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Popular Woodworking Editors Blog

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Woodworking advice, woodworking plans, woodworking projects and woodworking blogs
Updated: 3 min 7 sec ago

Urban Forestry & a Rash of Alarming Stumps

Mon, 06/19/2017 - 6:42am
urban forestry

Recently in my neighborhood, there has been an alarming outbreak of stumps. The City of Cincinnati has been removing trees that are encroaching on and breaking up the sidewalks, in anticipation of the replacement and repair of said walkways – a cost that is the responsibility of homeowners…which has caused some anger. I understand why we need passable walkways (I also understand the disgruntlement at having to pay for them, particularly with […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

11 Last Minute Father’s Day Gifts with Digital Delivery

Fri, 06/16/2017 - 12:20pm
brendan tools

Sometimes the best Father’s Day gifts are the ones that you pick up at the very last second…right? We understand that some of our readers haven’t taken advantage of our free shipping deal – which runs through this weekend if you want to hand Dad a receipt of a product that is in the mail – so we have curated a list of 11 products from our store that would […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Introduction to the BARN Workbench

Fri, 06/16/2017 - 7:46am

A workbench designed for hand tool woodworkers but made (partially) with a CNC. It features a 3D carved leg vise and a workbench top designed to improve ergonomics. I designed the BARN workbench for the Bainbridge Island Artisan Resource Network. It’s a Seattle area community group that has built a wonderful community facility for artisans to share resources, education, and workspace. I wanted to help my new neighbors, so I […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Book Giveaway: Perfect Edge

Fri, 06/16/2017 - 5:54am
Perfect Edge

Any experienced woodworker will tell you that the first secret to good work is keeping your tools sharp. “The Perfect Edge” by Ron Hock is one of the best books out there on sharpening woodworking tools. If you don’t have it, you need it. From choosing a sharpening set-up to in depth coverage of different sharpening methods, this book takes the mystery out of this crucial set of skills. I’m […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Last Chance to Enter the 2017 Excellence Awards!

Thu, 06/15/2017 - 8:43am

The 2017 Excellence Awards entry period will close on Friday (6/16) at midnight! The grand-prize winner gets a check for US$1,000, the winner in each of the five categories, and the overall Readers’ Choice winner, get a gift certificate to ShopWoodworking.com – plus, the grand-prize piece, and the Editors’ Choice and Readers’ Choice winners in each category will be featured in the November issue. There is absolutely no cost to […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

HVLP Finishing a Benefit for All

Thu, 06/15/2017 - 8:30am
HVLP Sprayer

When I was first learning woodworking, HVLP didn’t exist. That’s something I lament on occasion when I recall taking a deep breath (even with a face mask and decent air collection) before starting to spray a lacquer finish. The overspray cloud was amazing and there really wasn’t a way to avoid it – affecting my breathing and my ability to see what I was finishing! HVLP (high volume low pressure) […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Ridiculous Woodworking Books (Give me More!)

Wed, 06/14/2017 - 4:21am

As I work on the upcoming article “Young Maker’s Bookshelves” (for the October 2017 issue), I’m reminded of one of my favorite-ever posts (from 2009): “Ridiculous Woodworking Books, ” by Christopher Schwarz – mostly for the hilarious responses. But that was 8 years ago – it’s time for some new ones. Here’s a few from me (which are at best merely amusing): “The Ultimate Guide to Craft Fair Crap” (an […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

To See Like a Woodworker – A Forgotten Chamfer

Tue, 06/13/2017 - 11:20am

In the August 2017 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine, George Walker shares what it means to “See Like a Designer.” The article tells the classic story of how his workshop students transition from casual consumers of objects and art to sentient observers of form and design. It is a transition that I am familiar with – my upbringing in a machine shop that created custom automation equipment meant that very […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Congrats to Mark Bushinski, PWM 2017 Workshop Makeover Winner!

Tue, 06/13/2017 - 7:18am
Mark with daughter

Congratulations to Mark Bushinski of Minneapolis, Minnesota! Mark was chosen as the winner of the Popular Woodworking Magazine 2017 Workshop Makeover Giveaway. Mark won a new workshop stocked with more than $9,200 of tools from Jet, Bessey and Woodpeckers. Mark, where do you live and what is your occupation? I live in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with my wife and two children. I am 35 years old and work for the state […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

How to Resize a Cabinet Door

Mon, 06/12/2017 - 6:39am
Cut the door to size on the table saw

We all know the old saw about measuring twice and cutting once. I’ve even gone one better in my world: Measure three times. Nonetheless, I still occasionally find that I’ve made a door or a drawer the wrong size. (I once made an entire cabinet, complete with four drawers, that was an inch too wide for the opening where it was intended to go…oh, the pain.) Over the years, I’ve […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

‘Arrowhead Joint’ Box

Sun, 06/11/2017 - 6:26am
arrowhead joint

Eric Brown, a Dayton-area tool collector and woodworker, has been conducting further investigating and experimentation into curious corner joinery (read his “log cabin dovetail” piece by clicking on the link). Yesterday, he stopped by while I was minding the Lost Art Press shop to show me his latest: what he’s calling the “Arrowhead Joint.” The procedure is similar to the log cabin tails linked above, but he added a new angle – 45° to be exact. […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

How to Keep Kids From Wasting Sandpaper – Part 1

Sat, 06/10/2017 - 3:40am

It seems that no other shop resource is treated with such obliviousness as sandpaper. Although sandpaper is responsible for the last steps of shaping much of our work, it doesn’t receive the same heed as hand tools, or even portable tools. And, for obvious reasons, it doesn’t have the same sex-appeal as a hand tool. It is also disposable and cheap. Still, I tell my students: although it may seem […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Book Giveaway: Denning on Cabinet-making

Fri, 06/09/2017 - 7:02am
Denning on Cabinet-making

After a brief lapse in book giveaways due to a bit of travel, I’m back at it again. This week I’m giving away a copy of “The Art and Craft of Cabinet-making” by David Denning. It’s a high-quality binding of a classic woodworking text that belongs in every woodworker’s collection. You’ll find insight into wood selection, glue prep, tools and appliances, joinery, decorative details, hardware and much more (just check out the table […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Frank Klausz & the Joys of Filister Planes

Thu, 06/08/2017 - 8:30am

If you enjoy using hand planes in your woodworking, then you may be considering adding specialty planes (like a filister) to your shop. Frank Klausz is a fan of filister planes, and in this short video he shows some of the details on adjusting and using a metal-bodied filister to make a ship-lapped joint. Just one more example of his impressive knowledge of woodworking joinery, and why we love learning from Frank. If […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

The BARN Workbench

Wed, 06/07/2017 - 4:30am

The BARN Workbench is named for a community group of woodworkers and other artisans. BARN is the Bainbridge Artisan Resource Network located on Bainbridge Island. The island is directly across and a 35 minute ferry ride away from Seattle. Started by a group of enthusiastic woodworkers, the group has grown to include artisans with a number of interests, including fabric artists, metal workers, jewelers, writers, printers and more. After years […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

The Craft Classics in Just 5′ – Must-Read Woodworking Books

Tue, 06/06/2017 - 6:40am

Fight woodworking ignorance 15 minutes each day. Editor’s note: In the September/October 2017 issue (which mails to subscribers on Aug. 1), we have an article from up-and-coming makers on the books that have influenced their work and woodworking philosophy. Below is a similar article we ran in June 2011, asking established makers what they felt were the most important woodworking books, plus we included our staff picks. (I’ve linked to […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Fitting Doors & Drawer Faces With a Router

Mon, 06/05/2017 - 5:25am
Indicating the mark for one end of the line to trim

As with most things in woodworking, there’s more than one way to fit doors and drawers. Nothing beats a handplane for precision, flexibility, and speed when you have a solid bench and vise. A table saw can also do the trick – quite well, in fact, even for tapered cuts. But what about those times when you’re working in a shop (or on a jobsite) with a less-than-solid workbench and a portable table […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

How to Increase the Holding Power of a Square

Sat, 06/03/2017 - 5:00am

Anyone who has introduced a square to young students or beginner woodworkers knows the challenges of teaching them how to control the tool and maintain it square to the edge of the workpiece during use. The main problem for the inexperienced woodworker is to keep the square where they intended. As the student slides their pencil or marking knife down the ruler, problems begin. The further away they slide the […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Welcome Nancy Hiller to the PW Shop Blog

Fri, 06/02/2017 - 7:33am

I’m dead chuffed to announce that, commencing next week, the inimitable Nancy Hiller will be a regular contributor the PWM Shop Blog. She’ll be sharing techniques and tips from her more than 30 years of experience as a professional furniture maker and cabinetmaker – a journey on which she embarked (with several fascinating detours along the way) after dropping out of Cambridge and training as a furniture maker in the City […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

How to Repair Loose Screws on a Chair

Thu, 06/01/2017 - 8:30am
loose joint screw

With time, furniture joints (especially in chairs) tend to loosen up a bit. It’s part of working with a material that once was alive and continues to react with the environment. Wood shrinks and expands with humidity, and the same goes for the holes that have screws in them. So before you retire a favorite chair to the less-used area of your house, take a little time to tighten things […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

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