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General Woodworking

Video: Joinery in Curvy Furniture

Popular Woodworking Editors Blog - Thu, 11/09/2017 - 8:48am
curvy joinery

Curvy furniture is great to look at and usually offers a tactile aesthetic that makes it appealing. Holding it all together is the joinery – and whether it’s dovetails, tenons or lap joinery, creating that joinery on a curve adds a new level of complication. Whether made by hand or by machine, most of our training on making joinery starts with having flat and square stock to start with. We use reference […]

The post Video: Joinery in Curvy Furniture appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

More With RECO-BKLYN’s Roger Benton – 360w360 E.257

360 WoodWorking - Thu, 11/09/2017 - 4:10am
More With RECO-BKLYN’s Roger Benton – 360w360 E.257

In this episode of 360 with 360WoodWorking, Roger Benton, co-owner of Re-Co BKLYN (recobklyn.com), spends more time with us. During the discussion, he talks more about his design ideas and what jazzes him about his work. We also hear a great story about an incident about which many of us could relate.

Join 360 Woodworking every Thursday for a lively discussion on everything from tools to techniques to wood selection (and more). Glen talks with various guests about all things woodworking and some things that are slightly off topic.

Continue reading More With RECO-BKLYN’s Roger Benton – 360w360 E.257 at 360 WoodWorking.

new hammer handle.......

Accidental Woodworker - Thu, 11/09/2017 - 2:01am
My order from the Hammer source was waiting for me when I got home. I tried replacing the handle and doing it went smoothly. The results weren't too bad considering it was my first ever attempt. I had few other toys come in too and I had to play with them. So that ate up my time to make my plane storage cubby. No biggie as I am not on any deadlines here.

disappointed here
I thought I had ordered the Thorex 712 like mine (on the right). Instead I got this one made by Vaughan from England. It is similar but it isn't the same. The size of the heads and the plastic faces appear to be the same. I will strip the stickers off the handle along with the finish and put on a couple of coats of shellac. That is what I did to my hammer.

comes with the wedge slot already done
it fits
I read a bunch of hammer replacement posts and I was looking forward to doing some shaving and fitting. The handle is a snug fit in the bottom of the eye.

used Miles's new hammer to fix the other one
a bit of slop at the top of the eye
All the things I read on this said to shave and fit the handle until it filled the eye. Even with the wedge installed I think that there is going to be some daylight between the walls and the handle.

wedge was too wide for the eye
I scored the wedge with the sheetrock knife and snapped it off. I trimmed it to fit with a block plane. I just happened to have a few them handy.

instructions don't mention glue
They say to put linseed oil on it before you fully seat it. I don't have any linseed oil so I'm skipping that. I'll make up for that by using hide glue on the wedge.

two new metal wedges
I'll put these in tomorrow after the wedge has set up.

blurry pic is hiding the boo boo
I had to tap it one more time and I got my reward. It split on the right side.

I glued the split and set it aside to dry
new toy for me
I'm still on a journey to find my marking knife and I'm going to try this one.

not a plug for them, it's where I bought it
why I bought it
I don't want anther spear point knife. I am getting used to a single bevel knife but I notice one hard point with them.  All the marking is concentrated right at the point. When I mark a knife line I do so with all the stress at the point and the other 99% of the knife's bevel is not used.

This knife has a curved bevel and a point. With this one I can start my knifing with the point and rock it to use the bevel to complete the line. With this one I should get more use out of the bevel then just the area by the point. At least that is what I am thinking I can do.

I stropped the bevel and the back and tried it out. Rocking the bevel worked and I didn't have any problems transferring a line 360 on piece of scrap. It isn't as sharp as my Japanese marking knife but this isn't or hasn't been sharpened by me yet.

The instructions for sharpening it say to put a piece of sandpaper on a T-shirt and drag the bevel on it by pulling it straight back. The T-shirt is soft enough to have some give and allow you to follow the round bevel on the marking knife. I'll give it a try when I sharpen it.

added a few more tools to Miles's toolbox
I have a pile of scrapers and taking these for Miles's toolbox didn't even put a dent in the pile. I would like to get a thinner, flexible rectangular scraper but even I don't have one. All of mine are thick and don't bend/flex too much.

I don't have too many more tools to cross off the list. I have some of them but I haven't rehabbed them yet. Once I do that, I'll cross them off. The list is slowly shrinking. The only biggies left are a dovetail saw and and a set of chisels.

parts for the bottom of the new plane cubby
The two cross pieces will be let into the bottom of the sides flush. The back will the held in place in a rabbet sealing up the back. With the top shelf on this space should stay relatively clean.

the back is the same width as the sides
After the cross braces are in, I'll cut two pieces of this to go inbetween them. The sliding shelf will ride in and out on them. And since it is plywood, I don't have to worry about expansion and contraction.  Maybe tomorrow I'll actually get some 'put it together' woodworking done on this.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
Who was Laika? (hint: it's a dog)
answer - Laika was the first living creature to orbit the earth

Live Edge Class at Snow Farm, Massachusetts – Part 3, Ben’s Table Completed

Popular Woodworking Editors Blog - Wed, 11/08/2017 - 9:43am

When connecting a Live edge waterfall joint together we need to expect a “tectonic” shift of the connected corner. While mitering the two banks of the joint at 45 degrees we remove a considerate amount of wood in the shape of a triangular prism from the lower part of the miter. So in order to make the miter flow nicely from one side to the other, Ben had to gouge […]

The post Live Edge Class at Snow Farm, Massachusetts – Part 3, Ben’s Table Completed appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Joel's Blog Ten Ways I am Doing Things Differently - Part 4

Tools For Working Wood - Wed, 11/08/2017 - 4:00am

I've been working with wood since I was a kid. I took my first woodworking class at the 92nd Street Y when I was 6 years old. I've been taking classes and building stuff for over 35 years. For the last 17 I have been working at Tools for Working Wood. In that time, new tools and new techniques have come on the market. By and large I have ignored them in my personal work. However, I haven't ignored everything, and my methods of work have in certain areas changed dramatically for the better. I've broken up my list of ten things into three posts so I don't drone on and on to long. This is Part 3. Part 1 is here. Part 2 is here. Part 3 is here

The Moxon Vise

As I have gotten older it's been harder and harder for me to see anything. And bending over isn't much fun either. This isn't a joke. Sawing joints has always been problematic for me and I currently wear magnifying glasses for any close work. My bench (Frank Klausz style made over 30 years ago) is the right height for just about everything except cutting dovetails. It's just too low. So I hunch over thinking "there must be a better way." About ten or so years ago I found out about Jeff Miller's Bench on Bench. I built one and it was a big step in the right direction. Basically a Bench on Bench was a little table you put on top of your main bench and it has a double vise in the front.

Then along came the "Moxon Vise" popularized by Christopher Schwarz. The vise gets it's name from Joseph Moxon's "Mechanick Exercises" But as I wrote last week the actual connection between the wood press illustrated in Moxon's book and how the Moxon vise is used to today is at best tenuous.

Many vendors now sell complete vises or just hardware kits. We used to offer the entire vise but currently we are only offering hardware kits which we are very pleased with. Our kit came about initially from a joint project with the . They came up with the ears on the sides, a cambered jaw, and the little shelf for clamping tails during layout. We added acme screws, washers, big nuts that don't wear out their mortises and spin, and handles that can be moved out of the way. You can read all about how to design your own Moxon Vise here.

The big reason the Moxon Vise made my list of ten is that I feel that by raising the overall height of where I saw I can see better, bend over less, and the whole process feels so much less jury-rigged. I am sawing better and more accurately - partially at least because I can see what I am doing , but also with the work clamped pretty low in the vise I can still easily saw uphill and have the work solid and vibration free. Not to mention my posture is better and it's less tiring.

The picture above is me in the middle of sawing out tails using one of the showroom / class benches where we have fitted Moxon vises at each end.

So that's my list of ten ways my work has changed. I hope to be able to say in a few years that my skills have gotten better, that I am still learning, and maybe have an even better list.

Has your woodworking changed over the years too? I welcome your comments.

I stumbled upon it....

Accidental Woodworker - Wed, 11/08/2017 - 1:01am
Last night the newest book by Jim Tolpin and George Walker was waiting for me when I got home. From Truths to Tools awaited my perusal.  I was getting worried about it as the USPS has a habit of delivering my mail to other addresses. But there was joy in Mudville last night. There was a chapter devoted to the Libella which I was not expecting. I thought it would be mostly on sector related things but the book is packed with other ingenious gadgets the ancient people used. And what I like about it is that there isn't any math or number manipulations that have to be done.

The underlining principles that make the Libella work as a level I got right even though I didn't know it. The Libella does have to be made accurately because it relies on the principles of right triangles. When the plumb bob hangs down it forms a right triangle from the apex to the horizontal brace out to the legs. This is what I stumbled on and got right without realizing it.

I would post a pic of the book page but I am wuss when it come to things like that. I don't want to chance violating some copyright and getting sued. I've done it in the past naively but I won't do it anymore unless I have it carved in stone that I can.  My wife told me to snap a pic of a partial page and credit where it comes from. I will say that the Libella starts on page 123 and leave it at that.  The book is well worth the $25 admission price so you'll have to buy it to see for yourself.

thanx Steve
I am not a fishing guy and don't remember any fishing line looking like this that my brother used. It doesn't look or feel like the fishing line I have.  I'll use this for the plumbline stick.

kind hard to see
It is against this block that you need to see where and how the string hangs. I am going to try and mark this with a black sharpie and see how that shakes out.

$28 bargain
I could not pass this up for this price. I need a crosscut backsaw for Mile's kit and this will work.

round head saw nuts
I don't know diddly about dating saws but this is the first time I've seen round head nuts on any type of saw. The handle is clean and doesn't have any dings, chips, or blowouts anywhere on it. The handle feels dry so I'll have to get it refinished ASAP.

Grace saw nut screwdriver
The handle was a bit wiggly and loose so I tightened the screws. So far this screwdriver has fit in every single saw I have tried it in. And with this saw, it fits everyone I own.

Dead nuts straight
Not even the slightest deviation off of zero any where down the tooth line. All the teeth are even, none are missing,  and they are all the same height down the length. I definitely got a $28 bargain and I would like to get one again. I need to find a dovetail saw for Miles's toolbox.

kind of sharp
The teeth appear to be filed for crosscut and it sawed this pine scrap easily. Considering that it is pine, the cut is pretty good looking. The saw does feel like it could have a touch up filing done on it.

sailed through this 5/4 pine
nothing on the big button
There isn't any etch on the saw plate neither. Maybe that is why this was so cheap.

ever heard of Jackson saws Bob?
two carcass saws
Now I don't feel bad about keeping the bottom saw for me.  The one I just got feels as well balanced as the Disston saw on the bottom. I like the look of the handle on bottom one better than the one I just got though. I don't think Miles will mind because this one will be his.

just need a dovetail saw
 I've been looking for a dovetail saw for over a month and no luck so far. I saw two but both were priced over $300 each. I can buy a LN for less than half the price of one of them. I'll keep looking but I think I may end up buying an LN dovetail saw.

change 3, alteration 7C, upgrade 1.01, rev XV7.3
The biggest reason I wanted the cabinet to stow the planes in was to keep them clean and dust/dirt/debris free. Nixed that, KISSed it, and I am going down another road. The plan now is to make a 'U' shaped carcass with a slide out shelf on the bottom. These three planes on going to be on that shelf.

the top
The top will be screwed into the two sides creating the 'U' shape. The top will be fixed and won't be sliding out or in. I also have enough room to put my scrub plane on it. The top will still be getting dirty but this will all change once I make my new bench. That will have dust and dirt free storage for all my planes.

this has been cleaned up
 I have three holes in the bench for the hold fasts and it surprises how much crap falls down through them onto my planes. I don't think I glued down the plane division strips and I'm about to find out if I did. I will be removing the first four of them - L to R.

one empty slot has to go
The empty slot to the left was for a #4 that I gave to Miles. The slot on the right is for a #3 that will stay. I will remove the #4 slot and put the #3 in it's place.

dry fit looks good
I will nail this down later. I want to get a little further on with the new plane storage cubby before I commit to this. I may want/need to change it as I develop the 'U'.

the 'U' sides
Might not need to put that oak strip on the right side of the #3. I should be able to use this to keep it in place.

plenty of height
I will half lap or half mortise a cross piece at the back and front (not this wide or thick). I'll use them to keep the sides parallel and to attach the 'U' shape to the shelf.

the top will be screwed to the sides
I think that this is a simple design and it should work. I have the basic shape I want and the next step is figuring out the sliding shelf details. I want it to have a stop so it doesn't fall on the deck when I pull it out. I could be absent minded about it and drop it and my planes on the deck. I don't want to to be on the losing end of a bounce test with Mr Concrete Floor.

As I was leaving the shop I went by 4 big sized sheets of 1/2" plywood. I think that it would be adequate for the bottom sliding shelf and for the top one. I'll keep the 3/4" stuff for the sides. Using 1/2" stock will knock back the size somewhat. Maybe by tomorrow's shop time I will have thought up something to try.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
President Thomas Jefferson named his estate Monticello. What was his neighbor, President James Monroe, name for his estate?
answer - Highland

Human Touch.

Inside the Oldwolf Workshop - Tue, 11/07/2017 - 9:26pm

Robert G Indahl

Robert G. Indahl, 81, of West Salem, passed away on Friday, Oct. 27, 2017 . He went peacefully at home with the scent of fresh baked cookies filling the house and his wife’s, daughter’s, and granddaughter’s voices in the air. He was born in the summer of 1936 to Harry and Blanche (Osbourne) Indahl and often told fond memories of growing up on the farm. He graduated from West Salem High School in 1954 and entered the Wisconsin National Guard where he served until 1962.

In August of 1964 he married Karen (Koll) Indahl and so began the adventure of their lives together. Having four daughters and one son made his life full but he still found time for his many passions. He was fond of photography and art, returning to Western Technical College and earning a degree in Commercial Arts in 1992, he was often pestered by his children and later grandchildren to draw pictures for them. He enjoyed camping and aviation, for a time holding his pilot’s license and part ownership in a plane. He liked to be prepared for anything and was known to carry more gadgets and tools in his pockets than seemed possible. He sang in barbershop quartets and in the church choir. He was very active in the church and on the school board and was a long-time member of The American Legion.

Maybe most importantly, over the years, Robert and Karen opened their home and hearts to numerous foster children both official and unofficial. From babies dropped off wearing only diapers to their children’s friends. Many, many called them Mom and Dad. Robert was a man of patience and kindness and will be missed.

He is survived by his wife Karen (Koll), daughters Sarah (Joseph) Avampato, Rachel Indahl, Naomi (Derek) Olson and Rebecca Indahl. And his grandchildren Ashley, Alexandria, Nicholas, Chloe, Fayth, and Infinity.

He is preceded in death by his parents, sisters Pauline Ardel (Delbert) Wiltsie and Joyce (Leonard) Hemker and his son Joseph.


A year ago when my wife and I bought a new house with my in-laws it was so we could all help take care of each other. Advanced age had made some things difficult for them and we figured our help was better than any assisted living facility. In retrospect I'm glad we, and especially my daughters, had the extra time around them both. Life is inevitably unpredictable, and a short 13 months later we lost Bob due to health complications. The obituary above is one of the most difficult things I've had to string together words for.

And now I find myself at the threshold of another difficult and related task. Bob had decided on cremation a long time ago. But as I sat near Karen listening to the little funeral geek lean into his ash container sales pitch I started to lose my temper. All the selections "tastefully" arranged on the wall were crap. Giant ceramic golf balls and baseballs, gilded vessels of robotically turned aluminum, not one item, not one with soul and heart and the touch of the human hand. We had carefully coordinated the final days of Bob's life with hospice, seen to his needs and arranged to have all his daughters get time with him near the end. We brought him home to his own bed, worked to keep him comfortable as we comforted ourselves. There was human hands, and touch, and love in every decision, every care and every moment. Why should the box that holds his ashes be less considered.

I spoke up before the pitch started. Thanks to the cremation I would have a little time to build a box, a box fit for a human, in the shop where Bob would sometimes sit and watch me work and tell me all the reasons I should find a good radial arm saw like the one he used to have.

My own post-op weight restrictions modulated from 10 to 25 lbs for the last two weeks of my convalescence. Enough to get out in the shop and work if I want and out to the shop I'd go, somehow believing inspiration would just strike me. I had a box in mind but I also had dimensions from the funeral geek for the interior of the air tight, atom bomb proof box my human construct would have to fit inside. I think I was overwhelmed by the responsibility.

I looked at a hundred designs on google photos, and many of them were beautiful and artistic, but the box I was building wasn't intended to carry the burden of shelf display with quarterly dustings. Mine was intended for the ground and the burden was the desire to house a human being's remains inside something made by a human being.

Last night I curled up to my wife and was nearly passed off to sleep when my mind clicked on the image. I could see it clearly, all the joinery, the look, the finish. I could see the construction using some walnut cut from a tree that fell on Bob's childhood home farm. Two remaining boards have followed him for years. He passed them on to me, and asked after them often, but whatever his suggestion, using them didn't feel right until now.

I almost let myself continue off to sleep, promising I'd remember clearly in the morning. My rational mind reminded me that was bullshit. So at one in the morning I found myself sitting in my robe, hunched over a card table set up for all the visiting company and not yet put away, scribbling away in my sketchbook.

Once I had the idea fully rendered I closed the book and went back to bed. This afternoon I returned to the sketches and notes. The thing is there, fully visualized. Tomorrow I head out to the shop with a plan and a purpose. I should have enough to make at least two, a matching one for Karen come her time.

I owe Bob so much. Everything really. Even though I was a loudmouthed long-haired teenage punk dating his daughter, he always showed me patience and kindness, and sometimes turned a necessary blind eye I'm not sure I could. Every decision he made in his life delivered the most important gifts to me. My wife and my daughters. I hope I'm worthy of the challenge.

Ratione et Passionis


Categories: General Woodworking

Product Video: Sjobergs Elite Workbenches

Highland Woodworking - Tue, 11/07/2017 - 7:49am

If you’ve been looking for the ultimate professional woodworking workbench, look no further. Sjobergs Elite Workbenches come in a number of different configurations, and are all constructed with dense, clear European beech. Every Sjobergs bench comes equipped with two massive 29″-wide vises that open to 5-3/4″, won’t rack and can be configured for left- as well as right-handed use.

Steve Johnson, the Down to Earth Woodworker, took a closer look at a Sjobergs workbench. Watch the video below to find out more!

The post Product Video: Sjobergs Elite Workbenches appeared first on Woodworking Blog.

Categories: General Woodworking

Easy Entry Digital Woodworking — Preparing Patterns for an Outside CNC Vendor

Popular Woodworking Editors Blog - Tue, 11/07/2017 - 5:17am

In earlier posts in this series, I explained how you can take simple computer drawings and make paper patterns. In my last post, I revealed the process I used for years for making MDF patterns. But, how do you do that if you don’t own a CNC?  Outsource it. Here are a few tips on finding and working with a local CNC shop. If you look around your area, you should be […]

The post Easy Entry Digital Woodworking — Preparing Patterns for an Outside CNC Vendor appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Finishing Workshop @ CW – Undulating Surfaces

The Barn on White Run - Tue, 11/07/2017 - 5:10am

One of the frequent challenges for finishers is the undulating surfaced — carvings, moldings, and similar.  In reviewing the historic methods for the CW crew I emphasized the problems of square-tipped brushes for this process, as the corner tips of the brushes often squeegee on the raised surfaces being varnished, resulting in excess varnish and runs dripping down the surface.  This result often causes hair pulling and pungent language.

In the past the ancients often used oval or even round brushes similar to sash brushes, and thus reduced the problem.  In our time, we not only have these brushes to rely on but also a form used by water colorists, the Filbert Mop.  The tapers oval tip of a Filbert makes varnishing a vibrant undulating surface a piece of cake.  Not only are there no brush corners to deposit excess varnish where you do not want it, but the tapered oval tip drapes the surface excellently.

The preparation for carved surfaces is essentially the same as flat surfaces; good tool work followed by scraping as necessary, and finally burnished with a bundle of fibers.

After that it’s simply a matter of applying the varnish by brush, and not too surprisingly this crew tool to this like a fish to water.

After the initial application dries, the surface can once again be burnished with the carver’s polissoir, a tool I designed for my broom-maker to fabricate along with all the other polissoirs he makes for me.  This was followed by  second round of varnishing, and the pieces were ready to be rubbed out with beeswax and rottenstone (grey Tripoli).


the next project is.......

Accidental Woodworker - Tue, 11/07/2017 - 1:03am
Been thinking about what the next project will be and I decided. I have 4 planes that I am rehabbing in various stages of done that I should be doing. I have my Record 53E vise that I should be cleaning up and getting it ready for the upcoming bench build. I am almost done paying Lowes off but I forgot about xmas being right around the corner. So it looks like the bench will have to wait until after the new year. The vise can wait too.  But I can start on the new project and that will keep me from playing in the streets.

Stanley 71 for Miles
I got this from Josh at Hyperkitten. I think this will be a good gauge for Miles. It has two independent moving arms that can hold two different settings. It can be used as a marking gauge or a mortise gauge.

Miles's Stanley 72
I thought that 71 I had the same features as a 72 except for being made of the same type of wood. They are basically the same gauge with one major  difference.

the 72 has a brass wear plates
The 72 has brass wear plates on the marking pins and on the fence. This is what I got confused with the 71. It is still a good gauge but if I see a 72 I'll buy it and swap it out with this one.

Miles gauge herd
This is as far as I'm going with this. He should be able to do everything with these 3. The top gauge is a Stanley 65.

the plumbline stick ready for string
I did good on drilling my line. I nailed it on the centerline on this face and the front edge. If I had missed either of them, I would have two options. Fill the hole and drill it again or drill a bigger hole in the errant one.

dull razor blade
It is dull but not so dull that it won't cut flesh. I used this to scrape the paint that spilled over onto the face here.

It is gone from the face and didn't effect the sides at all. Sandpaper wrapped around a stick will work too. But I think the razor blade scraper action leaves behind a cleaner surface.

back of the frog
Two coats of black and this is done. I can paint the entire frog and set it aside to dry on the frog seat. I'll scrape the face and the seat one last time when this coat is dry.

the next project
From the block plane on the left over to the leg on the right and backwards up to the #8 is the new project real estate. The plan is to make a small cabinet with two drawers to hold the 3 planes here plus some others.

about 9"
This restriction in the height isn't carved in stone. From the shelf to the underside of the bench is a little bit more than 12". I can inset the cabinet in so that the front face of it is behind the dog holes. Then the dog will only be in the way of opening or closing the top drawer.

a pattern board

This board is the size of the ID on the cabinet. I'm allowing an inch for the sides and I'll use it to find the optimum placement of the planes.

I got most of them to fit here, the 140 was left off
I would rather lay the 073 (at the back) on it's side along with the bullnose plane.  I can do that but I can't fit the edge plane on here in a way I like. Looking at this, I'm also not to happy about the 073 being at the back. I don't use it often but it may prove difficult to get out of the drawer. It is looking like I will have to pull it out entirely to have access to it.

cut out another pattern board from cardboard
I forgot to factor in the dimensions of the drawer. I am losing an inch for the sides and another inch for the sides of the drawer. I might not get the 073 to fit in a drawer now. I have 12" to play with and the 073 is 11" long. I'm already down to 10" for the drawer ID side to side, so I may not be able to fit it.

bottom drawer
top drawer
I have already thought of an alternative placement. The 140 in the lower right corner with the 102 and 60 1/2 to the left of it. The other planes, which I don't use as much, can be placed at the top. Maybe. All of this is as hard set as Jello.

roughly 8"
I'll have to allow for the bottom thickness of the cabinet and the drawers so this will definitely be over 9" high.

the plywood scraps are too small to use
my first choice
I want to use this 1/2 stock to make the new plane storage cabinet. I am having my doubts about it being strong enough for this. These planes will weigh a lot and I'll need a beefy drawer bottom to support them. I also will need to make a strong drawer to be able to move it in and out without having it falling apart.

Food for thought and I'll sleep on this for now and attack it tomorrow.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
Who is Soyean Yi?
answer - she was the first Korean astronaut

Salvaged Lumber: Part One

Popular Woodworking Editors Blog - Mon, 11/06/2017 - 8:49am

People use the term salvaged to describe a variety of lumber. Salvaged lumber can be cut out of beams, joists, or other parts of buildings, whether remodeled or demolished. It can come from cabinets, furniture, packing crates, or other objects no longer in use. It can come from a tree felled by a bulldozer to make way for new construction or uprooted by a storm. Using material from any of […]

The post Salvaged Lumber: Part One appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Plymouth CRAFT – spoon carving in December and Sharpening in January

Peter Follansbee, joiner's notes - Mon, 11/06/2017 - 8:40am

The closer you get to the end of the year, the faster time goes by. Maybe the older you get the faster it goes too. Paula, Pret and I have started sorting out stuff for Greenwood Fest, who’s doing what, etc. But in the meantime, we have a few courses closer to the horizon. There’s a spoon carving class coming up in early December at Overbrook in Buzzard’s Bay.


We have held classes there a lot, it’s a wonderful place. 2 days, lots of spoon wood and Paula’s lunches. December 9 & 10, 2017. https://www.plymouthcraft.org/spoon-carving – plus both afternoons there’s a German Holiday baking class going on with Kirsten Atchison – maybe if you’re good they’ll let you sample some goodies https://www.plymouthcraft.org/german-holiday-baking and https://www.plymouthcraft.org/more-german-holiday-baking


Then the following month, after all the hubbub dies down, is Tim Manney’s sharpening class. This class is a deceptive thing. Sharpening classes are not as glamourous as a project-based class, but the skills you develop in this class reach into every aspect of your woodworking.





Tim gets things fiercely sharp, and is an excellent teacher.  https://www.plymouthcraft.org/an-axe-to-grind Last year, people were scooting around asking “what else can we sharpen?” – I’m going to be around for it, and I’ve been cleaning my loft out in the shop. I plan on bringing a box of tools that will be free for the taking – but you’ve got to sharpen them!

Hope to see some of you there…or beyond.

record 077 and libella done.....

Accidental Woodworker - Mon, 11/06/2017 - 1:01am
Had a good day in the shop. I still didn't have any idea what was going to be on my plate at on dark thirty but I managed to put three things in the done column. I got the Record 077 rebate plane all nice and shiny. It has taken up residence in Miles toolbox now. I also got the two libellas I made checked out and working.  I quit the shop around 1400 so I could catch up on my reading.

I found a hammer handle at the Hammer Source. This is the same place I got my Thorex 712 hammer and I bought one of them to put in Mile's toolbox. I ordered a replacement hammer handle and I was happy to find out that each order comes with the necessary wedges - included in the price of the handle.

I had a bit of confusion with it in regards to the eye of the hammer. The instructions on the site say to note the shape of it and then get the long and short measurements of it. What I found confusing was they didn't say which end of the eye to take the measurement from.  I tried to find something on line about it but I didn't find anything helpful. I measured the bottom of the eye, which made sense to me to do. The top is tapered/flared and with the wedges installed it will push the handle outwards against the walls. I'll find out next week whether or not I pissed away $10.

yoke hanging out
There isn't any rush to get this painted. I'll let this hang here for another day to cure out. On monday I'll put the second coat on it and it will be done.

the frog hanging out
I have the frog hanging out on the frog seat. That is not painted and provides a good seat for it while dries.

mineral bath worked
I came down to the shop at 2100 on saturday night (after I did the DST clock dance steps) and checked this. I ran this face over some 220 grit and it removed all the oily crap right away.

rip back saw
I got this too late to put in yesterday's blog post. My wife told me there was a box on the front steps when she came home. It was a nice surprise as I wasn't expecting this until next week. This saw sang as it made these cuts. I also made 3 cross gain cuts in the top. Although it wasn't as easy as the rip cuts, it still made them relatively easy.  I am going to refinish the handle because it looks like absolute crappola as is. I want it to look as good as the job Bob did filing this.

I was right
I knew I had read about the 077 having a shim on the nose that could be removed to close the mouth. One other thing I saw while cleaning this was it isn't symmetrical. Put in on one way and it is flush on the two long sides. Flip it 180, and one side is proud and the other is inset a tad. Something I'll have to remember to tell Miles about.

I was working on cleaning the 077 here. That entailed a lot of finger aching sanding with 220 followed up with 320, 400, and finishing with 600. I wasn't no where near done with it when I stopped to go run some errands.

Home Depot acquisitions
worth going to HD and finding these
I stopped at HD first before I went to BJ's warehouse to buy my coffee K-cups for work. I had time to kill so I wandered around looking at whatever caught my eye and these did. They had pair of them to try on so I did. They fit and the package has five pairs for $5.98 so I put them in the basket.

I have 3 kinds of gloves
These gloves are ok for painting or applying a finish. They suck out loud for anything that involves a even a teeny bit of finger work. The tips rip and tear just by thinking about it. They are useless for doing plane rehabbing.

can't wait to try them out
I'm hoping that these will at least last for one plane rehabbing. If they do that, this will be well worth the price of admission.

mason's line and degreaser
Simple Green doesn't sell a cleaner that has 'degreaser' on the label like this one. I checked all 3 different bottles for sale at HD.  Because I want to use this in the shop where I have a lot of grease and unknown grunge to clean, I want the bottle to say it is a degreaser.  This is the only mason's line I found at HD. There was a bigger reel but I settled for this smaller one.

my strops are all stuck together
I was worried about this one
This one came apart and both strops remained where they should be. I wore the gloves for a while here to get a feel for them. They felt pretty good. They weren't slippery and the nitrile covering lends a bit of a sticky effect to things I touched. More importantly, I did not give off 4 gallons of sweat wearing these for over an hour. I had a good feel for what I was grabbing and pulling apart here. I could pick up a razor blade off the bench so that is a good thing.

the white/dark spots are hide glue (I think)
gave them a haircut on the tablesaw
Other then a bit of stink, the tablesaw had no problems sawing the plywood and the leather.  I am going to treat all three of the strops with mineral oil.

crosscut feather left by the tablesaw
mineral oil darkens them

Some more than others. This I don't understand because all three strops came out of the same piece of leather. So why 2 dark and one light? I trimmed the four edges with a razor blade putting a small bevel on them.

big kudos for the gloves
All that crap on the gloves is what usually would be on my fingers. I finished sanding the 077 with the gloves. I did 99% of it with them without any hiccups. All the fingertips are intact and there are no rips, tears, or gouges on any of them. These are definitely a keeper and there is still a lot of life and a few more rehabs left in these pair.

flattened the back, raised a burr, and sharpened it
the before pic
Even I was impressed with how well this rehab came out.

port side
bow shot sans the decal
starboard side
stern shot
The hardest part of this rehab was the two knobs. Both of them were black and I didn't think I would be able to get any part of them to shine.  The Zep cleaner and a wire brush cleaned up the knurling a little and sandpaper raised a shine in the other spots.

I was a little surprised by how rough this was in spots. I was expecting this to be a lot more uniform and precise. The handle had four rough spots on the outside edges. Two at the front and two at the back. I couldn't sand them out completely. Another rough spot was the bed for the iron. I could not only see it but I could feel it with my fingertips.

The hook part of the plane where the pins from the handle engage were rusted and very rough. The tops of them weren't finished and both are uneven and have a different shape. That part doesn't effect the fit of the handle but I would think this would be finished a bit better than this. I already mentioned the shim in the nose isn't symmetrical.

My overall impression of the plane is still highly favorable. The areas that matter the most appear to be dead nuts on. The sole is flat and square to the sides and the nose is in line with the sole too. All the areas I'm quibbling about won't interfere with the plane making rebates or being used as a chisel plane. These areas are cosmetic at best but they also show the care and workmanship of the person who made it.

can't put these in a drawer

hanging out here until I need them again
Binder clips just aren't for holding paper. I use them in the shop for things like this, as clamps for small glue ups, and more importantly for keeping the potato chip bag closed once it's been opened.

time to saw off the proud ends

chip missing
I missed getting this on the outside. I had seen it during the dry clamp run and I was going to put it on the outside and remove it by chamfering the legs. Obviously forgot to pay attention to that detail during the glue up.

last side flushed and cleaned up

used a stick to mark both legs for the 45 saw cut
handy having the miter guide on the bench hook
check of where I'll do the libella
I didn't know that my workbench was level. This is the first time I've ever checked for that.

unraveling like crazy
I cut the string with a razor blade and 3 inches of it instantaneously unraveled. This is nylon or a nylon like string and I had to light the end with a match to keep it from doing this.

ready to see if the libella says I'm level
I have two of these to check and I haven't come up with a way to secure the top end of the string. The tape will work for checking these out.

I couldn't see my black mark on the tape
It looked like it was on the line but I wasn't sure. It was hard to see the black mark on the blue tape.

 a pencil line
I squared a line across the brace by lining up the square with the apex at the top. The plumb bob line is dead nuts on that.

I got the left leg propped up on piece of scrap
It isn't off the plumb line as much as I thought it would be. It would take some getting used to but I think I could use this.

the second libella
Marking my square line off the apex.

it's off the squared line
I held the plumb bob string here and marked that with a pencil.

hanging right on the line
propped up the left leg
This libella shows a big difference between the plumb line and the bob. I was expecting this on the first one but I can see why now it wasn't. The leg spread on that one is greater than the shorter spread of this one. It would take a bigger offset to move the bob on the larger one due to how far apart the legs are.

swapped it 180
I got the same reading so the pencil line I have is the plumb line. I did this with the first libella too but I forgot to snap a pic of it.

found my centers
I'll do this one on monday. I think I would use this one more than the libella.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
What is Leap-the-Dips?
answer - the worlds oldest roller coaster built in 1902 and is located in Altoona, Pa

Antique Food. Really.

The Furniture Record - Sun, 11/05/2017 - 9:15pm

For me, one of the highlights of the auction season is the Country Store Auction in Mebane, NC. Not much in the way of furniture but tons of interesting stuff. The focus of the auction is things found in a country store, the merchandise found there-in and advertising of all sorts.


Need a thermometer?


Does anybody know what time it is?


Lots of stuff of all varieties.


And tobacciana. Those were different times.

My favorites of favorites continues to be the foods or nominally edible products. Many unfamiliar products or familiar products in unfamiliar formats. Like soft drinks:


When you say NEHI, I think quality.


Orange flavored, yum!


A more familiar name.

IMG_1070 - Version 2

Possibly more information than you wanted.

Then the are some adult drinks (non-alcoholic):


Before there was Starbucks…


Chicory, the greatest coffee extender. And this from Josephine Cambre, Expert Home Economist.

There was also other the counter remedies:


No trip to the store would be complete without your gallon of Lucky Tiger, For Dandruff.

But, by far the largest category is something you don’t eat. Directly. I hope.


110 pounds of heavy-duty lard.


Quality lard.


Stabilized lard.


Cold lard.


Also available in smaller sizes for home use.


And seafood. Love them canned oysters. And lard.

One thing this display points out is that there are no longer local brand in the number there once were. Consolidation has killed off local and regional brands. That and people used to buy a lot of lard.

You would need to buy one of these:


Several to choose from.






Machine Manuals and Old Tools

Popular Woodworking Editors Blog - Sun, 11/05/2017 - 2:00am

This past week I’ve been out in the Popular Woodworking shop, doing a bit of maintenance. Many of our machines were bought many years ago – while they’ve been maintained well and used by careful workers, every machine needs a bit of TLC every once in a while. The biggest hurdle in adjusting and maintaining machines is often figuring out the various set screws, rollers and shrouds, and finding the […]

The post Machine Manuals and Old Tools appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

a puttering saturday......

Accidental Woodworker - Sun, 11/05/2017 - 1:59am
My day started early in the shop this saturday. My wife had gone off to one of her dead people meetings so the day was mine to do as I pleased. On the way home from OT I made a pit stop at the store for cat food. I give the cats canned food every saturday morning and no one will ever convince me other wise that they don't know what day of the week it is. Saturday is the only day that they follow me around everywhere until I feed them.

Before I went to the shop I balanced my check book and tried to think of what I wanted to get accomplished today. When I got to the workbench I still had not made up my mind on what to do. So I puttered and doodled and wandered aimlessly around the shop. I got a few little things done but still no focus of what is the next project.

finished the libella first
There wasn't any spring back when I removed the clamps so I thought I was golden. The inside was still square but the outside wanders off and up the further it got from the half lap. I don't think it will be a problem but I'll have to wait and see.

I concentrated on keeping the inside square but I ended up with this gap. I chopped the 1/2 lap on the legs first and laid the brace in them. I then marked the brace directly off the junction between the two. That didn't seem to mean diddly squat because I still got a gap.

inside corner is still 90 - glued it up and set it aside
working on Miles's #6
This is the first frog I've rehabbed that didn't need a ton of work to flatten and raise a bit of shine on. After a few strokes I checked it and I had consistent scratches top to bottom. This is done after one grit and ready for paint.

prepping the plane body for paint
Since this plane isn't going to be used for a while and will be sitting idle in a toolbox, I'm going to put on a primer coat first. I'll spray the primer on but I will brush the top coats on. The first step, besides shaking the rattle can for a while, is to clean the body with acetone. I filled all the screw holes with extra parts so I don't get paint in them.

taping off the sides and bottom
This is blue painters tape. You don't want to use masking tape for this and especially so if you leave it on for a while. I plan on keeping the blue tape on for a while and when I do take it off it will easily peel off. And it won't leave behind a ton of tape adhesive residue like masking tape.

strops ready to be glued
Almost all of the curl in these has gone away.

could have used this
This has my friend Roger's number on it. He was a fellow vet who passed away a couple of years ago. I still can't bring myself to use it and I could have gotten all three backers out of this. I'll leave here for few days and put it back by the tablesaw.

I'm using hide glue
my current strops
I used hide glue on these and they have held up for the last 4+ years. One is glued to 3/4" plywood and the bottom one is MDF. I have been using and abusing these without any problems with the strops staying in place. The corners are still down and tight so I'm using hide glue again.

3 strops cooking away until tomorrow
painted the frog
I cleaned this with acetone first and no primer on this. I brushed on one coat of black and I will put on another coat tomorrow. I painted the yoke too and put a nail where the pin goes and nailed it a joist to dry.

looks better doesn't it?
The sides definitely will need a second coat but the back looks good with just one.

good even coat from toe to heel
 The top coat will come after I have sanded and cleaned up the cheeks and the sole.

original plastic bag and rust paper
this partial sticker isn't going to survive this clean up
I am not a collector and I really don't care one way or the other about this sticker. I want a user plane once I get the oily goop off of this. There isn't any way I can save the sticker so it's history. I feel the same way about the box but I'll hang on to it. I will put it with the box that my Record 043 small plow plane came in.

sandpaper did diddly
Before I can try and shine up the body, I am going to have to remove the oily crap on the plane. 220 sandpaper just gunked up on me sanding this dry.

mineral spirits bath time
I am going to soak the entire plane overnight and tomorrow I'll try and clean it up.

time to try something new
 I broke this hammer about 10 years ago and bought a new one. The both of these are Craftsman brand 8 ounce rip claw hammers. I think that this would be a good first hammer for Miles. It just needs a new handle and replacing one is something I've never done before.

drilling out the wood that is left
it's tapered
The top of the head is slightly larger then the bottom. I removed out the remaining wood with a metal punch.

the two wedges
I am not sure if these reusable or not. I am going to do a search for a handle and I'll see if there are wedges for sale.

traced the outline
The left one is the bottom opening and the right is the top. There is a small difference and I can see a taper from top to bottom by looking down through the top.

my plumb bob string options
Fish line, twine, and cotton thread. I don't like the any of these choices. I would use the twine but it's a braided, fall apart twine.  It was proving to be impossible to keep it together to thread through the hole in the plumb bob.

clever idea
The previous owner of this used a small piece of what looks like a pipe cleaner to act as a stop. This orange line doesn't feel like thread and it isn't braided. I tried twirling to see if I could do that and couldn't. I'll make a run to Home Depot tomorrow and see what they have in the way of mason's line.

Did anyone forget to turn the clocks back for the idiotic DST shift?

Accidental woodworker

trivia corner
He died at Fort Sill, Oklahoma in Feb 1909. Who was he?
answer - the great Apache leader, Geronimo

Check Another Bucket List Box

Inside the Oldwolf Workshop - Sat, 11/04/2017 - 10:08pm
A while back I had the opportunity to do some of the work I've dreamed of. I built a couple commissions for my favorite museum. The Castlerock Museum of Arms and Armor. In an alcove of the basement level there are a few fantastic 17th century great chairs (and one suspicious cabinet) alongside a great display of silver serving platters.

The museums owner wanted three items made. A small pedestal box to raise a very ornate jewelry box up off the carpet. A board he could attach and display several period silver and tin spoons. And a small shelf to display three rare ornate period plates.

There was a little back and forth on the design and getting the color dark enough so he was happy took several tries. But in the end he was very pleased and I have a little feather for my hat. Some of my work is on display in a museum.

The pedestal was designed to be very understated so not to battle with the delicate ornament of the jewelry box. A short dovetailed box with a lid made of four rails and a floating panel so no warping or cleats should be needed with seasonal movement.

This is a good example of the debate I went through on every piece here. In particular I decided to use a electric router to cut the moulding edge around the top. I figure even on a subconscious level the modern execution will set the pedestal apart from the piece it's meant to display.

The spoon board was a different design issue. I worked with the director over several designs I wanted to add a little ornament to help offset the spoons, maybe even draw some attention to them. I traced out the mock up fan display they'd done on foam board and stepped off the arches to correlate to each spoon.

After sawing everything out with a coping saw and refining with rasps and a card scraper I went back in with a scratch stock and cut in the shadow line finishing the points with a V carving chisel.

The plate shelf was the most fun. We wanted something that definitely wasn't modern looking. I started this design based on the corbels, (which are difficult to see in these photos) I took theri design from an engraving of a 17th century kitchen scene.

From there I worked out the gothic arch back board with a handcut moulding on the underside of the shelf itself. The whole thing was pretty successful, I wouldn't mind having a shelf or two like this in my own home.

The finish ended up a little complicated. First I layered on some iron buff to react with the tannins in the wood and darken the grain significantly, then went two coats of an "Ebony" oil based stain. I followed this with a half dozen coats of Garnet Shellac which was rubbed down with 0000 steel wool to cut the glossiness. Then a application and buff of dark colored paste wax and I was done. Just finishing these pieces took two weeks and with the exception of the spoon board I got the coloring pretty well on (The spoon board was already edge joined and cut for the museum by another cabinet maker and given to me. Not wood I chose, nor done really to my standards, but you work with what you get sometimes)

All in all a ridiculously gratifying experience I hope to repeat several times more in my career.

Ratione et Passionis
Categories: General Woodworking

Tackling the Houndstooth Dovetail: An Engineer’s Approach to Form and Function

Popular Woodworking Editors Blog - Sat, 11/04/2017 - 2:00am

As an aerospace engineer I don’t often get the opportunity to sprinkle snippets of beauty into my day job – “I mean, isn’t a missile going super-sonic beautiful enough?” Definitely not when it comes to woodworking!  I’m starting to realize that one of my weaknesses is my inability to interject design aspects into my woodworking while maintaining structural integrity.  But truthfully, these two things don’t need to be separate and […]

The post Tackling the Houndstooth Dovetail: An Engineer’s Approach to Form and Function appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

is winter coming........

Accidental Woodworker - Sat, 11/04/2017 - 12:35am
It was a wonderful day in the neighborhood. Clear blue skies with a few high wispy clouds and just a hint of a breeze. It is November 3, 2017 and the temperature today hit 73°F (23°C). The nights for the next few days will be in the low 50's and the T-shirt weather is forecasted to go into next week. I'm happier about this than a clam at low tide.

new sash lift came in
I should have gotten this one in the first place.

shiny brass
This is a substantial improvement over the the piece of crap that it replaces. How can you go wrong with shiny brass?

crap on the right
I glued a piece of wood on the back of this to act as a spacer. Sometimes these stamped pieces of crappola tend to dish in when the screws are tightened down.

much better looking now
It's a match with the lid lift and the handles on the ends.

for Miles toolbox
I think a bullnose plane is a useful plane to have. I bought this as soon as I saw on Jim Bode's tool site. I didn't pay what was written on the box. I know it isn't shillings because 20 shillings is equal to one pound so that dates this box to when the pound converted to the decimal system (100 pence = 1 pound). At today's exchange rate this would cost $3.47 american. Adjusted for inflation it would be about $26.  I wish I had paid that but I didn't.

Record 077
 I don't think that this was ever used even once. The entire plane is still covered in a protective film that has hardened and thinned out a bit. I thought the plane was covered with rust blooms in the pic I saw but there aren't any. I mistook the protective film covering the plane for rust.

out of the box
I advanced the iron and planed a rabbet. Other than trying to do it a straight line, I had no hiccups.

can't get a  fresher or newer iron than this
This is still covered with the oily film too. And it still has the original factory grind marks.

back side of the iron
I'm not sure what the spots are and my first step with this will be to remove the oily sticky crap all over it. I'll try a bath in mineral spirits first.

converts to a chisel plane - the only spot on the plane with rust
is that a shim?
I seem to remember that the thin shiny piece of metal is a removable shim. Taking it off closes up the mouth more. I couldn't get it off tonight but maybe after it is cleaned up I might be able to.

12" square
This square is 12" on the inside and 14" on the outside. The blade is 2" wide and straight. No bends or wiggles along the whole length.

outside edge is square
From what I just learned this plane is meant to be used on the inside and outside checking for square.

what wood is it?

From looking at this I would guess it is ebony. If it isn't ebony than it is some dark rosewood with no figure at all.

15" on the left, 12" on the right
The brass plates are very similar but I am not familiar with these types of plates that I could date them or figure out the manufacturer. The 15" square has no maker mark at all except one side has an owner 'X' carved in it.

maker of the 12" square
inside brass plates
These plates are different. The 15" one is screwed on and I can't see any screws or other type of fasteners on the 12" one.

not square on the in or out side edges
checking the outside edge - the bottom
the top runs out
the inside bottom - this looks promising here
runs in at the top
It looks like I'll be doing some filing on both of the edges to bring them into square.

6mm iron holder
a little more than half the iron is in the holder
I'm going to glue it here
labeled it before I glued it in the box
carefully laid out my half laps this time
much better
I am dead nuts flush on the two but I'm slightly off on the ends.

wee bit of crap at the bottom
I have two choices to clean this up. A chisel or a tenon plane.

cleaned both of them with two swipes of the tenon plane
my leg spread
This is going to be a big ass libella.

nutso glue up with hide glue
My half laps are dead on square and I wanted the glue up to be dead on too. There isn't much more to do to complete this. Install the horizontal brace and saw the bottom of the legs off at a 45 will complete libella #2.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
What US college has the oldest medical school?
answer - Univ of Pennsylvania


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