Post By rivett608
Rare surface gauges for sale
I just looked at my email for the upcoming MJD auction and two of the rarest Starrett surface gauges are being sold in as one lot..........
Live Free or Die Auction Preview
Two patented surface gauges, No. 55/56, by the L.S. Starrett Company, Athol, Massachusetts, patented March 17, 1896. both clean and complet. ***(This item will be sold on Friday, July 27, 2012)***
Maker: the L.S. Starrett Company, Athol, Massachusetts
Length: 11.000 Inches
Patent Paper: 556703
Estimate: $125.00 - $250.00
Cheap estimate! good shape! here is you're chance.......... I have them so I don't need to bid.
I haven't looked to see what other goodies are for sale...... I think this is the summer 3000 lot sale.....
And one is a scarce #56 used in the type study in the thread here:
Starrett #56 Surface Gauge Type Study Pics
Here is a Starrett surface gage that I have and use on a regular basis .
It was given to my father by a family friend and I was thinking it was probably from the 1910 Ė1920 time period.
Pat. date Mar 17 1896 at least the rod was .
I donít know what number it is.
No other markings on the base so I donít know for sure it is all Starrett but I am presuming it is.
It looks quite a bit different than most of the #56 models mentioned in the thread mentioned above by Antique Mac.
If there is another thread where this model was studied I could post more pictures over there ,or here if someone would like to see them .
Nice gage Jim!
It is likely at Starrett #257, probably from about the period you mentioned. But, that is hard to tell.
I have never seen any sort of study of the #257, but you could start one. Just remember, type studies take a huge amount of time and money tracking down patents, catalogs and a slew of pristine examples, all for identifying factory original differences.
Yes, indeed, Jim, a nice gage!
Older Starrett catalogs say that the four stop pins in the base of the #257 make it useful for lining up the crosshead slides on a steam locomotive. As I understand it, this is a "taut-wire" technique where the relationship between the slides and a taut wire is being measured. Do you know if the family friend who gave the gage to your father had any RR connection? (Not that the #257 does not have many other uses!)
Thanks for that information.
I did a Google search and found a few Model 257 for sale on e-bay and one looks to be nearly as I can tell the same as mine at fairly minimal cost.
starrett 257 - Google Search
I don’t think I will try and take on to do a type study or start a thread about this gage on my own but I would be happy to contribute more pictures and measurements to anyone who wants to take on the project.
I have too many projects in the works right now one of which is trying to learn a little more about several of the old tools that are in my care at the moment .
if you know of any links that would tell about how to do a type study I would be interested in seeing what is involved even if I can’t take on to do one right now.
As far as I know this gage belonged originally to a machinist or engineer in a paper mill who would have been born some where around 1900 and died at a relatively young age.
His father was a patternmaker in the pulp mill where my father and grandfather worked and was born around 1880 .
No doubt there would have been some “ Taut Wire “ lining up required in that industry .
As far as I know the pulp mill where my grandfather worked had ben run by electric motors and not steam but It is possible that the gage could have been used in a steam powered mill and used to up the crossheads of some sort of stationary engine.
there is an article about taut wire lining in one of the old 1905 I.C.S. books that I have that also belonged to the original owner of the gage
It starts here in a similar slightly older edition with the part about locomotives farther on
International Library of Technology
In these cases they don’t seem show the use of any surface gages.
I see one of the images in the search above is from your thread here
Starrett 257 as "Locomotive Guide Liner" ?
I hope I haven’t run rivett 608’s thread too far off track with all this.
"I hope I haven’t run rivett 608’s thread too far off track with all this.".... NO, No way to do that..... the more discussion of these things the better. I got my first #257 from my first girl friends father who was taught the trade at the Washington Navy Yard..... I still have it and think of him when I see it.
I have been so busy I haven't had time yet to look at the auction and see what other goodies await me.......