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Only the head and the point were forged, so these nails, which were common from the 17th to the early 19th century, can be distinguished from earlier ones by the sharp regular profile of the cut section.
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Then the sheet was turned over and the next was cut.
As a result these nails taper to a point on two sides only, producing a square point (see illustration), and are easily distinguished from earlier cut nails.
Machine-Made Screws By the late 18th century screws with blunt ends were made by machine, and in the 1840s George Nettlefield began to produce the modern pointed screws at his factory in Birmingham, initiating their widespread use in joinery.
The appearance of the head of hand-forged and cut nails is easily distinguished from modern fixings, and for restoration and repair work it may be necessary to use modern reproductions.
These nails were expensive to produce and were used sparingly.
Early Cut Nails The introduction of cut nails dates from the late 16th century with the advent of water-powered 'slitting mills'.
Stamped Nails A machine capable of incorporating a simple head was introduced in the 1840s, and by the late 1860s nails had begun to be stamped, with several nails being produced at a time.
Wire Nails The wire nails which dominate the market today date from the late 19th century, although cut nails remained the principal form used until the 1930s, and are still common.
To determine if a piece of mirror is old, hold the tip of a key to the glass.
The closer the tip of the reflected Image IS to the tip of the actual key, the more likely it is that the glass is old.
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