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The Woodworking Blogs Aggregator

This "aggregator" collects all of the woodworking blogs I read every day - or try to anyway!  Enjoy!

Do you have a suggestion for a hand-tool woodworking blog you would like to see here?  Tell me via the CONTACT page.  Thanks!


Craaaaack Oopppps!

orepass: Woodworking to Pass the Time - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 8:09am

Finally it seems that I’m making progress. All of the mortises are complete and all but the side Tenons fitted when suddenly I notice a line where none should be, in fact much worse than a line a crack has appeared on one of the legs.

Sitting quietly with a mug of tea, I contemplate the crack considering its similarity to the Grand Canyon or perhaps the San Andreas Fault. Fortunately it is on the outside of one of the legs, why fortunately you ask? Because there are no mortises here and I can laminate a piece down the entire side without having to cut mortises.

At times I believe the real skill of woodworking is repairing the mistakes or covering up the natural flaws. Using my table saw ( yes I do have one) a quarter inch is trimmed off the leg and I plane the new surface smooth. Then I cut a piece to laminate over the  crack which will be planed to match the other legs.

IMG_1427 The repair is on the left side of the leg, after planing to size and finish it should blend into the rest of the piece.

Categories: Hand Tools

Greene & Greene Blacker House Table Plans

McGlynn On Making - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 7:34am

I worked yesterday on the Blacker table, and got the joinery on the base sorted out.  Today I’ll start making the templates for adding in the cloud lifts and leg indents.  As I work through each part of the table I’m updating my plans to correct any errors and add in missing dimensions or additional views that would be useful.

Since I haven’t finished the table I’d bet these aren’t the final plans, but I thought I’d share them anyway in case anyone wants to build this table.  The only missing information I’m aware of at this point is that I need to re-design the inlay pattern for the table top.  I don’t have a great picture of the design on the original, so I may have to wing it.  These are certainly complete enough for any woodworker to build from.  If you do build it, please send me pictures, I’d love to see how yours comes out!

Blacker House Serving Table

Blacker House Serving Table Plans

Categories: General Woodworking

Drawbore Pegs

The Indian DIY & Woodworker - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 4:54am
Medicine cabinet: Shutters are invariably made with mortise and tenon joinery

Drawbore: noun (Joinery) A hole bored through a tenon nearer to the shoulder than the holes through the cheeks are to the edge or abutment against which the shoulder is to rest, so that a pin or bolt, when driven into it, will draw these parts together. [The Free Dictionary]

Cabinet shutters experience a lot of use during their lifetimes which means poorly constructed ones can come apart or loosen much before the cabinet shows any sign of wear. This is why traditional cabinet makers preferred the strong mortise and tenon joint to put together shutters.

Although modern adhesives ensure that the mortise and tenon joint will be strong and long lasting, it is always better to further reinforce the joint with the use of drawbore pegs. This ensures a tight and super strong fit that will endure seasons and years of usage without the slightest stress.

In India because of the high humidity and heat, traditional cabinet makers continue to drawbore their mortise and tenon joints.

Diagram: How Drawboring works

Drawboring is a simple process that requires pegs to be driven through holes drilled separately through the mortise and tenon joint. The hole drilled through the tenon needs to be offset by a small amount so that when the peg is driven through it pulls the tenon tighter into the mortise. (see diagram)

I avoided drawboring in the past because I anticipated problems in making round pegs. I thought I needed a dowelling plate or some jig to make perfectly round pegs until I read that it was not necessary to have perfectly round pegs.

Pegs can be whittled with any knife

I tried my hand at whittling pegs and found it easy. Once they are driven in, sawed off and sanded flush, they look perfect.

Drawbore Pegs sawed and sanded flush

A drawbore pin made by Sunil Chetiwal came in handy; this tool, which is very much like an awl with a long shaft, helps in pulling the tenon into the mortise after which the peg can be hammered in easily.

Chetiwal's Drawbore Pin

From now on I plan to drawbore all my mortise and tenon joints, especially because I know how easy it is to take this extra step to make super strong joints.

For more information read "Drawboring Resurrected" by Christopher Schwarz at http://www.popularwoodworking.com/techniques/joinery/drawboring-resurrected

Indranil Banerjie
19 April 2015

Categories: Hand Tools

June Chair Build - Seat Blanks

Toolerable - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 4:04am
The chair I recently finished.  Now I need some side chairs.
I have decided to build a pair of side chairs this upcoming June to match the Welsh stick chair I recently completed.  I thought it would be fun to invite anyone who wanted to participate to build any kind of chair along with me! 

So far I have heard from a couple of people who want to build along in June, and it would be fantastic to get more people involved.  There are no sponsors, and it isn't a contest.  If you complete the project, the prize is you get to keep your beautiful chair!

Let me know if you want to build along, I will link to your blog, Instagram, or whatever, or I will post photos on my blog that you send me.  I think sharing a build like this facilitates us to keep motivated, solve problems, and will be great fun.
Drop me a note at this email address and I'll add you to my list.
My intention is to attract whoever wants to build chairs, but I would particularly like to see inexperienced chair builders (like me) to join along.  The above pictured chair is the only Windsor style chair I have ever made, so it isn't like I am teaching a class with decades of experience under my belt. 

I have a few ideas I would like to share, and would love to hear thoughts from others going through the same thing, or some more experienced chair builders who want to chime in.

Two books I have read on the subject that I found particularly useful are John Brown's brilliant book, and the fantastic book by Drew Langsner.  I built the above chair essentially only having learned what was in those two books.  You can still get them both on Amazon when I checked.

The book I am reading now, which I am sure you have heard of, Is Peter Galbert's Chairmaker's Notebook, recently released from Lost Art Press.  I haven't finished it, but I think it probably is true that if this is the only info you had, you could probably have success building a chair.

On to the chair:

The foundation of any Windsor style chair is the seat blank.  Everything is anchored to the seat blank. 

It could be that many people are put off by chairs for this very reason.  If you are extremely lucky, like me, you may be able to lay your mitts on some appropriate elm that is wide enough to make a seat from. 
My nice little stash of elm seat blanks.

My guess, however, is that not very many people have access to such lumber.  If I were to do this build and didn't happen to have these seat blanks, I would use whatever was locally available. 

In Munich, our lumber yard has a very nice selection of scots pine (Pinus sylvestrus) which I am told is very similar to southern yellow pine (not a specific pine species).  Boards of this can be found wide enough to make single chair seats from.  I would choose something around 8/4 (50mm or so) or a little thicker.  I think that kiln dried lumber is probably OK, as long as it was dried properly.

Pine is commonly used in American Windsor chairs.  I think if you plan to paint yours, this is probably the way to go.  It is much softer and easier to carve than a hardwood.

I think that a good chair seat could be made from practically any wood, though.  I would like someday to try one in Walnut or Cherry. 

Bottom line:  look for some well-behaved wood with as few knots in it as possible (to make carving easier) and go with it.

If your wood is not wide enough, it sounds like it should be OK to laminate some boards together to get the proper width.  I would just try to steer clear of putting a glue line right where one of your legs join the seat.
There is a lot of stress where the leg joins the seat.

Once you have your seat blank, I would suggest leaving it in your shop for a couple of weeks to acclimate.  Flat sawn wood is often used for chair seats.  It tends to cup when the humidity changes, but I think if your chair seat is well seasoned, it shouldn't make much of a difference in the appearance and comfort of the chair.

The chair I made had a seat blank that was "sort of" dry, and I know it has bowed a little since I started working on it.  The only way I can tell is that sometimes it rocks on three legs a little bit and sometimes it doesn't.  In the end, it doesn't really matter.

My next post will be discussing chairmaker's tools.  You might want some, but traditionally, Welsh stick chairs were made with whatever tools were on hand.  Do you really need them?  Stay tuned!
Categories: Hand Tools

frustrating day.....

Accidental Woodworker - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 2:07am
It was a beautiful day today in my part of the universe. Kind of too nice to be in the shop but I'm a deadline and I must motor on. Things started out going well and I had a few hiccups one after another. Not mistake hiccups but what and how do I this hiccups. It took me a while to figure one of them out. I think I got it in the end and I'll be trying it out tomorrow.

dry clamp
I think this will work for clamping the drawer apron. I got this way left as a comment but I can't remember who left it. I hadn't thought of using the drawer opening to clamp this.

a lot clamps in a small area
I won't be clamping the long apron and the end aprons together like this. I decided that I will glue up the long rails first.  After they have cooked for a day I'll dry clamp the ends on and get my shoulder lengths for the interior rails.

 First up is finishing the mortising for the interior rails. All of the latest plugs have set up and have all been sawn and planed flush.

not a war wound
I was washing dishes and a wine glass shattered when I tried to stuff the dish rag inside it. A broken glass severed the radial nerve in my left hand index finger a couple of years ago and I thought I had done the same here. Got lucky that these are just superficial cuts that are annoying because they won't stop bleeding.

drill bit broke
This is/was the next to last mortise and the drill bit snapped and broke off. I was able to dig it out without ruining the mortise. I had to take the web to the left of it to do it because I couldn't get a purchase on it with the pliers.

piece of crap delta mortiser
I swapped out the rig in the mortiser with the 1/4" chisel and bit from this mortiser. There is no fence on this mortiser. It was a round bar with a fence attached to it. My bar bent and Delta doesn't have a replacement part. If you look it up it is listed as obsolete with no replacement. No wonder Delta has been flushed down the toilet and is out of business now.

For that matter, Steel city which made the mortiser I use now, is also out of business.  They finally folded up because they couldn't compete with the cheap asian crap being imported and sold here.

rails done
 I got the last mortise done and fitted the drawer runners and the drawer tilt rails. They fit in both the drawer and back aprons. I made the mortises for all the interior rails an 1/8" wider than the rails. This will give me some side to side squaring room for front to back adjustments. In case the mortises front to back don't line up exactly

I have one more I can use
The three sets of interior rails all have different layouts. I still have to do the opposite ends of all of them. The the drawer tilt rails have 1/4" tenons as do the drawer runner rails. The center rails have 3/8" tenons. I didn't change any of the settings on these and put them away for now.

drawer runner side to side sticks
I made the drawer runners so that a 1/2' x 1/2" stick will keep the drawer tracking straight in and out.

needs a quick honing
Time to sharpen and hone this and try out the blade holder.

it worked
This is a small iron to sharpen but it didn't present any standout problems. The aluminum iron holder did it's job well. I was a bit skeptical about the iron staying stationary in it. The iron didn't move at all during the sharpening/honing or when I stropped it. 

screw length is ok too
This was another point of possible contention for me. I thought that the screw might have been too long and would be sharpened along with the iron. That didn't happen. Once I got the feel for the bevel, the screw was out of the line of fire.

Overall the iron holder worked well. I was able to maintain pressure on the iron and the holder was long enough to give me something to grab so I could develop a rhythm sharpening the iron. Which I did by hand but I recall reading that it can be used in the MK II.

it's imperial
This surprised me as I expected this to be a 2.5mm allen head screw. Turns out a 5/32" allen is needed to screw it in and out. This is butt hinge mortise plane from Lee Valley, the land of metric.

another hiccup
The outside face split here and at the top. This leg and mortise is for the drawer apron which I wanted to to glue up first. That will be delayed while I glue it and let it cook for a few hours.

rived out some peg stock
I had thought of draw boring the base together but decided against it. Mostly because I am on a dead line and I can't afford to back up at this stage if it goes south on me. This would have been my second draw boring attempt. The other point is that the inside face of the top of the leg is gone. There isn't a lot of meat for the peg to sit in and these are some big ass aprons at 5" in width. Instead I'm going to peg them after I glue them up.

putty work is the next batter
I mixed up some putty and applied it all of the plugged mortises. I also puttied the area of tear out I got on the back apron. I did this just before lunch and I could have easily done this after I did the glue up. But I want to take my time here and think about the aprons and of anything else I might still have to do to them. If I do it will behoove me to do it before glue up.

putty sanded smooth and ready for glue up
I can't do the drawer rail (the easy one) until the leg has had more time to set up. I'll do the long rail first and get to see how my ideas for gluing that work out.

clamp blocks
I need four pieces of stock to use as clamping blocks. This is a scrap piece of poplar that was rough sawn. I planed it smooth and I didn't go nutso on it. I didn't check for wind and made it flat just using the planes themselves.

it didn't work
This was like watching a monkey trying to dribble a football. I couldn't get this to work even though I think I'm on the right track with this. After 45 minutes I accepted defeat on this. This was a dry run and I had the heebie jeebies just thinking about trying to do this with glue applied.

new clamping jigs
My idea of clamping a couple of blocks onto the apron and then using clamps from them to outside of the leg worked. The biggest problem I was having was with the clamps holding the clamping blocks to the apron. They were partially in the the way of the clamps I used to clamp the apron to the legs.

These new clamp jigs (that I didn't want to make) won't have the above problem. I'll still use my Wetzler clamps to clamp the jig to the apron as they can provide a lot of clamping force. There will be enough height above those clamps that will allow the other clamps to grab hold without interference.

I'll see how well round two goes with this tomorrow. I've had enough dealing with problems today.

accidental woodworker day 9 with 27 left to finish the table

trivia corner
What entertainer sold more US War Bonds than anyone else during World War II?
answer - Kate Smith, she sold 600 million dollars worth

HB Tansu #3-Progress 16

Greg Merritt - By My Own Hands - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 7:47pm

…and then there were three.

Almost every evening this week I was able to spend at least an hour or so in the shop.  The sum total of that effort netted me two additional completed drawers.  Not as much as I had hoped for, but progress all the same.  All of these drawers are relatively small.  So at first glance, small drawers should take less time.  The reality is that a drawer is a drawer is a drawer.  They all have four corners that require joinery and grooves for bottoms.  Sure, very large drawers with additional dovetails will  take more time.  But average size drawers all eat up the same amount of time no matter the length or width.


I would like to draw your attention to the smallest drawer with a walnut front.  This drawer is a little different and took a bit more time to execute.  It is actually a removable pencil box with a sliding lid.  Much like the other pencil boxes that I have made only with a slight variance in the joinery.

As I have worked on and used these tansu I have begun to think that some of the drawers should actually be treated as removable trays and/or boxes.  I’m actually considering building a tansu with a separate removable case of drawers.  It just seems to make sense that the drawers should be removable.  Thus providing storage that can be taken to a table or similar.  Worked out of and then stored away again in the tansu proper.  Now I’m not saying that all of the drawers in a tansu should be this way, but maybe one or two key elements of a tansu.  Anyway, long story long.

The smallest drawer with a walnut front will be a removable box with a sliding lid.  So the joinery should reflect the fact that the box will be in full view when it is removed from the tansu.  Lapped dovetails in the front and the rear.   A sliding lid box is a simple thing to build and it’s also very easy to make a mess of it.  So in an attempt to keep myself straight I first plowed both grooves in each side piece.  One for the sliding lid and one for the captured birch ply bottom.  I had one small scrap of walnut left that was just large enough to make the rear of the box.  This was a one-shot deal.

The dovetails were marked out and sawed as per the usual.  The tricky bit is to get the rear piece to set flush with the bottom of the lid groove.  Since the groove is already in place, it’s very tempting to drop the saw into the groove.  Don’t!  Trust me on this.  A gap is what you will end up with.  Instead I sawed as close to the edge as I could and then trimmed the remain sliver of wood away when I chopped out the other waste.


Note the sliver of wood next to the groove on the right.

All of the parts milled and ready for assembly.


Assembled, glued and pegged.


My hope is that I can build the remaining three drawers tomorrow.  That will leave the fitting and installing of the drawer bottoms over the course of the coming week.  Next weekend I’ll begin adding the decorative touches.

Part 15 Greg Merritt

For Sale: To Make As Perfectly As Possible Deluxe Edition, Signed

Benchcrafted - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 7:21pm

Signed by Don Williams, Philippe Lafargue, and Chris Schwarz (it's off camera on the right right of this page, trust me.)

I ordered two copies when they were going to press, thinking one might get lost in the mail and I'd be out of luck. Well, that never happened. Plus, my library is growing and I don't have room for this extra copy. It's in new condition. I've opened it maybe twice. 

$375 plus actual shipping, or pickup at Handworks if you're attending. 

To purchase, send me an email using the contact form at right. 

Categories: Hand Tools

On Books

Lost Art Press: Chris Schwarz - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 6:50pm


“What knowledge is this which thieves may steal, mice or moths eat up, fire or water destroy?”

— 13th-century Parisian preacher in a sermon on elaborately bound books.  

Filed under: Personal Favorites
Categories: Hand Tools

Turning Point

North Country Windsors - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 6:31pm

Sometimes you just have to jump and build your wings on the way down

Ray Bradbury

Well I'm back. After too long in the wasteland, to quote James McMurtry.  I saw that my last post was last August, which sound about right. I did a demo show last fall, a cool day, and just a few weeks ago decided to get back at it.  It honestly felt like it was time to keep building or let it go. The blog, the whole thing.  I was pleasantly surprised my skills haven't eroded at all, which I was worried about.

Above you can see where I'm going; and below where it all starts. It's been too long. I took a job to pay bills, soldered thru the winter and quit the job. I've perfected the poached egg.  I have become a student of yoga.  I have met some wonderful people and gained some wonderful friends. I guess you could say half measures availed me nothing, I stood at the turning point. I made a decision and right or wrong it's the decision I made.  I've been reading a lot of Wayne Dyer and Thic Naht Hahn.  I've found spirituality and started to meditate.

Here you can see two beautiful ash logs and of course my buddy Forrest. He is glad the winter is over too.

Beautiful logs. This is the first time these logs have seen the sun.  I feel like that too in some ways.

Loaded up and headed Back home For supper.  Stick around, share in my journey. 

Categories: Hand Tools

Picture This XLIX

Pegs and 'Tails - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 6:02pm
An early eighteenth-century low-back three-legged Windsor type chair with scarfed, two-piece arm and, unusually, square cabriole legs. George I ash chair, circa 1720. (Wakelin & Linfield) Jack PlaneFiled under: Antiques Tagged: Ash, cabriole leg, three-legged, Windsor chair
Categories: Hand Tools

Commemorative Postcards with ‘Virtuoso’

Lost Art Press: Chris Schwarz - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 5:21pm

Studley-cover-2(3)We still have 109 postcards left to give away with copies of “Virtuoso” The Tool Cabinet and Workbench of Henry O. Studley,” which will be published next month.

So if you had given up hope that it was too late to get a postcard, it’s not.

The full-color 4×6 postcards will accompany the first 1,000 copies of “Virtuoso” purchased through Lost Art Press, whether you opted to pick it up at Handworks or have it shipped to you. “Virtuoso” is available with free domestic shipping if ordered before May 13, 2015.

— Christopher Schwarz

Filed under: Virtuoso: The Tool Cabinet and Workbench of Henry O. Studley
Categories: Hand Tools

Divided we Share

Lost Art Press: Chris Schwarz - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 4:57pm


George Walker, one of the authors of “By Hand & Eye,” handed me a small box of tools yesterday as the Lie-Nielsen Hand Tool Event in Cincinnati was winding down.

The tools were intended for the students at my Hand Tool Immersion class this fall at the Marc Adams School of Woodworking. While some of the students have their own tools, many will need some of the basics to complete the tool chest we’re building.

I picked through the box of well-cared-for, user-grade tools and thanked George.

He picked up a Brown & Sharpe 12” combination square from the top of the pile that looked like it had seen a lot of years. It had a well-patinated standard head, plus the protractor and center-finding heads.

“When I was an apprentice, this was my square,” he said, smiling a bit.

I know that my face screwed up a bit when I replied: “You’re giving away your first combination square? You sure you want to do that?”

“Sure,” he said. “During the last several years I found I have a lot less need for rulers in my work.”

Touche, George. This fall some lucky beginning woodworker is going to end up with a sweet tool with an even better story behind it.

— Christopher Schwarz

Filed under: By Hand & Eye
Categories: Hand Tools

Enjoying the struggle

goatboy's woodshop - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 4:18pm


Although I’ve not been woodworking for all that long, I’m pretty pleased with my progress so far. It has not been plain sailing mind you – I’ve made plenty of mistakes along the way – but it would be boring if there was no challenge.

I’m not a hand tool purist by any means. I still occasionally reach for my cordless drill, or fire up my chop saw. But, I have found that I am at my happiest, and my best, when I’m using hand tools. Power tools and machine tools are fine, but if I had to choose I’d choose the hand tools.

I watch a lot of woodworking YouTube videos, and I’ve noticed that there are quite a lot of YouTubers who pay lip service to hand tools. For instance, I was watching one the other day who was doing a tutorial on making a shooting board, a bench-top accessory for truing up end grain for squareness, or for mitres. This is a hand tool accessory, to be used in conjunction with a hand plane, and I’m in the middle of making one myself. The first thing this chap did was to run over to his table saw and band saw to cut the components. I was left wondering if he was ever really going to use the shooting board.  I found myself coming over all sanctimonious, and I remember thinking, “well, I’m not going to do it like that.”

It’s silly really, and I soon snapped out of it. Each to their own. I have to remind myself that I went down the hand tool route, in part, because of space and money concerns. It’s only now that I’m realising that I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I hope that I’m not coming across as boastful. After all, I am all too aware that my work is very far from perfect. The thing is, I’m not striving for perfection. Not yet anyway. I’m just striving for competence – perfection comes later, if at all, and there’s no harm in enjoying the struggle along the way.


Filed under: Uncategorized

An Intriguing Measuring Tool

The Barn on White Run - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 4:06pm
photo courtesyof Narayan Nayar

photo courtesy of Narayan Nayar

It might be the fact that I am in the midst of what could be called Studley Silly Season, wherein my time and energies are focused entirely on getting the exhibit of the Henry O. Studley Tool Cabinet and Workbench done and over, but it seems that I see everything in the light of what old Henry had in his tool cabinet.  One of his tools was this set of ultra precise measuring calipers (above).


Consider this intriguing micrometer I found in a vintage tool store in Connecticut a couple of years ago, and which I have found a useful addition to my tool kit.  While it is functionally similar to the Starret vernier micrometer Studley had stashed back in his tool cabinet, this one is a more straightforward micrometer system mounted on a movable bar.

cIMG_8759 cIMG_8760

Made in Cranston RI at the Central Tool Co., this is unlike anything I had ever seen before, notwithstanding my years in a foundry/machine shop.


Just something for amusing contemplation on a beautiful spring evening.

Antique Dovetailed Chest Restoration Part 1

Heritage School of Woodworking Blog - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 3:44pm

Heritage Restorations founder Kevin Durkin (heritagebarns.com) found an antique blanket chest in an early 1800’s barn in New York, and has tasked Heritage School of Woodworking instructor Frank Strazza with turning a “sow’s ear into a silk purse”. Follow along during the next few weeks as we show footage of this interesting restoration process.

The post Antique Dovetailed Chest Restoration Part 1 appeared first on Heritage School of Woodworking Blog.

Categories: Hand Tools

Skottbenk i Norsk Folkeminnesamling, del 3

Norsk Skottbenk Union - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 2:13pm
 Roald RenmælmoEinar Strand i Nord-Trøndelag høvlar med skottokse på sin nylaga skottbenk. Skottbenken er laga med utgangspunkt i gamle originale skottbenkar.  Den låge benken til venstre er for å høvle flask på borda før kanthøvling. Foto: Roald Renmælmo

Eg held fram med gjennomgangen av svarmaterialet frå spørjelista om snikkarhandverket i Ord og Sed i Norsk Folkeminnesmling. Eg har frå før posta del 1. og del 2 med gjennomgang av dei nordlegare og austlegare fylka. Den generelle innleiinga som beskriv materialet og arbeidsmåten min er med i del 1.

Sogn og Fjordane

Ivar Rauboti i Balestrand skriv: Ikkje kjent noko redskap i staden for høvelbenk, men til å kantstryka lengere  bord og plankar hadde dei strokbenk.

G. G. Bekmann i Hafslo (i dag ein del av Luster kommune) skriv: Strjukebenk: planke med trekloss og blegg.

Helge Dale i Hafslo (i dag ein del av Luster kommune) skriv: Når det var berre kantskjoting brukte dei strokbeink, strukebeink, tvo plankar festa loddbeint til stolpar, mellom plankane festa dei bordet som skulde “skjotast“.

K. Gjesme i Lærdal skriv: Dei brukte, å brukar endå, ein skåtbeink til å beinskjota bori i. Han saog paolag soleis ut. 1. (plo) aos te ha unde. 2. Ein planke pao kor sia. 3. Imødlo dei plankad´n bore so ska hevlast beint. 4. Føted´n me klemma uppe før plankad´n. 5. Kjila te å slao plankad´n å bore fast me.

Skisse av skåtbeink av K. Gjesme i Lærdal. Tala på skissa er forklara i teksten. Skisse av skåtbeink av K. Gjesme i Lærdal. Tala på skissa er forklara i teksten. 1. (plo) aos te ha unde. 2. Ein planke pao kor sia. 3. Imødlo dei plankad´n bore so ska hevlast beint. 4. Føted´n me klemma uppe før plankad´n. 5. Kjila te å slao plankad´n å bore fast me.

A. B. Vansråk i Kyrkjebø (i dag ein del av Høyanger kommune) skriv: Skotbenk

Anders Barmen i Selje skriv: Når ein skulde “skyta” kanten på t.d. uferdige bordkledsbord hadde dei ein “skotbenk” med nokre kilar i staden for skrue.

M. H. Berstad i Selje skriv: Ein bruka “skotbenk” med “benkehakjo”, ja skotbenken var nytta heilt til 1890-åra. 

Wilhelm Kvalheim i Volda (svaret gjeld for Vågsøy) skriv: Skotbenken laga ein av ein lang planke og kunde verta laga for høvet når ein bygde eller vølte hus.

Skotbenk som illustrerer svaret frå Wilhelm KvalheimSkotbenk som illustrerer svaret frå Wilhelm Kvalheim

Olav Sagen i Årdal skriv: Skotbenk som dei skaut bordi på.

I Sogn og Fjordane kom det inn til saman 15 svar på spørjelista. Heile 9 av svara nemner skottbenken med ein eller annan skrivemåte. 6 av svara har nemninga skotbenk eller varianten skåtbeink. 3 av svara har nemninga strokbenk eller strjukebenk. Det er nokre av forklaringane og teikningane som tyder på at desse svara beskriv andre typar benkar enn det vi vanlegvis snakkar om med skotbenk. Skåtbeinken som K. Gjesme har teikna er bygd opp på ein annan måte enn dei vanlege. Han er bygd opp med ein kraftig ås (aos te ha unde) som står på føter. Tilsvarande seg eg ser for meg kan stemme med korleis nokre av svara frå Møre og Romsdal beskriv i posten om Skottbenken i Norsk Folkeminnesamling, del 2.


Haldor Kåstad i Bruvik (delt mellom Osterøy og Vaksdal, dette gjeld truleg Vaksdal) skriv: Til å retta materialen vart den set i rettebenken, so var ein 8 alen lång, med påsett 2 klåsser frå undersiden, med håkar tå tre festa det fast, brugtes kjilar. Den arbeidsmåten brukes endå i bygder dei har skog og ikkje når the å få det opparbeidt på masjinar.

Knut Dalen i Røldal (i dag ein del av Odda Kommune) skriv: Strykebenken var bere i bruk når ein skulde kanthøvla lange bord, t.d. golvbord. Ein bruko da meihøvle. Han vart kalla so av di han hadde “meiar“, smale ripor på båe sidor av solen. Det bordet som skulde høvlast rett i kant , vart sett fast millom tvo bord som høyrde til benken. Benken sine bord laut vera heilt retta og nøgje vinkla i øvre kant. Når eit bord skulde rettast, let ein det stikka litt høgare upp enn benken sine bord. Meiane på høvlen gjekk då på ustida av det bordet ein høvla, og når bordet var nedhøvla slik at meiane tok benkebordi, var kanten på det rett.

Skisse av strykebenk i svaret frå Knut Dalen.Skisse av strykebenk i svaret frå Knut Dalen.

Frå Hordaland var det heile 19 svar på spørjelista om snikkarhandverket. Berre to av desse har med noko om strykebenken eller rettebenken, som er dei to nemningane som er brukt.  Heldigvis er båe dei to svara ganske utfyllande og detaljerte. Knut Dalen har og med ei skisse som viser korleis strykebenken ser ut og korleis ein kiler fast borda.


Lars Gjels i Jelsa (i dag Suldal kommune) skriv: Strykebenk” laga man mangesteds naar det trenges for at kantstryke og pløie gulvbord o. lign. Gjøres av 2 mand med okshøvel langt bedre end med langhøvel, festes med 2 kiler i strygebenken

Edvard Kageberg i Sjernarøy (i dag Finnøy kommune) skriv: Dei brukte strykebenk til å stryka (høvla) av bordi på kanten. Ein strykebenk var to krakkar med eit fast bord og eit laust bord. Når flatsida skulde høvlast sat dei på bordi og det gjer mange snikkarar endå.

Jon Line i Time skriv: Høvelbenk og strygebenk sa dei.

I  Rogaland var det til saman 10 svar på spørjelista og 3 av desse har med med strykebenk eller strygebenk. Lars Gjels får også med at når ein er 2 mann med okshøvel så høvlar ein lang betre enn med langhøvel.

Samanlagt for Sogn og Fjordane, Hordaland og Rogaland var det 44 svar på spørjelista. 14 av svara har med skottbenken som svar på korleis ein festar lange emne som skal høvlast. Så langt har vi berre presentert originale strykebenkar frå Rogaland tidlegare på bloggen. Det har vore skrive litt om nokre benkar i Sogn og Fjordane men desse er ikkje fullstendig dokumentert. Frå Hordaland har eg ikkje fått tips om gamle skottbenkar. Alle svara frå desse tre fylka viser at det kan vere grunn til å leite meir etter gamle skottbenkar i desse områda. Gjennomgangen av dei siste fylka kjem i ein siste bloggpost i nær framtid.

Categories: Hand Tools

Charleston Rice Bed Carving

Mary May, Woodcarver - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 1:47pm

Mary May - Woodcarver

About a month ago, Charles Neil (check out his online woodworking school), John Peckham and Jim Pell travelled down to Charleston with 4 beautifully turned bed posts in Santa Domingan Mahogany.

Feasting on local oysters.

Feasting on local oysters. Charles Neil, Jim Pell, John Peckham, and my husband, Stephen.

About 2 years ago these 3 fine oyster eating fellows (plus 4 more) spent a week learning the finer points of carving in my workshop. Fitting 7 people in my workshop was quite a challenge, but we all managed – with only a few small injuries. But nothing requiring stitches :)

On one of the days they were here several years ago, we took a little “field trip” to David Beckford’s workshop that is just a few miles down the road. David is a high-end furniture restorer who specializes in restoring period furniture. The day we stopped in, David happened to have an original Charleston Rice Bed in his shop that he was working on. Here are some of the photos of this amazingly beautiful carved bed:

photo 4
photo 1
photo 1 (1)

John Peckham was so enamored with this bed, that he commissioned Charles Neil and I to build and carve a bed similar to this style. Charles turned the posts beautifully and I am now working on carving the details.


Last month I had the honor of being invited to demonstrate how to carve several different Charleston carvings for a MESDA (Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts) Furniture Seminar and one of the pieces of furniture I showed how to carve was this rice bed (along with an acanthus leaf on a pedestal table and ball and claw foot). Here is a video on this carving.

If you have never been to MESDA in the Old Salem village in Winston-Salem, NC, you are missing an amazing experience. The MESDA museum, library and bookstore are a wealth of information, and Old Salem itself is just a wonderful opportunity to experience a historic village very close to how it was when it was originally founded by the Moravians in 1772. You will probably need to spend several days (or more) to really enjoy everything both MESDA and Old Salem have to offer.

Now I just need to finish the rice bed carving, finish several other commissions that have come in, continue to publish a video every week for my online carving school, and write a book on acanthus leaves… in my spare time…


Colonial Williamsburg Hay Cabinet Shop Tour (part 1)

Wood and Shop - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 1:35pm

In the above video I share the first part of my recent visit to the 18th century Anthony Hay Cabinet Shop at Colonial Williamsburg here in my home state of Virginia. (Make sure to subscribe here so you don’t miss the other parts).


Colonial Williamsburg, and the Anthony Hay’s cabinet shop, have held a special place in my memory since my youth. Last year I met Kaare Loftheim (Shop Supervisor) at a tool meeting in Richmond, and he invited me to come film a tour of the Anthony Hay Cabinet Shop.


This past weekend he and his wife Melody opened their lovely home to me, and then Kaare and his colleagues kindly welcomed me into their historic workshop. Throughout the day I was very fortunate to get to know these highly skilled, yet modest, craftsmen. Because they work full time in the traditional cabinet making trade, they are perhaps the most skilled hand tool craftsmen in the world.  I’d like to introduce them to you below:

Kaare Loftheim, Journeyman Cabinetmaker, Shop Supervisor  bio


Edward Wright, Journeyman Harpsichord Maker  bio



Bill Pavlak, Journeyman Cabinetmaker  bio


Brian Weldy, Apprentice Cabinetmaker


These men have been keeping a detailed blog about their research and skills in the Hay’s Cabinet shop, and I feel that it is one of the most useful woodworking resources available, so please subscribe to it here and follow them on Facebook to get updates on their latest projects.


Make sure that you go visit the Anthony Hay Cabinet Shop and tell these fellas that I sent you. Here are some more photographs that I took while at the workshop:














New Tool. Awl with Mexican Rosewood handle.

David Barron Furniture - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 11:22am

I've had these on the 'to do' list for some time and at last got round to making them.
The handle is made from Bocote or Mexican Rosewood. Although not a true rosewood the colours are wonderful and they hold up nicely over time.

The handles are fairly traditional in shape and very comfortable to hold and use. The blades are Japanese HSS hardened to RC 68 and they extend nearly to the end of the handle.

I may not make these again due to time pressure, so it's first come first served, cost £28.

Categories: Hand Tools


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by Dr. Radut