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Second Chance for ‘Roman Workbenches’

Lost Art Press: Chris Schwarz - Sat, 05/06/2017 - 9:05am


Thanks to the good work on the press and the bindery, we are going to have about 150 copies of the letterpress version of “Roman Workbenches” to sell in our online store at the end of May 2017.

Yesterday, Megan Fitzpatrick and I repaired all these excess copies, pasting in the two missing lines that were snipped off during the plate-making process. All these copies now need to return to our warehouse in Indianapolis and we need to take care of a few customers who received severely damaged copies.


Then, after we take care of all those details, we will put up the remaining stock for sale in our store at noon Eastern time on Friday, May 26, 2017. The price will be the same as it was for the first batch of books and it will be available for international customers.

We will not have any of these books at Handworks later this month, I’m afraid.

After these books sell out, they are gone. We will not do another run of letterpress copies of this book. So you have 20 days to sell your plasma, etc. I am, however, working on a greatly expanded book on this topic that we will print on our usual offset presses and will include photos and additional research I’ve conducted this year.

— Christopher Schwarz

P.S. Several customers have asked if we will print any books in the future using letterpress. The answer is: I hope so. It has to be the right sort of book, and we’ll have to marshal all the people involved in this project and hope they’ve forgotten what a pain in the crotch mahogany it was.

Filed under: Roman Workbenches
Categories: Hand Tools

The One-Day Storage Cabinet - Part I: the Plan

Toolerable - Sat, 05/06/2017 - 7:37am
Today the Frau mentioned we should get another small storage cabinet for the office.


This means one of two things: Either she wants to buy a crappy disposable cabinet made of termite poop, or I get nagged at until I come up with something.

Fortunately, I would like to build a piece like this using some of the techniques in The Anarchist's Design Book by Christopher Schwarz. That means I just move it up in the queue and get it over with.

It's not often that the Frau asks me to build anything that we need anymore. She learned long ago that it could take months, and in the meantime what she wants to store in it lays on the floor driving her nuts. It would be a nice surprise if this was complete by the time she got home from work on Monday.

In order to make this happen, I am going to cheat. I know, I can here you: "There is no cheating in woodworking." Well, there is if you use Leimholz.

She said it doesn't need to be any kind of fine furniture. I even suggested adding a mahogany top, but she thankfully said, "No." Just a plain-Jane basic bookshelf with doors.

I thought out the design in my head in about seven seconds, and did something I rarely do: I drew the cabinet and wrote down a cut list!


So here is my plan:

Get to the Borg on Monday as soon as they open at 9:00 a.m. (Early for Spain), buy everything I need and rush home with the materials in my carrito de la abuelita and knock it together.
High capacity lumber transport.
To give myself a head start, I am going to use only nails and rabbets for construction. Maybe some screws to secure the top panel. I also plan on using the plastic-wrapped laminated wood panels in the final dimensions, so there shouldn't be much in the way of dimensioning the wood.
Front view.
Click on the photos for a better view.
Side view.
Yeah, I know I drew it wrong, it should show the right hand view. I almost never make drawings before I build anything.

It turns out I have some leftover laminated wood already laying around, so I'll use that. There should be no problem with getting the rest home on the bus.

The idea is that the doors will cover the front of the cabinet, coming even with the top. I haven't decided yet if I will add any molding profiles other than just a small chamfer or roundover to soften the sharp corners. What do you think? Any suggestions?

The Frau said she wants this piece painted, and SHE gets to pick the color. I gues that means no experiments with home made milk paint (thank God!). My plan is for the cabinet to be complete except for paint after one day.

Now that I think about it, I might have time to run to the Borg now, so I can start right away on Monday.
Categories: Hand Tools

Beer as a Furniture Stain

Chris Schwarz's Pop Wood Blog - Sat, 05/06/2017 - 5:54am

Beer shows up in many accounts of early workshop life. Not only was it an important source of nutrition, it also served as payment for trespasses and a way to mark important days in the shop, such as when an apprentice was promoted to journeyman. Beer also shows up in workshop recipes and for diluting glue. Recently Thomas Lie-Nielsen encountered a use for beer that I hadn’t heard in the […]

The post Beer as a Furniture Stain appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: Hand Tools

Art of Concealment – A Table With Hidden Compartments

Popular Woodworking Editors Blog - Sat, 05/06/2017 - 4:00am

by Matthew Dworman pages 32-39 From the November 2016 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine Hidden compartments – just saying those words puts a smile on the face of most woodworkers. There is something magical about a secret space that reveals itself to only the person who knows about it. Since the origins of furniture, hidden compartments have been used for storing valuables, documents and other important belongings. With modern safes, security […]

The post Art of Concealment – A Table With Hidden Compartments appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

3 thread post......

Accidental Woodworker - Sat, 05/06/2017 - 1:19am
I had to slim this post down picture wise. I got three different topics and each ate up a lot of space on the memory card. I thought of putting it out as two posts but I thinned the pic count instead. This is what I did tonight in the shop and when I'm in my rocking chair I'm going to need all memory refreshers I can get.

I am little flush right now
My bills are all way ahead now and I got a pocketful of OT dollars waiting to be spent. I had ordered these two from LV last week and they came today. This morning while surfing my usual tool sites I came across a Stanley 5 1/2, type 11, for a C-note. I had the money so I pulled the trigger on it. I should get that next week.

not a toy - this is a fully functional teeny router plane
closed and open throat
Haven't tried it yet but it looked like I can put the iron 180 and use as an open throat router.

why I got it
I want to start using stopped dadoes for my box bottoms. The router iron is the same size as the 1/8" iron in the Record 043. It's a good match and I'll be able to get consistent groove depths with it.

LV tool buy #2

cabinetmakers screwdrivers for screw sizes #4 to #10
small Grace screwdrivers
These two have broken tips. The other Grace screwdrivers I have I don't have any complaints with. These I do. The tips broke off with very little force. I will use the other Grace screwdrivers for other things and I'll use the Chestnut ones for driving screws only.

tapered bulb shape
Good shape that fits the hand well and it has a presence. Even the smallest driver has some heft to it.. These won't be rolling off the bench on me.

U shaped tips
comes with a burnisher
The instructions show how to use this to roll a burr on the tip of the U. This increases the grip of it in the slot of the screw.

bottom to top #4, #6, and a #8vscrew
Perfect fit of the U tip in each screw. The last driver is for #10 screws of which I have none. And the number 10 driver won't fit in the #8 screw slot. I bought this mostly because 99.9% of screws I use are #4 to #8.

#2 plane parts out of the citrus bath
Both sides of the iron have a black spot that didn't rinse off nor could I rub it off with my finger.

found the S casting Pat mentioned
I was looking for this on the plane body. That has no markings at all.

holding the screws while I wire brushed them
the black spots sanded off easily
flattening the back
I rounded the corners on the coarsest diamond and went to the next one after I felt a burr.

back done up to 8K and I still have a burr

burr is gone
When I first read of this stropping of an iron on your palm, I thought it was a ludicrous idea. My opinion of that has changed and I strop on my palm all the time now.

prepping the chipbreaker
 I stoned the leading edge and then stropped it.

even side to side
needs a bit of shine
I forgot to take this off and clean it last night. This is the before pic.

tote and knob brass caps
I do like my brass to be shiny so I'll do these when I do the brass adjuster nob. This is the before pic.

These are the first tote and knob studs that I have seen this clean. I have a boatload of plane rehabs under my belt and these are the first that have not been rusted threaded end to threaded end.

had to stop here
I need the brass bits before I can put the plane back together. While those were soaking I oiled all the parts down.

the after pic
the brass cleaner
used this for years in the kitchen
Jonathan (benchblog.com//) blogged about cleaning brass with this and it does an awesome job. I put some water and Bar Keeps in the container and let the parts soak for about ten minutes. Pulled them out and scrubbed them with an old toothbrush.

the after pic
I have never gotten any brass adjuster knobs this clean with any other method. I used a bazillion different ones and none match the cleaning and shining power of Bar Keeps Best Friend .

plane #1 (last thread)
This is the shaving jam left over from the last tryout.

leading edge looks like crap
Right around where the greatest jamming occurs, is where the most damage to the mouth is. Not big chips missing but the edge is rough and not smooth like the sole is.

checking the  iron for twist
I don't see any twist in the back of the iron.

this tip is not sharpened and is misshaped
I looked at this with a magnifying glass and it needs some work to reshape and sharpen it.

another problem area
Where the pine build up is on the bevel, there is a burr. There shouldn't be one there and the rest of the profile is burr free too.

marked the area where I can feel a burr
I am going to sharpen this again and concentrate on the bottom bevel and the circular one.

sharpened up to 1200 and stropped
I did the small left side bevel by hand on the stones.

ready to road test again
felt a difference
The plane was easier to push and my shavings looked better this time. Thin and almost continuous end to end. It still jammed but I was able to make shavings for a longer time than I did yesterday. The profile looks pretty good for what I was able to do before the jam shut me down.

profile turned to liquid fecal matter
I started doing my tap and try dance steps and I ended up with this. The profile went south because I think I was taking a heavier shaving and I did not keep my original plane orientation on the last 4 end to end runs I did. The cutter seems to be taking a shaving on the front edge which it wasn't doing yesterday.

This is as far as I can go with this test piece of wood. I also think that this plane isn't made for 3/4" stock neither.  I got the sharp part of the iron figured out and the jamming has me stymied big time. I don't have more stock to sacrifice for testing for I'll put this aside for now. I'll pick this back up later and put a win in my column.

Tomorrow the plan is to finish rehabbing the #2, make a frame for my wife's newly awarded genealogy certificate, and do some work on the bookcase.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
Which US President served as a hangman twice?
answer - Grover Cleveland while serving as a sheriff in Buffalo NY in the 1870's

I did it!!!!!!!!!!!

Journeyman's Journal - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 8:56pm

Where’s there’s a will there’s a way and these pictures simply proves it.  When you set your mind on a task you can achieve whatever you want.


I hope these pictures bring clarification to my previous post, you can see by removing metal from the top and bottom I was able to bend it without any bulge on the back.  The iron now goes all the way into the body of the plane and when extended almost reaches 2″ without flex.  This length like I said before will be rarely needed in your normal joinery but if you’re going to produce a moulding plane with 2″ wide sole and you’re going to employ this French build method then you will need an iron of this length.

Next Thursday is my day off work again and I will be heat treating this iron, I am making recordings of the build so stay tuned for those.  I think I will replace my own 1/8″ width blade with this one but so far it hasn’t really caused me any concerns and I have dedicated too much time to this build.  I really want to get to building these moulding planes so I can move on to building myself a bench.  Would you believe it I still haven’t decided on the type of vices I’m going to use.  Unbelievable, there is just so many to choose from and I want this bench to be the last bench I’ll ever build so it must do everything I want it to do.


Categories: Hand Tools

One-day Workshop at Haystack Tomorrow

The Mortise & Tenon Magazine Blog - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 2:13pm

I will be spending all of tomorrow at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Deer Isle, Maine teaching a one-day workshop. The class is an intro to hand tools class in which we will be building a small pine box. Depending on experience and comfort level, the students will be joining it with either rabbets and nails or dovetails. 

I truly believe that taking on small projects in inexpensive wood is the best way to learn. I’ve probably only ever made a dozen “practice” joints in my life. It always seemed like a better use of my time to make a “practice” project. Small boxes and tables are great for developing your marking, sawing, and planing skills in the context of an actual build.

As a one-day class, it’ll be interested to see how it goes. It’ll be crash course, for sure. 


Categories: Hand Tools

Handworks 2 weeks away, a Video Featuring the Making of Lever Cap Screws

Brese Plane - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 12:18pm
 I've been very busy putting the finishing touches on the planes I'll be bringing to Handworks. A couple weeks ago I shot some video while making some lever cap screws and thought it might be of some interest.


"You can't do people's thinkin' and feelin' for dem Rose. Some folks you ain't neber gonna figure out - you just gots to accept them where they be. Dere ain't no way to get inside a person's head and figure out what makes them be the way they be. You just got to accept them"  ~Sarah
Categories: Hand Tools

Dovetail Markers for Handworks, 14 days to go!

David Barron Furniture - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 8:43am

I made these cute little dovetail markers just for the Handworks show. They have a 1:6 angle and are made from rippled sycamore and walnut. They are stamped and come in a protective bag.
I've got just 20, so first come first served.

Categories: Hand Tools

Portable work bench part five

Oregon Woodworker - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 7:33am
With the bench and toolbox done, I began thinking about what tools to put in it and how best to store them.  I tried to go about this the "right" way by sitting down and making a list of the tools I want to take camping, but it just didn't work.  The list would just keep growing and I couldn't visualize what would fit.  In the end, I went to the shop, put the tools I thought I would want on the bench and started trying to figure out what would fit.  Little by little, tools got put away until these were left:

I am sure the list will grow and change over time, but these are the ones I settled on:
  • dovetail saw, crosscut backsaw, flush cut saw and fret saw
  • #4 bench plane, router plane and fence, shoulder plane
  • set of chisels
  • spokeshave
  • mallet
  • small combination square
  • hook rule
  • eggbeater drill and bits
  • marking gauge
  • screwdriver
  • measuring tape
  • double-sided diamond stone
  • scrapers and burnisher
  • mechanical pencils
I started by making holders for the saws, planes and eggbeater:

I had a canvas tool roll and this works well for a spokeshave, chisels, a marking knife and gauge, a screwdriver etc.  The mallet can be loose:

I put the smaller tools into the top tray:

A final verdict will have to await field trials but I think this project is a success.  At minimal cost, I have a travel toolbox and bench that seems highly functional and versatile.  The big issue is working height, because 12" on top of a picnic table is on the high end.  If it's too high, I will try it on the seat instead.  Another possibility is to use legs and anchor them to the table so they wouldn't tip and slide.

My hope is that others will come up with their versions of a portable workbench and toolbox too.  The only other one that I am aware of is the Milkman's workbench that Chris Schwarz built.  I don't like it at all, but it does have the advantage of solving the working height problem.  You could make a separate toolbox instead of having a single unit like I made.  If you got rid of the vises and just made a laminated top I think it could be quite nice.

    Categories: Hand Tools

    Tips from Sticks in the Mud – May 2017 – Tip #2– “Free” Sanding Tools

    Highland Woodworking - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 7:00am

    No Southern-fried Southern boy wants to be called a Yankee, but we share the characteristics of shrewdness and thrift. Thus, each month we include a money-saving tip. It’s OK if you call me “cheap.

    I love my scrollsaw. I’m not completely convinced it loves me, but I’m working to make it more of a friend. Someday, when I have the time, I would like to move up to fretwork and other, more intricate scrollsaw projects.

    For now, though, I mostly use it to carve out initials of grandchildren and others I make stools for. And, I can’t say I’m particularly good at it. Therefore, I had to develop techniques for sanding inside lines and curves to fix the problems I create on the scrollsaw.

    I use four main tools, three of which are, you guessed it…free! The first is a rasp (not free), and I use mine for the roughest beginning work inside letters.

    A four-sided rasp like this is extremely versatile. Two round surfaces, two flat surfaces, coarse and fine.

    By the time I get to this stage, I’ve created a panel, sanded close to a final finish, not-so-rough-sawn the letter or letters the stool needs, and I’m really not wanting to have to back up and make a new panel. Therefore, I’m taking no chances that I cut too far or suffer tearout. I’ve tried to fix minor tearout in a damaged letter before. Because it’s a focal point of the stool, the damage is nearly impossible to hide. What rasping I do is performed with a little angle, directing the cut to the middle of the board.

    With patience in mind, I turn next to sanding, not being too concerned about how long it takes.

    For straight lines, nothing beats a popsicle stick. It’s as flat as you need it to be, narrow enough to fit almost anywhere, and stiff enough to stand up to firm pressure while sanding.

    If I need to cover more real estate in a hurry, I make a stick out of plywood. With the panel in a vise, you can even get a two-handed grip on either kind of stick.

    Another universal sanding/shaping tool is the disposable foam brush handle. They come in a variety of diameters, so they can fit the broadest to the tightest of curves.

    Wrap your sandpaper around and get to work.

    With these three makeshift tools you’re ready for flat and round sanding. You can even alter the size.

    Sycamore can be tricky to sand, so it’s best to start with a high grit and be patient.

    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 – May 2017 – Tip #2– “Free” Sanding Tools appeared first on Woodworking Blog.

    Categories: General Woodworking

    Workbench 1,2,3 – Day 3b

    The Barn on White Run - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 6:43am

    I snuck in a couple hours the other day to flatten the undersides of the two bench top slabs with a foreplane (a #5 with a cambered iron) and fit the legs.  The strategy of fabricating the top slabs in halves and surfacing them with the power planer is definitely a winner.  I already knew how successful the “David Barron” practice was for the lamination approach.

    At this point I am just shy of 20 hours for the two benches.  In a couple days I will flatten and trim the tops and drill the holdfast holes and call them done.   Temporarily, as I need to install the leg vise and shelf for the one I am donating to the Library of Congress rare book conservation posse.  But for demo tables at Handworks, this is as good as I will get.

    Book Giveaway: The Woodworker’s Kitchen

    Popular Woodworking Editors Blog - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 5:32am
    woodworking projects for the kitchen

    For this week’s book giveaway I’ve chosen a fun book of kitchen themed woodworking projects: A.J. Hamler’s “The Woodworker’s Kitchen.” Think about it: Where do you spend the most of your time? Well – the shop probably. But, what about the rest of your time? Where do all of your guests end up when you entertain? Probably in the kitchen. Kitchens are the centers of activity in most homes. So […]

    The post Book Giveaway: The Woodworker’s Kitchen appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

    Categories: General Woodworking

    I’m all burned out

    Journeyman's Journal - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 4:30am

    Well it’s finally all caught up with me, I’m all burned out.  All those waking hours I’ve spent at the bench and now the same thing in my new job my mind and body has said enough.  Two whole glorious days off and I managed to do only half an hour of work at the bench, I can barely even muster enough energy to write this post.

    What I did for half an hour was correct a mistake I didn’t anticipate, a mistake that could of been avoided had I received the correct information.  Going against my own better judgement which is nothing more than pure logic I followed the misgiving of applying incorrect advice.  So what am I talking about, I’m referring to the iron I’m making for the router planer I intend to sell.

    The first router plane I made which you all saw I used a 1/8″ round iron which bent fairly easily and made a nice tight corner but that diameter iron was only a one off I had.  The new stock I bought is 5mm in dia. which I think is better than my initial 3mm one as it’s stronger and has zero flex in it.  But trying to bend it to the right angle and have it tucked up inside the plane, well following the advice I was given was just plain and simply wrong.


    I knew it wasn’t going to work but hey I’m a woodworker not a metal worker and a metal worker who works metal for a living should know more than me right, well he does but his advice was still wrong and my own gut instinct which has never failed me yet was telling me it was wrong but I still went ahead with it.  So as you can see from the picture above the iron does not simply go all the way into the body of the tool and it just looks darn wrong and stupid.

    Veritas, Lie Nielson and others either the screw the blade on or weld it to make the iron a 90° angle.  Bending it like I did either by hand or by hammering it will not upset the angle to 90°.   It took me about 15 mins to figure it out on what to do next.  Take a look at the picture below.


    Left is the mistake, the middle was a trial and success, the far right is how I achieved it and it’s pretty darn simple.  I filed an inset on both sides of the iron, by relieving metal, I’m initially thicknessing it and that’s the key answer.  Now I can simply chuck it in the vice and bend it by hand or hammer.  I have a puny chinese crap vice and if I were making tools for a living I would buy a good quality vice like Dawn.  I will end up buying one soon enough as they do come in handy more times than not.  Anyway as you can in the next picture the test iron goes all the way up, well not entirely but a few tweaks would fix these small anomalies.


    I’ve been working by hand for so long now that machines have become alien to me and here is the irony.   I tried to use my 6″ grinder to grind a bevel and somewhat flatten the bottom of the iron.  I’m so unaccustomed to machinery that I made a complete mess of it and almost lost my fingers in the process, another words I had no control of the tool.  Many people would cringe at the thought of hacksawing metal or filing it into shape but for me that’s the only way I know how.  I have complete control over the tool,  I enjoy it but I have control and the key to precision work you must have control and confidence in the tools that you use.  I guess if I spent as much time behind a machine as I do with my hand tools I would gain mastery over them, but so far I haven’t seen the need to implement machinery in my life.

    I don’t know how long it took me to file the recesses all I know I didn’t break a sweat nor grew tired of it.  The process seemed to end all so quickly without a hint of frustration or the risk of personal injury.  I didn’t need a special jig and definitely not a machine to do it.

    I can definitely understand why people do rely on machines and it’s not just speed of work but to avoid frustrations of poor work like I experienced using machines.  They are machinists because that’s what they’ve trained themselves to use and so they’re comfortable using them, while I’m a hand tool user because that’s what I’m trained to use and am comfortable using them.  All I’m trying to say is stick with what you know and what you’re comfortable with and your woodworking experience will continue to give you the thrill and pleasure it always has.

    Categories: Hand Tools

    Spoon carving workshop for Rusland Horizons

    Steve Tomlin Crafts - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 3:26am
    A beautiful spring weekend for a spoon carving workshop in the woods. Continue reading
    Categories: General Woodworking

    plane #3 0 , me 1........

    Accidental Woodworker - Fri, 05/05/2017 - 12:24am
    Before I get to plane #3, a thought or two on collecting. First and foremost I don't consider myself a collector of anything. And I consider a collector is someone who doesn't use what he/she collects. I might be considered a collector of  books, old hand tools, and old tool catalogs, but I use them. Today I got a 1890 vintage #2 Stanley smoothing plane. Do I need a #2 smoother? No, not really but when I saw it being offered up on Patrick Leach's may tool list, I bought it.

    I think I crossed the line in the sand with this plane and became a collector of Stanley bench planes. I don't see myself ever using this plane but I could for small boxes etc. Of the bench planes I only need the #1, 5 1/4, 5 1/2, and the #10 to complete my bench plane collection. Of these four remaining planes, I already know that I will not be getting the #1. To me it is not worth the $$$ it commands.  I've used the LN #1 and to me it is a toy that I don't see it being a viable tool for use in my woodworking. If I do get a #1 it will probably be a LN or a Wood River one.

    With that banished from the wish list, I can also eliminate the 5 1/4. I have never used nor seen one of these planes. It isn't in the toy category but I think there are other planes that are a better choice. One nagging thought is to get it for my grandson to use. I've read that is was a school boy use plane.

    The 5 1/2 jack is another up in the air plane. I don't use the #5 I have now that much and I don't think the 5 1/2 will change that one way or the other. The #10 is another plane like the 5 1/2, nice to have to say my collection is complete and the collecting is done.

    My collection as it is now - #2, #3, #4, #4 1/2, #5, #6, #7, #8, and #10 1/2. I don't know what is 'the' bench plane collection is supposed have but I'm shooting for these with mine.

    waiting for me on my front step
    not as small as I envisioned it
    Patrick says that this is from 1890 so this little plane has lived now in 3 centuries. The rear tote is complete and damage free.  The whole plane looks to be clean, rust free, and in remarkable shape for something this old.

    side be side with a #3
    rear end shot
    You can really see the difference in the two from the rear.

    rough grind on the iron and lots of life left to it
    road test was a bit bumpy
    Setting the iron took a bit of doing. About half of my planes have a reverse threading on the iron advance/retraction. It is a bit a chore trying to remember which is which. I was able to get some shavings in spite of the rough looking bevel.

    a small chip is missing  on the front knob

    all these are taking a citrus bath overnight
    rather delicate looking frame
    I looked this over very carefully checking for any cracks or other boo-boos and I found none.

    plane #3 iron out of the citrus bath
    The black stuff on this was rust leaving a lot of pitting on this side. But the bevel and the immediate area around it is clear.

    the back is pit free
    a couple of strokes on 120
    The back of this looks pretty good after a few strokes on sandpaper. There don't appear to be any hollows or humps I'll have to deal with.

    back flattened on the coarsest diamond stone
    the two outside bevels are done too
    While I flattened the back up through the grits, I sharpened the two outside bevels at the same time. All that is left to be done is the center circular part.

    back done up to 8K
    there is a burr

    I checked for and felt a burr at each step of the way. I wasn't expecting one on the circular one but I got it here too. The lower the grit, the bigger the burr. When I got to 1200 grit, it was hard to feel the burr but I did have one there.

    perfect fit with my biggest round strop
    ready to road test plane #3
    setting the iron
    I set the iron so that it projected evenly and the iron matched the profile of the sole.

    nice pile of shavings
    sneaking up on the cut
    It took a lot of tap and trying before I made these shavings. With a sharp iron and a low set iron, making shavings is a pleasure. They spill out of the mouth like ripples across a pond. Finding that sweet spot takes a little doing. My sweet spot was found after the 11th tap of the iron and I made a complete profile shaving end to end.

    this plane is not meant for 3/4" stock
    I got this plane tamed for the time being. I like this profile a lot more than the profile on plane #1. In fact now that I have gotten a partial profile molded with #1, I am not liking it that much. Together with the problems I'm having tuning it may spell it's doom. I will make that decision after I have fixed the jamming problem and planed a complete profile.

    accidental woodworker

    trivia corner
    Who designed the original 1936 Volkswagen?
    answer - Ferdinand Porsche

    The Plate 11 Bench

    Lost Art Press: Chris Schwarz - Thu, 05/04/2017 - 5:58pm



    This is an excerpt from “With All the Precision Possible” by André-Jacob Roubo, translation by Donald C. Williams, Michele Pietryka-Pagán & Philippe Lafargue. 

    One of the biggest obstacles, downsides and joys to a French bench is the massive slabs used to construct it. Finding wood that is big enough to use without laminating thinner pieces together can be difficult. Laminating thin pieces together to make the thick pieces required for the top and legs is a lot of work without the help of machines.


    With any slab workbench with through-joinery, you will experience some shrinkage of the top around the tenon and sliding dovetail. This subsides eventually until it is almost imperceptible.

    If you do find stock that is 6″ thick and 22″ wide for your benchtop, it almost certainly will be wet in the middle and prone to distortion. The first French bench that I built used a 4-1/2″-thick cherry slab that had been seasoning in a lot for about five years. The first couple years with that bench were rough. The top shrank at least 1/16″, leaving the through-tenons and sliding dovetails proud of the benchtop.

    After planing those flush, the top didn’t shrink much more, but it sagged a bit in the middle during the third year. And now the benchtop is quite stable – yearly humidity fluctuations have little effect on it. The tops of the legs and the benchtop are always in the same plane and the overall shape of the top is consistent.

    The French oak that I used in 2013 was likely even wetter than the cherry. For starters, the oak was thicker. And thick material takes a lot longer to dry than thin material. When we first cut into the oak, we used a moisture meter on the wood and found its moisture content in a few places was off the charts. Most places on the bench were about 30 percent moisture content, which is quite wet by furniture standards.

    Two months after completing the bench, the top was so wet that it would rust the surface of a holdfast left in a hole overnight.

    Like the slab cherry workbench I’d built years before, the oak benchtop shrank around the tenons by more than 1/16″ during the first six months. And the middle of the benchtop began to sag. I flattened the oak top twice during the first nine months in order to be able to plane thin stock on my benchtop.

    This begs the question: How flat does a bench need to be? The answer is: It depends on your work. If you plane woods that are less than 3/4″ thick, benchtop flatness is important. I shoot for getting the front 12″ of the benchtop so flat that I cannot get a .006″ feeler gauge under a straightedge anywhere in that area.

    If you work with thick stuff or do mostly carpentry, you can be more cavalier.

    So if thick slab workbenches are so difficult to find and fussy at first, why bother?

    After they settle down, slab workbenches move very little. The same forces that make the top dry slowly also retard its ability to take on much moisture during the seasons (thanks to Steve Schafer for explaining this via Fick’s Second Law, a diffusion equation). After about five years in your shop, your benchtop should be well acclimated and monolithic.

    Meghan Bates

    Filed under: With All the Precision Possible
    Categories: Hand Tools

    Lumber Yard Q&A, Shop Update LIVE

    The Renaissance Woodworker - Thu, 05/04/2017 - 5:27pm

    Lumber Stuffs, Get It Here

    First, let me apologize about the static in this audio. I specifically did this same demonstration with the same hardware at the same time last week and I had great sound. All I can figure it the radio on my phone (no wifi) was interfering with the wireless lav mic. If I do it again I’ll get a wired lav mic. Anyway, this session is all about you and the questions you have about lumber, the lumber industry, buying lumber, choosing lumber, etc, etc.

    What Did We Cover?

    A LOT!! Its a really broad topic and I had way more questions than I could keep up with. Thank you for that. We covered a lot of basics from terminology to how to choose your lumber and prepare for a trip to the lumber yard. We even talked about some ways to source lumber when you don’t have a retail or wholesale yard near you. Here are some blog posts to help you with some of the points I talked about.

    Categories: Hand Tools

    Thread of Gold

    Lost Art Press: Chris Schwarz - Thu, 05/04/2017 - 1:35pm



    “Designs for Candlesticks,” The Woodworker magazine, January 1938

    “Some generations have suffered more than the others, and it may be that we erred in thinking we had put all that behind us. But we shall face the future with braver hearts and a better hope if we take each day as it comes to us, cherishing the thread of gold which is always there among the homespun, keeping the sharp new vision which can look on life with loving eyes and find in it manifold good.”

    Charles Hayward, The Woodworker magazine, 1938

    Filed under: Honest Labour, Uncategorized
    Categories: Hand Tools

    Simple Mitering Jig

    360 WoodWorking - Thu, 05/04/2017 - 10:50am
    Simple Mitering Jig

    While I was working on a tea caddy for an upcoming 360 Woodworking class, I decided to knock out a simple, table saw jig to cut miters on small parts. Normally, I use a miter saw for this work, but with the pieces being small I opted to work on a machine that allowed an easy line of sight at my fingers and hands. Plus, I could install and use a super-thin 7-1/4″ saw blade.

    Continue reading Simple Mitering Jig at 360 WoodWorking.


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