J A Lapham Marking Gauge

//J A Lapham Marking Gauge
J A Lapham Marking Gauge 2016-04-03T22:44:00+00:00
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    robdb8
    Participant
    Post count: 1

    I recently came across a dingy marking gauge in an antique store which I had been looking for one for sometime. I found the price tag and when I read it, I couldn’t pass it up… It appeared to be completely intact and for only $6 it was mine. I brought it home and looked it over really carefully and found the maker’s mark of J A Lapham which gave me more to search with. Finally I find a good picture so I know what this completely brown tool should look like. I started on the brass parts with some brasso and wiped down the wood with some simple green. While not like new, it shines enough to have that worn in and used well look. Now it can get some more use. Does anyone have one of these or know anything about them? I was hoping someone could inform me on the function of the screw knob on the back end of the gauge. I gave it some good turns but it seems to be hesitant and I don’t want to force it. As always thanks for any information anybody can give me.

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  • Joshua Farnsworth
    Keymaster
    Post count: 54

    Cool!

    Cool! I can’t give you more info (there were a ton of people making gauges, as they were simpler than making planes or saws) but it looks beautiful.

    • Mike in TN
      Participant
      Post count: 262

      Hi robdb8,

      I don’t know anything about the maker but the gauge is clearly a mortising gauge that should have two pins, one of which would slide back and forth in the slot and moved by the screw on the end. The mechanism can be a bit delicate and sometimes the pins can break off. It might be that someone, not knowing the tool, cranked the movable pin against the fence wear plate and snapped it off. Make sure the fence is loose when you try to work the screw because locking down the fence will typically lock down the sliding mechanism. It should still be useful as a simple marking gauge or you can attempt to replace the missing pin and/or freeing the screw mechanism by taking the screws out of the brass wear plate on the arm and accessing the internal mechanism. Restoration would require a little metal working but would probably be worth the effort. Keep the screws from the wear plate in order if you do take it apart because some of the old screws are not standard and the screw holes were matched to the screws. You want to make sure that the screws don’t interfere with the wear plates or the fence.

      Nice find. Have fun.

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