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Popular Woodworking Editors Blog

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Woodworking advice, woodworking plans, woodworking projects and woodworking blogs
Updated: 53 min 42 sec ago

Creating in CAD: Variations on a Theme

Tue, 03/14/2017 - 5:19am

Digital woodworking comes with a lot of moving parts: new hardware; new software; new methods and skills. But it’s the machinery itself that gets most of the attention. CNCs, Laser Cutters and 3D printers are all impressive machines. Watching them work, and the resulting precision, is the main focus of this new way of woodworking. With all that amazing machinery magically moving around, it’s easy to miss the most important […]

The post Creating in CAD: Variations on a Theme appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Cheap & Easy Steam Box Setup

Fri, 03/10/2017 - 3:00am
steam box

In the recent Don Weber “Build a Welsh Stick Chair” class/video shoot, Don brought some pre-bent arms for us to use, simply to make things move along more quickly (filming a woodworking video is sometimes like filming a cooking show – some parts are prepped ahead of time). But he did bend a couple on camera, using a simple and inexpensive steam box setup, made with items you can easily […]

The post Cheap & Easy Steam Box Setup appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Laguna IQ CNC Review: Part Two

Thu, 03/09/2017 - 11:00am
CNC

In Part One, I introduced the Laguna IQ 24″ x 36″ CNC. Below is Part Two of the video review. Conclusions I’ve had a Laguna IQ in the shop for a few weeks and put it to use on a variety of projects from part cutting to 3D carving. Like all the machines in this the class, I expected that the design, choice of components and solid construction would give […]

The post Laguna IQ CNC Review: Part Two appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Demise of U.S. Clamp Makers & A Defense of Hardware Hoarding

Wed, 03/08/2017 - 5:00am

The topics of United States clamp manufacturing and hardware hoarding might seem unrelated, and many of you will certainly think that they deserve two separate entries. In this story, however, I will try to show you how they can be “clamped” together quite successfully. Recently I decided we needed to add a few more clamps to the woodworking program at school. I wish we could have bought some domestically made […]

The post Demise of U.S. Clamp Makers & A Defense of Hardware Hoarding appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Laguna Tools IQ CNC Review: Part One

Tue, 03/07/2017 - 5:00am

In Part One and Part Two of this series on small shop CNCs, I introduced machines in this group that are designed to perform well in home and small professional shops. What they have in common is the size range and their engineering, design, components, specifications and build. Now, it’s time for a closer look at one of the machines and a review of the Laguna IQ. There’s a lot […]

The post Laguna Tools IQ CNC Review: Part One appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Lie-Nielsen Hand Tool Event March 10-11, Greater Cincinnati

Mon, 03/06/2017 - 6:39am

The Popular Woodworking team is looking forward to the end of this week – instead of reporting to the office for work on Friday morning, we’ll be meeting bright and early at Braxton Brewing Co. to set up for the 2017 Greater Cincinnati Lie-Nielsen Hand Tool Event. I’ll be there Saturday as well…but perhaps not bright nor early – but by 10 a.m. for sure! (That’s when the doors open […]

The post Lie-Nielsen Hand Tool Event March 10-11, Greater Cincinnati appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Table Saw Blades that Make the Cut

Thu, 03/02/2017 - 5:16am
table saw blades

In the video excerpt below, Doug Dale, instructor at the Marc Adams School of Woodworking, explains the three basic table saw blades – rip cut, crosscut and combination – and show you how each one makes the cut. And, he tells you the one he thinks should be in every shop. For more from Doug on proper and safe use of this machine, check out his “Power Tool Essentials: The […]

The post Table Saw Blades that Make the Cut appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

A Good Goodbye

Mon, 02/27/2017 - 8:18am

Last summer, upon accepting the position of managing editor here at Popular Woodworking Magazine, I wrote a blog post publicly asking myself if I was a woodworker. Today, as I begin my final week in this role, I’m only slightly closer to a definitive answer. Sorry – burying the lede is an old writer’s habit of mine (same with posting misleading photos). Yes, I’m leaving my position at Popular Woodworking […]

The post A Good Goodbye appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Alternative Paint Strippers

Fri, 02/24/2017 - 7:58am
stripper

by Bob Flexner Safer strippers are having a ‘green’ revival. Methods for removing old paint and finish from furniture have gone through at least four distinct periods. Before solvents became widely available, coatings were removed by scraping, often with glass used like we use scrapers, and sometimes by sanding, after sandpaper became available. (Heat and caustics such as lye have never been a good idea for furniture because they can […]

The post Alternative Paint Strippers appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Use Epoxy for Filling Gaps & Bark Inclusions – Martin Goebel

Thu, 02/23/2017 - 7:15am

Along with 64,000 or so (at least as of today) other people, I follow Goebel & Co. Furniture on Instagram. The furniture pieces coming out of this St. Louis-based shop are well-built and beefy, with imaginative designs that in many cases make use of live-edge tops that are stabilized with epoxy. (And take a look at some of the table bases – they’re pretty astounding!) So when we were looking […]

The post Use Epoxy for Filling Gaps & Bark Inclusions – Martin Goebel appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Thin, Good Looking & Strong – Micro Plywood Splines, Part 2

Wed, 02/22/2017 - 4:21am

It is very easy to install thin plywood splines in mitered corners of boxes and frames But, to do so successfully, you will have to design the placement pattern of the splines and spend some time carefully laying out your design on the corners. (Read part one of the micro splines story here)  Design Above (in the lead image) you can see a few optional designs that can be easily […]

The post Thin, Good Looking & Strong – Micro Plywood Splines, Part 2 appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Small Shop CNCs: Machines That Fit, Part 2

Tue, 02/21/2017 - 5:00am

In Part One, I introduced a class of machines in this group of CNCs that fit and perform well in home and small professional shops. What they have in common is the 2’ x 3’ to 4’ size range, engineering, design, specifications and build quality. Let’s have a look at that list again. Axiom Precision Pro Series AR6 Pro 24” x 36” & AR8 Pro 24” x 48” Laguna Tools […]

The post Small Shop CNCs: Machines That Fit, Part 2 appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

How to Select Woodturning Tools

Mon, 02/20/2017 - 6:30am
lathe tools

When it comes to turned furniture components, you only have a few options. You can buy mass-produced factory-turned components that do not accurately recreate the fine details in period furniture; you can make friends with a turner; or you can invest in a lathe and turn your own. If you decide to go with the third option you’ll need some woodturning tools (in addition to your lathe). This can seem like […]

The post How to Select Woodturning Tools appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Small Shop CNC: A Class of Machines Designed to Fit

Sat, 02/18/2017 - 5:00am

If you’re at the point to where you’re at least thinking about the idea of adding a CNC to your shop, then you’ve likely done some research. If that’s the case then you’ve certainly noticed there’s a huge range of sizes and prices of machines to consider.  With CNC routers from as small as 12” x 18” to as large as 5’ x 10’ in size, and prices from a few […]

The post Small Shop CNC: A Class of Machines Designed to Fit appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Popular Woodworking Magazine, April 2017

Fri, 02/17/2017 - 3:00am

The April issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine (#231) just mailed to print subscribers and emailed to digital subscribers. It’s live in our online store too. There’s a lot to dig into in this issue, including a chisel primer from Christopher Schwarz – he addresses what chisels you really need, how to set one up right and correct chisel usage techniques. And if you’re interested in period woodworking, you should really […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Frank Klausz’s ‘Secret’ Water-tight Joint

Thu, 02/16/2017 - 6:32am
water-tight joint

Frank Klausz reveals the family secret – how to make the watertight wood-on-wood joint for the bottom of his sharpening pond – a boatbuilder’s joint taught to him by his grandfather. It takes a special shop-made tool…from a material that you likely already have on hand. (I think I’ve enough of this particular thing to make at least 40 of them…I need to clean out the basement.) The pond also […]

The post Frank Klausz’s ‘Secret’ Water-tight Joint appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Acclimating Wood

Tue, 02/14/2017 - 1:00pm
acclimating wood

Whether you buy your furniture wood from a specialty hardwood lumberyard or from a local sawyer, the chance that the wood is ready to go into a piece of furniture with a minimum risk of shrinking (or, rarely, expanding) unduly is just about nil. Instead, it’s more likely (at least in most areas of the United States) that the wood has been sitting in an unheated space and is, at […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Thin, Good Looking & Strong – Micro Plywood Splines, Part 1

Mon, 02/13/2017 - 5:38am

While designing a 9th-grade box project, one thing kept bugging me: How should we reinforce the miter joints at the corners of the boxes? After cutting the miters and gluing the box parts together, I knew that we would have to add some strength to the corners – otherwise they would fail at some point, because simple miters are not reliable. So the question was, what kind of reinforcement? First […]

The post Thin, Good Looking & Strong – Micro Plywood Splines, Part 1 appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Digital Woodworking & Contemporary Art

Sun, 02/12/2017 - 6:53am

While working on a couple of blog posts about a group of CNC machines that are great for small shops, I got distracted by something rather impractical. But I thought because the distraction was about wood, it might be of interest to some of my fellow woodworkers. This is the final week of a solo contemporary art show of my work at Zinc Gallery near Seattle.  All the sculpture created […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

Create a Fumed Finish

Fri, 02/10/2017 - 5:00am
fumed finish taboret

Ever tried to create a fumed finish? Fuming with ammonia is a traditional Arts & Crafts finishing technique. When exposed to concentrated ammonia, the tannins in white oak cause the wood to darken, yielding a rich, warm color that penetrates the surface of the wood. Depending on the intended use of the piece, different topcoats can be applied to provide different effects. Boiled linseed oil is easy to apply. Shellac offers additional protection […]

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Categories: General Woodworking

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