The Fall (Sept) Brimfield Fair.  Friday, Sept 11, 2009

To recover from the exhaustion of trucking all of Wednesday's tools, and spending some time sorting through them (it was a real trove), I took Thursday off from Brimfield--without any regrets.  Actually, it was a day of adventure, with an interesting scrimshaw workshop and luncheon discussion at the New Bedford Whaling Museum, and then the arrival home to find a stopped up sewer line leading to my septic tank at home.  After alerting my son to the crisis, calling a local honey dipper (great answering machine message:  "We're No. 1 in the No. 2 business-------remember, in our trade a flush beats a full house every time!", and traveling about to rent a plumber's snake, my son Jeff & I managed to isolate the blockage, which was quite severe and inaccessible to the snake.  But with some judicious opening of cleanouts, and some ingenious long stick work, we solved the problem.  One upbeat result, was the Borg did not charge for the rental of the unused snake.

But today was another trip to Brimfield to look through the sole Friday field, J&J's.  This has always been a good one for me.  Today the weather forecast was for "possible showers developing in the afternoon."  The field opens at 8:00am, and since the weather seemed destined to be ok, by wife went along to do some poking about on her own.  Well, the rain started as we were about half-way to Brimfield, and settled into an intermittant drizzle while standing in line to get in the back entrance to J&J's.    When 8am came, I followed a slight variant of my usual route, and pretty quickly came to a stand with a few tools, some of which were nice.  My only purchase was a really Fine James Swan 3"slick, with original handle, and no pitting.  Not cheap, but worth it.  At the other end of the field, another booth held promise, with shelves of nicely displayed bedrocks, scraper planes, dado planes, etc.  Most of these were a bit overpriced, and not that salable these depressed days, but I did buy a few things.  Included were a minty P.S.&W No. 1003 brace (I don't think I've seen a better one), three boxes of Irwin bits (two of them boxes of ten made in Germany (Schangenbohrer), and the other an Irwin No. 22 brand new in its box, and a later Stanley No. 65 boxwood marking gage.  The last item found here was the best of the entire week.  It is a 2 1/2" steel bevel with slotted handle and blade clearly marked by the St. Johnsbury Tool Co.  This is the smallest one I know of, and it is in great condition.