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  1. #61
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    Hi Lycanthrope!,

    haha, you've got me cornered here! First of all, please forgive me for my late response, i rarely visited the forum in the past months, due to very hectic duty schedules.

    1. Since i don't own a Quartermaster and only ever saw one in a picture, i'm not able to take one apart and compare it to the inside life of a Safetymaster. The latter was clearly advertised as a double insulated tool, so, if the Quartermaster was built to that specification, the difference between the two may be in the motor construction and switch layout. But this is only a guess.

    2. Didn't the Challenge have a metallic light blue livery, with black and white checkered decals, like on UK police cars and F1 finish flags? If so, i have once been in the position to buy two brand new ones for a bargain from a shop closing down. I was tight on money around that time, there were also two vintage metals B&D drills and a streamlined all aluminium and highly polished French made Val d'Or drill. These are very rare and they are the drill equivalent of a CitroŽn DS, so i spent my money one that item. I went back for the other drills a few weeks later, to find that the shop had been cleared out entirely. The phrase "you can't have 'em all" was very apt, but also little help.
    These light blue Wolf drills i saw, indeed looked like a spitting image of the Cubmaster. They may have been a budget version, although the Cubmaster already has quite a few sleeve bearings. The motor power may also have been different. Like you, i have yet to encounter another one, so these models are rare indeed.

    3. Cast lettering and ornaments were popular in the 30's up to the 50's. To achieve quality detailed results, both mould finshing and casting require extra care and thus cost, with possibly a higher amount of rejects that have to be recycled. On the other hand, cast details stay recognisable much longer than housestyle colours, riveted typeplates or brand decals, which are prone to become scratched or worn down. Examples of tools with cast lettering are from Fein, Stanley, Porter-Cable and Rockwell, Mafell, Milwaukee, Elu, Holz Her, Ackermann + Schmitt, Stihl, Festo, Siemens, AEG, Millers Falls, Hilti, Gotthold Haffner, B&D and Outillage Peugeot, with many brands using contrasting paint colours to bring out the name or logo from the surrounding cast housing. Most of these brands ceased to use cast lettering around the 60's, often when the conventional moulds and the tool models they would produce, were obsolete or due for refurbishment anyway. In the new moulds, the cast details were simply ground away or filled out, to crank up the mould's filling speed and loosening properties.To cut cost and still give products a distinctive appearance, paint colours and decals were adopted as the new tool identity trend.

    The same goes for Wolf, with the cast detailed models in general being older then the smoothed down ones. Early models without cast details were also common among tool brands, since flaws in such details tend to give away imperfect mastery of the casting process and require grades of metal liquidity and filling pressure that were not yet advanced enough in that era. From around 1890 to the 20's, alloys didn't yet have the ideal mix ratios and properties that exist today. Cast details in early tools tended to be a bit more coarse and irregular and if time and money were an issue for a manufacturer, he may not have bothered or would choose branded riveted or screwed-on badges instead. From around 1850 to 1930, there was a whole industry of platemakers available (brass, bronze, cast iron) to cater for many markets, from locomotives and household appliances to ships, bridges and machines. Often a very vintage electric tool with a smooth housing is merely so because its original badges or plates are missing, leaving only tiny telltale screw or rivet holes.

    4. Vintage Wolf catalogues and advertisement prints are very rare worldwide. Wolf tools were considered to be workhorses with glamour coming second, and i have the impression that the firm didn't spend as much on marketing as B&D or Bosch or Festo did. Although it must be said that the Pioneer Works did show their association and good reputation with the British aircraft industry with considerable pride. On my trip to the Ealing Council Library (which stock the archive on London's Ealing and Acton, including the Hanger Lane region where the factory was), there were more newspaper articles on Wolf in relation to aircraft manufacturing, than there were advertisements on the brand in general. Wolf was never big in Holland, there were very few sales points stocking the brand, although most Dutch users knowing the brand, tended to stay true to it all their lives. Still, for most things on Wolf, i have to shop abroad.

    That's how far my knowledge reaches at the moment. You've given me some homework to do first, before i can comment more accurate than this.

    Best regards

    gerhard

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  3. #62
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    Nov 2010
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    Whitehaven
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    Default Cub, Cubmaster, Quartermaster and Safetymaster.

    Hello again Gerhard and thanks for replying in such a detailed manner.
    I've attatched (hopefully) a few pictures of my "Wolf Pack" I hope they're of interest to you or other Wolf collectors.
    One more thing, if you've ever watched the film "The Worlds Fastest Indian" then look out for the scene where Burt Munroe (Anthony Hopkins) is rather discustingly trimming his toenails with guess what!.....a Cub or Cubmaster.
    regards Lycanthrope.

  4. #63
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    Nov 2004
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    Hi Lycanthrope!

    Very nice collection indeed! Aren't they just great, those yesteryear liveries? And look at the brochure layouts and boxes and manuals printwork; they capture an era all on their own. Accessories are often incomplete or have their boxes and manuals missing or are just not considered collectable enough. Your collection is proof of the opposite and offers a much better picture of what the brand was about, beyond the basic machines.

    To fetch my entire Wolf collection i have to delve inside a few stacks of boxes, which may take some time. From the green hammerite era i have a few drills, a large angle grinder and a belt sander, from the silver hammerite and red era i have a Cubmaster and Safetymaster brand new in mint box, from the cream and aqua era i have five drill types, two circular saws, a jig saw, a small angle grinder and an orbital sander and from the red era i have a circular saw and two drills.
    Recently on ebay.co.uk i saw an odd Wolf circular saw (beveled geared or worm drive geared) whizz by, of which i only managed to retrieve a very small picture. The item hasn't been sold and the seller lives in Clacton and doesn't ship, he only wants it collected from his home. Next month i'll be in England, i may be just crazy enough to visit him and buy the thing.

    Greeting

    gerhard

  5. #64
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    Nov 2010
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    Whitehaven
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    Thanks Gerhard, I try to use them all as often as I can, so hense they're all a bit grubby and have a rather used look (the red Cubmaster has been in the family 55 years), although if I owned mint examples I think I'd be a bit reticent about using them.
    ' Sounds like you have a great collection (I'm most envious)from all the eras.
    The circular saw you mentioned and pictured looks a pretty rare piece of history indeed, (do you know the model?) if I were you, I'd certainly make a point of snapping it up (have you tried persuading the owner to post it.....££££?)

    Lycanthrope.

  6. #65
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Donegal, Ireland
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    2

    Default Wolf tools and Stanley Bridges

    I have been amazed and delighted at the postings by Gerhard and Chas! For sentimental reasons to do with my early interest in woodwork I am keen to get hold of a Stanley Bridges Wasp or Husky drill, working or not, and wonder if Lycanthrope might know how I could chase this down? You describe exactly the same interest as mine in wolf tools. also glad to buy a wolf saphire 70 or arcoy buccaneer if any available. Ireland / UK preferable.

  7. #66
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    Nov 2010
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    Whitehaven
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    Hello there ciaran,
    It's always nice to hear from another 'wolfman' I can't help you at the minute, but I'll certainly keep a sharp look out for all four models you mentioned and let you know immediately via this board if I find them. Actually I've just last month fully restored a Bridges Neonic drill, it works and looks really good!
    If you find a 'Saphire' I've a completely unused 6" circular saw attatchment and blade that your quite welcome to for nothing if you can use it, I'm trying (rather unsuccessfully) to concentrate on my favourite four Wolf models of the 50's.
    Lycanthrope.

  8. #67
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Donegal, Ireland
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    2

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Lycanthrope View Post
    Hello there ciaran,
    It's always nice to hear from another 'wolfman' I can't help you at the minute, but I'll certainly keep a sharp look out for all four models you mentioned and let you know immediately via this board if I find them. Actually I've just last month fully restored a Bridges Neonic drill, it works and looks really good!
    If you find a 'Saphire' I've a completely unused 6" circular saw attatchment and blade that your quite welcome to for nothing if you can use it, I'm trying (rather unsuccessfully) to concentrate on my favourite four Wolf models of the 50's.
    Lycanthrope.
    hi Lycanthrope, thank you very much for offering to help, and for the offer of the circular saw attachment, most kind! I wasn't really planning to use these drills, if I get any, but indeed the attachment might well complement the collection if I ever start it. The fact that you're looking for drills from the 50s also encourages me about those from the 60s! Wishing you every success, for now, ciaran

  9. #68
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Bournemouth
    Posts
    2

    Default Wolf Tools.

    Dear Gerhard and other Wolf collectors, My son has just drawn my attention to the various posts you have made regarding Wolf tools. I am delighted to see your interest in these products as I was an executive of the company for a number of years from the late 1960's to the end of 1982 when Geoffrey Wolfe sold the company to Dobson Park Industries who had shortly before this time purchased Kango tools.

    Initially I was operating in the UK for the company, then took over our Scandinavian operation and spent the last seven years of my time with Wolf as Managing Director of our South African operation.

    During our "Sapphire years" there was a real buzz within the company as we were so proud to be selling a really good British made product throughout the world, and making a very reasonable contribution to overseas earnings during the "Ted Heath years".

    I always recall my meetings with Geoffrey Wolfe as i reported directly to him, and the fact that it was always very difficult to inform him of any product problems we were experiencing in the field, as he could not accept our tools were anything other than the very best, which in the main they were but with the odd exception. For example when we introduced the grey bodied Sapphire range (ie Sapphire 70 etc) with GRP mouldings, we had serious problems with bearings turning within the housings. Similar problems affected the first of the grinderettes when we went from the Makita supplied version (AG4) to our own 4578 models, i remember clearly a failure rate in excess of 20% which was overcome by replacing the gearbox with a cast metal product.

    I still have a couple of briefcases full of internal product development memos which i still find interesting reading to this day!!

    I have recently commenced upon a "nostalgia trip" and have myself been purchasing a number of our old tools, mainly the Sapphire range as that was the main period of my time with the company.

    As a matter of interest, in South Africa we produced our own metal (homeworker) cabinets which contained a sapphire 76 drill complete with the full range of attachments, orbital sander, drill stand, circular saw, jigsaw etc plus a range of hand tools, chisel, screw driver etc. These sold very well indeed and really helped us with the sale of our domestic range.

    We also found it very difficult to sell the 100mm grinderette in South Africa as all the large operators had vast stocks of 115mm discs and were using every make but ours. To overcome this I introduced an "add on" which was given away with every grinderette which contained a guard to accomodate a 115mm disc and an adaptor to take the shaft from 16mm to 22mm. I hadn't told Geoffery of this idea and i remember one evening him phoning me at home to ask how the South African associate was selling so many grinderettes. I sent him a sample pack and although i got my knuckles rapped having not obtained approval from the board, he loved the idea of this modification and it became offered throughout the rest of our associates.

    I am in Bergen Op Zoom in Holland from the 10th-14th August and if you are near that area it would be nice to see your collection.

    Kind regards

  10. #69
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    97

    Default

    I remember back when I was around 10yrs old (long time ago), my grandfather had (which looked old even back then) this huge Wolf hand drill.

    It was bare metal, unless all the paint was worn off, very heavy and did not have a pistol grip handle rather a closed loop handle.

    The trigger switch was heavy with a very positive action and I remember once you released the trigger that the drill took a long time to slow down again.

  11. #70
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    Jul 2011
    Location
    Midlands-UK
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    3

    Default Questions regarding - Wolf D1 X24 Drill

    I am seeking advice on a wolf product and had drawn a blank until i read the woodwork forum.

    I recently acquired a Wolf "D1 X24 A" drill, however I can not see where its fits within the generations of drills that were manuactured (ie sapphire), and all internet searches for that model prove fruitless.

    The unit is huge, weighs a ton and is silver finished.

    At the moment it is a non-starter (dont know why, it could even be the fuse in the plug - thats how little i have tinkered with it at this stage). My questions are:


    01 - Where can i find more information about this model
    02 - Anyone in the UK (preferably midlands area, whom is knowledgeable about this unit and could possibly assess
    03 - Anyone who provides spares or overhauls these units (should it be required)

    i would like to thank you for taking the time to read this and hope you are willing / able to help

    Kind Regards

  12. #71
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    Nov 2004
    Location
    Santpoort-Zuid, Netherlands
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    Hi all,

    my sincere apologies for not having been here for a long time. This was due to holiday breaks and the switching to a different job content, which required a lot of time in the past month. But it's either that or no job at all in these recession times.

    This drill type was made in the early 70's, prior to the Sapphire range (1973-1976 onwards). So this is one of the last all metal Wolf tool models. The Sapphire range introduced fibre reinforced moulded synthetic resin housing parts around newly developed motors. For improved durablilty and overload reserves, a new copper wire insulation lacquer recipe was used, based on estermide-polymers. To express this additional toughness, the marketing term Sapphire was used, to tell that such an improved motor was used inside tools with such name on them. So this D1 is a pre-Sapphire model. The odd round flanges around the motor housing , used for handle grip fixtures and such, are there because this motor housing design was used for other tool type as well (e.g. circular saw). This principle was also used in its successor, the grey and aqua coloured Sapphire 1020 Watts two-hands drill (later ivory beige and aqua), which also shared its motor housing design with 1020 Watts and 1350 watts circular saw type models in the same range. Pictures of the related Sapphire drill and saw are included below, to illustrate the resemblance to the D1's motor housing, on which these large Sapphire models were clearly based. You can see the same fixture array which serves for a stick handles on the drill and as a fixture points for the wrap-around handle of the saw. The motor housing's hind cap incorporates a breast plate on the drill ans is a mere closing plate with cooling air vent slits on the saw. The same thing goes for the D1. Drills with two side handles and breast plates were also dubbed "cross shape drill models" , hence the "X" in its type name.

    To determine the cause of the D1 not reacting in any way, you need to be electricity-savvy and in the possession of an Ohm-Meter . For the next story, no mains power is necessary; you use the meter's batteries as the only power source, so this is safe. Attach the Ohm meter wires to the plug prongs and operate the switch. With squeezed switch there should be a circuit, measuring something between 12 and 40 Ohms. If the scale needle remains unimpressed and stays put on zero, turn the drill chuck to rotate the motor by hand without using mains current. Dirt may have been trapped between one of the brushes and the commutator, in which case there is no electrical contact and hance no circuit to be measured. Rotation often removes the dirt and if this was the cause, there will now be some meter needle movement (to preferably a proper reading). If not, the other most probably cause will be the switch, the contact of which may have become sluggish or stuck. In this case you can squeeze the trigger, but the contacts may not really move enough to make a reliable electrical connection. There may also be dust or dirt or oxidation between the switch contacts, which would not be surprising after a decade or more of unused storage. If again the needle doesn't move, it's time to take portions of the drill apart.
    Unscrew the handel part which houses the switch, to get access to its contacts. Once insde, determine which are the motor leads, remove the meter wires from the mains plug prongs and connect them to the two motor wires. If there is still no reading, one of the brushes may still not touch the commutatot; not because there is trapped dirt (since this was emoved during the turning of ther chuck) but most likely because the brush is stuck inside its brass holder, whereas it should have free play to allow its spring to push it against the commutator's copper strips. Unscrew one brush cap and pull out the brush. Remember in which position it was, because you will have to insert it in exactly the same way. If turned axially 180 degrees, the worn brush face does not match the round commutator shape and running the motor on mains power will result in violent sparking that is harmful to the commutator. Visually the brush contact face; its hollow worn surface should be smooth and slightly gleaming, without grooves or burnt edges. Replace the brush and check on its free sliding inside its brass holder. Screw the cap back on and epeat the same procedure fo the other brush. Again measure across the motor leads. If there is still no reading, there is a wiring fault inside the motor itself, most likely in its coil wire or in the leads between the coils. You have to be experienced the motor when this is the case. If not, hand it in for repair after having checked the (hefty) price and having determined if this pays off.

    With the switch lying bare before you, you can also measure across its poles. I never held a D1 in my hands myself, but being an all metal machine the switch is likely to be a double pole model ( to make sure that both mains cord wires are shut off since there is no 100% certainty that the live wire will always be one and the same). You can clearly see the two leads form the mains cord, coming in in one side of the switch, and the two motor leads coming out from different spots. Attach the meter wire to one incoming (mains cord lead) and one outlet pole (motor lead). With a squeezed swtich, you will eventually see needle movement. If not, the fault is inside the switch, provided there was a reading across the motor leads. If the motor and switch are okay but there no reading between the plug prings and the switch connections, you have a faulty mains cord, which needs replacing.

    Wolf was early to adopt noise suppressor capacitors (even small models like the Safetymaster have one squeezed in, tiny as they are), so you may as well check it while the handle grip is opened up. Replace it if its shape is bulged, if parts of its contents have been leaking out or if its surface shows cracks or tears. While you are inspecting the brushes, do have a look inside the brass holders to spot the commutator strips somewhere below in the deep. Let light shine on them and slowly rotate the motor through the chuck. All strips should gleam and should show no burnt edges or black spots. The commutator is one of the telltale spots on which to determine general motor health.

    good luck and greetings!

    gerhard

  13. #72
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    Nov 2004
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    The promised pics to illustrate the story in the post just above this one.
    The first two pics show 1020 Watts cross type drills with Sapphire motor (the one on the floor is a rare single speed model, which went missing during shipment from the UK to Holland and neither i nor the seller ever saw it again; i still feel a rage towards ParcelForce every time i think about it, since the drill looked well preserved and i was really looking forward to it). The dirty drill in the stand in the first pic is now restored and looks like new, so i got hold of at least one decent specimen of this type.

    The motor housing designs clearly show that these machines are the direct successors of the all metal types like the D1. The third pic shows a 9 1/4" circular saw with a 1350 Watts Sapphire motor, using the same motor housing design as the drill. There was also a 7 1/4" version of this saw, with the same 1020 Watts motor as the drill. The saw is shown in a later red livery (the ivory and aqua were skipped when Wolf merged with Kango), but the model and its construction haven't been altered since the first grey and aqua Sapphire tool liveries. The side flanges, meant to hold the two side handles of the drill, can also serve as fixtures for the wrap around handle on the saw. Using standard housing components across several types of power tools is a cost saving measure that is frequently used by many manufacturers the world over. The Wolf Sapphire motor housing model of this cross type drill and circular saw was also used for some larger angle grinder types, for which the fixture flanges were left out of the pressure injection mould templates. In such cases armature and field components also show many similarities.

  14. #73
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    Jul 2011
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    Midlands-UK
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    Default Wolf D1

    Hi Gerhard,

    Thank you very much for taking the time to reply, with a couple of texts that are detailed and informative. I appreciate the time and effort that this took you to do.

    Im afraid i do come into the catagory of persons who "Dont have a clue", however a friend of mine has confirmed that the brushes do not exist.

    Could anyone recommend the best way to acquire replacement items?

    Regards

    Finder

  15. #74
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    Nov 2004
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    Hi Finder,

    brushes can be made to order. There are many recipes for making carbon compounds suited for specific circumstances (rpm and friction heat, surrounding climate like tropic or arctic, moist of dusty or chemically polluted atmosphere, shock load, duty cycle, current peaks, frequent forward/reverse running, need for operation with reduced sparking, etc.). But for the average power tool the recipe is relatively universal and there is little chance that you could go wrong in choosing universal non-brand specific brushes. When -for instance- you look at the original brush selection tables from Hitachi or Makita, you see several sizes that are used in (percussion) drills, grinders, planers and saws alike. So there is not really a special drill only carbon brush or a special jig saw only carbon brush, the same brush recipe will work for many power tools.

    Much more important are the exact size and the specific attachments as mounted on the original brushes. There is a good article on carbon brushes in Wikipedia:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brush_(electric)

    ...and i took the liberty of borrowing the picture from this article, to explain about the attachments. One of them is a power conducting cord woven from fine copper. One cord end is attached to the compressed graphite/carbon material and the other end to a brass insertion clip that fits the brass brush holder that is underneath the brush cap. This woven cord is important, the spring must not be used as the only conductor, since its electrical resistance (steel) is too high and its fysical electrical contact between the brush holder and the brush too unreliable and too unsteady. This may result in heat and sparking inside the brush holder, especially when the motor experiences shock load.

    The length of the new brush and the strength of the spring as a combination are also very important. Too much spring pressure on the brush contact surface increases friction heat and may lead to commutator damage. I suspect that for your drill model the length of a new brush should not exceed 5/8", to be on the safe side. For cross cut sizes of the brush you only need to measure the hole inside the brush holder. Take the drill to the dealer to check that the readymade brushes can move freely in the holders without wobbly play, or as an alternative take the drill to the dealer the first time around, to have him measure up the holder before the brushes are ordered for you. Be sure that they are fitted with the woven copper cord. I have ordered universal brushes made to size many times myself, and i removed the original spring and brass clip from the spent ones to use them again on the new ones. Next to the real (extinct) thing, that's as original as you can get them.

    good luck!

    gerhard

  16. #75
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    Nov 2004
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    Default

    Hi all,

    just visited Ebay.co.uk and came across this auction:

    VINTAGE ELECTRIC WOLF DRILL. ORIGINAL BOX, PRICE TAG& ORIGINAL INSTRUCTIONS MINT | eBay

    The machine doesn't look half bad, so this would seem to be one of the rare changes to get hold of a collectible Wolf drill in decently preserved state. Just to let you know.

    greetings

    gerhard

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