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Author Topic: Garage Sale Finds  (Read 11837 times)

Barry in IN

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Garage Sale Finds
« on: September 24, 2010, 09:33:57 AM »

After taking our youngest to school (the oldest is sick today), I spied a garage sale down one of the nearby streets and had a look.  I've had very little luck at these things, but have been stricken with the urge to look at all of them lately.

The first thing I saw of interest before I stopped was a Snap-On top chest; one of the chests that sits on top of a roll-a-way cart.  I don't need one, as I have one (probably the same model) that I have hardly used since hauling my tools home from the airport.  
But it was an indicator there might be manly things present.  More than clothes, kitchen gadgets, and Atari games.

I found no gun stuff, so it wasn't that great.
As I looked at the manly section, I found a Hitachi cordless drill set (with flashlight and charger).  It was not super industrial quality, but it was a decent size and power.  My 23 year old Makita has been dying for years but I keep nursing it along.  It needs a battery (again), which will be another $30 invested.  The price on the Hitachi was $14.  
Then I saw the price on the Snap-On box:  $60.  I bought mine used for $125 in 1986, and got it for that only because the Snap-On dealer had repo'd it and wanted to get the $125 still owed on it.  Maybe I do need this one.  

I sought out the old man in charge of that stuff, told him I was interested in both.  Would he deal?  If he told me the prices were firm, I probably still would have threw my elbow out of joint going for the wallet.
"How about $50 for them?"

I can hardly bend or lift, but I managed to get that box loaded.  I would have gone to the hardware store and bought items to build a block and tackle and loading ramp if I had to.  



That saved my week.
I had a crappy week until then.  Sick kid the last two days.  Blew the case in the Delta on Tuesday.  Had a really rotten day Wednesday when I went to get new tires, but had to see a doctor 45 miles away first and had a flat on the way, which I plugged alongside the interstate and had to air up three more times with my 12V compressor before eventually getting to the tire store, which ran my check electronically and failed even though it was good, so I went to the bank to straighten that out (stopping again to air up along the way) where I cashed a check for the same amount in about two seconds, and came back to the tire store which only sneaked me a small box of wheelweights for casting.    
So getting a deal made me feel better.

The smart thing to do is re-sell the box.  I don't do smart things, so I will probably keep it.  I think it will make a nice storage box for reloading dies.  Or bullet moulds.
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Kenny Solomon

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« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2010, 10:01:31 AM »

Not too shabby there, Barry.
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Barry in IN

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« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2010, 10:56:37 AM »

I'm always hearing about people finding reloading or bullet casting gear, or holsters, or other cool gun stuff, but I never find anything but paper towel racks and can openers.
The only other time I've found anything good at one was right across the road, at the rental house that used to be there.  About seven years ago, one of the tenants had a garage sale.  They had an M1916 Spanish Mauser (Small Ring) with the mid-50s conversion to 7.62mm, and a Hopkins & Allen falling block single shot .22.   I got them both for 60 bucks, I think, but it could have been less.  

Neither were presentation pieces of course, but OK.  I've shot the .22 just enough to see that it worked and the bullets made round holes in the paper.  It is rather interesting, to look at since it is a true falling block action instead of a tipping block like the Stevens Crackshots.  It's a dinky little thing to start with and takes down.  The takedown screw is in the receiver bottom, and has a ring you can grasp without tools (that might have been for a chain to attach it to a shooting gallery bench?).  The barrel then comes out and it makes a little bitty package.
 
I have not shot the Mauser, since the Spanish 7.62 rebores on the Small Ring action are a little...dubious.  I've read some heated online debates over that, with some saying they are fine and others feeling they are time bombs.  I think it would be OK with mild loads or cast bullet loads, but I have plenty of .308 rifles so don't need to find out aside from curiosity.  
The stock is cracked so there is little collector value, even if I found that one collector on the planet who specialized in mid-20th century Spanish arms (Could be one.  People are funny).  I thought I'd sporterize it starting with a barrel from Brownells or Midway.  I have the barrel vise, action wrench, some reamers and gauges, which is what adds up in these projects.   Somehow, a Small Ring Mauser with a short light barrel of about 18-20" and chambered in .35 Remington appeals to me.
 
But-
I think it is nice to have around as a bone to throw.  In case the poop actually does hit the fan and neighbors come knocking asking to borrow a gun, it might be the solution.   There are many ways to handle that situation of course, but the easiest might be to hand them that rifle and a few stripper clips of really mild .308 loads and say "Good luck".  
Arming people who could/should have armed themselves previously is something I don't really care to do, but handing them that rifle would:
a) Make them go away.  I might have my hands full without messing with them, and the simplest solution would be to make them go away.  Yes, after giving them something once, they will surely be back, but now I know which neighbors to expect.
b) It gives them something.  It isn't the best in the world but is sure enough capable of repelling boarders.  
c) Between their skill and that rifle, it's something that isn't too dangerous to my family.  Having a gun and being armed are not the same.
d) If I don't help, they might get something better if they keep looking, or trade some canned peaches to "hire" someone with some actual skills.
e) Them having it might actually benefit me.  If they pop some roving scavenger, I won't have to deal with the scavenger when they finish there and move on in this direction.  If they fail, their shots will at least warn me something is going on.
f) Good barter material.  They might be shocked I gave them anything, be appreciative, and I will then deal while the iron is hot.  I will probably need something, as much as I hate to admit it.  We can prepare all we want, but there will still be something we need, either because we missed it or the situation is not what was expected.  Once the situation is clear and preparations altered to suit, then I can tighten things up.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2010, 11:08:40 AM by Barry in IN »
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Who is John Galt?

Can't we all just get a long gun?

Kenny Solomon

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« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2010, 12:51:53 PM »

They also may take the gun and ammo, say thank you, walk a few steps while loading the thing, turn and fire at you.

Sorry, but I have to think like that.

I'm still standing.
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Barry in IN

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« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2010, 01:01:15 PM »

They'd never get the first round out of the stripper clip before losing that gamble.  
Actually, if I thought any of my neighbors would be capable of getting a gun loaded within a few steps, or even 100 steps they wouldn't get both at once, if at all.

I don't know if I would arm a neighbor in that situation, and really doubt I would, but I have the option with that rifle.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2010, 01:14:36 PM by Barry in IN »
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Seeing the world through a rose colored bombsight.

Who is John Galt?

Can't we all just get a long gun?

Kenny Solomon

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« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2010, 01:25:23 PM »

I know for a fact I wouldn't arm any of my neighbors....... except for one of my direct neighbors on one side and the couple directly above me........ and both of them have toys already.

The rest of 'em here all voted for you-know-who and STILL don't get it, or see it, or don't understand what they're watching happen right in front of them.

But we're the weird ones, right ?
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Barry in IN

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« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2010, 01:36:03 PM »

I tried to commit to memory who had what yard sign.  You never know when that might have to come up, and this is one example.

I would arm the old folks next to us, maybe.  He has stuff, but it's small stuff.  They also have an ill grandchild that I think has a lot to do with things.  In other words, I don't think he doesn't have more because he is opposed to it.
Other than that, it would pretty much have to be a case of me needing something (in which case I could just send the old guy to take it for me!).
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Col. Craig

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« Reply #7 on: September 24, 2010, 02:50:45 PM »

A dozen years or so ago I went to the TRW Swap-Meet with my brother.  This meant getting up long before sunrise so that we could be at the gates @ 7:00am.  I go up & down the rows and spend a few bucks here & there.  Then I see it.  I find a metal 'top-chest' tool box unlike anything I had ever seen before.  The metal was extremely heavy.  The finish was some of that 'baked on crinkle' stuff in a rich bronze tone.  Although the box had handles these are only for transport when empty.  When full a couple of 2"x4"'s are slid under the handles and captured by 'teeth' so that two or four people may carry the loaded box.  This is how it was displayed when I seen it because it was loaded.  What was it loaded with?  GUNSMITHING TOOLS!  This box was the size of the largest mechanic's top tool chests and stuffed with all kinds of tools - most of which I did not recognize.  The seller was clearing out a relative's garage and this was left after the first yard sale.  The asking price was $100.  Between my brother and I we only had $85 remaining between us and no way to get this home (we rode motorcycles to the swap-meet).  I cried all the way home...
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Barry in IN

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« Reply #8 on: September 24, 2010, 04:50:16 PM »

Ouch!

I had a similar thing happen, albeit on a much, MUCH, smaller scale and I still cry about it.  I can only imagine how that must bother you.

Mine happened in 1984, about two months after buying my first AR-15.  I was also starting my second year of college and was broke as broke could be, but scraped up enough to go to a 1500 table gun show.  A gun show that big was a big deal then, and not to be missed.  I might have even came back home that weekend just to go, I don't remember.
Not yet knowing that it's best to make a quick scan over everything at a big show before spending all your money, I nickled and dimed myself to death as I went along.   I got to the end of the very last row, right before the exit, and found a scruffy-looking guy with one table.  He had one item.  He was selling used 20-rd M16 magazines.
They were 50 cents each, or three for a dollar.
Three for a dollar!
I had $1.50 left.  
The table was covered with them, and stacked six or eight mags high.  Even back then before any mag bans or other hysteria, I would have gladly bought all I had money for...or could fit in my CJ-7 Jeep, whichever came first.  
They were all in pretty good condition, but I started to sort through them to pick the best ones.  He stopped me and said he had more I might want to look at before choosing, then hauled a big ol' cardboard box out from under the table that was full of them.
There I was, facing half a pickup load of 3/$1.00 mags and could only buy four.  

I headed back to school after the show, and that was a long drive back.  I got back to school and told my gun buddies there about my find.  They all wanted to know how many I got, and I held them up in one hand.  

The next worse was before a Highpower match about 1991.  A guy was selling USGI M14 mags for $5 or 5/$20.  I had $20.
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Who is John Galt?

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Barry in IN

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« Reply #9 on: October 05, 2010, 01:04:19 PM »

Since this find, I've got a few more things at garage sales.  I got a big Everlast (body) punching bag, a screwdriver set, and a chainsaw case for $6 total.  

Then I stopped at one where I saw a guy walking out with a gun case.  The lady there said her husband "used to do gun shows" selling reloading stuff.  Could this be the big find?  
Well no, because apparently that guy got everything really good.  I did end up with three ammo cans- a .30 cal, a .50 cal, and a big 20mm- for $4 total.  Not bad at all.

Toolbox is filling up:
« Last Edit: October 05, 2010, 01:13:59 PM by Barry in IN »
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Can't we all just get a long gun?

Col. Craig

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« Reply #10 on: October 05, 2010, 04:54:25 PM »

Sunday I stopped in a few antique shops while on the road home.  They all still have their 'tourist' prices in effect.  But I did make one good find which came home with me.  I found a mid-'60's Hoppes shotgun cleaning kit that looks like new.  The cardboard box is stain-free but showing signs of weakness from years of humidity, actually the end flap did not last the ride home.  But the sheet metal box inside is absolutely perfect!  The dark green baked enamel finish is flawless.  Inside is a three-section shotgun rod with one eye and one jag.  The rod has a translucent yellow screwdriver-style handle I have never seen before.  There are two unopened packages of cleaning patches, one for 12 ga & 16 ga and a smaller size for the rest.  There is a small bottle of #9 inside its original box with a little cardboard 'girdle' to cushion the fit.  However, the bottle is empty - there is some crusting around the cap to suggest the solvent slowly vented away over the years but there is no other evidence of staining anyplace else.  This could be a 'replacement' bottle for completeness for all I know.  There is also a can of Outters bore solvent which is full.  I do not know if the Hoppe's and Outters relationship went back to the '60's or not, so this may have been added in later.  The kit also includes a Hoppe's booklet about gun cleaning published in '62.  Back then there were still a lot of black powder guns around and many curious concoctions for primers so the book goes into detail about the unique properties of these and what they will do if not cleaned out of the bore in a timely manner.  It also discusses "Jetting" which I recall reading about when I was very new to firearms.  I should scan the book page-for-page to share.  But the two real gems are the cardboard box and metal box.  I want to cut open the cardboard box to mount for display like a picture.  The green metal box with "Hoppe's" silk-screened on the lid looks like a brand new $100 dollar bill all by itself.
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Barry in IN

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« Reply #11 on: October 05, 2010, 05:41:07 PM »

Cool.  I can spend hours in good antique stores just looking at stuff.
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Who is John Galt?

Can't we all just get a long gun?

Barry in IN

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« Reply #12 on: November 11, 2010, 12:45:41 PM »

Just when I was about to give up on garage sales again...

It had been a dry spell.  Nothing but old lady junk and stained baby clothes.  
Then I spied a red tool box in a driveway down the street from the school.  
A stack of three.  A bottom chest, a center two-drawer box, and a top box.  Cheap boxes, but much more promising than a rack of clothes.  I stopped.

He had two big boxes of hand tools and said "have at it".  If I had more time to spend sorting through it and actually needed the stuff, I could have gotten a lot of decent hand tools for a small sum.  It was mostly Chinese stuff, but there was plenty of Craftsman with an S-K or Blue Point mixed in.   There were a lot of taps and dies, that I know can get expensive but I don't need big ones so passed rather than sort through them.  I did snag a couple of tap handles, though.
 
I passed on the tool boxes at first just for the room they take up, then decided I could always use them for ammo/brass/bullet/primer storage.  That stuff takes up room anyway, so the space might as well be taken up in red steel boxes.  

The tool chests had a lot of little knick knacks still in them.  I can use most of it, especially the two big 10 oz tubes of Lubriplate grease that makes great gun grease.  Those tubes will handle a battalion.  

Since nothing had been priced, I got a big handful of hand tools to feel him out on price.  A buck.  
He said he'd have to have more for the big stuff like air tools, like two bucks.  (!)  So I dug some more out.

I came out of there with this:


And this:

The die grinder is a Blue Point, the air hack saw an Ingersoll Rand, the big pliers are Diamond, the wrenches are S-K, Craftsman, Blue Point.  That drill is a Coleman, so isn't much, but what the hell.  



And this:

Including the UGA hat.

And I spent...
$35
« Last Edit: November 11, 2010, 12:49:34 PM by Barry in IN »
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Seeing the world through a rose colored bombsight.

Who is John Galt?

Can't we all just get a long gun?

Kenny Solomon

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« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2010, 03:33:56 PM »

Nice haul !
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Col. Craig

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« Reply #14 on: November 11, 2010, 03:49:23 PM »

And that hat too?!  ;)

Excellent find, congratulations.
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