and tighten the screw to lock the wheel and spring in that direction.
With the spring locked move the indicator arm manually and release it and it should return to the set direction. If not more spring tension is needed so repeat the process with more spring tension.
This allows the indicator to indicate in the direction of the spring setting. For the other direction repeat the process tensioning the spring in the other direction by thumbing the wheel in the other direction. For long storage release the tension by loosening the wheel screw slightly to release the spring to relaxed state.
This instrument is very adequate for indicating center or detecting errors on work chucked in a lathe. While it has been replaced by modern clock style gauges, it did an amazing job for machinists of old and still does if properly used.

View attachment 242643
Thanks, Wayne! I thought my 64 was broken or the spring was too short, but now it works just fine.
 

timpet98

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Hi, I have a very old Starrett combination square set and I'm struggling to date it. The strangest thing is that the rule has a square groove not the standard half circle one. The only things that it is missing is the scribe (I'm assuming the one it has is not original) and unfortunately also one of the little latch parts with the unique square nub on the end. I called Starrett and they said they "threw them all out a few years ago because the government kept taxing the inventory". That kind of saddened me because I have no clue how to get one of those. Here are some Pics and if anyone knows how I could find one of those parts that would be amazing, its my grandpa's square and I'm sure he would love to see it back together if possible. Apparently I forgot to photograph the center finder head but that's the part that is missing the latch stem part.
 

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