Return to the Woodworking Forum | Post a Follow-Up

What to do with all those shop tools when someone passes away?

Posted by johnfrwhipple ( on
Mon, Jun 21, 10 at 10:23

I get a call about every 7-18 months from a client or friend of a client wondering what to do with their Husbands shop tools when they pass away. This is always a sad call and one I have struggled with to answer in the past.

Our shop programs in our schools are disappearing. I would think that schools have a certain liability in not using old tools that are not under warranty.

What about if they could be warehouse and given to those in need. What if they where just crated and shipped out to places like Haiti that are trying to rebuild their lives, homes, schools and hospitals.

I would like to do this here in Vancouver. I think I could build a crate, pack the tools and ship them out - anywhere.

Is there a program like this anywhere in North America?

Is there any other local places that might benefit from this "Sad Windfall" of tools?

Any thoughts here???


John Whipple

Follow-Up Postings:

Action Houses

Has any one delivered a shop to an auction house before?

Any idea the value of these old tools (maybe 10 cents on the dollar???)

RE: What to do with all those shop tools when someone passes away

No relatives or friends that might want them (even some of them)?

I still use the Delta floor drill press I inherited from my grandfather, along with hand saws (Disston) and some chisels (old Buck Bro.).

RE: What to do with all those shop tools when someone passes away

One of the frequent writers for Fine Woodworking packs up tools and sends them to Central America where people are taught to use them to better their lives.

Now, if I could just remember the guys name or the name of the program? Anyone have better name recall than I seem to be having at the moment?

Otherwise, one of the members of our woodworking club willed his shop to the club. It was sold off, proceeds went to the club treasury, and members got some well-loved tools to take loving care of.

There is also a place here in town that liquidates estate personal property in a system very similar to eBay, with local pick up or some high value items have shipping available.

RE: What to do with all those shop tools when someone passes away

If it were me, I would look on the web at sites like Ebay and try to get a general idea of what the tool was selling for. Then I would make a list and go to a college or junior college or adult night school that has a woodworking program and post the list.

RE: What to do with all those shop tools when someone passes away

There are several woodworking websites that could help with tool dispersal.

Saw Mill Creek is a long time site. WoodNet is another. I am a member of both sites and have seen many instances where members helped with that process.

I am the Senior Moderator at WoodNet, so can guarantee any help requested(such as pricing/valuing or interest in purchasing) will be helpful and honest.

And both websites have Canadian members, so information will be applicable.

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Woodworking Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here