Hand Tool Headlines
The Woodworking Blogs Aggregator
by R. Bruce Hoadley
The object of clamping a joint is to press the glue line into a continuous, uniformly thin film, and to bring the wood surfaces into intimate contact with the glue and hold them undisturbed until setting or cure is complete. Since loss of solvent causes some glue shrinkage, an internal stress often develops in the glue line during setting. This stress becomes intolerably high if glue lines are too thick. Glue lines should be not more than a few thousandths of an inch thick.
If mating surfaces were perfect in terms of machining and spread, pressure wouldn’t ‘ t be necessary. The ” rubbed joint, ” skilfully done, attests to this. But unevenness of spread and irregularity of surface usually requires considerable external force to press properly. The novice commonly blunders on pressure, both in magnitude and uniformity. Clamping pressure should be adjusted according to the density of the wood. For domestic species with a specific gravity of O. 3 to 0. 7, pressures should range from 100 psi to 250 psi. Denser tropical species may require up to 300 psi. In bonding composites, the required pressure should be determined by the lowest-density layer. In gluing woods with a specific gravity of about 0. 6, such as maple or birch, 200 psi is appropriate. Thus, gluing up one square foot of maple requires pressure of (1 2 in. x 12 in. x 200 psi) 2 8, 800 pounds. Over 14 tons! This would require, for an optimal glue line, 1 5 or 20 cee-clamps, or about 5 0 quick-set clamps.
Conversely, the most powerful cee-clamp can press only 10 or 1 1 square inches of glue line in maple. Jackscrews and hydraulic presses can apply loads measured in tons. But since clamping pressure in the small shop is commonly on the low side, one can see the importance of good machining and uniform spread. But pressure can be overdone, too. Especially with low-viscosity adhesives and porous woods. too much pressure may force too much adhesive into the cell structure of the wood or out at the edges, resulting in an insufficient amount remaining at the glue line, a condition termed a starved joint. Some squeeze-out is normal at the edges of an assembly. However, if spread is well controlled, excessive squeeze-out indicates too much pressure; if pressure is well controlled, undue squeeze-out suggests too much glue. Successful glue joints depend on the right correlation of glue consistency and clamping pressure. Excessive pressure is no substitute for good machining. Panels pressed at lower pressures have less tendency to warp than those pressed at higher pressures. Additionally, excessive gluing pressure will cause extreme compression of the wood structure.
When pressure is released, the cells spring back and add an extra component of stress to the glue line.
The second troublesome aspect of clamping is uniformity, usually a version of what I call ” the sponge effect. ” Lay a sponge on a table and press it down in the centre; note how the edges lift up. Similarly, the force of one clamp located in the middle of a flat board will not be evenly transmitted to its edges. It is therefore essential to use heavy wooden cover boards or rigid metal cauls to ensure proper distribution of pressure.
Clamp time must be long enough to allow the glue to set well enough so that the joint will not be disturbed by clamp removal. Full cure time, that is, for development of full bond strength, is considerably longer. If the joint will be under immediate stress, the clamp time should be extended. Manufacturer’ s specified clamp times are established for optimum or recommended shelf life, temperature, wood moisture content, etc… If any of these factors is less than optimum, cure rate may be prolonged. It’s best to leave assemblies overnight.
Most glue specifications are based on ” room temperature” (70 · F). Shelf life is shortened by storage at above-normal temperature, but may be extended by cold storage. Normal working life of three to four hours at 70· F may be reduced to less than one hour at 90· F. Closed assembly at 90· F is 20 minutes, against 50 minutes at 70· F. A curing period of 10 hours at 70· F can be accelerated to 3 – 1 / 2 hours by heating to 90· F.
Finally, cured joints need conditioning periods to allow moisture added at the glue line to be distributed evenly through the wood. Ignoring this can result in sunken joints.
When edge-gluing pieces to make panels, moisture is added to the glue lines (1), especially at the panel surfaces where squeeze-out contributes extra moisture. If the panel is surfaced while the glue line is still swollen (2, 3), when the moisture is finally distributed the glue line will shrink (4), leaving the sunken joint effect.
Here is three catalogues available to you for download. Each catalogue represents its current year of release. Every tool displayed is mouth watering.
I am offering for download this tool catalog from Stanley. There are many vintage tools available on the market today and this catalog will help you identify each tool, it’s use but most importantly its parts. Many times sellers on eBay either due to lack of knowledge or intentionally mislead their buyers by claiming all the parts are there or that’s in an antique when it’s a vintage. I have seen a plane listed as vintage when it was actually built in the 90’s. Unfortunately this particular seller’s response was “boohoo” yes I know it’s hard to believe that such people do exist but they’re out there. So when you buy, do so with open eyes and arms yourselves to the teeth with knowledge about the product before you do so.
The download is through megasync, it’s my personal account where I backup all my drawings.
Don’t worry there is no copyright issues with this. If I find anymore I’ll post it.
As sprung joints are great for clamping two edged boards together to make a panel, they are disastrous for non clamped rubbed joints. To avoid following the footsteps of magazine articles, I will not go into detail of what a rubbed or sprung joints are. I believe that you are well passed the novice stage and I don’t feel it would be beneficial in re reading something you already know, but would rather bring to your attention to something you may not have been aware of or unintentionally overlooked.
There has been a strong emphasis awarded to sprung joints, many articles and videos have been written and produced stressing the benefits of such a joint. While I don’t disagree with them, sometimes the obvious tends to skip us and we continue to apply a certain technique that has been drummed into our heads by an almost hypnotic suggestion through the continual parroting of others, that would lead to disastrous results if we were to apply the same technique using a different application. This issue I feel needs not be overlooked, but addressed in any future articles written on the subject.
The success of a rubbed joint is comprised of only two things, glue and two perfectly straight no gapped edges. A sprung joint as you know has a 32nd hollow in the middle, creating a successful rubbed joint would not be possible. The other point is the type of glue that best suit a rubbed joint would be hide glue. True, you could get away with small thin pieces using ordinary PVA or other quick setting PVA glue, but for a small cabinet or bedside table or even a coffee table, only hide glue in my opinion would be better suited for a such an application ie. rubbed joint. I have written in my previous posts on the benefits of hide glue so I won’t go into any great depth on the subject here, other than to add, only hide glue as far as I know, has the capabilities of drawing two mating edges together as it dries, forming a good solid join and for that to happen there cannot be any gaps.
I’m offering my smoother for sale click on the link for more information and pictures.
From time to time I will post tools for sale, I’ll notify you when I do but it’s also a good idea to check periodically the items for sale page.
What is A2 steel
“A” stands for air hardening which means you don’t quench in any liquids but set it aside and allow it to cool down on its own. It contains .95% High Carbon a 1% Molybdenum, 1% Manganese, .3% Silicon, 5% Chromium, .15% Vanadium, .03% Phosphorous and the same for Sulphur. Excellent edge retention is possible thanks to the Chromium Carbides that are mixed during the heat treating process that makes it the most preferred cutting tool steel by tool makers. However, the trade-off is that honing A2 steel takes longer and more effort than O1, it won’t hone an edge as sharp as O1 and the edge fractures quicker if the bevel angle is honed at 25 degrees. To prevent the edge from fracturing Lie Nielsen recommends to hone the bevel at minimum 30 degrees but preferably to 35 degrees. So, if you notice your blade isn’t cutting as well as it should be hone a steeper bevel.
O1 Tool Steel
O1 is a high carbon medium alloyed cold work tool steel with 1.1% manganese, 0.6 chromium, 0.6% Tungsten AND 0.10% Vanadium added to it with good hardening capacity.
The O stands for oil quenching. Quenching in oil is recommended over water because it cools slower reducing the chance of cracking. O1 also takes an edge better than A2 but will not stay sharp as long as A2. So, the main difference between the two is; O1 sharpens relatively quicker than A2 and hones an edge sharper than A2 but the edge retention in A2 is better than O1. Obviously thinner O1 blades that come with old Stanley planes will sharpen very quickly than the thicker modern A2 blades because their less steel to hone which is why they’re still a preferred choice for many old-time woodworkers who know the difference between truth from fiction. Thicker blades do not reduce chatter as advertised, instead they are a pain in the backside to sharpen but for more information on that refer to Paul Sellers blog. I believe he’s done a video on that.
Heat Treating Process
So now that we know all the technical jargon and we don’t want to spend an eternity on sharpening lets go with the heat treating process of O1. Remember this is the tool steel I’m going to use on my moulding planes and the small router plane that’s been holding me back from the true build. Maybe I should fill you in before I continue.
The small router plane I currently have which is the Veritas, the blade is ¼” wide which is too big for the mouth opening on the moulding plane which should be no bigger and smaller than 1/16” and I’m referring to the gap between the edge iron and the breast. The mouth on the plane is 3/16” (5mm) and I’m using an iron that is 1/8” (3.175mm) thick so that should leave a precise gap of 1/16” to allow shavings to go through. The thicker the iron the larger the mouth opening should be, so make your adjustments according to the thickness of the iron, all in all the gap should equal to 1/16”. This I learned from Charles Hayward may he rest in peace.
I actually thought that a gap opening of 1/32” was ideal but that would only allow very thin wispy shavings through and that isn’t ideal for a moulding plane. So, this router plane once I actually get it done will have a longer blade to do 2” or more depth and I’m yet to find out if it can handle that depth and also have a 1/8” width blade. This will be the only tool of its kind in the world as far as I know and I’ve looked everywhere for one. What’s holding me back you might ask, I’m trying to make it look pretty.
Ok now with process of heat treating O1. O1 comes annealed so we can skip this part. Grind your bevel and shape first, then whatever process you like to use as heat go with that, I used 2 blow torches. You heat the cutting iron to about 1500 degrees Fahrenheit (815deg. Celsius) you will know you’ve reached that temperature when it reaches a bright cherry red colour. In my opinion, I think that a bright orange colour is a more correct description of it but that’s the word that’s been in use for a few hundred years now so I won’t rock the boat.
Once that critical temperature has been reached you plunge the iron into an oil bath. I used peanut oil over motor oil as it has less tendency to flame up and apparently, it smells better but I couldn’t smell squat. I even stuck my nose into it and still couldn’t smell any peanuts. You can use a metal container or a glass jar, I used a glass jar that was fairly thick. I think the thickness is important due to the heat build-up of the oil, you don’t want the glass shattering and spilling oil all over your bench so a Nescafe jar is ideal.
When you plunge the iron into the oil, plunge it in vertically and keep it upright vertically while you continue to plunge. If you angle it in and stir it you could induce warpage, I’ve seen Tod Herrli stir it gently but it was still held vertically.
Now take it out and let it sit for ½-1 hr to cool down, be careful though as it is still quite hot so don’t touch it and don’t ask me how I know that. This is the confusing part though, some technical websites say cool it in the oil until you can touch it with your bare hands and temper it immediately, others say let it sit depending on its thickness, so 1 hr for 1” thickness and then temper it. Up to you on this one, I don’t know who is right or wrong here but as for me personally on the next one I will choose to let it cool in the oil and then temper it.
Tempering is the process of reducing the steels brittleness, if you didn’t temper it, the steel would shatter like glass if dropped on the ground. You also wouldn’t be able to shape the edge nor sharpen it, your file would just skate over it.
Ever wonder how those martial arts experts were able to karate chop an iron in two, well you too can do that in its brittle state and that’s why we need to temper.
The temperature may vary according to the desired hardness and the hardness scale we are working to is the Rockwell C scale. You see in every tool sellers’ description hardened to Rockwell C 60 or 62. To reach that Rockwell C scale we need to heat up the iron in an oven to about 325 deg. F (162deg. C) for about an hour. The iron will reach a light straw colour, you don’t want any other colour but that. If you were tempering a knife then your Rockwell C should be about 55 -57 which is about 500-600 deg. F (260deg. C). My oven only goes up to 260 degrees and there is no guarantee your oven is accurate.
If you can’t use your oven here’s the way I did it. I held the flame back from the cutting edge and observed the colour change. I withdrew the iron from the flame and watched the heat travel up the iron until it reached the edge during which a colour change was occurring. Once the light straw colour was reached I immediately plunged it into the oil and then left it to cool in air.
I did skip an important part, after hardening clean and flatten the back to take out any potential warpage and clean the black oxidation around the cutting area up to the beginning of the tang. It’s important to do that so you can observe the colour change during the tempering process. Also get yourself a good magnet so you know you’ve reached the correct hardness and either glue it on wood or get one big enough you can hold by hand. If you your burn fingers in the process you’ll live, don’t be pussies about it you won’t burn them second time round.
There are three fundamental rules in designing furniture: Rhythm, Balance and Harmony, according to Fred D. Crawshaw who has based his theory on E. A. Batchelder’s book “The principles of design.
Here is an excerpt from a book I’m reading dated 1912 for teachers of woodworking, I feel that many of you may find this beneficial in understanding the fundamental laws of furniture design which you may consider when drawing up your own furniture designs. Even if you don’t design one yourselves you will at the very least have a better understanding of furniture design concepts and be able to differentiate between a good design and a bad one.
Steps to take in designing a piece of furniture
- In response to a need for a piece of furniture consider carefully it’s detailed use.
- Determine the material to be used in construction. In general, close grained and fine textured woods are most suitable for furniture which has a limited use such as parlour and bedroom pieces. The courser grained woods have their principle use in living and dining room furniture. Again, the close grained and hardwoods are best suited to pieces of furniture having many curved lines formed either by modelling or turning. The courser grained woods should be used principally in furniture of severe design.
- Determine, if possible, the place a piece of furniture will occupy in a room. This will fix some of the definite dimensions and will enable one to make a wise selection of the kind of lines to be used that the piece may be harmoniously associated with its companion pieces.
- “Block in” the design so as to make the piece of furniture harmonise with the general “makeup” of the room. Secure the harmony by having a re-echo of the line.
- Consider now the indefinite or detailed dimensions to make all parts of the piece members of one family. This will result in unity. All details such as the modelling of top and bottom rails, the use of curves in stiles and legs, the modelling of feet and top of legs or posts, and the making of metal fittings, etc., will affect this element – an all important one – in the design.
- Make good constructions and proportion serve as an important factor in the decoration of the piece.
- Before considering the design complete, give careful attention to the three fundamental elements of design: viz.: rhythm, balance and harmony. If the several parts are so arranged and formed that there is movement as the eye passes from one part to another in the design, then rhythm has been secured. If, by having the whole arranged symmetrically with respect to an axis or by a judicious arrangement of parts, the whole seems to stand or hang truly, there is balance. If the design as a whole does not “jar” upon one; if all parts seem to belong together, then there is harmony. The design is a unit.
Correlation in Design
It is believed that no better line of work can be introduced in conjunction with woodwork than that commonly called “Decorative Metal.” Many woodwork constructions are enriched by the addition of some escutcheon – a strap, a hinge, a pull or a corner plate. The making of these metal fittings may be considered a legitimate part of a course of study in woodwork, especially one in which emphasis is laid upon the design and construction of furniture. It is believed there is no line of work which offers a greater opportunity for the teachings of the principles of design and for their application than this. There is, too, not only an opportunity but a demand for close and natural correlation between furniture making and its associate, decorative metalwork.
General lines and Proportions
The general character of the lines will be largely dependent upon the lines in the pieces of furniture with which the one you are designing is to be associated; there should be a general harmony of line, a re-echo of line, in the room as well as in the single piece of furniture. The general proportions will be determined by the space your piece of furniture is to fill and its use. In case it has no particular place in the home or there is not a decided need for it, a design is not called for. It is believed that much of the furniture of either poor or mediocre design is the result of a misdirected effort due to a misconceived or purely mercenary demand.
The shape of the piece of furniture will generally determine its construction. One will hardly make a mistake in the selection of joints to be used, but there are many forms of some of the principle joints, such as the tenon and mortise joint, from which to select. Here, again, one must be governed by that fundamental law of design, viz., there must by harmony.
If the general design is a severe one, then the protruding form of joint will be appropriate, such as, for example, the open or pinned tenon and mortise joint instead of the closed one or the screwed construction instead of the nailed butt joint, etc.
Construction is no less an important factor in the ultimate beauty of a piece of furniture than is its design. The best designed article may be ruined by poor constructions. Makeshifts such as glued on parts to represent protruding tenons and pins are deprecated. The butt joint fastened by means of screws or lag bolts may be an appropriate form of construction and decoration, but it should not be used as a general substitute for the tenon and mortise.
It is a false interpretation of honest construction and is one of the many things in manual training which helps to swell the number of those who condemn the subject for its insufficiency and impractical methods.
Simple carving, upholstering or textile or leather panelling is often the thing needed to give a piece completeness in appearance, but, ordinarily, good lines, good proportions and good finish are quite sufficient to fulfil all aesthetic requirements. The simple modelling of the top or bottom of a post and the introduction of broken or curved lines in some of the rails and stiles is sufficient decoration.
In addition to these three considerations, it is desired to call attention to two others dependent upon one or all of these three:
- There will constantly arise as one works over a design the question of widths and lengths of certain parts. Some of these will be definite because of the use to which the piece of furniture will be put, but many may be determined with some degree of accuracy if one will carefully consider the three following laws governing arrangement.
- Uniform spacing of similar parts is usually unsatisfactory.
- Wide masses and narrow openings should be made near the bottom of a piece instead of near the top to give the feeling of stability.
- The centre of weight in a design should be directly below the centre of gravity.
- The satisfactory of filling of space areas is often difficult. This is largely a problem in decoration although it may be one in construction when the strength of the piece of furniture is an important factor in the design. As an aid toward a satisfactory of arrangement of parts in a given area the designer should become familiar with the term “measure” and the principles in design affecting it, viz., rhythm, balance and harmony, as set forth in E.A. Batchelder’s book, “The Principles of Design.”
When reinforcing mitres place the splines as close as possible to the inside surface. If they are too close to the outside surfaces, the mitered ends of the adjoining surfaces will be weak. It’s not the splines that make it weak but the grooves made for the splines that make it weak.
Btw I haven’t given up on the moulding planes, I’m just a little busy designing a small router plane that will help in the build of the moulding planes.
In a remote dusty sunburnt village an old man produces a guitar with nothing more than a handful of basic hand tools. One would think the build would turn out to be a blocky piece of chopped up wood that resembles nothing more than a cigar box guitar, don’t get me wrong I like those guitars. But the results were quite the opposite, instead he produces a guitar that is pair shaped with inlays.
This video has been a humbling experience, it reminds me just how lucky we really are. We enjoy the comforts of a multiple bedroom home with swimming pools, double lock up garages, front and back yards, multiple bathrooms, remote lights and doors, windows, air con, internet, iPads, playstations, entertainments of all sorts and still we crave for more.
We all want to be craftsmen and women but never take the first step towards it, we all want more tools yet we struggle with space to store the ones we have. Mans continual struggle for more is a never ending pit hole he continues to dig for himself.
If this video sends any kind of message it’s this – Get up off your arse and do it. If you want to be a craftsman then stop being curious about it, stop dreaming and wishing and endlessly looking through tool catalogues and other magazines. Stop making up excuses of how little time you have, guess what you also have little time on this earth but your still living it so why not make the best of it while you can. This old man had a vision on how to provide for his family utilising the skills with minimal amount of tools he has on hand in a most inhospitable environment, with zero tourist traffic flow with no etsy or facebook social media marketing going against all odds and he did it. He is providing for his family and doing what he loves to do. He is experiencing true freedom and isn’t this what we all really want.
We all makes choices in life based on this most stupid ridiculous statement “oh well it’s the way of the world, there’s not much we can do about it.” The world does not and cannot make choices for you, you are the one who has made your choice, the world is there to tempt you off your path to true inner freedom and happiness but the world has no ward over you. It likes to think it does but it doesn’t. There is one positive lesson you can learn from the corporate world, if you want something then go and get it other than that there is nothing decent you can learn from them..
If you want to become a craftsman then make the effort and put in the hours, if you want to live from your craft then just do it. Make something no matter what it is, even if it’s a pencil case, make it and go to the markets and sell it. Then go home and make some more and do it all over again. Stop counting the hours on how long it took to make, speed will come with repetition but don’t compromise quality for speed. Start somewhere, do something, start living.
I’ve never seen original footage until now shot back in 1912 on any type of woodworking before and I definitely want to share this with you.
I believe this is a school on chair making and upholstery, most probably an apprenticeship program of some sort. They employ a bandsaw and spindle molder but the rest is done by hand, I particularly was struck by a clever clamping device they used to hold the leg. This clamp will be in production in my shop very soon. There is nothing in this video that doesn’t constitute hand work. The training these young lads got are truly superior and I can imagine the joy and sense of fulfillment they had from producing chairs of such high calibre. Now doesn’t this video put cnc “craftsman” to shame, it most certainly does!
If you want to bring back quality then stop buying their crap.
Enough rambling, break out the popcorn, sit back and enjoy.
This is a short video on how to convert the Veritas plow plane using their accessories into a tongue and groove plane. Having said that my preference would go to the LN version for it’s ease of use and accuracy right out of the box however, you have the benefit of various blade widths with the Veritas version. Unless you know you will always work with either 3/4 or 1/2″ then I would recommend LN no 48 or 49 over Veritas for the above reason.
There’s one more episode left to edit, I know I’ve been slack lately but not without reason. I’ve been very productive in the shop with tool making, I’ve designed a small router plane to help with the build of the moulding planes. While I’m still waiting for steel to arrive I’ve been catching up on a lot of passed work I’ve missed.
I like making video and sharing my work with you don’t get me wrong but it does consume a lot of time and that’s something I don’t have the luxury of. So I need to work out and plan better so I can continue sharing my builds with you.
I have received a lot of positive comments about the blog and I thank you for it and yes I do intend to continue blogging so as long you to continue to have me but, I only have a day and half off work. So trying to figure out how to use that little time productively and sharing it with you is a real challenge.
Finally after a long wait the irons have arrived and today I could do some work on the plane. It’s progressing very slowly due to work, today and tomorrow I have off, but next week I won’t be so lucky.
I have learned a great deal during the build and I will share my findings with you. I have studied my existing antique plane and have set the mouth opening exactly to match the antique plane, a big mistake though.
The iron in the antique is 5/32 thick and the LN version is 1/8 that’s 1/32 difference. You may not think that is much of a difference but compare the two pictures with the irons installed and you’ll see that it is a big difference.
Clearly you can see that the mouth opening is too much again, luckily for me I was smart enough to use prototypes and not the real deal. So tomorrow I will be making another one with a smaller opening but I wonder how will I get the waste out. I don’t have a 1/16 chisel. So it’s just getting harder and harder till I figure out a way to get that waste out and level that wall. That part has to flat so the shavings don’t clog.
The mouth opening on this HNT 1/2″ shoulder plane is the same as the antique, this plane has a 37 degree bevel and a 60 degree bed. It’s steep to tackle Aussie wood which is usually reversing grain. Having a steeper bevel and bed means the plane is harder to push and the edge will blunt quicker but will help in eliminating tearout.
I also made the wedge the fit and the 15degree spread planing board I made should’ve been less but it turned out that I didn’t need it after all as I planed the wedge to fit prior to shaping it.
Prototypes aren’t meant to look pretty but they’re there to serve a purpose and that purpose is to work out the quirks and to do build experimentations. I won’t know if I made a success until I take my first shaving and I won’t be preparing the blade for the prototype this I will save for the actual plane.
The sides are perfectly flush with the iron and I will rehearse the round on this plane while I build the second prototype with a smaller mouth. My recommendation to you if you are going to make yourselves moulding planes is to get your irons first. It doesn’t matter whether it’s from LN or you cut them up yourselves, what does matter is the thickness. Once you know how thick your iron is you can then make mouth according to that thickness.
I’ve waited 2 years to start this build, I didn’t know if I was going to buy them new or get the antique version or just build them. I can definitely see why new ones cost so much, they are time consuming to make, the irons aren’t cheap at all and the wood is also expensive especially when your laminating as you’re using more wood. The antiques also aren’t cheap, but they aren’t that great either. Some will work fine while others are way past their due by date but none of them are identical in build unless they are all from the same maker. I have noticed on some of mine that the mouths are open quite a bit and others are very tight. I’m guessing that mass production had a lot to do with it and just careless. People still buy them by the truck loads and don’t notice these things until they learn more about them.
Anyway I’m not really fussed on how long it’s going to take me, I have work which pays the bills which is more important to me. I’m also trying to save up for a metalworking lathe and mill which isn’t cheap either especially that I have to import it from the US as Australia doesn’t sell any quality lathes. I’m really excited about adding metal work to my skillset as I want to build mechanical movements and other hand tools.
Well it’s beddy bye time for me, till I update you next goodnight all.