For the most part, facsimile editions of historical books don’t do much for me. The printing is muddy. The paper is a measly notch above groundwood (aka newsprint). And the binding is weak. The cover, however, always looks nice so as to trick you into buying the poor manufacturing job within.
If you’ve ever bought a facsimile of Thomas Chippendale’s famous book, then you know what I’m talking about. Some companies do a good job with facsimiles; most do not.
So when we decided to reprint the “Stanley Catalogue No. 34,” we wanted to reproduce the look and feel of the original and make some manufacturing improvements, such as a sewn binding, to ensure our version could outlast floods, dogs and babies.
Our first shipment of “Stanley Catalogue No. 34” arrived smack dab in the middle of Woodworking in America, and I haven’t had much time to look at it. (I had one in the car that I was examining at stoplights; that’s how nuts it has been here.)
So I’m happy to report that this book has exceeded every expectation I had for it. The prepress people managed to make plates that mimicked the original’s crisp drawings and text. The black are black. The screens are real screens – not some moire mess.
Our warehouse is getting an assembly line together during the next week to ship out all the pre-publication orders. So if you placed an order for one, it will be on its way soon.
“Stanley Catalogue No. 34” is $25, which includes shipping in the United States and Canada. Many of our retailers have decided to carry the book, including Lee Valley Tools, Lie-Nielsen Toolworks, Henry Eckert in Australia, Tools for Working Wood in Brooklyn and Classic Hand Tools in the UK. Check out our international ordering page for links.
— Christopher Schwarz