Hand Tools Archive

Re: Stanley Sweetheart chisel purchase.

Michael Brady
I have a couple of them and use them for rougher work. The Stanleys are not as good as my Lie-Nielsen chisels; in either quality or edge holding. They are comfortable to hold, but a bit under-weight due to the blades being thin and the handles on the small side. L-N's have more mass, as do most vintage chisels. Stanleys do take an edge quickly, but you will go to the stones more often to renew them.

In my experience, chisels are priced very close to their relative value as useful tools. The only bargains are in vintage ones if you can get them for $15 or so, and then restore them with new handles and careful preparation. The disadvantage is that they will be mismatched, most likely. Be careful that you do not keep trading up in chisels until you get some you are satisfied with. When that happens, you have basically wasted money on those earlier purchases. I know this from my own experience.

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