Growing up on a small Iowa farm, I have always had an interest in old tools. My earliest memory of the antique tools takes me back to the machine shed on my grandpa’s farm. Our family would go there every spring to plant flowers in grandma’s gardens. After the work was done, the adults would sit down at the kitchen table and begin the usual boring adult conversations. I always found a way to slip out of the house and go explore all of the sheds and barns on the property. My favorite shed was the machine shop where grandpa kept most of his tools. It hadn’t been a working shop in a number of years, and everything was covered with that thick heavy dust that only seems to be found near the midwest row crops. There was a 2-ton chain hoist, more wrenches than I could count, and a rack full of horse tack from the old days. I distinctly remember grandpa’s anvil, mounted on a tree stump section…and I also remember how bad my forehead bled when I knocked it against the corner of that anvil! I still have some of my grandpa’s tools from that shed…they aren’t much to look at, but they are absolute treasures to me.
My dad had a machine shop too, but I got into a bit more trouble playing with those tools. He still used them regularly and so did I. It’s funny how much dad’s keyhole saw looked just like one of those laser guns from the Star Wars movies. I had used it one weekend to defend the farm from an incoming attack of storm troopers. I was quite successful in the defense of our home, but I lost my laser gun during the melee…most likely when mom called us in for lunch. When dad mowed the lawn the following day, he found the spot in the yard where his keyhole saw was carelessly left by me. The saw was mangled beyond repair by the lawnmower, and boy was dad angry about that! I learned in the most definite way a naughty child can that tools were valuable, were not toys, and should be cared for properly.
My interests are not just in old tools. I have a great interest in many different antiques and the old way of doing things. I also have a deep appreciation for the ways new technology has helped us and made everything seem easier. Growing up in an agricultural community exposed me to the razor’s edge where new technology met antique methods, and we embraced the fascinating changes. My first full time job was at Gateway 2000, a computer manufacturer right in the middle of the Midwest. This is the place where I learned about computers and the internet. This is the place where I learned of the importance of real-time worldwide communication.
I began selling antiques and collectables during the 90’s shortly after eBay became popular. I sold a little bit of everything then, but I was able to attend my first antique tool auction in 1998. I was amazed at all of the different kinds of tools there and I was able to purchase several old Bedrock planes. I didn’t know then why the Bedrocks were so popular with collectors, but they became popular with me too.
Major changes happened during the 2000’s when I started my own family and also had a career change. I took a break from online sales during that time, but I started back up again in 2014. I run Elk Point Tool Company, an eBay store specializing in antique and vintage tools. My business philosophy is focused on delivering great customer service and fast high quality order fulfilment.
Many of my customers have been tool collectors and some folks have inquired about selling their collections for them. I formed Kuehl Auction House as a way to serve the collectors and their families with an Internet based auction sales service. Our family will handle all of the details of the sale. We will catalog the collection and take high quality photographs of each individual item. We take care of all of the marketing too. After the sale is over, we will handle all of the credit card processing, packaging and shipping. If you have a need to sell just one item or a whole collection, we would be delighted to help you. Just send us an email and we’ll get it started for you.