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The Woodworking Blogs Aggregator

This "aggregator" collects all of the woodworking blogs I read every day - or try to anyway!  Enjoy!


Facebook Group Antique Tools Buy, Sell & Trade Weekly Friday - Saturday Auction Begins!

Toolemera - 2 hours 55 min ago
At the fairly new Facebook group Antique Tools Buy, Sell & Trade we are having the first of what will be the weekly Friday - Saturday auction! Along with the regular buy, sell and trade activities and the every day discussions about anything traditional tools and crafts, each week, from Friday AM until Saturday PM, any group member can post as many items as wanted in an auction format. The rules of the auction are: * WEEKLY FRI - SAT AUCTION RULES * Duration: Friday AM through Saturday PM * State AUCTION at the beginning of the item description *...
Categories: Hand Tools

I didn’t mean to do this…

Peter Follansbee, joiner's notes - 4 hours 1 min ago


I didn’t set out to make this at all. I only saw the original once, back in the early 1990s when I was researching the furniture made in 17th century Braintree, Massachusetts, by William Savell and his sons John & William.  But then recently I was given (thanks Michael) some really wide red oak bolts…so  I rived & planed up stuff & decided to tackle this form. (10″ high, 22″ wide, and about 16″ deep) I had built one once but I think it had no insides, I forget.

In the photo above, I have test-fitted the fixed top board, it will be trimmed after attaching it with wooden pins. It won’t get installed until the hinges are attached to it. First things first.

Many English boxes are just plain inside, but New England ones often (usually) have a till inside. The Savell shop had tills and drawers inside theirs, even their flat-top boxes like this one, I forget right now if there were drawers under the till nearest the camera:

Braintree box interiorBraintree box interior

It’s a particularly stupid arrangement – if you stuff things in the box, then you can’t pull the drawers out. But it has an obsessive compulsive appeal.

A desk/slant-lid box almost always is divided up inside. This one features two tills, a long open tray in the rear, and four drawers up above. One of the tills, closed – English oak for the till lid:

till closed


Same till, open:

till open

The original is missing its drawers, maybe they were cubbies w/o drawers –


but mine will have small oak drawers. I just ordered the dovetail hinges for it, and some curtain rings for the drawer pulls. When I get this far on a new project, I always wish I could make the 2nd one first – just made some trial & error sort of mistakes. Nothing major, but next time….

Now while I wait for the hardware from the blacksmith, I’ll plane up the board for the hinged lid, then I can go back to the joined chests I was making.

Spoons & more for sale here: https://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/spoons-baskets-bowls-for-sale-march-2015/

A New Issue of Wood News Online- March 2015

Highland Woodworking - 5 hours 14 min ago

wn115Our March 2015 issue of Wood News Online is now available for reading and it is chock full of some great woodworking project ideas, safety tips, and advice.

This month’s articles include:

My Tell Tale Pyrography- Professor Nsir Malik discusses his passion for pyrography – the art of decorating wood with burn marks. He discusses how he constructed his own “pyrography contraption” and shares some of his beautiful and colorful pieces of artwork that he has made.

Designing and Making a Bench- Rod Scott has had several other articles published within Wood News. This month he discusses a sitting bench he constructed using 2 cast iron end pieces that were found in an old barn on a homestead property.

We’ve got an in-depth review of the Hock Kitchen Knife Kit made by Ron Hock. We’ve also got a book review of The Soul of a Tree-A Woodworker’s Reflections, the biography and philosophy of woodworker George Nakashima. We’re excited to continue our Lie-Nielsen Tool of the Month column with Lee Laird’s review of the Lie-Nielsen No. 60-1/2RN Low Angle Rabbet Block Plane with Nicker.

Our Show Us Series includes:

Show Us Your Shop- Herb Schlobohm takes us on a tour of his anti-shop, which is a different take on the typical shops that we have highlighted in the past.

Show Us Your Woodworking- Butch Montgomery has built a variety of woodworking projects and enjoys paying attention to what people around him need, and then surprising them with a custom made piece.

Show Us Your Woodcarving- Rodney Miller, who we recently featured in our Show Us Your Woodturning column in The Highland Woodturner, has a passion for carving “Love Spoons” which can be made with just a piece of wood and a pocket knife.

This month’s tip columns include:

 The Down to Earth Woodworker- Steve puts a trio of popular woodworking tapes to the test, discusses design flaws in store bought wooden furniture (compared to pieces you’ve made yourself), and begins a new project- The 5S Compliant Shop Wall Cabinet.

Tips from Sticks in the Mud- Jim’s got a helpful tip on enlarging pre-drilled holes, as well as a money-saving tip on creative ways to store wood.

Alan Noel’s Finishing Tip- Alan shares a variety of common household items that you can use in your finishing processes. We’ve also got an Ask the Staff finishing tip on the best way to match stain colors.

A lot of our recent Safety Tips have discussed the dangers of blade spin down and this month Ed Scent gives us several suggestions for staying safe in the shop when you’re working around machinery with fast and sharp blades.

All of this and more including new product specials and sales in this month’s issue of Wood News Online.

The post A New Issue of Wood News Online- March 2015 appeared first on Woodworking Blog.

Categories: General Woodworking

Mallet Rant VIDEO

The English Woodworker - 6 hours 2 min ago

Here’s video blog number one. I’m starting out with a quick rant about ‘lumpy’ my mallet since this was one of our most repeated comments from the previous videos.


Categories: Hand Tools

Upcoming Conservation Project — Saint Joseph

The Barn on White Run - 6 hours 39 min ago

Another project new to the studio is this three-foot-tall carved wooden figure of St. Joseph.  My task will be to sculpt a new arm, which means I will need to look at a lot of similar sculptures, then fabricate a new one to make the sculpture seem whole.

c st joseph

One thing I will probably do to make the task “read” more sensibly is to apply an easily removable whitewash over the entire surface so that I can concentrate more fully on the form.  I will also try to discern a color scheme to see if there was polychrome or if it was simply painted to mimic plaster or marble.

Stay tuned.

Saw sharpening series – Saw vises, Part I

Blackburn Tools - 7 hours 53 min ago

This is the first entry in a saw sharpening serial. To ensure you don’t miss any future posts, you can subscribe to this blog by submitting your email address in the box to the right. You can also find related posts by searching this blog for “saw sharpening series”, or by visiting the full chronological index.

The series will be as comprehensive as possible without making it too tedious or dense for the writer or reader. Should the author belabor a point, it is because we believe it too important to leave unsaid or to chance. -Ed.

The qualities of a good saw vise, being the first part in a saw sharpening serial.

There are many places I could start this series, but the humble saw vise is a good one. In this installment, we will establish the criteria that make a vise good or bad. Future posts will address the working qualities of a range of vises, along with possible modifications.

A nearly countless variety of saw vises, both mass-produced and shop made, grace this world with their existence. The quality of these vises range from frustratingly useless to exquisitely useful. Choose one of the former and sharpening becomes a discouraging or impossible task; choose the latter and sharpening may become an enjoyable routine.

To increase your odds of finding or making a superior saw vise, there are several characteristics you should look for.

Above all, the vise must be rigid. By this, I mean that the vise cannot move about when you are filing. The vise itself, as well as the bench or stand it is mounted on must be rigid. It is of equal importance that the connection between bench and vise be solid.

Rigidity matters because pushing a file across a saw tooth also pushes the saw (and the vise holding it) away from you. Lacking rigidity, the vise will oscillate back and forth, which is bad for the file (it wears prematurely), your ears (the screeching can be dreadful), and the saw (the random motion makes it difficult to maintain any semblance of accuracy and precision in shaping the teeth). The larger the teeth, the more rigid the vise must be to resist this oscillation.

Don't be a dullard (Miseries of Human Life by Isaac Cruikshank, circa 1808. Courtesy of Jack Plane, pegsandtails.wordpress.com).

Don’t risk the wrath of passersby by using a weak vise. Yes, we’ve seen this illustration before (and will again, as it is one of my favorites). (Miseries of Human Life by Isaac Cruikshank, circa 1808. Courtesy of Jack Plane, pegsandtails.wordpress.com).


Of nearly equal importance is the ability of the vise to hold the saw securely. To do this, the jaws must grip the blade firmly and evenly across their entire width. To facilitate an even pressure distribution, the jaws on better vises are slightly curved. As the jaws are closed, the ends touch first, then bend until they meet at the middle as yet more clamping force is applied.

Lack of support for the blade leads to the blade chattering, with all of the attendant problems outlined above in the section on rigidity.

Compared to the two criteria above, other considerations pale. One of these lesser criteria is the width of the jaws. Having to continually reposition the saw is a minor inconvenience and annoyance. If you can find one with jaws that are at least half the width of your longest saw, you will need to move the saw no more than once.

Coming next – a look at some of the metal bodied saw vises, with brief discussions of their working qualities.

Categories: Hand Tools

Saw sharpening series – index

Blackburn Tools - 8 hours 2 min ago

I have created this entry as an index for my saw sharpening series. This index lists the entries in chronological order, which is a good order to read them in.

As I post the entries, I will update this index with links to each post.


Saw sharpening series – Saw vises, Part I - The qualities of a good saw vise

Categories: Hand Tools

Registrering av høvlane etter Sjur Nesheim

Høvelbenk - 8 hours 32 min ago
 Martin HermannEin av okshøvlane etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim (1939-2013) i Granvin. Foto: Martin Herrmann

I slutten av januar hadde vi ei samling på Voss for studentar på studiet Teknisk bygningsvern og restaurering på Høgskolen i Sør-Trøndelag. Studentane har bakgrunn frå ulike handverksfag og har spesialfagleg fordjuping i sine fag. Arbeidssamlinga er del av den spesialfaglige praksisen for snikkarane ved studiet. Målet med samlinga var å få kjennskap til verktøysamlinga etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim frå Granvin. Sjur var ein viktig tradisjonsberar som fleire av oss fekk høve til å lære mykje av. Tomas Karlsson og eg har skrive ein artikkel om dørsnikring saman med Sjur. Vi har også skrive om Sjur i fleire postar her på bloggen. Med den bakgrunnen er verktøysamlinga som Sjur Nesheim har etterlate seg av spesiell interesse for oss. Teksten under er skriven av Atle Østrem og dei fleste bileta er teke av Martin Herrmann, båe er studentar som var med på samlinga. Dette vert del 1. av rapporten frå samlinga, del 2. som tar for seg høvelmakinga kjem i ein seinare post.

Sjur Nesheim (1939-2013) var ein snikkar frå Granvin i Hardanger. Han er ein av dei siste me kjenner til som snikkra på gamlemåten. Han laga sine eigne høvlar som han brukte i produksjonen. Det er og høvlar etter far og bestefar hans i samlinga.

Verktøyet til Sjur er gitt i gåve til Kulturakademiet på Voss der verktøyet skal vere tilgjengelig i samband med undervisning i tradisjonelt snikkarhandverk. Verktøyet skal registrerast i Hardanger Folkemuseum sitt arkiv og me startar opp dette registreringsarbeidet under samlinga. Gjennom dette skal studentane få trening og innsikt i denne typen dokumentasjon ved oppmåling, registrering og teikning av høvlane til Sjur. Vidare skal studentane få trening i å laga høvlar. Dette ved å kopiere dei gamle høvlane til Sjur, eller ved å lage høvlar etter andre snikkarar. Høvelmaking vert innleveringsoppgåve i  spesialfagleg praksis for snikkarstudentane ved studiet våren 2015.

 Martin HerrmannLanghøvel, eller lokkert som Sjur sa,  laga av Sjur Nesheim i 2011. Foto: Martin Herrmann

Med tanke på at høvlane er tilgjengelige ved Kulturakademiet vert det bestemt at me bare tar med dei viktigaste opplysningane om dei i registreringa. Det gir trass alt meir informasjon å ta fram ein høvel å studera han direkte enn å lesa om han i ei opplisting. Høvlane vert fotografert i samband med registreringa. Ved å teikna høvelen vert me utfordra på å studera detaljer i utforminga av han. Det er nyttig når me skal laga høvelen etterpå. Når me arbeider med høvlane gjennom veka vert me godt kjend med dei. Høvelmakinga i kombinasjon med dokumentasjonen gjev oss eit grunnlag for å forstå kva for kvalitetar som ligg i ein god høvel. Me lærer kva me må legga vekt på når me skal laga vår eigen høvel og kva utfordringar som ligg i det å få den til å virke på best mogleg måte.

Dag 1. 19. januar 2015

Studentane møter på Tvildemoen, Voss saman med Roald Landøy frå Hordaland Fylkeskommune. Høvlane til Sjur blir lagt utover golvet slik at me får best mogleg oversikt over dei. Me sorterer høvlane grovt etter type høvel,-slik som langhøvel, okshøvel, pusshøvel, profilhøvel med meir. Høvlane blir førebels merka med nummer på maskeringsteip. Det vert laga eit rekneark som listar opp høvlane etter nummer. Innhaldet i lista vert diskutert. Me vert einige om berre å ta med dei viktigaste opplysningane førebels slik som type, namn, nummer og referanse til foto. Me er samde om at lista kan utvidast med fleire relevante opplysningar etter kvart som me vert kjent med høvlane.

Martin riggar til ”foto studie” i eit hjørne av lokalet. Alle høvlane blir fotografert mot kvit bakgrunn. Det blir tatt fire bilete av kvar høvel frå ulike vinklar. Bileta vert lagra i mapper merka med høvel nummer og bilde nummer. Referanse til bileta vert ført inn i registeret over høvlane.

 Atle Østrem  Atle Østrem  Martin Herrmann  Martin Herrmann  Martin Herrmann  Martin Herrmann

Roald Landøy viser oss bruken av teikneprogrammet ”Archicad”. Prinsippa rundt teikninga av høvlane vert diskutert og me kjem fram til ein måte å teikna på som er hensiktsmessig i forhold til dokumentasjonen av høvlane. Me har ikkje tilgang på Archicad og teiknar heller for hand på gamlemåten. Høvlane vert helst teikna i målestokk 1:1 slik at me syner detaljane så godt det lar seg gjera. Målet er at ein skal kunna snekra ein høvel ut frå teikninga. Me har ikkje tid til å teikna meir enn ein til to høvlar kvar ved dette høvet. Me vel ein høvel som me kan tenka oss å snikra seinare i veka.

 Atle Østrem  Atle Østrem

Dag 2. 20. januar 2015

Gunnar Kjerland kjem frå Hardanger Folkemuseum for å vera med på registreringa av høvlane. Samlinga skal inn i museet sitt arkivsystem. Han gjennomgår derfor registreringsskjema med oss og fortel litt om korleis arkivsystemet i museet er bygd opp. Samlinga får tildelt serienummer 1100 saman med bokstavane BHG (Bygdemuseet Hardanger Granvin). Referanse til fire bilete for kvar gjenstand (fotografert av Martin Herrmann) vert lagt til med bokstavane A,B,C,D. Merkinga vert då: BHG. 1101_A,B,C,D med stigande nummer for kvar gjenstand. Me oppdaterer skjema i forhold til den informasjonen Gunnar vil ha med i registreringa. Det som vert notert er namn/type høvel, mål, bredde på høveltanna, om det er klaff/forgatt/sponbrytar. Treslag vert og notert der me kan sjå dette sikkert. Særskilde opplysningar rundt bruk og eigenart vert omtala i eigen rubrikk.

 Atle Østrem  Atle Østrem

Høvlane vert merka med tusj på et underlag av neglelakk. Merkinga blir forsegla med eit nytt lag neglelakk utanpå. Gunnar og Atle arbeider med registreringa ut dagen medan Roald, Ellev ,Martin, David, Rune og Anne Mari er flittige med å teikne. Roald Landøy og Gunnar Kjerland takkar for seg etter endt arbeidsdag og overlet resten av arbeidet til oss studentar. Me held på med teikning og registrering eit stykke ut på kvelden.

Dag 3. 21. januar 2015

Roald Renmælmo og Trond Oalann kjem frå Oslo og sluttar seg til gruppa. Trond finn fram fleire høvlar som me må registrera. Me fortsetter arbeidet med nummerering, fotografering, teikning og registrering i skjema. Det vert snakka ein del rundt namnebruken på høvlane. Trond og Roald har informasjon om Sjur sin namnebruk på høvlane. Roald hentar fram svar på spørjelista om snikkarhandverket frå Ord og Sed i Norsk Folkeminnesamling frå 1934. Der er det nokre svar frå område i Hordaland som ikkje er så langt unna Granvin. Det gir oss supplerande informasjon som bekreftar ein del av den namnebruken Sjur hadde på høvlane sine. Slik dokumentasjon gjev oss inspirasjon. Gamal namnebruk kan vere ei viktig informasjonskjelde. Det kan fortelja oss noko om utvikling over tid og om geografisk utbreiing.

I galleriet under er det døme på teikningane av høvlane i samlinga til Sjur. Dette er eit lite utval av høvlane i samlinga som er målt opp og teikna som ei øvingsoppgåve på samlinga.

Oppmålingsteikning av høvel i samlinga etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim i Granvin. Oppmålingsteikning av høvel i samlinga etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim i Granvin. Oppmålingsteikning av høvel i samlinga etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim i Granvin. Oppmålingsteikning av høvel i samlinga etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim i Granvin. Oppmålingsteikning av høvel i samlinga etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim i Granvin. Oppmålingsteikning av høvel i samlinga etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim i Granvin. Oppmålingsteikning av høvel i samlinga etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim i Granvin. Oppmålingsteikning av høvel i samlinga etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim i Granvin. Oppmålingsteikning av høvel i samlinga etter snikkaren Sjur Nesheim i Granvin.

Meir om høvlane og høvelmakinga kjem i ein seinare post på bloggen.


Roald Landøy, Hordaland fylkeskommune. Trond Oalann, Hordaland fylkeskommune. Gunnar Kjerland, Hardanger Folkemuseum. Roald Renmælmo, HiST, Anne Mari Mehus, student HiST. David W. Hovden, student HiST. Ellev Steinsli, student HiST. Rune Hofslundsengen, student HiST.Martin Herrmann, student HiST. Atle Østrem, student HiST.

Arkivert under:Dørsnikring, Snikkarverktøy, Snikring av vindauge, Tilbehør høvelbenk
Categories: Hand Tools

Pennsylvania Spice Cabinet – Part Five

  Well, now that we have done some marking and measuring, and some sawing… we can now cut some joinery. Finally, some dovetails right? WRONG! Dovetails are so boring… and everyone does them. Besides, we have not done any chiseling exercise yet. (I promise, I...
Categories: Hand Tools

Today’s Article – Herms, Terms & Therms: Synonymous Terms?

360 WoodWorking - 9 hours 23 min ago
“As woodworkers and furniture makers, we have become accustomed to an arcane technical vocabulary that may sound foreign to the uninitiated. For example, kerf, quirk, pith, and muntin are just a few terms that we can all quickly visualize in our minds because we have learned the specific attributes of each and because there is […]

chiisai-fukurou:I finished my toolbox \(^-^)/I think it turned...

Giant Cypress - 9 hours 35 min ago


I finished my toolbox \(^-^)/

I think it turned out nicely :3 

It sure did.

541 Madison’s dresser pt 5 “More drawer frame stuffs”

Matt's Basement Workshop - 10 hours 3 min ago

Just when you thought you were finished, they pull you right back in again!

Actually I was never really finished, once I had the drawer frames glued up I still had a little more work to do on them before we’re ready to assemble the entire body of the dresser.

So in today’s episode we’re going to finish the construction of the drawer frames.

Chopping stopped dados

Chopping stopped dados

This involves cleaning up the dried glue and tweaking the joinery to insure the drawers will slide in and out smoothly every time. And it also involves cutting a dado down the center rails to accept a drawer guide we’ll install later to help keep the drawers perfectly centered.

Unlike the dados we cut for the sides of the dresser body, these dados are a stopped version. So this requires a little more planning to make sure they don’t show on the front face and a little chopping with chisels, followed by some tweaking with a router plane.

All of it can sound a little complicated, but it’s not as bad as you think it will be.

A full set of detailed plans are available for sale on my website, thanks to Brian Benham of Benham Design Concepts.

You can find them by visiting our new “Digital Downloads Store” by clicking here.

Episode available for download in the following formats:
|SD Video||720HD Video||Audio only|

Help support the show – please visit our advertisers

Categories: Hand Tools

it wouldn't stop.......

Accidental Woodworker - 12 hours 21 min ago
When I went to work this morning, I left about 20 minutes earlier than usual. The white stuff had started to fall and it was sticking by then. I wanted to allow myself some extra time to deal with the roads not being plowed.  This has been one screwball start to March so far.

At work I watched the white stuff keep coming down all day long. It started to taper off around 1400 and still hasn't completely stopped as of 1700. I had this surprise when I got home and it put a serious crimp on my decompression time in the shop tonight.

how I spent my time after work
I am getting a wee bit tired of shoveling this stuff. I especially don't like doing it after working all day long. I can't let it stay here and let mother nature melt it because the temps are nosing diving over the next couple days into the low 20's. Average temperatures for this time of year are the 40's during the day and 20's at night. If I didn't shovel this crap it would freeze and that would turn the driveway into a skating rink.

record 151
I bought two of these record spokeshaves from Jim Bode tools. This one came today and the other should come tomorrow or saturday.  If the cap iron didn't say record, I would not know that this was a record spokeshave.

sole is clean and the iron looks like it was sharpened recently
stanley in the back - record in the front
There isn't much difference in the two spokeshaves.The only difference I see is the 'meat' for the screw posts look to be a bit beefier on the record. The split on the stanley has now gone even further and has split the sole too.

won't come off
The cap iron won't slip off the screw. I had to remove it in order to get the cap iron free.

cap iron screws are different
The record screw (on the right) is a finer thread than the stanley. The irons swapped out and fit but the screws didn't.

stanley cap iron
The stanley lifts off the record screw without having to remove it. I don't want to have to remove the screw to remove the cap iron so I'll be using the stanley cap on the record.

had to do some woodworking
After fiddling with the iron to get the depth set right, I made some shavings. This is the record iron and it is sharp enough to shave this pine. I feel much better now that I have done some woodworking.

This spokeshave is pretty much ready to go to work. I'm not a nutso restorer who repaints authentic colors and finishes. The sole is clean and the iron needs a touch up and that is pretty much all I plan on doing with this one. We'll see how the second compares to this one.

I wonder what caused the split on the screw sleeve on the stanley? I know that I was pulling and pressing on the spokshave as I made the spatulas but it shouldn't have gone south on me like that. Maybe I had a spokeshave with a weak casting.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
What is Fe2O3?
answer - rust

Fingers in the Till - Rabbet Plane

Toolerable - Thu, 03/05/2015 - 11:32pm
Today my hand drops in my tool chest, and what comes out but my trusty Kenyon 1 1/8" straight rabbet plane!

My trusty old rabbet plane right after rehab.  That is, the plane was rehabbed!

This great old plane almost never made it as one of my regular arsenal of beloved tools.  It was one of the first planes I ever bought.  I can't rightly remember, but I would be surprised if I paid more than ten bucks for it on eBay.

The first thing I did was sharpen the blade.  The steel on this particular blade must be magic, because this is one of the only planes I have that I enjoy sharpening.  It cleaned up and became razor sharp in no time.

I next decided to flatten the sole, as it looked pretty  beat up.  One swipe from a plane, and WHAM!

I found a nail in the sole.

This plane languished for a couple years in this state.  I almost got rid of it when I read Matthew Bickford's book, "Mouldings In Practice."  This book inspired me to get that old rabbet plane running.

Long story short, I extracted the nail and glued a strip of some mystery tropical wood for a new sole, and I was in business.

Plane in use.
With the new sole, this plane transformed from a paperweight into one of the most awesome things known to man.

I resisted the temptation to round over the edge of the new sole.  This crisp, sharp edge allows this plane to ride in the mark from a marking gauge.
The first step in making a freehand rabbet - ride the edge of the plane in a mark from your gauge.
If your rabbet plane doesn't ride in a gauge line, you have to deepen the line with a chisel or something until your plane will register there.  The sharper the edge, the smaller the line can be.  This equals a step you can skip if the edge is crisp.

Another view of the plane riding in a gauge line.
Matt's book showed me how to do a rabbet in this way.  The idea is that you use your plane to deepen the mark.  The next stroke you bring your plane a little more upright.  After three or four strokes like this, you can then use that edge as a fence, and hog down to your depth (which hopefully you have marked out), and you are done.

Even if I had machines in my shop, I think I would do rabbets this way if I only had one or two to make at a time.
After establishing the edge of the rabbet wall, you can use it as a fence.
Rabbets this way are surprisingly fast and easy to do.  Before I understood this, I had no idea how a rabbet plane could be used to make an accurate rabbet.  I thought that it took some kind of magic skill from a true artist.  In reality, anyone can do it, it really is easy.

My recommendation would be to take a look at your rabbet plane, and if the edge is rounded over, dress the sole with a finely set jack plane until it is sharp again.

You can buy wooden rabbet planes brand new.  Just because it is expensive, it doesn't mean that it is a useful or more superior tool.  I saw one with a $250 price tag that had the edges rounded over for comfort.  To make them sharp would have meant taking the sole down nearly 1/8 of an inch!
A rabbet plane also excels at chamfers.
One also could be forgiven if they thought all a rabbet plane could do is make rabbets.  In truth, this plane can do so much more.

I find that when this plane is on my bench, I won't pull out my block plane.  This plane will make chamfers like a pro.  With the tall body, it is easy to see the angle that you are planing.

I think this is the reason there are so many examples of this tool in existence today.  This tool is extremely versatile.  Have you ever wondered why there aren't examples of wooden bodied block planes everywhere?  It is because this tool is better at it and more versatile.  It is smaller, and nothing could be more simple, as it is just a block of wood.  I suspect far cheaper, too.

The only thing I think you probably could say a block plane could do that this can't is use on a shooting board. 

Like a block plane, the rabbet plane can be set for a very fine cut.  In contrast, the rabbet can also be set for a cut as course as any roughing plane.

One thing I recently discovered, was that using this plane cross-grain (at least in soft spruce), leaves not only an expectedly rough surface, but a ragged edge on the rabbet, too.  If it is critical, this is where a filletster plane should be used.  One might be able to get away with a rabbet plane with an angled blade, but care would have to be taken to ensure to continually strike a line on the wall to sever those fibers.  A filletster plane has a knicker that does this automatically, and the angled blade leaves a much smoother cut.

In conlusion, I think that while this tool isn't essential for woodworking like the tools in my beginner's tool kit (jack plane, two chisels, a Japanese saw, marking tools and a sharpening stone), I would recommend this to be one of the very next tools a beginner should buy when they are ready. 
Categories: Hand Tools

Swat the Fly: Flies Are Dangerous

The Furniture Record - Thu, 03/05/2015 - 7:41pm

A local auction house just had one of their semi-annual Country Store auctions. As you would expect from the name, this auction is loaded with vintage and antique merchandise from long defunct small town retailers. NOS (New Old Stock, unsold and unused), displays, advertising, salesmen’s samples and tools. This auction had lots of tools and hardware store items.

This first item is interchangeable jaw pliers. I view things like this as the kind of tools you would find at Brookstone back in the 1980’s when it was the place lawyers and doctors went to buy tools. You can only use one set of jaws at a time and they never worked as well as a dedicated tool. It has its place in the world, I guess.

The overview.

The overview of Koeth’s Interchangeable Tool.

The jaws.

The jaws.

And the instructions.

And the instructions.

Here you have one of the most specialized oils you are likely to come across.

Cream Separator Oil.

Cream Separator Oil.

For this McCormick-Deering Cream Separator. Or one like it.

For this McCormick-Deering Cream Separator. Or one like it.

Need to stuff your sausage?

You can use this. (Chris, behave.)

You can use this. (Chris, behave.)

Need to shear things?



Or linearly.

Or linearly?

This stretches something…

I'm not sure what but but I bet it hurts.

I’m not sure what but I bet it hurts.

This is a manual seed drill (planter):

For the aerobic farmer.

For the aerobic farmer.

What makes this one more interesting is that is has an adjustment for three different seed spacings. By moving the gear, the you can set what rotation of the wheel drops the next seed thus varying the spacing.

Three settings for different crops.

Three settings for different crops.

This is a variation on the collapsing ruler. Instead of unfolding, it pulls out:

The linear collapsing rule.

The linear collapsing rule.

And finally the inspiration for this post:

The captions says it all. Who wouldn't want one?

The title says it all. Who wouldn’t want one? And only 10¢!

To see all 91 photos, click HERE.


Steam Bent Spoon Blanks

Tim Manney Chairmaker - Thu, 03/05/2015 - 6:44pm

Perfect crooks for spoon carving are rare in the wild, so I've taken to shaving blanks that follow the wood fibers and then steam bending them into the perfect crooks that my heart so desires to carve into spoons.  I lose some of the romance of searching for, finding, and working with a curve that was grown by a tree, but I gain a limitless supply of perfect crooked spoon blanks that are a true joy to carve.  

Because these blanks have no twisting, curling, or knotty fibers, they finish carve beautifully.  This makes it easier to leave the nice, long, consistent knife marks that are one of the calling cards of skillful spoon carving.

The process begins with a straight section of spoon carving wood and a froe.  I'm carving mostly red maple and paper birch these days.

I sight down the blank to orient the split in a way that avoids small knots.
Then tap the froe in...
and pull back...
to yield two halves.
I like to take a moment to look over the blanks and get myself oriented.

Then onto the shaving horse...

 ...to create a flat face that perfectly follows the wood fibers.
You know you've got it right when the wood cuts cleanly in both directions and the grain runs in straight lines from one end to the other.
Not quite there.  Notice the tearing on the right hand side and the V shaped grain lines starting a couple of inches in front of the shaving horse jaw.  It is a little hard to see on the red maple, but look closely.

Grain lines that run from one end of the blank to the other tell you that the blank follows the wood fibers.

I trim the edges square to the face.  I like to keep the blank a little wider than the spoon I will be carving.

I scribe the blank to 5/8" thickness.

...and shave to the scribed line.

I like the grain pattern inside the bowl when the bark side of the blank is the top side of the spoon.  The top of the spoon will be against the bending form.

I mark the outside of the bend so that I don't get turned around when the blank is hot from the steam box.

Basic bending form shape with blank in position.

Half an hour of steam and a couple of clamps create the bend.

Twelve hours later the blank has set enough to remove from the form and start carving.

Some of the fibers tore on the outside of this blank.

I shave down below the torn fibers...

...and then follow the newly exposed layer of fibers from one end of the blank to the other.

That nice flat surface is ideal for layout.

The back of the bowl should begin a little bit up the curve, for looks.

If you carve them fast these bent blanks are soft, like green wood. which they are!  But you'll want to carve them fast because at close to 1/2" thickness they dry out quickly and become more difficult to work with.  I have a handful of spoons and spatulas that I have bent like this that are in constant use.  Over the past year and a half the bends have opened very little.

Give it a try!  Spoons carved from these blanks can be very thin because they perfectly follow the grain and the sinuous curves make for beautiful, sweeping shapes.

Here is a link to pictures of an eating spoon that I carved like this last year.

Categories: Hand Tools

Saw sharpening – an upcoming series

Blackburn Tools - Thu, 03/05/2015 - 6:18pm

With a snow storm dumping about ten inches of snow on us today (the forecasters finally got one right!), I stayed home today to catch up on a few things. One of those is a series on saw sharpening, which I have wanted to do for some time now. I have been working on it in small bursts here and there, and while it is not yet nearly complete, it is time to finally start posting some of the material.

Over the coming year, the series will cover the equipment and tools needed, then delve into various aspects of sharpening. I will show how I do things in my shop, but also try to present other options and opinions.

If you want to make sure that you don’t miss any of these posts (or any others), you can subscribe to this blog by submitting your email in the box to the right.

Categories: Hand Tools

I came, I sawed

McGlynn On Making - Thu, 03/05/2015 - 5:16pm

I’m going to do another marquetry picture.  For practice.  Again.

I really (really) want to do a “real” project, but I need to get some more practice time in first.

The design for this came from a flower coloring book.  I traced it a couple of times, tweaking a few little details to get it to something I liked (and believed I could saw well enough).  It’s going to be a larger panel than I’ve done before, 8.5″ x 11″.  I picked out a very pale white veneer (probably Maple) for the petals, Bubinga for the colored rays, and a dyed red veneer for the anther.  I was careful to select the show faces when laminating on the reinforcing paper, and I dutifully made a reversed drawing for the pattern.  I’ll either saw it out or set it afire this weekend.

Design for the next marquetry panel.  The original drawing is on the right, my tracing is on the left.

Design for the next marquetry panel. The original drawing is on the right, my tracing is on the left.

But I really need to do a real project.  I don’t know if I’m at a loss of ideas, or if I have too many ideas.  Knowing me, it’s probably both.  Here are the ideas that have been going on in my head lately:

A reprise of the coffee cup cabinet, but with a marquetry panel on the door instead of a bookmatched panel.  That was a fun project, and it came out nicely.  I actually through about doing this particular flower design for the door of it.  I may still, the design isn’t quite big enough, but I can add banding and what-not to make the finished panel bigger.  What-not is a particular speciality of mine apparently.  (and you have to say “sepciality” with a British accent, spee-see-hal-ity).

Along the same lines, I have an idea to make a cabinet to store DVDs.  I have a great marquetry design in mind that I downloaded from the UK marquetry society.  My thinking is that this would be a frame-and-panel carcase.  The frame would be Cherry or Walnut, and the panels would be some sort of figured Maple, with the marquetry design on the front.

Marquetry design for another project

Marquetry design for another project

Astute readers will probably recognize the main rose bud in the picture from a recent practice panel.

My last practice panel

My last practice panel

So those two cabinets are fairly obvious projects, but I also have at least six other projects in mind.  A dutch tool chest (with a marquetry design on the inside of the lid), the Blacker House Serving Table I drew plans of recently, a cool tool tote that I bought plans for, another utility cabinet for the shop for my table saw accessories, a Wharton Esherick (ish) stool, a pair of casement windows, and let’s not forget about the bookcase for my wife.

The casement window is a funny story.  My shop has El-Cheapo (TM) aluminum sliding windows.  Last week a bee was buzzing around, and I went to swat it and blew the glass out.  Too much coffee I guess.  So I could replace it with a big-box-store plastic slider, or I could figure out how to make nice windows for my house by practicing on the shop.  You already know where my brain goes.

By the way, the bookcase is a funny situation too.  I realized, luckily just before buying a lot of very expensive 6/4 wide Q/S White Oak, that because of the turn from the hallway into the guest bedroom I couldn’t actually get the bookcase where I wanted to put it.  So a redesign is necessary.

I have to say it.  I also just want to go buy wood.  The local wood store has some nice clear vertical grain Douglas Fir, 4/4 x 12″ wide (tool chest!), as well as narrower 8/4 and 10/4.  And piles of Sapele.  Both of those could be nice to make windows…but do I really want to spend $300 on wood to make a window? (Yes!)  Oh, and I recently watched a couple of episodes of The Woodwright’s Shop where Roy made a neat standing desk from construction lumber.  I spend all day at a desk, and I don’t really like standing up in any case, but I still want to build that.

Maybe I’ll just go buy a load of wood tomorrow.  I’ll get enough for all of these projects.  Cherry, Fir, White Oak, Sapele.  Maybe a couple of Monterey Pine slabs to play with.  Then I have options.  No room to work, and my wife probably won’t speak to me, but I’ll have options.

Veneer for the new marquetry panel is in the press being laminated to newsprint to reinforce it.

Veneer for the new marquetry panel is in the press being laminated to newsprint to reinforce it.


Categories: General Woodworking

Reclaiming White Oak Framing

Sleepydog's Wood Shop - Thu, 03/05/2015 - 3:22pm

Well we just celebrated our first year in this house. and I thought I would update our progress. We ran into a major snag with the plumbing that shut us down for the whole winter. our sewer line was totally blocked and need to be have about thirty feet of it replace on the city’s side, but wouldn’t do the work until we found our clean out on the property line. After some digging and probing with a rod I located what I hoped was the clean out, the trouble was it was about two foot under a small grove of black locust. There was no way we was going to be able to dig it up with shovels and picks.

On to plan B

Plan B; move into our camper for the winter, not a lot of fun, but we got though it and we are still happily married.

When spring hit I rented a backhoe and cleared the trees, dug out all the old clay tiles and replaced it all with schedule 40 PVC, made a nice clean out for the city, and then still had to argue with them for two weeks before I could get them to fix their end of the pipes. They finally came and replaced about thirty feet, left the yard a mess, but at lease shit was flowing in the right direction again and everyone was happy.

With the plumbing worked out we got to work gutting the rest of the house. We replace the ceiling joist and raised the ceiling to ten feet, this had to be done over the existing ceiling which made it a challenge. we set up a rotary laser level then cut and fished the sixteen foot 2 x 6 joist through the existing framework nailed and screwed them with lag bolts. we also replaced the collar ties. With the roof tied together we removed the old joist and loaded bearing walls which were all rough sawn white oak. I happily pulled nail and cleaned each board. Then made a nice stack in the side yard that is stickered with 3/4 space between each layer.

Next project that has to be done is the floor, it is so badly constructed the only fix is to tear out and rebuild it. on the bright it is also 2 x 8 rough sawn white oak. on the other hand it is going to involve digging piers putting a thirty foot LVL beam and hanging all the joist off of hangers. and this is if we don’t run into any surprises like rotten sills or ban joist. this is also a swallow crawl space so there may be some digging involved. I want to install some 2″ close cell foam board around the inside of the foundation wall and get a get vapor barrier down, this is money well invested. Lumber will delivered the end of the week so look for more updates as we work though this.

Filed under: Home Improvements, House Rehab

We’ll always have Cincinnati.

The Slightly Confused Woodworker - Thu, 03/05/2015 - 3:21pm
The End?

The End?

Before I ever purchased a woodworking tool, I purchased a subscription to a woodworking magazine. I had already purchased some woodworking books, so subscribing to a magazine only seemed like natural progression in the process of learning how to woodwork. Just a few days ago I received my last issue of Popular Woodworking, which conversely was also the first woodworking magazine I ever subscribed. As of this moment, I will no longer receive a woodworking magazine in the mail for the first time in more than five years, and I’m not sure how to take it.

At the beginning of my “journey”, during any given time I usually had at least two subscriptions going, sometimes more. Eventually, I whittled those down to one, that being PW. I have a decent collection of woodworking books, in fact I just ordered another. I’ve also taken several classes and I own several very good videos. The truth is that I’m not sure if I necessarily “need” to subscribe to a magazine. Much of the information I am seeking can be found in the books, videos, and magazines that I already own. That would make subscribing to a magazine redundant, wouldn’t it?

I will admit that I’ve generally gotten a lot of enjoyment from PW over the past five years. The last issue could sum up my feelings towards the magazine in a nutshell: There were things I really enjoyed, some that were okay, and some I didn’t care for at all, but in general I liked it. That hasn’t been the case with some of the other magazines I’ve read.

So for the next few days I’m going to think about keeping my subscription or letting it fade quietly into the night. PW certainly doesn’t need me, and the loss of my subscription won’t hurt them any. One way or the other this is no Earth-shattering decision I’m making, just a minor fork in the road of my woodworking “journey”.

Categories: General Woodworking


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by Dr. Radut