BLAST FROM THE PAST Treasure Trove By Dale Dougherty
Makers past and present populate a
unique catalog of hard-to-find lore.
Vince Gingery p ulls the
crucible from a gas-fired
Dave Gingery’s Charcoal
Foundry shows you how to
build a very basic furnace
This 96-page reprint,
of a booklet published a
century ago, has 46
a device that makes
smoke rings, and one
that detonates flour.
“I have been an incurable experimenter and will take an impression of the pattern and provide
gadgeteer since childhood. I love old science and a cavity into which we pour the molten metal.”
technology books, and have a special fascination Lindsay, who only uses one name, is the man who
for people, past and present, who can build some- puts out the eponymous catalog. He says, “
Sand-thing out of nothing. In fact, I have something of a casting goes back 3,000 years. Dave Gingery used
reputation myself.” Sound like anyone you know? to say ‘When you shake out the sand and see the
That is how H. Peter Friedrichs introduces himself casting, it’s like Christmas morning.’” Lindsay, an
in The Voice of the Crystal, his 185-page book about engineer, has been publishing for 25 years. Metal-making crystal radios from household materials. This working is a big category for him.
1999 gem is one of many in the extensive catalog of “I don’t offer everything. Just the very best I can
Lindsay Publications, Inc. find,” he tells me. “There’s a lot of good old stuff.”
Not into crystals? Try red-hot metal. The Charcoal Many of the Lindsay offerings are reprints of out-
Foundry by the late David Gingery is the first of a of-copyright works, such as the 1885 Distillation
series featured in the catalog. Gingery writes: “As and Rectification of Alcohol, a so-called treatise that
is usually the case with the hobbyist, experimenter, explains the making of wine, whiskey, and liqueurs.
or inventor, I didn’t need a machine shop, I just If that leads you to building a distillery, you can learn
wanted one.” He sets out to build a lathe by casting to make a boiler or a kettle from Coppersmithing,
the parts himself, and then to “use it to produce the published in 1893. If you’re a fan of Six Feet Under,
rest of the equipment to make up a full and practical you may want to undertake reading the 1900 Pre-
machine shop.” Even if you’re not that ambitious, serving the Dead: The Art and Science of Embalming.
the book will convince you that you can learn to build Lindsay also carries self-published books, such
your own foundry and make items from scrap metal. as those by Gingery and Friedrichs, that don’t end
“If you have ever built sand castles or made mud up in bookstore chains. “I rarely offer beginner’s
pies, you have some experience in green sand mold- books, which are more easily found. My books are
ing,” writes Gingery. “It really is that easy. The sand … more complicated,” says Lindsay, “but not nearly as