🔎 UNIDENTIFIED Axes that say Pittsburgh

Older The Better

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Found this axe a while back, gave it a good soak in apple cider vinegar hoping to find a maker I thought I looked it over pretty good and didn’t see anything so I went ahead and hit it with a little grinder stone on a dremmel to knock off all the rough ridges from rust and help prevent future rust. One one pass right up by the end the letters sburgh appeared… I assume it was Pittsburgh
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If found this pretty fast with an axe that looked very similar if not the same but I’m suspicious that it was too easy to solve so to cover my bases I’ll throw it to you guys
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OP
Older The Better

Older The Better

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I forgot to ask the metal had a grain before I cleaned it up, I was under the impression metal with grain is hand forged, any thoughts that this was hand made? If my quick Id is right I’m not so sure they wouldn’t have better manufacturing techniques in Pittsburgh in the 1880’s also I’ll throw in a before pic
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releventchair

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Early axes were wrought or other iron with a steel insert for the bit. To conserve on steel.
Your piece shows the iron well.
Imagine a wing shaped iron piece folded over a mandrel to form the eye , then reheated to add the bit.

There is a knack (including flux) to forge weld the iron and steel to marry them.
Just the right temperature , and a "pop" sound when struck.
 
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OP
Older The Better

Older The Better

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It’s definitely two metals before I hit it with the grinder the bit was almost black while the rest was a dull iron color. You can still see the line a bit if you look closely. It was found at that same site that has been gone since before anyone can remember so the 1880-1920 would fit pretty well

Update: here’s the pic that came with the description
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gillious

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It’s definitely two metals before I hit it with the grinder the bit was almost black while the rest was a dull iron color. You can still see the line a bit if you look closely. It was found at that same site that has been gone since before anyone can remember so the 1880-1920 would fit pretty well

Update: here’s the pic that came with the description
View attachment 2008151 View attachment 2008152
Just a tip for axes. Don't use vinegar. It Can cause bad pitting. Use a 9 parts water to 1 part molasses. I got this advice from one of the top axe collectors in the world. He Has over 5000 axes from all over the world. I switched to that recipe for all of my axe restorations. It works amazing. It does take a little time but it won't damage or discolor the steel.
 
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Gare

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Just a tip for axes. Don't use vinegar. It Can cause bad pitting. Use a 9 parts water to 1 part molasses. I got this advice from one of the top axe collectors in the world. He Has over 5000 axes from all over the world. I switched to that recipe for all of my axe restorations. It works amazing. It does take a little time but it won't damage or discolor the steel.
Gillious First off let me welcome you to Tn as i see this is some of yoiur early posts 1. Second can you post some pictures of some of your AXES after you have cleaned them with your solution so we could please see the results ?
 
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cudamark

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I hope it's an old and valuable one, but, keep in mind that Harbor Freight carries a Pittsburgh line of tools that are made in China.
 
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gillious

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Gillious First off let me welcome you to Tn as i see this is some of yoiur early posts 1. Second can you post some pictures of some of your AXES after you have cleaned them with your solution so we could please see the results ?
I dont keep many pictures of my axe restorations, typically They get sold very shortly after I am done. Here are a few of my earliest restorations. After the molasses soak (usually up to 2 weeks)I buff them out with a paint stripping wheel. The typical color change from almost black and light gray is most often because the very tip of the bit is hardened and the rest of the axe is not. The hardened part of the axe will be black or darker grey. I will try to find a pic of one of my wrought iron axes after it comes out of the molasses. Until you see a few it can be tricky to tell the difference by sight.
 

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gillious

Full Member
Jul 17, 2015
166
294
Wayne County NY
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2x Whites 5000d series 2, sears 5000d clone, 3x 6000di
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Found this axe a while back, gave it a good soak in apple cider vinegar hoping to find a maker I thought I looked it over pretty good and didn’t see anything so I went ahead and hit it with a little grinder stone on a dremmel to knock off all the rough ridges from rust and help prevent future rust. One one pass right up by the end the letters sburgh appeared… I assume it was Pittsburgh
View attachment 2008103 View attachment 2008104 View attachment 2008106
View attachment 2008111 View attachment 2008113
If found this pretty fast with an axe that looked very similar if not the same but I’m suspicious that it was too easy to solve so to cover my bases I’ll throw it to you guys
View attachment 2008114
If this is not allowed please delete it. If you want the best resource for axe information I have come across there is a group called Axe and Woodworking Appreciation on Facebook that will be hard to beat. A few of the members there have forgotten more about axes than I will ever know. I no longer use that platform but if you want to know about axes those are your guys and gals.
 
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OP
Older The Better

Older The Better

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Apr 24, 2017
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south east kansas
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I feel like I tried molasses a long time ago and it didn’t touch the heavy rust, must have done it wrong. I want to mark it solved as a Lindsay but I swear I see another letter after Pittsburgh and I think there’s more letters above it that have been smashed
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gillious

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Jul 17, 2015
166
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Wayne County NY
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2x Whites 5000d series 2, sears 5000d clone, 3x 6000di
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I feel like I tried molasses a long time ago and it didn’t touch the heavy rust, must have done it wrong. I want to mark it solved as a Lindsay but I swear I see another letter after Pittsburgh and I think there’s more letters above it that have been smashed

I feel like I tried molasses a long time ago and it didn’t touch the heavy rust, must have done it wrong. I want to mark it solved as a Lindsay but I swear I see another letter after Pittsburgh and I think there’s more letters above it that have been smashed View attachment 2008959 View attachment 2008960
The only problem with molasses is it takes time. I typically use a brass brush to knock off heavy rust before I soak my axes. I had a completely rusted solid Cresent wrench that took a month to clean up. I still use it and it's as good as new.
 
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