Anyone know what this is?

by Gary Frazer
(Herndon, VA)

What is this?

What is this?

My father-in-law found this in a box of old production moulding planes. I assume it some sort of jig or measuring gage, but don't know for sure. It has numbers inscribed on the side for each of the "steps". Anyone know what it is and what it was used for? Email me at

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Apr 09, 2011
Flooring Tool
by: Richard O. Byrne

This tool is used in laying floors where the boards are of different widths. Roy Underhill shows one in one of his on-line Woodwrigt's Shop videos ("The Till in The Tool Chest" - current #3004). Random width floors were laid in "panels" where all of the boards were of the same length BUT OF varying widths, whereas today flooring is pretty much all of the same width and thus can be laid with lap joints. Keep in mind floors in the 18th and early part of the 19th century were laid without a sub floor and thus you could see the joist and the area below the floor being laid.

On "panel" laid floors the last two boards had to be a bit wide and placed sticking up in a "V" and then the work crew would jump on the "V" and drive the last two into place thus tightening the entire panel.

I have not seen this tool in use but the handle extends in Roy's video above and below the block of wood so that the tool could be set down into the floor area and measure the width of the needed next board to fill the gap...I think.

If anyone has used one of these and thus knows more than my "guess let me know and if anyone has one for sale I'd be interested.
Richard O. Byrne

Jan 25, 2011
Marking Gauge?
by: Anonymous

I believe its an odd style marking gauge. I know I've seen a picture of one in a book. May have been in one of the Woodwrights shop books, but I don't remember for sure. It should have a scribing pin in the end. Hope that helps.

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