John Ruskin Books - Spine Titles (header image)

Ruskin Published by Dana Estes & Company

Our antique for this week are two “Illustrated Sterling Editions” of collected writings/lectures by John Ruskin which were published by Dana Estes & Company.  There are no copyright dates in the volumes, but Dana Estes & Company operated in Boston, MA, 1898-1914, so these two works were published sometime...

"ACME No. 1 Victor Top" Etching on Chimney Glass

The P & A Manufacturing Company Finger Lamp

Today’s antique is a small glass “finger” lamp (so called because of the finger loop).  There are no markings on the glass lamp body or “fount”, but the burner and chimney are marked. The glass tank is the drip proof design which has a trough or gutter cast into...

Nikon AF-S Nikkor 35mm 1:1.8G

Nikon AF-S Nikkor 35mm 1.8 G Lens Review

I made the point once before in my 200mm macro lens post that prime lenses (lenses that don’t zoom) are superior to zoom lenses in picture sharpness and clarity.  For many years, 35mm film cameras came standard with a 50mm prime lens.  This is considered by many to be...

Keystone K26 Camera - Header

The Keystone K26 Camera

Keystone made a number of different 8mm movie cameras including a couple of variations of the rotating lens design such as the K26.  As shown below, there are three different lenses that are changed by rotating.  The top right lens position lines up with the front opening in the...

Hilger & Sons Hand Vise - header image

Hilger & Sons Hand Vise

Marked “H&S”, this Hilger & Sons hand vise is 4-5/8″ long with a 1-1/2″ jaw.  These small vises were sometimes call jeweler’s or gunsmith’s vises.  A simple web search turns up many old and new examples of vises this size. Similar to a blacksmith’s leg vise (though on a...

Kodak "Brownie Six-16" blog header picture

The Kodak Brownie Six-16 Camera

This week we have an Art Deco style Kodak Brownie Six-16 camera.  This moderately sized box camera was made for eight short years from 1933-1941. Production began during some of the worst years of the Great Depression and ended just before America’s entry into World War II. The film...

Preston Spokeshave - Header

Edward Preston & Sons Spokeshave

Edward Preston’s tools are famous for their ornate design and this week’s antique is no slouch in the design department.  This cast iron, flat bottom spokeshave is covered in Victorian scroll work. This scroll work covers the top, the back, and the cap. Probably the most unique part of...

Nikon AF Micro Nikkor 200mm 1:4 D

Nikon AF Micro Nikkor 200mm 1:4 D Lens Review

I’m back on modern photography this week and want to jaw about a macro lens with incredible optics.  I’ll preface “incredible optics” with “it comes with some drawbacks”.  More on that in a minute. Nikon’s 200mm macro lens (Nikon calls it “Micro”) is quite simply the best macro lens...

Antique Machinist Level Blog Header

An Antique Machinist Level

This small, seven inch machinist’s level is a fascinating bit of history.  It has a cast iron body with a glass vile topped off with a brass plate.  The alcohol bubble is still intact.  It has a heavy coating of black Japanning. There is no manufacturer’s name.  It’s unmarked...

Sargent 5206 Block Plane

Sargent 5206 Block Plane

The Sargent 5206 block plane is a beautiful and somewhat collectible artifact produced at the end of the industrial revolution.  It was made during both World Wars with production beginning in 1912 and ending in 1947.  The Sargent 5206 block plane was finished in nickel plate, cadmium plate, black...