watery view of Keystone Saw Works

Some of you might be aware another love of mine is kayaking. Mostly white water but not having any close I also paddle the Delaware river near Philadelphia.

You know what else is in Philly. Keystone Saw Work!

It’s mostly knocked down at this point but one of the big stacks and a few buildings still remain. Mos is currently used for commercial fleet stores and what looks like a junkyard but redevelopment will have its way at some point. I’ll get some pic from land in the next few weeks but till then enjoy a view most never see.

As seen today from Google maps. The area in the pics is marked in red

What’s great about these water view is you can check out the bulkhead made from discarded grinding stones. I really can’t give you much information on the stones and how old they are be but looking at the wood and nails used give some clues. I’d love to year some thoughts so please contact me if you have info.

If you reference the google map image, I’ve posted pics from left to right. The large stack in my pictures is located right about where “Majestic Sports” is marked on the map.

These are take at low tide so you get a good view of the stones.

Most of the buildings are in not so great shape.

I’ll make some time in the coming weeks to take a few pics of what remains of the grounds. Philly has a few Disston plaques and parks in the area.

Till then enjoy the 4th!

Joe F
Saw Mechanic




John Porritt, a collection of details — Windsor & Stick chairs

Although I don’t make many Crafts (tool collectors) of New Jersey meetings, my good friend John Porritt was scheduled to speak about Windsor and stick chairs. With the distance we live from each other, this made for an easy trip to catch up.

The craft monthly meets start off with a boot sale. The weather was a little overcast but not bad. About a dozen people set up. Recently I took down a large red oak in the backyard and was now looking for a few additional metal wedges; you can never have enough when splitting a big wheel.

Around 1 we moved inside for the talk that was less a chronological history and more a free flowing talk on a dozen or so chairs that John had brought with the help of Jim Bode. They ranged in age from1740 to the present and in condition, as John is skilled in the ways of restoration, as you many have read in my other posts about him.

Now just being honest, I do love some vintage tools, but my furniture likes are more in the Frits Henningsen or Peter Hiort Lorenzen, aka Danish modern world than classic English and Welsh.

John however has a great way of seeing past the obvious and finding the subtler details easily missed at first glance. Mix that with a strong knowledge of wood and furniture construction and even a mid-century geek can find common ground.

John bounced around the room pulling chairs from the tables, pointing out details and/or repairs that might be needed or had been made in the past. With a group like Craft you have a wide variety of woodworkers and John answered questions as he worked through the chairs.

After about hour it was time for me to head home. Craft is a bit of drive for me so it was good to see a few members I’ve done work for in the past and to catch up with John. He’s admittedly not a child of the internet but if you reach out to me I’d be happy to put you in contact. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing many of his repairs, restorations, and chairs. I happily recommend him to anyone in the market looking for help with a restoration. His skills and technique in the field are not something you’ll find on Youtube.

And with that I’m off to the bench to get some saws ready for market.

Joe F. AKA the saw Monger