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Until we bought this hardware, it had been stored in a New York warehouse where it had been shipped from Sweden just before the Second World War. The Swedish manufacturers, August Stenman A.B., were concerned that Sweden would be overrun by German troops and requested that their New York distributor, a Swedish emigrant, store their finished product inventory until Europe settled down. The New York distributor agreed, and the Swedish warehouses were cleared of finished product inventory and it was all shipped to New York.

When the air had cleared nearly a decade later, the American economy had changed and hardware demand patterns had changed with it. As a result, this hardware lay untouched in wooden crates in a New York warehouse for 60 years.

This basic hardware is well made. Most of the hinges are unfinished steel. Of particular note is the hardware that is hot-dipped galvanized with bronze pins. Designed for marine use, it has the near-magical quality of replating itself when damaged. As long as a few salt molecules and moisture are present, it will repair scratches electrolytically until it has been scratched to the point that no galvanized finish remains. The bronze pins minimize the abrasion in the high-wear area between the knuckles and pins.

A small quantity of the hardware came from Stenman's British factory (Nettlefold-Stenman, Cardiff Works) and a tiny amount of it is of later Japanese manufacture, but the vast majority of it comes from the shiploads that cleared those Swedish warehouses in the late 1930s. In general, this hardware is of better quality and at substantially better prices than similar hardware available today. Please note, there may be some minor surface rust that can be removed.

There are several unusual items in the loose-pin styles. The hinges with the cranked pins that were widely used on the stages of Europe and North America, for scenery in particular, allowed scenery to be quickly assembled and equally quickly disassembled. These hinges are also useful for removable gates and doors as well as for knock-down enclosures, as are all of the loose-pin styles.

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