The Hand Tool Collection of Fred H. West Jr.
The hand tool collection of Fred H. West Jr., patron of the hand tool world, is currently up for auction at Alderfer. This collection is a culmination of Fred West’s life in the woodworking world, his passion for promoting tool makers and their wares. His enduring advocacy and support for up-and-coming woodworkers and the hand tool woodworking community in general is evident in the outpouring of love for him after he passed away in 2014.
Fred West Commemorative Tool Chest, Woodworking in America
Many in the woodworking world came together to create a "Pay It Forward" commemorative tool chest in memory of Fred West. Craftsman from Bad Axe Toolworks, Vesper Tools, Scott Meeks, Knew Concepts, Blue Spruce, Hamilton, Lee Valley, Lie-Nielsen and more, created a custom tool chest filled with the finest woodworking tools in the world and gave it to a woodworker during their Woodworking in America Conference. Many of the same craftsman and toolworks custom tools are highlighted in Fred's hand tool auction taking place at Alderfer Auction on November 8 and 9, 2022.
Chris Vesper is a self-taught woodworker from Australia. His passion for his craft began as a young student in high school. He did not have a family connection to woodworking, just a desire to learn and create. Chris did not have access to the expensive tools of the trade and he learned early the drawbacks to using poor quality and less expensive woodworking implements. In order to have what he needed he began using his gained knowledge of these tools to make his own or make improvements to existing tools.
Vesper Tools Cutting Gauge, From The Hand Tool Collection of Fred H. West, Alderfer Auction, November 8, 2022, Lot #42
At the age of 17, he crafted his Cutting Gauge, the tool won 1st prize in the student section at the Royal Melbourne in the late 90’s. In 2003 he started Chris Vesper Tools, making tools full time. His tools speak for themselves, their quality is known the world over.
Vesper Tools Carving Knives, From The Hand Tool Collection of Fred H. West, Alderfer Auction, November 8, 2022, Lot #46
Scott Meeks, Scott Meeks Toolworks, grew up around tools and woodworking. His first foray into the field was as a trim carpenter and cabinet maker. His love of hand tools had him directly turn his focus on the creation of beautiful hand-crafted wood planes.
Scott Meeks Woodworks, Jack Plane, From The Hand Tool Collection of Fred H. West, Alderfer Auction, November 8, 2022, Lot #118
Thomas Lie-Nielsen was first influenced by his father and his boat building shop. He developed an appreciation of traditional woodworking techniques. He became a master of his craft, making tools that pair function with beauty. made from a variety of materials.
Lie-Nielsen Toolworks, Langsner Froe (Lot 64), Router Planes (Lot 260), Hand Saws (Lot 252), and Jointer Plane (Lot 224), From The Hand Tool Collection of Fred H. West, Alderfer Auction, November 9, 2022
If one is looking to add a hand tool to their own collection, this body of tools, including planes, hand saws, chisels, awls, carving knifes, Japanese woodworking tools, and cutting gauges, is the perfect assortment to find the hand tools of your dreams.