Vintage Wilton Cadet Bench Vise

opaul

Well-Known Member
#1
Just my luck, picked up that old bench vise a couple of weeks ago and now I ran across this Wilton. It's about a three hour drive from where I live but I have a friend that lives in that area and he is going to pick it up for me tomorrow and I'll get down to get it next week. I've been wanting to add a vintage Wilton to my shop :)
 

opaul

Well-Known Member
#4
Thanks! This one had been on craiglist for about a month when I saw it. I thought for sure it would be gone but he wanted it gone so I think I got it at a steal. :)
 

Von Gruff

Well-Known Member
#8
One of the many essentials for our obsession but there are also various types of vises so another one is always going to be usefull. One of mine is one my grandfather made for my father in '49 when he got married and it still has a l place of pride on the bench.
 

Von Gruff

Well-Known Member
#15
Here you go guys. My grandfather was a self tought engineer after losing his farm in the depression due to the rabbit plagues. The 6 inch jaws are very slightly warped now but I have been merciless in using an 8lb sledge hammer to bend large bits of steel for projects over the years. It has about an 8 inch throat and would not take very much to restore it to true and square but it is in gentle retirement now although it is indispensible for some chores. It was my only metal vise till about 2 years ago.

 

opaul

Well-Known Member
#16
Very nice family relic! It has served you well, a testimony to your grandfather. I had to go and read up a little on the rabbit plague. I had heard about it but really didn't study up on it. Amazing that New Zealand today is still impacted from overgrazing and ravished grasslands.

The South Island plague
Southland and Otago

A population of rabbits became established in the coastal sandhills between Invercargill and Riverton in the 1860s. In the early 1870s rabbits from this area began moving up the banks of the nearby rivers onto the inland plains. By 1875 they were established in Central Otago. By the early 1880s rabbits had spread to all parts of Otago and Southland and had begun to invade Canterbury. In the 1890s they overran the Mackenzie Country.
 

Von Gruff

Well-Known Member
#17
Plague proportion means that the ground is litterally covered with them. Dad said that if you went outside and clapped your hands it looked like the hill side was moving. He told me of hare drives in southland where a number of farmers would get together and moving toward a central point that had been proof fenced would drive the hares and they would regularly get over 2000 animals in the 'trap' before they proceded to kill them by walking forward with a movable skirt behind the animals they would use clubs and step over the dead to keep reducing the area in to the trap as they kept after the live ones.
Rabbits were a different prospect and required a lot of shooting as they have the underground warrens where the hares (your jackrabbit I think) are above ground dwellers. Th problem was that no-one could afford the shooters so the problem was made worse and with 5 rabbits eating as much as one sheep the ground was so intensely grazed by the rabbit that it had to be destocked of the sheep and cattle so income was severly compromised. Aparently Grandparents house also burnt down in 1935( I have thier Morris chair which Grandad used as his kitchen arm chair till his death in 1972 and was about the only thing saved from the house. It had been a wedding present for them in 1921) and there were no financial reserves left to keep farming and like many others in the depression they had to walk of the land.
 
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opaul

Well-Known Member
#18
Plague proportion means that the ground is litterally covered with them. Dad said that if you went outside and clapped your hands it looked like the hill side was moving. He told me of hare drives in southland where a number of farmers would get together and moving toward a central point that had been proof fenced would drive the hares and they would regularly get over 2000 animals in the 'trap' before they proceded to kill them by walking forward with a movable skirt behind the animals they would use clubs and step over the dead to keep reducing the area in to the trap as they kept after the live ones.
Rabbits were a different prospect and required a lot of shooting as they have the underground warrens where the hares (your jackrabbit I think) are above ground dwellers. Th problem was that no-one could afford the shooters so the problem was made worse and with 5 rabbits eating as much as one sheep the ground was so intensely grazed by the rabbit that it had to be destocked of the sheep and cattle so income was severly compromised. Aparently Grandparents house also burnt down in 1935( I have thier Morris chair which Grandad used as his kitchen arm chair till his death in 1972 and was about the only thing saved from the house. It had been a wedding present for them in 1921) and there were no financial reserves left to keep farming and like many others in the depression they had to walk of the land.
What a piece of history. Thanks for sharing!
 
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