Saturday, March 24, 2018


The early years, from Plomb to Proto

Proto tools began somewhat unofficially back in 1907 when a blacksmith in Los Angeles teamed up with a traveling salesman who began selling the striking tools he forged by hand.

The robust yet austere tools bore the mark of Plomb, the name of the blacksmith Alphonse Marie Plomb, a native of France who had immigrated to the US in 1892. Mr. Plomb had recently come to Los Angeles after trying his hand at tool making in Chicago for a number of years.

The salesman, Charles Harvey Williams, a native of New York was a well experianced agent, having honed his skills as a traveling salesman selling shoes across the midwest back at the turn of the century.

By 1910 the duo added toolmaker Jacob Weninger, a native of Hungary who had arrived in New York from Hungary just a few years earlier, to not only help with the growing demand but also help expand their product line.

Some majors changes came to this organization around 1916 when Mr. Plomb left to go into business for himself and since the operation had been utilizing Mr. Plombs property at Maie ave, it was relocated to 1409 Georgia ave there in Los Angeles, a William Ziegler Jr was brought in as shop manager, also Mr. Williams brought in silent partner John Louis Pendelton, a man well experienced in business management.

In the beginning their product line was limited mainly to punches and chisels, but according to a 1917 advertisement which read "Hand Forged Tools for Plumbers, Tinners, Bricklayers, ect. Machinists hand tools a specialty.", obviously their line had expanded considerably.

In 1918 the shop was again relocated to 1119 Santa Fe Ave in Los Angeles, also Mr. Weninger was promoted to foreman to an ever growing production staff.

In 1920 the company made its first acquisition when MJ Carls Plastering sold his cement tool business to Plomb Tool with the agreement that they continue to manufacture them using the Carls trademark. Around this same time they relocated yet again to a larger facility just a short distance away at 2209 Santa Fe Ave, and this location became the home to Plomb Tools for decades to come.

*** More to Come ***

Ratio Eight

There are coffee machines that make great coffee and there are coffee machines that look great. Ratio is the first coffee machine that is truly both, combining form and function.

Designed in Portland, Oregon, every Ratio machine is meticulously assembled by hand. While common appliances often have a built-in obsolescence and a life span of maybe 2-3 years, Ratio is designed to last.

Hot water poured over fresh roasted coffee causes a bubbly interaction called a “bloom.” The control board of Ratio applies a bloom cycle that allows the bloom to settle down before delivering the rest of the hot water. The result? More evenly extracted grounds and a more amazing cup of coffee.

1204 SE Water Ave, Suite 15
Portland OR 97214

Contact Them
(800) 261-9640

Scout Boats

They design and manufacture world class luxury offshore boats from 17’ to 53’, each packed with timeless innovations, technology and trendsetting features. Dual console Dorados ideal for the family. Shallow drafting Bay Boats ready for backwater and inshore. Center console sportfishing machines ready for action.

2531 Hwy 78 West
Summerville, SC 29483
Ph: 843-821-0068
Fx: 843-821-4786

Monday, April 4, 2016

You don't have to be a coffee lover to like the AeroPress.

As a little kid I remember waking up to the smell of a mysterious brew my mother would make almost daily. It had this very strong but very pleasing aroma, and without ever having a taste, it did cause me to want to have some. I noticed she he put a fair amount of effort in making the stuff too. I mean you had to take the percolator and pour out yesterdays leftover, lift off the top, take out the used grinds, throw them away, rinse everything out, refilled the container with water and put in a new filter and the right amount coffee and put it on the stove until it percolated the appropriate amount of time. Well, maybe it wasn't so complicated for my mom but to a 5 year old boy who had a hard time getting cereal into a bowl without making a mess, yes it was complicated.

Whenever I would request a drink of this strange concoction the answer was always the, you are too little. To this day I still don't know what that means, after all I was allowed to eat sodium and corn syrup laced wieners, bacon that was chocked full of nitrates and salt, and sugar, sugar everywhere...and I had that stuff all the time. Ok, I get it, they didn't know what was in food back then, but it was common knowledge that coffee had caffeine, and that was bad, very

Eventually, I suppose when I had passed some sort of right of passage, I was finally allowed to take a sip of that wonderful smelling brew that I had craved so often, and to my utter disappointment the taste wasn't anything like the smell. It had this bold flavor with a sharp edge that I just didn't like. That was thoroughly confusing to me at the time (and still is), to have something with such a great smell yet with a bad taste.

Fast forward a few decades or so, and you'll find my taste for coffee has only slightly improved. I do occasionally make some, but it is mostly a social thing, wanting to be part of the group, and truthfully tea is still my choice of hot brews.

Now if you, like me ever find yourself in need of a cheap coffee brewer, one that is easy to use, never have to pour vinegar through to clean, one that will never short out and you'll have to replace every year or so, then I would suggest look in to getting an AeroPress coffee and espresso maker. They are right at $30, and you'll find that it makes probably the best tasting cup of coffee you'll come across. And for someone like me who's favorite brew isn't coffee, that is a very good thing.

After doing quite a bit of research before buying one, and after using it several times I've found that the AeroPress's simplicity is it's best feature. It takes less than a minute to make a cup (after you have preheated water in a kettle). Just place the unit atop a sturdy cup, place the filter, add a scoop of ground coffee and hot water, stir for 10 seconds, then press down on the plunger to force the water through the coffee, which takes about 30 seconds...and then viola you a have a small cup of concentrated coffee brew that you can dilute and or mix to taste. It is this quick brewing method and extra fine filter allows the coffee to be free of the oils that cause the bitterness, which I now know that it is the oils that I and many others find particularly distasteful about coffee.

Clean up is very simple as all you have to do is push out the used coffee 'puck', as they call it, rinse under a faucet for a second or two and that's it. It has only one moving part which is the plunger, so there is nothing to break or wear out. Some people have been using the same unit for 15 years without having to do anything but rinse them off after each use.

I use off the grocers shelf coffee, as I am not a regular drinker, but there are many coffee lovers out there that go all out. Some spending thousands of dollars on grinders & brewers, trying to make that perfect cup of coffee, but from I have read, and from some very reputable sources that this little AeroPress will make as good tasting coffee as those expensive units.

Lastly I would add that the AeroPress is one of three home coffee brewers still made in the USA.