GRMN Steel (Davenport)

Discussion in 'Forum: Saw Identification and Discussion' started by fred0325, Feb 9, 2015.

  1. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

    Messages:
    1,084
    Hello all,

    This is another saw that is not intrinsically wonderful, but I bought it because it has GRMN Steel as an abbreviation for, presumably, German Steel. And I am an absolute sucker for anything that deviates from the normal.

    Once I got it, I looked in BSSM and Simon has an identical mark to the one on this saw. I was going to date the saw about 1830 to 1835, but Simon has it at 1820. If it is this date, then it is a bonus.

    It also helps explain, to me at least, why an abbreviation would have been put on a saw that was probably destined for export, as opposed to what I normally associate with export saws and which is added decoration and an attention to detail. I suspect that with an 1820's saw, there would have been a much less developed concept of an "export model".

    Fred
     

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  2. wiktor48

    wiktor48 Most Valued Member

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    Fred, maybe you can explain how abbreviation of the marking suggest a saw made for export.
     
  3. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

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    1,084
    Apologies Wiktor,

    I am not always at my most lucid when I do quick posts.

    I bought this saw from the USA and therefore there is some chance that it was made or intended as an export saw.

    I could not understand why an abbreviation would be put on such a saw when the norm is for export saws to be more attractive and marketable than those meant for domestic consumption.

    But, if the saw is early, even if it is 10 years after 1820 my conjecture was that the concept of an "export model" may not have been as developed by then as it was at later times. In other words, the makers did not give two hoots what they put on the saw as the market into which they were exporting was not as competitive (in the 1820's/30's) as it was in the latter half of the 19th century.

    This would appeal to the Yorkshire sense of simplicity, conservation of effort and, dare I say it, frugality verging on meanness. Why tart a saw up to try to sell it when you needn't?

    Of course, if this saw went to the USA in some British joiner's tool chest, then the above is a superfluous and needlessly complex explanation.

    Fred
     
  4. ray

    ray Administrator Staff Member

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    651
    Hi Fred,

    Peter Evans and Myself wrote an article a few years back on the Davenports for the Sydney based TTTG publication, I will dig it out and post it here. The Davenports are one of those families that can be very frustrating to unravel..

    Ray
     
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  5. PeterEvans

    PeterEvans Most Valued Member

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    I have a PDF of the two part article - from 2008, how the years fly by! If you cannot find your copy, I can email mine. Probably not a bad idea to update it Ray
     
  6. ray

    ray Administrator Staff Member

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    651
    Hi Peter,

    Yes please, email me your copy, and I'll post it on the website. I suspect my copy is not the final version. Anyway it would be good to do an update to bring it into line with Simon's BSSM.

    Ray
     
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  7. Barleys

    Barleys Most Valued Member

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    Writing the article on the Davenports was made infinitely easier because Ray and Peter had done so much of the work… But it still felt confusing.
     
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  8. pmcgee

    pmcgee Most Valued Member

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    Here is a handsaw with just the tiny writing "DAVENPORT" "GRMN STEEL". I don't usuallt like this handle style so much, but this saw is sharp and feels good in the hand. Not sure if the hang-angle is lower than some other similar ones (like the 1880-1900 London-pattern types) ??

    https://goo.gl/photos/oVDZXR5oMac67EbL9
     
  9. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

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    1,084
    Hi Paul,

    I really like those old handles with the thin nose and the shallow return curve below it. With that handle the date that you have for it must be about right.

    As for any hang angle to the handle, I am not at all sure. It looks to me as though the index finger is probably parallel with the blade at best and inclined towards the top of it at worst. Where does your index finger point to on the blade when you hold it?

    Fred
     
  10. lozenge90

    lozenge90 New Member

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    Dear Ray,

    I came across this thread as I am a descendant of John Alfred and John Davenport and was trying to do some research on their saw business. I see above that you wrote an article on the Davenports and thought this would be useful for my research, is it available online anywhere do you know?

    Thanks,

    Laura Davenport
     
  11. ray

    ray Administrator Staff Member

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    651
    Hi Laura, and welcome to the forum.

    I'm overseas at present and don't have direct access to my files, so when I get home in about a week, I'll dig out that PDF, I thought I had already uploaded it? But I can't see it at present.

    Regards
    Ray
     
  12. lozenge90

    lozenge90 New Member

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    Hi Ray,

    thanks that would be great if you could! my family and I are very interested in the Davenport saw business and find it fascinating that some of their saws survive today.

    BW

    Laura