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molding plane work......

Accidental Woodworker - Sat, 03/04/2017 - 1:44am
I have acquired quite a herd of molding planes over the past couple of years. Some of them I don't have any problems using and others make me feel as smart as a box of rocks. I want to be able to reach into my molding plane till, pull out any plane, and use it. So far that is hit or miss but I am making progress. I am more of a do and learn type then I am a read, do and learn one. What I learn by just doing sticks with me more than the printed word does.

first batter
I bought this based on the profile and the price which I think was around $10. When I first got it, it worked on my first attempt. Turns out that was pure dumb luck on my part. I have tried it several times since then without even getting a shaving.

I learned a few things from playing with the other molding planes and I am going to see if any of that pays off here.  First I got the iron set so that it showing about the same reveal along the whole profile. I have also learned that the fraction stamped on this plane is the profile size and not the thickness of stock it will plane.

planed this profile on wednesday
I got this planed and now it's time to see if I can repeat it. Which is something I haven't done with this plane since I got it.

I set the iron deeper
I could barely feel the iron here at the top when I ran my finger tips over it. This is the portion of the iron that cuts first. If this doesn't take any shavings at first, this plane isn't going anywhere.

it's obvious viewed from here
This is something that I didn't think of when I tried to plane with this and couldn't. I thought it was the wood being too thick.

bottom of the plane is cutting
The plane will continue to drop down as long as this portion of the iron is cutting. After this cove is started the inside edge of the profile starts cutting.

plane stopped making shavings here
I know now that no shavings means the iron probably reveal isn't high enough.

set it deeper
The cove portion at the top is done cutting for now and the side of the cove needs to be proud so it can start cutting. I set the iron a bit deeper to increase the iron's reveal.

it's making shavings again
50% done
The plane is still taking shavings but were small.  I had to advance the iron a bit more to complete the S shape.

making shavings again after setting the iron

I'm not happy with how much is sticking up at the bottom
almost got the entire S shape
bit flat at the top here and it should be rounded

I did it. I repeated making the profile twice in a row.  I am making progress on using these but not at a speed I like. But you have to crawl before you walk.

I had to set the iron several times
Don't go nutso on me saying I used the wrong hammer. This was handy when I snapped this pic. I use my plastic mallet for all my tapping on wooden planes.

this reveal made the profile
second plane in the batters circle
Based on what I just did with the first plane, I'm trying for 2 for 2. This profile is a thumbnail with a shoulder.

same operative theory for this one too
The flat on the right cuts first and as the plane drops down, the cove starts to cut too.

raised the flat proud of the sole
going nowhere
This was frustrating to think I was on the right track and get no shavings. The plane dropped down maybe 1/8" and stopped making shavings.

thumbnail planed a thin piece of wood
comparing the reveals
I saw the problem right away. I have a lot of the flat revealed but almost nothing on the cove portion.

this is a nice looking profile
Once I got the reveal upped, I was able to plane the entire profile without having to set the iron again.

how much reveal made the profile
a little rough on the round over
I have noticed that roughness is usually caused by one or two things. The first is the iron being dull which in this case isn't the culprit. The other is the iron is set too deep. Here I think it might be a contributing factor but the grain is squirrely here too.

real bad tear out here by the knot

I was pretty happy with what I got done tonight. I made two profiles that for some time now have eluded me. But I have learned a few things about molding planes and with each use, I'm getting better at figuring out problems and being able to make shavings.

my newest molder
The profile of this iron is mismatched with the sole profile. The big dip is what I scribed and the smaller one is what I think it should be. Before I can fix this to match the plane's profile, I have get it scribed correctly.

With the iron set in the plane as I can it won't plane the profile. The flat is angled the wrong way and the bottom of the cove is up about 1/8". Even with a hydraulic ram pushing the plane, I doubt that you could make a profile.

how I scribed it the first time
why the first scribe line is toast
I didn't see this the first time around. I put the scribe at the mouth and moved it left to right. The scribe dipped down beneath the top level of the mouth and scribed the line too deep.  The scribe can't fit in the thumbnail of the sole so I couldn't accurately scribe the profile.

dental pick will work
This was on the bench so I tried it. It has a flat that I can lay in the bed and maintain it flat on the thumbnail profile while I scribe the entire iron.  I'll erase the layout fluid on the iron and try round two and see what results I get.

recommendation from Bob Demers
I remember Bob Demers telling me that this is some pretty good stuff and that he has been using it for years. On Lee Valley's site I found this. I bought a couple of things from the kit because I had a few of them already.  I bought the turkish towel for rubbing this out.

bought this too
Both of these leave a protective finish but I'm not 100% sure what this one really does. My impression of it that it is a long term protective finish.

medium and fine erasers
These I had and I'll be tossing them in the box with the polish and protective stuff.

got a use for the small box now
test time
I like shiny and would like to keep this as shiny as I can. However, through normal shop use this will turn grungy in about a month. The instructions with the Autosol say to apply a small amount in a circular motion and then wipe/buff it off. It warns not to let this dry and to remove it from cracks and crevices with alcohol right away. Then apply more Autosol in the normal fashion and wipe/buff it off.

I'm a impressed
This raised the shine quite a bit. Both the application cloth and the buffing rag were as black as the edge of space when I got done. I did both cheeks and the sole. I will keep an eye on this to see if it drags or anything when I plane something. I will also keep an eye on how long this lasts. If it works, I'll do all my planes with it.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
The Frenchman Alfred Vacheron was the first to put a steering wheel on a car in 1894. Who was the first american car maker to do it?
answer - Packard did it in 1899

The key to becoming a better woodworker

Oregon Woodworker - Fri, 03/03/2017 - 10:06pm
I listened to a Tedx talk the other day that, on its face, has nothing to do with woodworking yet, I believe, holds the key to improving as a woodworker no matter your current skill level.  If you have 12 minutes to spare, I think it might be worth your time to listen to it.

I have been thinking along these lines for some time, but the speaker really develops and justifies the idea very well.  Perhaps I am one of only a few who doesn't improve as much as I should or could for the reasons he talks about, but I doubt it.  Generally speaking, when I go into my shop I want to make something and I want it to be the best work I am capable of.   I am in the performance zone.  As the speaker explains, that isn't the best way to learn.  For that you need to move into the learning zone, where the goal isn't to make something but to learn something, to develop your skills and capability.  The end result is not a thing, it's a skill.  That's hard for me.  When I am asked over dinner what I did in the shop today, I don't really want to say, "I really accomplished a lot by practicing sawing more closely to a line.  I don't have anything to show for it because I threw away all the pieces I used."  Who wants to read a blog post about that?

I am going to try to motivate myself to spend 20% of my shop time during which I specifically commit to throwing away whatever I produce because I am trying to develop a skill and want to focus solely on that.  I don't know if I can do this but I think it is essential if I am to improve much more.  I have gotten to the point where I have enough skill that I can make pretty nice pieces that will be used and admired, but I am not getting much better for the clear reason that I am spending most of my time in the performance zone.  I tend to fall back on the techniques I know I can execute well.  After all, who wants to try something unfamiliar or that you know you aren't really proficient at on a workpiece made from expensive wood which you have already spent hours on?  I admit that I do this.

I think most of us know intuitively that what this guy is saying is right.  The challenge is to be disciplined enough to act on it.  The sad thing is that when I actually do it, it is very satisfying.

I'd be interested to know if I am the only one that suffers from this failing.
Categories: Hand Tools


The Furniture Record - Fri, 03/03/2017 - 9:28pm


When he sees this, Roy’s heart breaks just a little…

Not Bored Cutting

The Kilted Woodworker - Fri, 03/03/2017 - 3:00pm
I recently had a need to make a cutting board for someone. I wanted to make something unusual, with some highly figured domestic woods – most likely maple and walnut. I prefer these species because their pores are closed (or at least very tiny), which I think is better for something on which food will […]
Categories: General Woodworking

From Telegram (6)

Da Telegram (6)

At the end the US Commission on International Trade decided that Bosch infringed two patents owned by SawStop and therefore, excluding extrajudicial economic agreements, Bosch will have to stop selling in the US its circular saws Reaxx and related spare parts included the cartridges that are needed to operate the safety system.
Bosch commented the decision saying that they now hope that the President of the Commission should not ratify it. And the President of the Commission, if I have not misunderstood it, is no other than Donald Trump himself. Yes exactly that Donald Trump that is a lot protectionist and has already flamed with Angela Merkel.

Alla fine la US Commission on International Trade ha deciso che la Bosch ha infranto due brevetti di proprietà della Sawstop e quindi, al netto di accordi economici extragiudiziari, la Bosch dovrà smettere di vendere negli Stati Uniti le sue seghe circolari Reaxx e le relative parti di ricambio incluse le cartuccie che sono necessarie per far funzionare il sistema di sicurezza.
La Bosch ha commentato la decisione dicendo che adesso spera che il Presidente della Commissione non la ratifichi. E il Presidente della commissione, se non ho capito male, è nientepopodimeno che Donald Trump in persona. Sì esatto quel Donald Trump che è molto protezionista e che ha già flammato con Angela Merkel.

Categories: Hand Tools

March Poll: Selling Tools (continued)

Highland Woodworking - Fri, 03/03/2017 - 7:00am

Are you a tightwad, like me?

I know there are many of us out there. We pinch pennies and we are so attached to them we lose our appetites when the government talks about doing away with them. (Can you imagine what a government program to discontinue pennies would cost taxpayers? I shudder to even think about it.)

I once asked Alan Noel a paintbrush-cleaning question. He replied that “Since I am the world’s cheapest !*&/$#?\, first I dip the brush into lacquer thinner then I use Ivory bar soap (very cheap!) and rub the brush onto it under water then lather it up, rinse and repeat until the lather is absolutely snow white. This is how I clean a brush”…. I knew I liked this guy for a good reason!

Last month we talked about how to sell tools, and this month we want to think about how much we expect to get for them.

As of this writing, 21% of us said they wouldn’t even try to sell their old tools, but would give them away as gifts to our fellow woodworkers, like Jimmy Diresta did in this video.

Another 11% of us couldn’t bear to part with their old tools. I can relate. I have some surgical instruments and an old stethoscope that have simply become worn out, but I won’t throw them out. Maybe I’ll make a shadow box collection one day.

I could no more throw away this old Skilsaw than I could throw away my little Willie.

Somebody said you could get a pretty good price for a little poodle on Craigslist, but Willie’s not for sale. Or giveaway.

The Osborne Excalibur miter gauge I have, still in the box, sells for $120 to $140 at various outlets. I know no one will pay full price for it, even though it’s not “used,” which leaves me thinking, what would it take for me to part with it? For fifty bucks I’ll let it hang around, in case I want to assemble it one day, even though I couldn’t be happier with my Incra 1000.

Last month we asked how you sell your tools. This month, we’d like to know how much you expect to get for them:

Take Our Poll (function(d,c,j){if(!d.getElementById(j)){var pd=d.createElement(c),s;pd.id=j;pd.src='https://blog.woodworkingtooltips.com/wp-content/plugins/polldaddy/js/polldaddy-shortcode.js';s=d.getElementsByTagName(c)[0];s.parentNode.insertBefore(pd,s);} else if(typeof jQuery !=='undefined')jQuery(d.body).trigger('pd-script-load');}(document,'script','pd-polldaddy-loader'));

Jim Randolph is a veterinarian in Long Beach, Mississippi. His earlier careers as lawn mower, dairy farmer, automobile mechanic, microwave communications electronics instructor and journeyman carpenter all influence his approach to woodworking. His favorite projects are furniture built for his wife, Brenda, and for their children and grandchildren. His and Brenda’s home, nicknamed Sticks-In-The-Mud, is built on pilings (sticks) near the wetlands (mud) on a bayou off Jourdan River. His shop is in the lower level of their home.Questions and comments on woodworking may be written below in the comments section. Questions about pet care should be directed to his blog on pet care, www.MyPetsDoctor.com. We regret that, because of high volume, not all inquiries can be answered personally.

The post March Poll: Selling Tools (continued) appeared first on Woodworking Blog.

Categories: General Woodworking

From Telegram (5)

Da Telegram (5)

Colonel Mark Harrell, owner of Bad Axe Tool Works, has loaded online all the articles he wrote for Fine Woodworking and Furniture & Cabinetmaking magazines.

Il Colonnello Mark Harrell, proprietario di Bad Axe Tool Works, ha messo online tutti gli articoli che ha scritto per le riviste Fine Woodworking e Furniture & Cabinetmaking.

Categories: Hand Tools

From Telegram (4)

Da Telegram (4)

A nice infographic, drawed by Kate McMillan, about how to build a traditional north-european wooden plane.

Una bella infografica, disegnata da Kate McMillan, su come costruire una tradizionale pialla di legno in stile nord-europeo.

Categories: Hand Tools

Catching Up: The Winter

Peter Galbert - Chair Notes - Fri, 03/03/2017 - 5:12am
This summer will be a bit subdued as far as travels go, which is going to be lovely for me after the fall and winter of action. After returning from Purchase, I immediately launched into teaching a 22 person class in the Cabinet Program at North Bennet Street. I spent the better part of January working with the students there.

Here is the chair that we made. It's a scaled up version of my kid's hoopback (which is one of my personal favorites to have around the house). I made this version larger to better serve the students at the school as their bench chair. I think it's very cool that they get to make their own shop furniture. Scaling it up posed the usual challenges of adjusting the rake and splay of the legs so that the chair doesn't take up too much floor space, which is especially important in the tight spaces of the school.

As the class was winding down, I went down to Colonial Williamsburg to present, along with the outstanding Don Williams and the folks from the Cabinet and Jointers shop, on chairs...of course.

 The auditorium at the museum is first class with two cameras and projection to really get up close. Here Kaare is giving me a "hand" pumping the treadle lathe. Frankly, it was a bit much for me to turn, pump and talk! I got lots of help after wearing out Kaare from the jointers apprentices.

photo by Tom McKenna
For the presentation, I thought it would be fun to work out a new continuous arm and Kaare Loftheim, master cabinetmaker, agreed. Here is the chair that I made, based on a few photos in books and online. As usual, I learned some fun things about design and got to finally turn some Rhode Island balusters!
 Here is the complete chair and the one that I demonstrated
 The seat shape and the legs were a lot of fun.

 Plus I took a little more time with the distressing, placing a thin coat of shellac inbetween the undercoat and top coat of dark green. I was very pleased with the results.

 The swelling on the lower section gives ample material for the joinery, I'm not sure how much that played into the design thinking at the time, but it was apparent to me. The lower portion takes on much more of an important role in the look of the leg, which gives a nice balance. The image below is not good for proportions because of my phone lens, but you get the idea.

It was a great trip and an honor to be invited. If you ever get the chance to attend, I highly recommend it.
And here is your Georgie update! She is thriving and turning out to be the easiest dog I've ever had. Playful and loving but extremely calm on her own. She is now acclimated to all the shop noises and all my hustling about. When it gets to be too much, she just retires to her crate for a nap! We are still working on new experiences. The first time she saw the television she freaked, but now she sits calmly while it's on, I don't think that she had ever heard a voice come from a box.

I know it's gratuitous, but I"m smitten
Lil would approve of her technique
The truck is becoming a safe space, this is their first ride together

Categories: Hand Tools

Shop Update LIVE 3/2/17: Hand Cut Tapers

The Renaissance Woodworker - Fri, 03/03/2017 - 5:00am

Pay Attention to Your Lines, and Plane to Them

The focus of this Live session is cutting tapers in a leg by hand. The original question comes from Chuck who will be making tapered octagonal legs and wants to get the 4 sided taper first. Basically you lay out the taper and plane to your lines. I like pencil lines over knife lines but either method will work. I do all the heavy lifting with the Fore plane and get almost right on my lines, then flatten and refine the taper with my jointer plane. But a Jack plane would work just as well.

Using the Jack Plane as the Only Plane

Then I get into a question from Ed about how to use his Jack plane as the single plane to go from a rough sawn board to a finish ready surface. I did a live session on this very topic for my Hand Tool School Apprentices so I have edited that session a bit and released the video as a stand alone product that can be purchase over on the school site (or by clicking the Jack plane image.

Jack plane lesson

More Stuff from this Live Session

Lots of people showed up in the chat room and asked a lot of questions! Sorry I didn’t get to them all but maybe some of the below links will help:

  • Restore a Fore Plane from a Rusty Piece of Junk
  • The Resaw Frame Saw in Action
  • Making the Center Scribe

There were also some questions about edge jointing and squaring edges but I’m going to focus on that topic for next month’s live Shop Update on April 6th. So add it to your calendar, or join my email list and I’ll be sure to send out a reminder for the event a few days prior.

Categories: Hand Tools

Assembly of a Veritas tongue and plane

Journeyman's Journal - Fri, 03/03/2017 - 4:56am

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.

Categories: Hand Tools

tequila box done and a rabbet plane.......

Accidental Woodworker - Fri, 03/03/2017 - 12:52am
The tequila box is done but it won't be shipping until next week. I put one coat of my new finish on it and it will need one more. Since the post office will be closed by the time I get home from OT on saturday, it'll be shipped out next week sometime.

In the interim, winter has come back to my part of the universe. We have had nice weather with temps in the 50's and 60's for over a week. Saturday is forecasted to have wind chills of 5-10 degrees F (about -13°C). Tonight the temp is going to dip down into the low 20's. This morning when I went to work the temp was 55°F (12°C). That is a quite a swing in one day.

whacked out the thumb grab first
This gouge is getting dull in spite of the bevel looking so shiny. I didn't want to stop to do that so I stropped it. I stuck in the vise and ran the strop over the bevel. It worked and I didn't have any problems making this. Unfortunately, the stropping is a stop gap measure and I will have sharpen this.

planed the 1/4 astragals
The rabbets were deep enough that they didn't limit my planing of these. After I got them done I think I should have made the rabbets narrower.

first coat
I did a quick sanding of the box, dusted it off, and applied the first coat of finish. I like this finish and the slight color it gave the box. It can see a difference between the raw wood and this, especially on the end grain. Tomorrow I'll put on the second coat and brand it.  I'll box it up for shipping this weekend.

making a rabbet
Got a practice board, a marking gauge, and 1 1/4 wooden skew rabbet plane. Hand and eye coordination helps too.

knife a line
This line is the width of the rabbet.

use the point of the iron
You put the tip of the iron in the knife line you just made. The knife line will guide the iron from end to end with help from you.

start with the plane tilted
 Go slowly and keep the iron going in the knife line. It is easier to do than this looks. I started with the plane tilted about 45°.

of course I went off the knife line
I took my eye off of the plane for a second and this happened. The first couple of runs down the knife line you have to pay attention to what you are doing.

I had a small vee started and now I don't have to be as nutso watching to ensure that the plane is going the way I want it to.

wall established
Now as you progress from end to end you can start moving the plane to vertical. It will track down in the vee and plane the rabbet.

just about 90° to board here
big ass escapement hole
But little wimpy shavings coming out of it but that is due to the rabbet size.

not the best board to be planing a rabbet in
This board is knotty from end to end, with a lot of reversing grain. I got teat almost end to end.

except for the LV rabbet plane
I tend to veer inboard with fenceless rabbet planes. More so with this wooden one than with the 10 1/2 and not at all with the Lee Valley rabbet plane. The outboard edge is ragged out but the shoulder is fairly clean. It is step free and sharply defined right into the corner.

the lead in end
I didn't mark a dept for this and I should have. This is encouraging for me. I have a square shoulder and a reasonably flat rabbet on this end.

exit end
Not so good on this end. Not only am I sloping outboard, my shoulder is off square too.

went in the wrong direction
Got the shoulder squared up but I fixed the sloped rabbet by going in the wrong direction. Thank you again, my spatial ability.

Squared off but I now have a rabbet that is sloped down on this end .

I have been looking for a smaller wooden rabbet plane about 5/8" to 7/8" wide. It doesn't matter to me if it is skewed or not but I'm not having any luck. Most of the ones I seen are 1" and above. I'll find one eventually.

Between the wooden rabbet plane and the 10 1/2, I prefer the 10 1/2. I don't have the problems with the 10 1/2 that I do with the wooden one (as bad). Except with both, I do veer off on the exit end of the cut. I could probably even the score if I practiced more with the wooden one. That is why I want a smaller one.

I had put off trying to use planes like this because I thought I would never be able to master their use. They don't hold any secrets from me anymore and it is like any other handtool I've encountered, all it takes is practice. I learned just as much from my mistakes as I did getting good results.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
Who was the first female athlete to appear in Wheaties "Breakfast of Champions" TV commercial?
answer - Mary Lou Retton in 1984

George, Anne and an Impostor.

The Furniture Record - Thu, 03/02/2017 - 10:33pm

Yet more interesting(?) things from a recent auction.

There were three very different low boys at the auction a few weeks back. It is unusual to have that many low boys at one auction. They are as follows:

George II Inlaid Low Boy


This lot has sold for $260.

Description:  18th century, oak, pine secondary, top with banded veneer bordered edge, single long drawer above three side by side short drawers, shaped skirt, on cabriole legs with ball and claw feet.

Size:  29 x 31.5 x 18.5 in.

English Queen Anne Low Boy


This lot has sold for $280.

Description:   18th century, oak and elm, pine secondary, upper long drawer above three side by side short drawers, boldly scrolled skirt, cabriole legs with pad feet.

Size:  28.75 x 30 x 19.5 in.

Henry Ford Museum Reproduction Low Boy
The Impostor


This lot has sold for $260.

Description:   Colonial Manufacturing Co., with label and tag to interior of drawer, “Number 326 Mahogany Savery Low Boy”, upper long drawer above three side by side drawers, central with shell carving, fluted canted quarter columns, on cabriole legs with shell carved knee on ball and claw feet.

Size:  30 x 36 x 20.5 in.

I will mostly ignore the impostor for this blog. It has machine cut dovetails, believe it or not. The only interesting thing about it is the carved shell on the center drawer:


Not necessarily entirely hand-carved.

We will now compare parts of the two remaining low boys starting with the aprons and some drawer area details:


George II


Queen Anne

Some carcass detail:


More George with his banding.


More Queen Anne with beaded drawers.

All low boys have legs:


Queen Anne has a cabriole leg with a pad foot.


The leg terminates with a tenon into the carcass.


George favors the ball and claw foot.

The cabriole leg continues up:


and becomes an integral part of the frame and panel construction.


George II has proper dovetailed drawers. Nails optional.


The Queen has only nails and no tails.

And edge treatments:


George has a profiled top with banding.


The Queen has a two tiered top with applied molding.

There was actually a fourth low boy at the auction:

Edwardian Inlaid Low Boy


This lot has sold for $500

Description:  In the Queen Anne taste, circa 1900, mahogany, mahogany veneer, rectangular top with herringbone and sawtooth inlays, upper long drawer above a central hinged cabinet door flanked by two small drawers, shaped skirt, tall tapered legs with pad feet.

Size:  33 x 36 x 23 in.

And a fifth one at this weeks auction:


This item to be sold on 3/4/2017.

Description:  Circa 1760, white pine secondary, top with molded edge, upper long lipped drawer above three side by side lipped drawers, shaped skirt with drop finials, raised on tall cabriole legs with pad feet.

Size:  32 x 35 x 21.5 in.

I will cover these later.

Black Walnut (Juglans nigra)

Lost Art Press: Chris Schwarz - Thu, 03/02/2017 - 5:47pm

Fig. 2-7. Black Walnut (Juglans nigra) 60′ – 100′ (18-30 m) tall

This is an excerpt from “With the Grain: A Craftsman’s Guide to Understanding Wood” by Christian Becksvoort. 


The walnut family also includes butternut and the hickories. Juglans means nut of Jupiter, nigra, or black, refers to the dark wood. Its natural range is from New England through southern Ontario to South Dakota, south to Texas, and east to northern Florida. Walnuts grow best in the deep rich soils of river valleys and bottom lands, where they reach a height of 60′-100′ (18-30 m). The tree generally has an open crown with thick, sturdy branches. Walnut leaves are compound, 1′-2′ (30-60 cm) long, with 13-23 lance-shaped leaflets. Leaves grow alternately on thick, stubby twigs. When cut, the twigs reveal a light brown pith, about the thickness of a pencil lead. Overall, the light green foliage is scant, giving the tree an airy appearance. Early in the fall the leaves turn yellow and drop, leaving a distinctive 3-lobed, notched, leaf scar. The nut matures at about the same time, enclosed in a thick, green, pulpy husk about the size of a billiard ball. The deeply grooved black nut is very thick and hard, but well worth the effort of extracting the meat. The dark brown bark grows in broken, crossed ridges.


Black walnut is as close to a perfect cabinet wood as can be found in North America. The light sapwood, 10-20 rings wide, is often steamed commercially to make it blend with the heartwood, which is a medium chocolate to purplish-brown. The wood is medium hard (with a density of 38 lb/ft³ or .61 g/cc at 12 percent MC), strong and works well with both hand and power tools. Classified as semi-ring-porous the vessels (containing tyloses) are large enough to be seen on any surface. Walnut is very decay-resistant, and was once used for railroad ties. Many early barns, houses and outbuildings in the Appalachians and the Midwest were constructed with walnut frames. Its color, beauty and workability make it a prime cabinet wood. Gunsmiths use it for stocks because it moves very little once dried. Top-quality veneer logs will sell for thousands of dollars and will panel miles of executive offices.

Meghan Bates

Filed under: Uncategorized
Categories: Hand Tools

The One-stop Place for Saw Maintenance

Chris Schwarz's Pop Wood Blog - Thu, 03/02/2017 - 3:52pm

When I was learning to sharpen and set saws in the 1990s, I was desperate for information. All I had was one modern book, a somewhat helpful video and the attempts I had made on my bargain basement saws. It was a slog. While today there is a lot more information available on saws and saw sharpening, much of it is conflicting and more complex than necessary. Sharpening a saw […]

The post The One-stop Place for Saw Maintenance appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: Hand Tools

Planter Box Build Part 8

Journeyman's Journal - Thu, 03/02/2017 - 2:09pm

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.

Categories: Hand Tools

Craftsman Rocker Class

Heritage School of Woodworking Blog - Thu, 03/02/2017 - 9:43am

This week we have 7 people each building their own rocking chair! So we are starting with this (a stack of wood). And hopefully by the end of the week, each student will have this (a finished rocking chair).  We’ve cut the mortise and tenons, arch on the front rail, tenons for the arm posts […]

The post Craftsman Rocker Class appeared first on Heritage School of Woodworking Blog.

Categories: Hand Tools

Tips from Sticks in the Mud – March 2017 – Tip #1 – Changing Leaky Tool Batteries

Highland Woodworking - Thu, 03/02/2017 - 7:00am

Welcome to “Tips From Sticks-In-The-Mud Woodshop.” I am a hobbyist who loves woodworking and writing for those who also love the craft. I have found some ways to accomplish tasks in the workshop that might be helpful to you, and I enjoy hearing your own problem-solving ideasPlease share them in the COMMENTS section of each tip.  If, in the process, I can also make you laugh, I have achieved 100% of my goals.

“This call may be monitored and recorded for better customer service.” Apparently, it’s true. Ever the frugal consumer, when a battery company puts a guarantee on their packaging that says they will repair or replace equipment damaged by battery leakage, I found out they do keep track of those claims. How? One day, I got this notice in the mail:

Dear Mr. Randolph,

In covering our batteries’ warranty to repair or replace items damaged by leakage, we have reimbursed you many times for electronics you have sent us. Along with cash reimbursements, we have included coupons for free batteries, redeemable through local merchants.

Each time, we have advised you to be sure to change batteries prior to their expiration date, and to quickly remove batteries when their charge is exhausted. Your latest warranty submission contains leaky batteries that are far beyond their printed expiry.

Unfortunately, we are unable to continue to provide warranty protection when the end user repeatedly ignores proper battery use instructions. In gratitude for your loyal use of ‘XXX’ batteries, we have enclosed your ruined radio and coupons with which you may obtain new ‘XXX’ batteries.”

I now use two techniques to prevent having electronics become ruined by leaky batteries.

One, I put a reminder in my computer (a phone reminder would work just as well) that tells me to change the batteries in certain equipment every-so-often. Each piece of equipment has its own reminder. By dating the batteries as they are installed in each piece, I am able to determine how long the battery will last in that particular item.

Every battery-powered thing I own has dated batteries. It’s easy to tell when batteries have gotten old.

Dates on the AA batteries in this transmitting shop monitor have shown me, over time, that they will last about 8 months. A computer reminder tells me to change the batteries before they discharge and leak, ruining the device.

By contrast, the receiving half of the same unit has an internal monitor that turns on a light when its 9-volt battery is low. Why can’t everything be like that?

I don’t need a battery-changing reminder for the receiver, but I do need a Post-It Note reminder to tell me why I don’t need a reminder.

My Nissan key fob, this micrometer, the microphones in the breathing monitors at our clinic and the glucose meter all use the same button battery. I keep one brand new battery in the clinic and one in the car, always ready, rather than each item having its own standby, with all of them getting older, and weaker.

I don’t use this little battery-powered Dremel much, but when no wall power is available, or in wet locations, it’s mighty handy. It takes less than a minute to slide the batteries back into their holster and into the Dremel.

Months often go by that I don’t need to use the metal detector. Therefore, I take the battery out every time I use it. Ditto for the electric screwdriver in the electrical belt.

Some items need to have their batteries in all the time, especially devices requiring battery backup. For the bedside clock and weather station, we have computer reminders to change the batteries before they can go bad.

Jim Randolph is a veterinarian in Long Beach, Mississippi. His earlier careers as lawn mower, dairy farmer, automobile mechanic, microwave communications electronics instructor and journeyman carpenter all influence his approach to woodworking. His favorite projects are furniture built for his wife, Brenda, and for their children and grandchildren. His and Brenda’s home, nicknamed Sticks-In-The-Mud, is built on pilings (sticks) near the wetlands (mud) on a bayou off Jourdan River. His shop is in the lower level of their home.Questions and comments on woodworking may be written below in the comments section. Questions about pet care should be directed to his blog on pet care, www.MyPetsDoctor.com. We regret that, because of high volume, not all inquiries can be answered personally.

The post Tips from Sticks in the Mud – March 2017 – Tip #1 – Changing Leaky Tool Batteries appeared first on Woodworking Blog.

Categories: General Woodworking

Table Saw Blades that Make the Cut

Popular Woodworking Editors Blog - 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

The Golden Age Redux

The Barn on White Run - Thu, 03/02/2017 - 5:04am

I have long argued that we are living in two simultaneous Golden Ages, that of furniture making and that of tool making.  Never before in human history has a culture produced more superb furniture than we are right now, it’s just that most of the furniture is being made avocationally rather than vocationally, which is not to disregard the exquisite furniture being made by people who do it for a living.  It’s just that there are so many more “makers driven by passion” than those driven by income, a ratio I would  conclude is far north of 100:1.

The Golden Age of Tool Making is a bit different in that the purveyors for those particular narcotics in the marketplace are simultaneously driven by both passion and income.  Consider the upcoming Handworks event, where scores of professional woodworking tool makers will interact with thousands of woodworkers and tool aficionados, deep in the heart of the Iowa cornfields.  I am honored to count many of these toolmakers among my friends and acquaintances.

I am sure there are cranky toolmakers working under the nostrum of secrecy, but thus far I have yet to run into any of them.  My experience is that they are delighted that you are interested, and inevitably they will fill you with more information than you can digest at any one time.  They must understand this, as most of them have web pages that are archives of definitive and dispositive documents telling you almost everything you ever wanted to know about whatever it is that they make or do.  I keep several dozen of their sites bookmarked and visit them as often as I allow myself, knowing full well that the first click can result in an entire evening lost in pursuit of knowing more.

Occasionally one strikes my fancy or is so perfectly timed to a particular need that I find myself talking to myself in celebration.  Recently I have been doing some things with saws, some of which may eventually leak out into this blog, but most of which has to do with tuning up the saws that I already have.  With that in mind I was delighted to see a new (to me at least) offering over at Bad Axe on the care and feeding of  vintage back saws.  I am currently awaiting the fullness of time to get to a couple (four?  five?) of them hanging on my wall, and this page will no doubt serve as a valued resource once I get to that point.

In the service of full disclosure I should say that I have two Bad Axe back saws that I purchased from them, and have communicated with Mark Harrell fairly extensively on my two 4-foot late-18th Century frame saws, tools I use surprisingly often.  Someday I might show up on Mark’s doorstep with them in hand, and ask for a sharpening refresher tutorial.


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