I had the pleasure of driving Phil to the meeting and home last week and he told me some interesting stories. I also visited his house and shop several months ago and I have attached some pictures.
I first heard about Phil on Youtube when he was interviewed by Josh Farnsworth at a Midwest Tool Collectors meeting. Here’s that video.
Phil told me he is 87 years old. He is still restoring historic homes. His latest is the Higel house in Venice which he just finished.He made all 30 window for it from scratch. Here are some of the window parts in his shop. Here are some of the sashes stacked up and waiting to be installed in the house. And, here are the ones that have been installed.
I also saw some of his 690 back saws while I was visiting.
Phil told me that he once restored an old church, I dont remember where it was, that had a 172′ tower. The architect ask him why the chandlers were swaying when the wind blew. He put up some scaffolding and removed some trim to find that the beams that were supporting it could be scooped out with his hand. They complete redid that old church to it’s original design with out the tower falling down .
Phil is a fascinating character and I hope I will be able to visit him some more!