Most of us love a fully restored car. We marvel at the skill and time it must take to make something old and utilitarian new again. But what about the tools and odd bits of machinery left over from decades of industrialism? Don’t they also deserve to shine once again? There is a community devoted to breathing life back into these gems, and the videos of the rejuvenation process are enough to satisfy even the casual gearhead.
There are several excellent examples out there of individuals meticulously documenting the process of reviving old and broken tools and machines. The only way I can describe how they make me feel is a mix of ASMR and the deep satisfaction of seeing a complicated task through from start to finish without spending hours of my own time smashing my fingers.
Here’s a great one of the YouTube channel Odd Tinkering refurbishing a light from an old Cold War era nuclear sub:
Here’s what our silent mechanic says in the description of this video:
The disassembly on this project took a lot of time. Probably half of the screws were so badly stuck I was almost not able to open them and some of them broke. Even after soaking the parts in rust remover some of those would rather brake than open. I drilled those holes open and made new threads for those. I also had to make most of the broken screws by myself but I left that out from the video.
Left out from the video! Fantastic. You can’t just cut out going through the complicated process of making your own screws on your own projects, but through the miracle of video editing, we’re able to enjoy a seamless transition from rusted piece of junk to beautifully restored light.
Odd Tinkering has refurbed everything from old knives to antique hand tools to old gaming consoles. And since these videos are produced silently, you can immerse yourself in the great sounds of metal working and sanding. I’m clearly not the only one who appreciates Odd Tinkering’s projects; over 1.7 million users subscribe to the channel.
There is also Hand Tool Rescue, a smaller account that wins major points in my book for having a hilarious intro:
Hand Tool Rescue is, of course, mostly hand tools. I wanted to highlight the machine above, however, just because it has that perfect blend of completely dangerous and fairly useless while still being futuristic. Hovering is always better than non-hovering.
And then there is Mister Pantina, a newcomer to the YouTube restoration video game, but with some really awesome work:
I screwed up my back pretty badly last week, so while on muscle relaxers I binged my favorite brain relaxers. I’m running out of material at this point, so if you have any particular favorites, please clue me in.