Please note

Because of the lack of published trowel and masonry tool histories, the information here is based on other sources that may be less reliable and certainly are incomplete. These include eBay and tools that I purchase myself that are the starting points for my research. I will write what I know as I learn it. If what you read here interests you, please check back often and look for revisions and corrections. Scanned catalogs are either mine or by Rose Antique Tools and used with permission, and are on Google Docs as pdf files. A few are links to other websites. Your photos and information are welcome. Please click on any picture to enlarge it. Comments are welcome, but any with links will be deleted as possible spam.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Stone Chisels

Types of stone chisels include the following:
Toothed chisel (2-tooth, 3, 4, 5, 6, etc.)
Flat chisel
Bolster chisel or drove chisel
Point, or point chisel
Angle chisel, skew chisel, or miter chisel
Rondel chisel, round chisel, or bullnose chisel
Inverted rondel chisel
Cape chisel or splitter
Lettering chisel 
Generally they are sized small, medium, or large.   

Stone chisels made to be struck with a steel hammer are called hammer head. Mallet head chisels have larger, mushroom-shaped heads that won't damage a wooden mallet.    

Here are several photos from eBay of stone chisels, and at top an image of traditional French designs.
Traditional French stone chisels

Stone chisels in canvas roll

Toothed stone chisels (mallet heads)

Toothed, flat, rondel, and point chisels (hammer heads)


  1. Is there any way to date stone chisels? I recently bought an antique wood tool box at a thrift store. It was full of tools. While one was a newer WWII era wrench, the rest, with the exception of maybe one more, appear to be much older. I would estimate the box at late 1800s to maybe early 1900s. But I am not sure if the tools are just as old or not. I don't know much about old tools. My dad thought they were mostly stonemason tools. I am not sure how to date them. Not trying to value them or sell them, but rather curious to narrow down the date of the box. One chisel has the initials "IK" on it. Perhaps I could find out who they belonged to, although it seems a long shot.

  2. Very functional website for educating myself about stonemason tools. I am finding chisels in my great uncle's tool box. He was a finish carpenter, but seemed to deal with other tasks as part of his work. Thank you for presenting it so well.