I’ve got one good chisel. Here it is. I love this thing.
All my other chisels are mediocre at best. I got it at a flea market for 7 dollars. It said Dunlap on it.
The handle was just stuck on, not original. I brought it home and glued the obviously-not-original handle back on with some two part epoxy. Then I shapened it up. About this time I noticed it said “Germany.” I own a Dunlap block plane, but it says “Made in Western Germany,” so I am thinking that this is an old chisel. My hopes were high.
When I finally used it, I knew that this was the one for me. It just cut right between the wood, like magic. The I used it some more. It just kept on slicing through the wood. It didn’t get dull. Then I used it on some difficult wood; hard wood. It kept cutting with an ease I’d never experienced before.
Soon, I put all my other chisels away. I used the Dunlap for everything. After all, it was half-inch. Not too big, not too small. A jack of all trades. Sometimes I will need to chisel in a space too small for the half-inch to fit. I grudgingly use my smaller, inferior quarter-inch chisel. Just temporarily, with a kind of distaste. Knowing it won’t cut as well or as easily as my Made-in-Germany, Dunlap chisel. This tool has ruined me for all other chisels. For now.
In the back of my mind I have a thought that just won’t go away. Are there other Made-in-Germany, Dunlap chisels out there somewhere? A quarter-inch one? On e-bay? An eighth-inch? At a garage sale? I tell myself. I will find you someday. Meanwhile I just use my one chisel whenever I can. So far, so good.
Do you have a favorite tool? Or do you know what those Germans did to that steel? Let us know in the comments.