We’re still looking for the right tool

There is probably not any artifact of mankind that is so widely diversified and specialized as that of tools.

This is no surprise. For tools of some form, primitive or complicated, have been with God’s creation for a long time.

Tools have their place in the world out of necessity.

Advancement of tool design and changes in tool form came as a need developed. Necessity is the mother of invention.

Often the new tool is but an alteration of a tool already in use.

Collecting tools. Tools are my favorite of utilitarian articles – old, recent or new.

To a collector, often discovering and explaining the purpose of the unusual tool is the challenge.

The use of an odd tool can sometimes be discovered by comparing look-a-like tools in catalogs. The purposes of some odd tools often result in endless guesses of their use.

Ax evolution. A tool that mankind has employed for centuries and one for studies in the evolution of form is the ax.

This tool originated before recorded history, possibly with our earliest ancestors. It developed slowly as needs arose, new materials were discovered and new edges were developed.

About the time of America’s founding, the modern ax was well established in form and tradition. If there was not any need to change its form due to improved efficiency, why do so?

Hammers. Hammers are another tool that resemble one another, no matter the size, intended work or material.

The specialization of hammers is not surprising. The hammer goes through a tremendous repetitive use by craftsmen.

Over the centuries new hammer designs were created for improved performance. Efforts to overcome some of the short comings of the ordinary hammer were sometimes for better, other times questionable.

The hammer, perhaps rightly so, has been called the King of Tools. However if the saw had not prepared the plank of what use would the hammer be in many instances?

A handbook of tools listed over 800 different hammers and hammer-like tools, each for a definite purpose. The right tool for the right job.

Need nails. Nails are another article associated with tools that have evolved.

New nail designs have been developed due to failures of pre-existing designs.

Changes in any article that has proven proficient is quite often frowned upon. The fact that humans are adaptable to the technology in our environment is often what makes us resistant to changes, especially as we grow older and accumulate our own familiar things and ways.

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