In accordance with Czech law, my house must be visibly marked with my business identification number, my name, and the trade(s) that I am running here. So there is a small sign on the garden gate that says “manufacturing, sharpening, and repair of knives, shears and gardening tools and manufacture and repair of leather goods”. I have expected to get exactly zero business that way, because not very many people come by since I live at the end of a dead-end road, in the middle of large meadows. But my elderly neighbor has noticed it and she came by asking if I would sharpen her some shears, and two pruning shears ((large -loppers – and small). I have told her it will cost about 20,-€, which she accepted.
The pruning shears were modern tools and not in very bad shape. I had to disassemble them in order to sharpen them properly, but there was nothing interesting about them and sharpening did not take too long. But the ordinary shears were in very bad shape indeed.
Those were tools over fifty, some possibly even a hundred years old. They were extremely dull and battered, most did not even close fully at the tip due to excessive wear and lack of proper maintenance for decades. The protective nickel or chrome coating has mostly worn off and they were covered in patina instead. But they were made in times when things were made to last, so I got to work.
Thus I have sharpened all the edges and I bent the blades and the handles and peened the rivets so they close and cut properly all the way from the base to the tips. I did not attempt to remove the patina, since that could destroy them. But I have restored them to full functionality and, given the quality of their manufacture, they will now probably last several more decades. And I managed to do all this in just over an hour of work since it was not my first time I have so I knew what to do and how, otherwise asking for money would be a bit cheeky.
Even so, I was in for a surprise when I brought them to my neighbor, who was so thrilled with them that she offered twice the agreed price, which I had to decline. I would feel like a thief taking the price of several new shears for sharpening old ones, although I am convinced that these old ones are better now than many of the cheap new ones she could get for that price. But I have told her that I will gladly accept any pretty pieces of wood if she fells some of the sickly fruit trees in her garden.