Tools & Materials
Crazy Ads From 1952
Dangerous products and fantastic claims; ya gotta love these vintage ads!
Air Cushion appliance? I’m pretty sure this is an anti-hernia apparatus, but they really don’t go out of their way to clarify. I suppose it’s the 1952 version of clickbait. But they claim “Thousands Happy,” with their “…heavenly comfort and security…,” so there’s that.
Be all that you can be
Locksmithing, Hypnotism, Super Ju Jitsu, Swedish Body Massage, that sounds like a pretty wild party! And, if you order two or more items and send in a special coupon (closer look below) you will receive, free of charge, the most unusual text, “HOW TO GET ALONG IN THIS WORLD.” It’s the mother of all self-help books.The Family Handyman
The combo platter
Combination tools like this were much more common years ago. This one cuts, polishes, grinds, sands, drills, and mixes. It’s not unlike the Ridgid JobMax platform (below). But I’m guessing that the tools below costs more than $26.88.
A 5-room house for under $2,000!
Did you know that you can still order a house this way? Except a similar package costs more than $30,000 these days. But I bet you would save more than $21 per day if you built it yourself.
What a mower!
“How’ya Trade Cousin.” Translation: “I will trade my lawnmower for yours.” “Not for a dozen.” Translation: “I wouldn’t trade my mower for a dozen of yours.” Her mower really does appear to be doing a much better job. And it’s so easy to use, you can mow in your sandals!
Offend your friends and family!
All of these ads came from old issues of The Family Handyman (A CPT sister publication), but that doesn’t mean we can’t poke fun at ourselves. I wonder how many guys who used these cards had to build a doghouse…for themselves. I also love the claim that you can save up to $2000 per issue; now that’s a bargain!
Check out these ads from 1951 (below)
Is this a good deal?
At first glance, $46.50 seems a pretty fair price for a Tilt Arbor Saw (aka table saw). But never forget to read the fine print, people: “Less extensions, switch and motor.” No motor? I’m guessing there were at least a few unboxing disappointments with this bad boy. Never before- SO MUCH DECEPTION, for SO LITTLE MONEY!
This is a lot of tool for under $15. I’m dubious that the blower on this machine is useful enough to be categorized as “1” of the “4” tools. I’ll give it a 1/2. And why did they call it a “jig saw” when it looks like a scroll saw? At least this tool actually comes with a motor and a switch.
A 2000-deg. torch without an off-switch, strapped to the end of a toothbrush, what could go wrong? I wonder how many houses burnt down before they pulled this fire-hazard-nightmare from the shelves? Admittedly, however, if these tablets were still available I would absolutely have a box of them in my shop. Not sure what I would use them for- probably some practical joke that I would later regret.
The test of time
3-IN-ONE OIL is still around and so is Plastic Wood! I wonder if the agency who came up with this creepy enlarged-head concept can say the same?
Wait a minute…
I thought Tim Leatherman invented the first multi-tool with a pliers. Says here that this one was made by famous French craftsmen (who shall remain nameless). Seems fishy…
After seeing this guy getting conked in the head with a flying board, you’re darn right I’m buying a PTI Original Safety Blade. After all its, “tested and approved by leading laboratories, government agencies, and industrial concerns.” I’m thinking the “government agencies” might just be a brother-in-law who works for the post office? Hmmmm.
Disclosure: This post is brought to you by The Construction Pro Tips editors, who aim to highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We welcome your feedback.