A Makeover at 60+ Years


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_DSC8540Lately I have been adding a few old tools to my tool chest. There is something to be said about things made mid last century – the world was less of a throwaway society. Things were made to last longer. A mans (or woman’s) tools might have been something they took with them to job interviews – perhaps they were inspected and judged upon as much as the person! – are they tuned and kept well, clean, or abused and misused.

I already had a few hand planes and spotted this old Record No7 on our local online sales yard. Described as ‘good for French decoration’, I didn’t have high expectations. The photos suggested it has had better days.

Upon winning the auction and picking up from a very trusting seller, I brought the rust coloured beast home.

_DSC8541 _DSC8542As I dismantled the unit, the good news was that all the parts were there. Rusty, but there. The tote/rear handle had broken in two – a common occurrence. It was a clean break however, so with a clean up I wanted to bring it back to like along with the rest rather than replace.

Next step it all (minus the wood bits) got thrown in a container of white vinegar – a budget rust remover. The tote cleaned and glued.

_DSC8543 _DSC8545 _DSC8546Most the bits soaked overnight, were pulled out, scrubbed with 000 Steel wool, washed and scrubbed in soapy water to neutralise the rust, and then quickly dried with the other half’s hair drier. What a difference already!

_DSC8547 _DSC8551Purist restorers might stop here (some purist collectors keep the rust too) , but Im more about making a tool a good looking user again, rather than a cleaned up original. The tote glue all dry, I sanded it and the knob, and followed with a wax buff. The body, not forgotten, got several coats of blue enamel. Not quite the original color. Slightly lighter.

_DSC8549 _DSC8552 _DSC8553 _DSC8554 _DSC8555

It was all starting to look pretty nice. I gave the metal services a final rubdown on a super flat surface, and reassembled.

_DSC8556 _DSC8558 _DSC8559I’m in the very slow process of re-flattening my sharpening stone, so technically I’m not quite done, but almost!

Going by various identification pages, I date the plane late 1940’s early 1950’s. The specific date is not so important, more the journey its come so far to get to me. Looked after, it will outlast me too!

In the background of the final photo is my Record-Stanley No6. Technically Record-Stanley is not a thing. Stanley Bailey are. My No6 is a bit of a functional frankenstein. Its got some history to its miles over the years also also to have ended up like this. Looks like the No7 will fit right in now its ready to roll!






ANZAC 2015 One Hundred Years


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AZ15 1Today marks the 100th anniversary of the ANZAC’s time in Gallipoli. Up to 20,000 NZers rose early for the 6am service of remembrance. Regardless of ones thoughts on war, the service reminds us of those who fought for their country and lost their lives, or were injured in doing so. Such remembrance can apply to every country in the world – death does not take sides.

Back when the ANZAC’s landed in Gallipoli, New Zealand was a young country. With a population of about 1 million total, 100,000 set off to aid the war. 10% of the country! (an even greater percentage of the Male share!). Back then, there was an almost guaranteed chance you were related to, or at the least knew someone heading to war.

18,000 New Zealanders died in WW1, 41,000 more were wounded. The Gallipoli battle saw 44,000 allied soldiers fall, 2779 being Kiwis. The Ottoman defenders lost a massive 87,000.

AZ15 2Something nice to come out of the 100 year anniversary was a giant poppy made onto the local sports field. Each round disc represented a fallen soldier and had a customised message on it .

AZ15 4 AZ15 5 AZ15 6For those into Minecraft, the War Memorial Museum displayed the Minecraft Gallipoli one can visit. Its a different way to raise some awareness!

Galop 1I attend the dawn service every year. It seems as the years move along, more and more people attend to [usually] show their respects. Likely todays was the peak audience which stretched out of sight (glad I awoke extra early to get there!)

AZ15 3 AZ15 7 AZ15 8 AZ15 9I’ll close with a link to Mark Knopfler’s guitar tribute rendition of ‘The Last Post’. A moving modern electric take on the bugle song or remembrance.



Lest We Forget




They Tell Me its Progress


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Progress they say

Been a while since I have posted anything regular here. As it often does, life keeps us busy and things fall to the side. For me the busyness has been a bit of a break from photography in general. Neither a good or bad thing, just a thing. Todays shot was taken during a ’round a lake’ walk a month or so ago. Walking past a new zone of expansion as urban sprawl continues, the land was being carved into the suburbs of tomorrow.

Shot on the Ricoh GRD IV, converted to B&W with HDR effects added.

What Would You Do



Passed this thought provoking sign when cycling home from work today. It’s one of those great thought provokers that essentially asks where you want to be and why not be doing it now. The fact it was a chalk board makes it one of the best signs I’ve seen in a long time…that said, no idea if it was marketing something!…´╗┐


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