Aye, well, the stars aligned, and in the same day I managed to get photos of the
40 year old plus shears that I have declared beyond sharpening (again) and also
- same day remember - photos of Ernest Wrights’ little gem of a pair of scissors
that I bought for SWMBO.
The shears first - we’ve owned these for we don’t know how long, and my parents
owned them before us. They are fairly early in the field of stainless steel for
garden tools. I have sharpened them many times, using a file, draw-filing
sometimes to follow the changing angle, and testing with a bit of paper at the
bench, then returned to the main user, who takes them out and clips the lawn
edges, with occasional stones and dirt.
The reason it’s of interest is the way the steel has worn on the inside faces.
A couple of photos show it very well. In the early days of mass stainless,
there were few hard alloys, and these are quite soft, as evidenced by the wear
pattern. At the last sharpening I did consider taking an angle grinder
carefully to re-establish the hollow ground, and had them disassembled and
ready, then rediscovered an absence of said tailed beast. The last one died in
captivity of a cracked housing and was never replaced. ‘We’ decided we’d buy a
new pair of shears - when we are allowed to.
The scissors though - just take a look. Feel the finish, check the tolerance,
borrow some thread and cut it into shorter pieces. These are tools of the very
I’ve been aware of Ernest Wright for some years, and on the occasion of another
Christmas coming round, and enduring muttered epithets about the scissors not
coping with some sort of fancy thread (different universe amongst ardent stitch
related experts) it was finally time to buy the best scissors I could find and
earn some points.
However, staved of my purchase price Ernest Wright had vanished, been rescued by
some crowd funding, and re-invented themselves as old fashioned craft based,
hand skilled makers of things of both beauty and function.
And spendy! Phew, for us bottom feeders, it nakes your eyes water. But I
bought a pair, they arrived in a fitted box worthy of the gift, and have been
extremely functional and appreciated.
The last time I visited the website - before the big shutdown - they were no
longer available, sold out. Waiting for another batch I presume. The back
story to the company is fascinating though, I recommend both reading around
their website, and visiting Sheffield, where the Kelham Island Museum houses the
Hawley Collection of galoot tools, and a vast, vast, library of catalogues and
printed material, for which you will need to get some special permissions for
Well, there it is. Response to two (2) threads, and photos, on the same day.
I’m tired now. Off to bed.
in a windy Northumberland.