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Hand Tools Book

The Art of Fine Tools by Sandor Nagyszalanczy The Art of Fine Tools
by Sandor Nagyszalanczy

Hardcover: 240 pages ; Dimensions (in inches): 0.79 x 10.33 x 10.29
Publisher: Taunton Pr; (October 1998)
ISBN: 1561582638

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Amazon.com: Nagyszalanczy begins his book with this simple, declarative statement: "A well made tool is a thing of beauty that's as much a pleasure to look at as it is to use." Then, in nine chapters, 231 pages, and 300 color photographs, he backs it up beyond any possible argument. Never before has such a lavish and comprehensive exploration of stunningly elegant, exotic, plain but ingenious, and just flat-out gorgeous hand tools been assembled in one book. Making use of scores of private tool collections generously made available by private collectors and museums around the United States, the author doesn't merely write evocatively about a breathtaking variety of inventive and finely crafted tools, he also photographed them individually and in groupings that evoke nothing less than classic still lifes, as objects of art and craft. And that they are, without a doubt: silver measuring tools, ivory and gilt rulers, forged-iron double-calipers, cast-iron and brass levels, and jewelry-like plumb bobs made of exquisite materials like scrimshaw, brass, and fine steel. Hand planes of dizzying variety and configurations, designed for dozens of particular and exacting tasks, and made of rosewood, brass, steel, and ivory; cast-iron hammers with heads shaped like fish; drills and augers, axes and saws, and chisels; a bone-handled gouge; quirky and unusual combination tools; human-powered scroll saws and many more are described and pictured in delightful detail. This is truly a tool-lover's dream book. --Mark A. Hetts

Book Description: This collection features more than 250 unique tools built with beautiful materials, lavished with artistic decoration, and crafted with remarkable precision. Privately owned, many of these tools have never been photographed or shown in publications before. Included are measuring instruments, handplanes, saws and other cutting tools, striking and drilling tools, Asian treasures, miniatures, ingenious foot-powered machines from the 19th century, and improbable combination tools. Each photo is accompanied by detailed notes that provide historical and technical background. This handsome volume will appeal to collectors, those who use tools, and anyone who appreciates finely crafted utilitarian objects. "The Art of Fine Tools photographs clapboard planes and hand adzes, British spokeshaves, and Japanese ryoba saws as lavishly and seductively as a display of tarts in Martha Stewart Living."

Ingram: Delight in this remarkable collection of 125 of the most unique woodworking tools from around the world. This book will inspire and amaze from the first to the last page. It features tools of ancient significance, remarkable precision, and tools with incredible artistic decoration and design. Over 300 color photos depict the beauty and the classic designs of these tools.

Customer Reviews
Great pictures of tools, June 27, 2000
Reviewer: A reader from Sicklerville, NJ
This is a really nice book for those interested in fine tools. I was hoping to find information on how they were made. If you are a toolmaker, this book really does not include any drawings, sizes or build methods. If you are just looking for a nice historical record of works of art in tools - this is the book to get. Great pictures of Paul Hamler's miniature tools for those interested in his work too.

The title says it all., May 7, 2000
Reviewer: A reader from Florida
This is a spectacular collection of color photographs. The author has obviously sought out tools of great beauty and the editors have assembled them with care. Anyone interested in handtools and their history will be delighted. Those who are unable to understand the words in the book's title will perhaps be disappointed as the book is about art in an unexpected form.

Rich, Enjoyable, Impractical, December 28, 1999
Reviewer: Clarke Green from Kennett Square, Pennsylvania
This is not a very practical book, no not at all. If you have a real appreciation for old tools it is well worth owning. Okay it is tool porn. That's right - unadulterated, unforgivable, unjustifiable tool porn. It is a shame that innocent tools are exploited like this, but you will love it.

Keep a towel nearby, because you'll salivate uncontrollably, November 16, 1998
Reviewer: Jeff Taylor (ananda@pioneer.net) from Somewhere in the Pacific Northwest
Imagine a gazillion lovely old tools in bonerific condition, to use the standard Galoot rating for hand tools that are so perfectly preserved, so lovingly captured on shiny paper, that just touching them in two dimensions pulls you back into the past a century or two.

Mr. Nagetc. has written and photographed the ultimate book of tool porn. My editor is a bird of the same feather, and the cheap (but thoughtful)bustard was kind enough to send me the reviewer's peek at the book, which so inflamed me with tool-lust that I ran out and bought a copy -- and quit smoking just so I could afford it. (Nicotine is a mild preference, compared to tool addiction.)

This book goes in my coffin organizer. Don't even think about asking to borrow it. Do what I did: Buy two.

The ULTIMATE gift for anyone who admires beautiful tools, October 19, 1998
Reviewer: A reader from Minneapolis, MN
The first time I saw this book, I was literally overwhelmed by the quality of the images I was seeing: Beautiful, revealing color photographs of magnificent woodworking tools the likes of which I had never seen before. This is THE book for any tool enthusiast; an absolutely MUST HAVE book for any woodworker, or a terrific gift for the tool fancier on your gift list.

great guy gift, October 5, 1998
Reviewer: A reader from California
For all the woodworkers on your Christmas List - or birthday list - or whatever. This is a TERRIFIC book, beautifully photographed, intelligent text, and very reasonably priced for the value. Check it out!

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