Letís explore a bit
deeper into traditional woodworking tools from
a region that has been discussed in a previous post.
Todayís post focuses only on
Swedish braces and bits.
Years ago I found that tools from
other cultures and other times in the past felt very different
in my hands and I wanted to know how well they performed at the
The first thing that enters my
thought process when I pick up an 18th-Century Swedish brace is
how small it is compared to the braces of England and America. I
have included photos of Swedish braces for your viewing and
captioned each photo with relevant information about the photo
All the braces in my post are
typical of early Swedish types. All accepted flat-tanged bits.
Four of the five braces have a typical two-part thrust-block
head. All five braces have side latches that enter a hole in a
bit tang to retain the bit in the chuck. All have a slanted
upper arm and a lower arm approximately 90 degrees to the crank
These are typical Swedish braces from the 18th and 19th
The one on the left is slightly less than a foot tall and the
one on the
right is 8 inches tall. The bits are of a spoon type and are
retained on a spring ring.
This brace has a thrust-block head. Keep in mind that the bottom
of wood is firmly affixed to the iron and only the top piece
This is another brace with a thrust-block head.
Another brace with a thrust-block head. The bits on the ring fit
brace and no other one in this group of braces.
This is yet another brace with a thrust block head.