While clearing out possessions of my late mother-in-laws estate I came across an interesting antique/vintage hand tool.



I have attached a photograph and ask if TATHS can help provide a clue as to what it is used for.

I have tried to research it on the internet, but as yet have found no reference to a similar tool.


At first it looks like an early hand drill, but when the handle is turned the end bit oscillates back and forward rather than one direction.

There appears to be an old rubber end cap, so I attach four photo's, both sides, the end and rubber cap views.


It might well be that the any attachments on the end are missing, but other than this I have no idea.

Many thanks in advance if you can help.



Richard Johns


#1 Webmaster 2016-09-20 15:06
Nick White writes:

Assuming that the motion is oscillating(as described) with a slight turn each time, then it looks to be a valve grinder. You appear to have a perished rubber head or sucker, which on mine is missing.

It is not the same make. I believe it was used for grinding in valves on a side valve engine. A stick with a rubber sucker on the end, rotated back and forth between the hands is how I remember doing it on my Austin 7.
#2 AndyT 2016-09-27 15:50
Just to confirm that it is indeed a valve grinder / lapper, here's an entry in the 1953 Buck and Hickman catalogue showing a very similar tool (branded "Pickavant" ) with the oscillating motion and a choice of adaptor tips.
It also shows the simpler, cheaper stick+sucker option.


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