It is a sad day when, if we live long enough it comes time to set aside one's
One day, some time ago, a patient of mine saw something in my office which
led to a discussion about woodworking. I'm afraid (looking back with 20/20
hindsight) perhaps it was less discussion than discourse about my hobby.
A while later a board was left at the front desk, 4/4X3.5"x18". it was
rosewood, quarter sawn.
Several days ago, he was in again, and said he'd been the one that left it.
After thanking him he asked if I'd like some of his old tools, explaining he'd
been a string instrument maker and repairman.
I said I was always interested in tools, even just talking about them.
He said he'd given most of his tools to someone that "said he was a violin
repairman" but Mr. Kurt Glaesel had an expression on his etched face that
made me feel as though he didn't really think so.
He asked too if I would like some little pieces of ebony. only a fool would
have said no.
He handed me a box with a variety of many beautifully made tuning pegs for a
number of stringed instruments. Most were ebony, some have little ivory
beads imbedded in the ends and a few were a lighter (cherry?) wood.
There were a few small pieces of ebony, none square or true. Each had the
stirrings of some piece of a musical instrument within them, none would
yield much wood. yet all spoke of a Master Craftsman's touch. They were
parts in progress, you see.
He asked if I'd like some finger planes, and apologetically commented that
they had need of a little care, since they'd been stored for such a time. I
replied I probably would not make the same uses of them as he had done, but
"certainly I'd love to have them, thank you."
Today I was told (after he had gone) Mr. Glaesel had dropped by and had left
"some toys for you".
There were a number of tools that would probably fall into the "Can you
identify" threads, two smaller unusual micrometers that are cylindrically
shaped and finger planes of several sizes with one or two having a convex
Some were bronze, others cut from small blocks of ebony and one I think of
All the irons (a heavy name for such little blades) had a radius.
Along with the tools was a "repair manual" for stringed instruments, I don't
know if Mr. Glaesel wrote it, but at the bottom of the book it said in a
nice big font. "Glaesel" and below his name and Coat of Arms was "String
Instrument Division" The Selmer Company of Elkhart Indiana.
It turns out his family have a two hundred and fifty year tradition of
violin making. He studied, among other places in Mittenwald violin makers'
I think I'm gonna gather a few of the stranger tools and invite him to
I bet there are some things he might share of his life that would be