No Quarter Tools and Restoration

Giving the Past New Life

Sara Walters, photos by Bob Good

“No Quarter” is a military team that loosely translates to “take no prisoners,” which when you’re talking about restoring axes, knives and hatchets, sounds a little dangerous. But it's fitting for business partners A.J. Moore and Jai Mather, not only because of their shared love of early American tools, fur trading, relics and woodworking, but also because of their drive and deep dedication to the craft of restoring these tools.

They both throw themselves into their passions, and this passion has made No Quarter Tools and Restoration a successful online retail business. Together, the pair has taken advantage of the recent boom in the hand trades and sold many mid-1800s to turn-of-the-20th-century tools. Top sellers include axes, hatchets, hammers, hand plane and draw knives, ranging from $25 to $250.

“General interest in the slow trades and craft has been growing. There are lots of shows about these things now,” says Moore. He explains that “slow craft” qualifies as something that doesn’t use electricity, takes time and requires conscious thought. For him, it has a meditative quality. For others, it’s the break from big box consumerism. “There’s an attraction to the authenticity of things done by hand,” he said.

Their 200- to 300-piece inventory comes mostly from auctions and estate sales, and the two restore their finds in their personal shops, coming together later to take pictures of the final pieces to post online. They cater mostly to Facebook groups with interests in tools, history, the timber trades and blacksmithing, to name a few.

For Moore, working with old items is in his blood. “My parents have been involved with antiquing for a long time,” he says. Their interest was mostly in early American pieces, including those from the frontier and the fur trade. When Moore met Mather, Moore learned about Mather’s interest in fur trade reenactment, and the business was born. “We collectively decided to get a hold of these tools and start making things with them,” Moore said. The rest is history. 


No Quarter Tools and Restoration

A.J. Moore and Jai Mather

No Quarter Tool Facebook