COLLECTION: Tools & Equipment

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Creasing Swage

1780-1800
Origin: America, New England (probably)
Overall: 15 5/8 x 9 x 1 3/8in. (39.7 x 22.9 x 3.5cm)
Iron and steel
Gift of Roger Winborne III
Acc. No. 2015-133
American-style creasing swage with a reversible hammer and a low fence secured by a ram's head screw and four flanges. The hammer has two blade-shaped ends and two pivot holes, allowing it to produce a total of four distinct creases. Instead of the usual single tang below the anvil portion of the tool, this swage is affixed to the workbench by a pair of tangs at either end.
Label:Called a creasing swage for the crease, bead or groove it imparts into a piece of sheet metal, it has many clever applications, both decorative and structural. The tool itself is a hinged set of perfectly mated hammer dies used to strike a variety of neat, narrow grooves. This is accomplished by drawing a sheet of metal through the jaws of the piece while simultaneously working the affixed hammer. Its adjustable guard controls the alignment of the metal so that a continuous, straight bead is imparted into the piece. These beads, or creases, strengthen the metal and are often used as stops for friction-fit lids and caps.