B.A.Hjorth 'Tools and Machinery' Division (1888-1916).

Discussion in 'Manufacturers' started by igh371, Feb 18, 2021.

  1. igh371

    igh371 SotM Winner Subscriber

    Jun 23, 2013
    Primus 1898 catalogue extracts-page-0.jpg

    The front page of the 1898 B.A.Hjorth catalogue (above) has long intrigued me. That catalogue features all 3 of the sub-divisions of Hjorth's offerings at that time. So it included not only the 'Cooking Equipment' stoves, but also the 'Soldering Equipment' section, which had some overlap with stove production, and finally the 'Tools and Machinery' section. Each section highlighted by the identifying logo which had been crafted and introduced in 1896. The first two of these logos are familiar to most stove collectors, but I have always wondered whether any tools were produced which were individually marked with the 'Tools and Machinery' logo:
    Primus 1898 catalogue extracts-page-0 (2).jpg
    Photographs from a recent auction collection have now shown definitively that the answer is 'yes'. And the piece of evidence in question is very interesting in illuminating this other side of Berndt August Hjorth's business activity.

    The photographs found show an adjustable wrench marked with the 1896 logo in which it is featured:
    Skiftnyckel Bahco Johansson a (2).jpg

    Skiftnyckel Bahco Johansson d (2).jpg

    The other side of the wrench is even more interesting and is proof of a very early date:
    Skiftnyckel Bahco Johansson b.jpg
    Skiftnyckel Bahco Johansson c (2).jpg

    The manufacturer is given as Enköpings Mekaniska Verkstad. This was the tool manufacture business of engineer Johan Petter Johansson, the man who was to modern hand tools what Svensson and Lindqvist were to the Primus stove. And it was Hjorth's association with J.P.Johansson that had given Hjorth the business base from which he was able to take on the marketing of the Primus stoves in 1892.

    J.P.Johansson's inventions and business just pre-dated Svensson and Lindqvist's. Johansson had started his workshop at Enköpings in 1886, and took out his first patent, for a pipe wrench (rörtång) in 1888. (An excellent resource for Johansson's life and career can be found here.
    Johansson's second great invention was the adjustable wrench (skiftnyckel), for which he took out patents in 1891 and 1892, and it was that that had led to the marketing deal with Hjorth in 1890.

    The markings on the skiftnyckel shown above indicate that it must have been made between the introduction of the logo of crossed rörtång and skiftnyckel in 1896, and 1916 when Johansson sold all of his holdings in the manufacture to Hjorth. Below are photographs of a rörtång made between 1916 and 1954, when the company name was changed from 'AB B.A.Hjorth & Co' to 'AB Bahco',
    Rörtång B.A.Hjorth c.jpg Rörtång B.A.Hjorth d.jpg Rörtång B.A.Hjorth a (2).jpg
    There does not seem to be any evidence of the 1896 'Tools and Machinery' logo being used on actual tools after 1916. But it did still appear in modified form in some advertising and on some other company materials until the 1954 change of company identity, for example in the case of this document binder:
    B.A.HJORTH RING BINDER, 1950s.jpg B.A.HJORTH RING BINDER, 1950s (2).jpg

    Further links: the Enköpings mekaniska verkstad, Fanna here, and re. Johansson here.

    @Christer Carlsson
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 18, 2021
  2. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom SotM Winner SotY Winner Subscriber

    Aug 25, 2009
    Lancashire, United Kingdom
    @igh371 That’s grand, Ian.

  3. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

    Jun 8, 2013
    Stinkpot Bay, Howden, Tasmania, Australia
    Thanks, Ian. :thumbup:


  4. Staffan Rönn

    Staffan Rönn SotM Winner SotY Winner Subscriber

    Oct 21, 2018
    Stockholm, Sweden
  5. Murph

    Murph United States Subscriber

    May 14, 2010
    Milwaukee WI, USA
    The family Hjorth must have been prolific when making tools! I have a set of Hjorth spring winding tools for making coil springs, however, they were based out of Boston, MA. The maker of these were Hjorth Lathe and Tool, patented in 1907.

    US861283A - Wire-winding tool. - Google Patents

    Last edited: Feb 21, 2021