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Re: Good design you love to have

Postby Lmo » November 30th, 2014, 3:19 pm

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Smoking accessories were huge, especially right after WWII. Ronson was the big name at the time. Somewhere around here I've got a couple of Ronson lighters that were my parents. A tabletop "Crown" (I think Ronson made enough of them for every household in the United States) and a "Mastercase" lighter/cigarette case combination. I was always fascinated by the striker mechanism.
Ronson Crowne.jpg


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Also around here (I hope, I haven't seen it in years...) is an odd one; a Benlow Golmet Roller, milled from aluminum block, circa 1935. It was my grandfather's. I used it for a while, but it wasn't too reliable, and didn't hold up in a breeze at all. But it was cool.

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Benlow Golmet 4.jpg
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But my grandfather was the VP Treasurer of UO Colson, an advertising promotional products company, so there were always salesmans samples of Zippos laying around with the names of various companies who had their names applied to them.

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Re: Good design you love to have

Postby Robbie_roy » November 30th, 2014, 8:02 pm

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Thanks LMO -- great finds!

I'm intrigued too by the Ronson striker but I might have to take them apart to get them working (hopefully). The flints aren't touching the striker anymore and they are sticky from years of sitting around.

The stationary tabletop ones are awesome as well. I wish there were more "necessary" things like these for your desktop today, like inkwells.

Those Benlow's have a perfect 30s look (and the rendering as well). And somehow a customized Zippo is much classier than a screen printed plastic pen!

Re: Good design you love to have

Postby Jboogie941 » November 30th, 2014, 9:09 pm


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My favorite three products in order are:

1. Wahl detailer T blades
Love the classic look and feel of them when trimming my hair lines or facial hair. Exceptional line quality, quiet and smooth. Rarely needs oiling. Have owned since 2010. I always think of barbershop chairs when using them.

2. Chicago Cutlery Santoku Knifes
Im a HUUUUGE culinary fan! Matter of fact I feel like Bobby Flay every time I use these jokers. Sharp quality knife are a must in the kitchen. I know there are a lot of brands out there but I was raised in the Midwest and rep CC.

3. Nutri-bullet
Very heavy and feels solid. Really like the simplicity of operation and how the attachments twist on and off. In fact everything seems to involve a simple twist and turn. I mostly use it for smoothies and salsa but I also chop spices, coffee grinds, make gravy, bread crumbs and frying batter with it.

Re: Good design you love to have

Postby rkuchinsky » November 30th, 2014, 9:39 pm

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Love the vintage lighters. On my list pick up one but haven't dived down that rabbit hole of history and research yet. Had a zippo a long time ago ((not vintage, cheap china thing) but still infinitely better than a plastic bic. I've seen some nice dunhills but pricey. Last time I had a real lighter TSA made me take out all the cotton and flint.

I think I know what I'll be buying myself for the holidays....

Any suggestions on where to start or the ultimate vintage lighter appreciated. Like those roller ones.

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Re: Good design you love to have

Postby Lmo » December 3rd, 2014, 8:43 pm

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Sorry Richard, couldn't get back sooner.

I still haven't found my Benlow lighter. We've moved a few times so it may be a goner... . which would be a bummer even though I quit smoking over twenty years ago.

I found this images online, of course. But what I also found was that Benlow lighters of this vintage are not that rare; many were offered on UK Ebay, and at reasonable prices. I'm not sure if Benlow survives today, but it survived long enough to enter the butane fuel era, essentially with the same "roller" design. And, marvel of marvel, they are not too expensive. But one needs to be careful when buying, they are all old, some leak, and more often than not they are in rough condition... but not all ($).

They were available as, a hand lighter, a tabletop model, and what they called a "motorist". Two model names appear" "Golmet" and "Colibri".

i.e.
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See> http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Colibri ... 4d28ed0b7c
$15

"Motorist" pipe lighter
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The tabletop version seems, for whatever reason, to be more readily available. And understandably, generally in better condition than the hand lighters.
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I found this butane version hand lighter the other day; four are available, down from ten two days ago.... best part, it's in Cote Saint-Luc, Quebec :wink:

See> http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Colibri ... 4ae101d6fa
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Re: Good design you love to have

Postby yo » December 3rd, 2014, 10:05 pm

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Love the metal shoe last as a pipe stand!

Re: Good design you love to have

Postby rkuchinsky » December 3rd, 2014, 10:45 pm

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Thanks lew. Will check those out.

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Re: Good design you love to have

Postby Lmo » December 4th, 2014, 5:53 pm

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Love the metal shoe last as a pipe stand!


I didn't even notice it. From the size of it, it must be a child's shoe.

About six months ago a local "found item" gift shop had a going out of business sale. You probably know the kind of shop it was; antique items "re-purposed" into ridiculously expensie chic stuff.. .. I found an old AL-Macker press and wanted to pick it up thinking that either you or Richard might want it as an interesting office curio. The dealer wouldn't dicker on the $199 price (which is probably why she was going out of bidness) and I just couldn't make myself pay that for it. It was much older, and "seasoned" than this one.
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Re: Good design you love to have

Postby pdxcardinal » December 6th, 2014, 3:46 pm

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After reading this post the other day I started thinking about the things that I have and love. When it comes to consumer goods, I can't think of many things that give me joy every time I use them. One that does is a Snap-On 15mm box wrench. The wrench is simple and has the perfect feel in your hand. I think of the 15 as the "business wrench" in my tool kit. Usually when getting down to work on bicycles, the wheels have to come off and if they aren't quick release, they are 15mm. Having a nice tool that you use with high frequency is a great pleasure.

This particular wrench was bought by my dad, probably around 1980 when he was an auto mechanic at the local Ford dealership in our small northern Alberta town. Me and the old man didn't share many Norman Rockwell moments, but a few that I remember revolved around working on my bike. He was a self described "bush indian" and having grown up with parents that weren't great, he seemed to believe that he'd be a better dad by not being around. When he died two years ago, I inherited his tools. I knew I couldn't take them, because I'm currently not in a stable living situation either, but as I looked around his small shop, I opened a tool box drawer and saw this wrench. It had to come with me.

It reminds me of the best parts of my dad every time I use it.

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Re: Good design you love to have

Postby Lmo » December 7th, 2014, 1:18 pm

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Thanks for sharing that story pdx.

For years my dad's tools were hung neatly on a peg board above his work bench; each tool outlined so that he would remember if he had loaned out one to someone. While it was a reasonably complete set, they weren't great tools; slightly bent screw drivers, old, loose pliers, a hack saw with a worn blade, that kind of kit. He'd loan them out to anyone, usually his next door neighbor.

When my dad passed and it came time to clear out his garage I discovered his stash. When I finally found the keys to the floor-to-ceiling cabinets that lined three walls of his garage I discovered, in the cabinet next to his workbench, two red, top/bottom mechanics roller chests full of Willams hand tools, and Milwaukee gear of all kinds. Everything from micrometers to Sawzalls.
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Re: Good design you love to have

Postby themonet » December 12th, 2014, 2:11 pm

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Great comments here. I love all the stories about the vintage design objects. It's interesting to see the types of objects that DESIGNERS are bringing up here. My guess is that they're very different types of objects than what non designers would come up with.

I'd say my favorite thing I own is my Guitar, the Ibanez exotic wood, made with a beautiful zebra wood. Its got a great patina after a number of years of use. I rarely have time to play much anymore, (and maybe its because of that) but there is a certain reverence to pulling it out.
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One in the "I'd buy the exact same thing (and have twice now) when they wear out" category is my Sanuk shoes. I prefer as little footwear as possible in every situation, and these puppies allow me to get the "sandal feel" well past summer time into the fall / winter.
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Lastly, I love my dewalt impact driver. (no image needed I think) Every time I use it I am amazed at its capability. I don't know that I own anything else that performs its function as well as this does. I remember building a deck with my dad back when I was a kid. We had an old makita drill (back before impact drivers existed / were popular) and I had to put ALL of my 12 yr old frame onto the back of that drill to get those screws to sink properly. And I remember the agony of painstakingly trying to back them out when they didn't go in and the head would get stripped.
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