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The Woodworking Blogs Aggregator
An aggregate of many different woodworking blog feeds from across the 'net all in one place! These are my favorite blogs that I read everyday...
Now that Thanksgiving has passed, and we’re entering into the Christmas season, here’s something to keep in mind.
Ken Hatch, with an unsolicited opinion:
I have Japanese chisels in both #1 and #2 White Steel, either takes an incredible edge straight off the stone and the edge will last. I also have a set of the newer Stanley SW 750’s with Chrome Steel, they take a good edge but straight off the stone the edge fractures at the first touch of wood and the chisel dulls very quickly.
So while the face of training has changed a great deal over time, the talent of the next generation is still there and being encouraged and inspired. Couple that with passionate and skilled enthusiasts around the world writing, making and teaching, woodworking skills should be with us for a long time to come.
Although, as Graham points out, the certificates that this generation will get are a lot less fancy than the ones that were awarded to his great-grandfather.
Ben Seltzer at Tools for Working Wood dropped me a line about their Cyber Monday sale. They will be listing nearly 300 heavily discounted items on their website on the evening of Sunday, November 30th. Items to be sold include discontinued products, tools bought as samples but never sold, items with small defects/issues, or items that were used as a demo, or for photography.
Ben says there are a substantial number of Japanese tools including a ton of new (but dusty) Japanese pull saws, several new Japanese dado planes (like the one pictured above), and a decorative Nishiki twisted-neck chisel (sadly missing its hoop). Besides Japanese tools, there are also NOS Stanley spokeshaves, Ashley Iles chisels, slipstones, and more.
Listings will appear on the Tools for Working Wood home page starting at 10pm-ish Brooklyn time Sunday, Nov. 30th. They expect there to be a lot of shoppers all at once, so to make it a little less frantic for everyone once you add an item to your cart you will have 20 minutes to finish shopping and check out, otherwise the item gets released for someone else to have a shot at it. Set your alarm.
(Disclaimer: I don’t get any kickback for this mention. The Christopher Schwarz ethics policy is in effect.)
I have found that when you ask yourself if a tool is dull, the poor pathetic thing is way past being dull and is on its way to getting chipped and trashed. I think you need to sharpen an edge before it actually occurs to you to sharpen that edge. Sounds impossible, but it’s not.
I sharpen a lot, and it is part of the rhythm of my day.
I’m a big believer in this. Here’s my take, from earlier this year.
This is a fascinating video from Dave Friesen showing the steps in making a mount for a tanto, which is a Japanese knife. There are a lot of great shots of Japanese tools being used in this video. Well worth watching.
(Thanks to Patrick Anderson for the link.)
Though it might seem counterintuitive, sometimes bigger is better when you are doing fine work with veneer and inlays. A wide chisel provides plenty of reference surface to keep delicate cuts straight and square and plenty of heft to slice effortlessly.
Frank is a good friend of mine, and is a past president of the Central Jersey Woodworkers Association, the greatest woodworking club in the world. He has a pair of terrific articles in the November and December issues of Popular Woodworking Magazine on inlay techniques and building a Federal bowfront table. Check it out.
And, it is true — you can use a big chisel for fine work. Using a small chisel for big work is much more problematic.
About ten years ago, I had the privilege to talk to Click and Clack about a question I had about my car. It was a great experience, and an enduring memory.
Tom Magliozzi passed away last week. That’s going to be a big piece of radio silence to fill.
(I meant to post this remembrance earlier, but it took me a while to find this audio file.)
This has become a bit of a tradition here at giant Cypress.
This is one of the best Veteran’s Day songs, ever, even if it was written for Australia’s version of today.
God bless our vets, all of them.
Short film from 1932 showing how geta (Japanese wooden clogs) are made. The most interesting thing for me is at 1:45, where a “fire shovel chisel” (juno nomi) is used. I’ve seen photos of this style of chisel before, but was always unclear as to how they were used until now.
Watching how this woodworker uses saws was also cool.
(Thanks to Philip Fuentes for the link.)
The Palace of Versailles is hosting an exhibit titled, “18th Century, Birth of Design, Furniture Masterpieces from 1650 to 1790”. In the accompanying text, it states (emphasis mine):
In 1712, Shaftesbury introduced the term and concept of “design” to art theory. It contains the dual meaning of “plan” and “intention” and unifies the processes of conceiving and shaping a work. For the first time, furniture was planned with forethought, created with specific intention and shaped for both functionality and comfort.
This Ming Dynasty chair from the late 1500’s-early 1600’s thinks that idea is cute.
How did Wickham become a woodworker? The daughter of an architect, studied cultural anthropology and then, a few years after college, moved to Tokyo. “I was so moved and energized by the prevalence of super high quality hand made objects that you find in everyday life in Japan,” she recently said in an interview in The Artful Mind.
To teach herself how to use traditional Japanese hand tools such as chisels and planes, she made her own toolbox. “It took me a whole year,” she said, “working slowly, trying to understand the mysteries behind these amazing tools.”
Japanese shrine maker, from T. Enami’s portfolio of “resurrection images”. Interesting that he has five planes within reach, by my count. I can’t figure out why you would need that many.
This photo should be taken with a grain of salt from a documentary standpoint, as T. Enami’s “resurrection images” portfolio was designed to recreate photos that he lost in the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1926, so this photo may be staged, as opposed to being a photo of a woodworker in the middle of his work process. If this photo was staged, however, someone went to a lot of trouble making plane shavings for this shot.
Graham Haydon makes an appearance in the Popular Woodworking Magazine editor’s blog. Hopefully this will be the first of many appearances. Graham’s got a terrific blog, as well as a fantastic YouTube channel. I’m looking forward to his future posts.
A video posted by wnwoodworks (@wnwoodworks) on Oct 10, 2014 at 3:51pm PDT
William Ng, Japanese plane badass.
Glen Huey, Bob Lang, and Chuck Bender on what they’re up to with 360 WoodWorking. This sounds like a fascinating concept, and I’ll be interested to see how this turns out.
IKEA’s take on The Shining. Appropriate, given the upcoming holiday, and because there’s nothing more frightening to woodworkers than a warehouse full of termite barf furniture.
(Note that since this comes from IKEA Singapore, this relates to Asian woodworking, of a sort.)
Don Williams, on the H.O. Studley exhibit at Handworks 2, May 15-17, 2015:
The truth is there are still plenty of tickets available, and you can order them now. I do not have the spreadsheet in front of me right now, but I am pretty sure there are still time slots that could accommodate a woodworker’s guild or any other groups who wanted to purchase tickets and make it a shared experience.
Barring some disaster, I’ll be there. This is a once in a lifetime event, and should not be missed if at all possible. Get your tickets here.
"Design critics now look back at the birth of the Jobs-Ive partnership as the dawn of a golden age in..."
- Robert Sullivan, in his Vogue profile of Jony Ive. This is something that woodworkers might want to consider.
Dear giant Cypress, I have become a regular visitor of your blog. I thank you for your opinion on the Lee Valley plywood saw. Alas it isn't being sold in Europe. I could not find the Gyokucho S-410 you mentioned either. Your link to the Razorsaw...
Thanks for reading, and thanks for the nice comments. I really appreciate it.
You may want to try contacting Tools From Japan. They don’t list the S-410 on their site, but they carry many other Gyokucho saws, and may be able to order one for you. They do ship all over, so getting the saw to you in Europe shouldn’t be too much of an issue.
Lee Valley can ship to Europe as well. It’s worth contacting them about that possibility.