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An aggregate of many different woodworking blog feeds from across the 'net all in one place!  These are my favorite blogs that I read everyday...

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Lifestyle From a Lifestyle Woodworker

Paul Sellers - Fri, 07/25/2014 - 1:53am

Lifestyles Encompasses Work

I have always pursued work as a lifestyle, partly because I always needed to work to earn a living and partly because I always need to work – there’s a difference. I need work because I love it, I don’t love work because I need it you see. Getting up in the morning and going to work stimulates much of my early morning before I leave for the shop. As a boy I rode my bike or walked a couple of miles to work through cobblestone streets, rain, snow, sleet and occasional sunshine. I left at 7am and looked forward to stoking the boiler, reading the newspaper as the heat built up and then the banter that went back and forth over the morning news between theme I worked under. When other boys clambered over the stacks of newly milled window and door parts I walked around them, stared at them, picked them up and smelled them one by one. Oak, Kerruing, Merranti, Hemlock, Spruce, Walnut and more wood types were new smells to me and imbibing multidimensionally seemed to satisfy the very soul of my newfound craft. I savoured each different smell and retained the new knowledge as I asked about the woods from foreign climes. Rot resistant kerruing for window sills and sills to doorways. Ugly, dark, wiry, stringy, coarse-grained wood hard to work with planes, gummy substances exuding with every stroke of my plane and sticking the sole to the wood itself. I’m 15 years old, skinny, so skinny, and I am looking into every nook and cranny for new things to learn about wood.

Man and Boy
Some of the men were full of themselves whilst others had humility and peace about them. Some were crude and vulgar, others quiet and refined. All of them could work wood well. No, all of them could work wood very well. When a machine failed to make a cut for whatever reason they would do it with hand tools just as well an effectively but with more strain on their bodies. The difference between woodworkers then and now is that they could do it by hand, knew exactly the right tool to use and nothing ever stopped the work being done. One time, when I was too cocky in myself, I said something out of order to an older man of around 40. He lunged at me over the bench, grabbed my lapels and lifted me off my feet as he pulled my skinny frame up until his nose touched mine. He remonstrated, “If you ever say anything like that again I will kill you.” I felt the truth in what he said as he dumped me on the benchtop. Respect became mine as I saw the boundary I had crossed. It took a few months before things were healed between us and the past forgotten.
The Boy Finds His Place
Knowing my place became obvious in the first few weeks as everyone called me “boy” or “the boy”. I recall the first day in work as I was shown around and things were explained to me by the man who was to become my mentoring craftsman. Where to clock in and out at the start and end of the workday, where to brew up, where to stoke the boiler, how to bag the shavings from the power machines (never had dust extraction), I was the dust extractor. My boss, the owner of the company, was a man called Idris Owen. Mr Owen was the biggest conservative snob in the world. He drove in on my fIrst day in his Rolls Royce Silver Cloud all gleamy and silvery and asked me who I was. I told him I was the new apprentice. “What’s your name, boy?” he asked. I said, Paul Sellers. In the five years of my apprenticeship including working on his home, his property in Wales and seeing him most weeks at the workshop, he never called my by my name. He always called me “boy”. One day I was in the workshop when he drove into the physical shop itself. I climbed out of the Rolls, stood facing me about 15 feet from me and asked one of the men to “tell the boy to wash the Rolls”, even though I was in plain sight and nearer to him than the man he was talking to was. Such was the conservatism of the time and day. Did it put me off wood and woodworking? I didn’t really realise that the man in the immaculate pin-striped suit and highly polished shoes was so sad a man. I never saw him smile or flip a board of pine to smell the pocket of sap. In all of his riches and throughout the five years of my apprenticeship he never altered, never associated with anyone beyond the most superficial level yet I was immersed in a richness of scents and sounds and shapes and textures I would enjoy for the next 50 years. Class is very much a British phenomenon. I know it exists elsewhere too, but I found my place as each day I learned my craft, absorbed those things that mattered and discovered my lifestyle future.

Beginning Your Lifestyle as a Woodworker
My path has been different than yours. I learned to respect my fellow craftsmen because they earned it. I saw what I wanted to be as a lifestyle woodworker and made the most of every opportunity until I could come to rest in the knowledge and experience knowing what I could and could not do. If someone tells a child they can be anything they want to be they do that child a disservice because it’s really not true. It’s more important to help them discover their honest potential and what they are supposed to be no matter what that is. It should never be tied to economics or politics, social standing or the successes their parents measure success by unless they truly want the child to find their place. Life has limits and a craftsman finds his limits, the limits of his tools and the woods he works and finds rest within those limits. I found rest in my work. You can plan your lifestyle too. Getting of the conveyor belt and the production line of life doesn’t mean working it full time. You do what you can with the time you have and do it to the best of your ability.

The post Lifestyle From a Lifestyle Woodworker appeared first on Paul Sellers' Blog.

Categories: Hand Tools

Magstrop™ Sharpening Stations. New From Evenfall Studios

Evenfall Studios - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 8:24pm

Magstrop Leather 50/50.jpg

The Magstrop™ Sharpening Station: Leather 50/50.

Think micro-abrasive compounds, emulsions, sprays.

Magstrop  All Glass.jpg

The Magstrop™ Sharpening Station: All Glass.

Think abrasive and micro-abrasive papers and films.

The Magstrop Combo Glass/Leather.jpg

The Magstrop™ Sharpening Station: Combo Glass/Leather.

Think all of the above.

Quick-Change Strop Tops.jpg

Quick-Change Strop Tops™, held physically and magnetically.

Station uses a bench hook. Clamp it in the vise.

Is 14-3/4 inches square.

Cuts it’s own sandpapers.

Magstrop Sharpening System.jpg

Imagine the possibilities.

The Magstrop Bench.jpg

The Magstrop™ Bench.

Uses the same Strop Tops™.

Magstrop Sharpening System.jpg

Fixtures in a bench dog hole.

Measures 11-1/2 by 3-1/4-inches.

Portable sharpening in the space of a whetstone.

Magstrop Sharpening System.jpg

Again, imagine the possibilities.

Possibilities can become realities in your shop.

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Categories: Hand Tools

Sunburst Design for a Fireplace Surround

Mary May, Woodcarver - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 7:46pm

Mary May - Woodcarver

I am currently working on carving the details for a reproduction fireplace surround. The style is a traditional Charleston design and has 2 small vertically positioned sunburst designs on either side of a large horizontally shaped one.

I have finished one of the side sunbursts and have just added the video lesson to my online school. The wood I carved this in is poplar. It’s not my favorite wood to carve because it can be kind of spongy and stringy, but since this is going to be painted, this is what the builder chose.

This design is a little unique in that the “rays” on the design are carved down to a corner, rather than a curve – at least on the 2 smaller side ones. This creates a nice, sharp shadow. The large center horizontally positioned one has more rounded and hollowed shaped rays.

The grain pattern turned out to be quite nice, so it is a shame to paint it…

First carved sunburst in poplar
Original 1820's fireplace that I am attempting to reproduce.
Center design on the original fireplace.
Design laid out on wood before carving.

Floor Scraps, A Treasured Addition

The Barn on White Run - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 6:39pm

While attending a memorial celebration of Mel’s life and work last week, I revived an old acquaintance with one of Mel’s long time collaborators, a renowned architectural conservator.  Our conversation was a winding one, reminiscing on our mutual respect and admiration for our departed friend.

Eventually we passed into the territories of our own projects, and he mentioned a gift he had for me out in his car.  In a couple minutes he reappeared with an envelope with two index-card sized pieces of wood.

“These are some of the parquet floor remnants from the Oval Office, removed during the renovation of about 1990.”

cIMG_6204

Wow!

I do not know the configuration or pattern of the parquet flooring, and even if I did the pieces are so small I could not make sense of them.  Perhaps some day I will get a photo of the Oval Office flooring during this period and replicate it, but for the foreseeable future I will be content to enable these remnants to be prominently featured in The Barn alongside the c.1670 oak parquet flooring from the Palaise Royale in Paris.

cIMG_6206

 

So, in addition to sections of floor that may have supported  Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin, I have a scrap of floor that almost certainly bore the footsteps of Ronaldus Magnus.  How cool is that?

Now I just have to somehow find a piece of flooring from underneath the only truly great President of the past 200 years, Calvin Coolidge…

Hand Craft, A Text Book...Being An English Exposition Of Slojd by John D. Sutcliffe 1890

Toolemera - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 4:42pm
Hand Craft, A Text Book, Embodying A System of Pure Mechanical Art, Without The Aid Of Machinery. Being An English Exposition Of Slojd; As Cultivated In Sweden And By The Scandinavian Peoples. By John D. Sutcliffe. Pub: Griffith, Farran, Okeden & Welsh; Newbery House, Charing Cross Road, London. 1890 What can I say? The British were not content with the Swedish Slojd and how to create their own version. Truth be told, there is little difference in most Slojd books, with the exception of Barter, who really had to learn to relax a bit. Sutcliffe took the workbook of Slojd,...
Categories: Hand Tools

Business of podcasting “What make’s a good topic?”

Matt's Basement Workshop - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 4:00pm

The subject of topics is a popular discussion in correspondences I’ve had over the years. It’s kind of funny when I think about it, because the awesomeness of having your own show or blog is that the topic is whatever YOU want it to be.

choosing a topic

image courtesy blogthemeplates.blogspot.com

First of all, it’s your show, so that means you have more say in the topic than anyone else. I’ll be the first to admit it’s hard not to let others steer your content. Even when you have a clear vision of what you want to share and how to share it, there will always be a little voice in the back of your head saying “you should listen to them!”

Take it from me, it’s alright to listen to the suggestions from your audience, sometimes they will help steer a good conversation to a great one. But it’s probably more important to be true to yourself. If you find that your creating content about topics you’re not passionate about, you’ll eventually stop creating altogether.

Second; chances are if you have an interest in the subject…there’s someone else who’s interested in it too.

Trust me on this one! If you’re interested in some obscure and arcane subject, I can guarantee there are many more other people who are also interested in too. Probably more than you ever thought could exist.

Of course the problem with obscure and arcane is that the number of visitors will be minimal, but chances are they’ll be quality. The kind of quality visitor that becomes friends you’re glad you met, even if you never actually meet in person ever.

And third, if you’re still convinced no one will be interested in the topic before you write it, there’s a good chance they will AFTER you post it.

The truth of the matter is that sometimes we either don’t know the topic exists or we do, but perhaps the way you present it is in a way we never thought about previously.

In the end, regardless, chances are someone will find it useful and a conversation will most likely begin. Often this leads to even more information and the chance of new interactions, which can lead you to your next topic.

So what I’m really trying to say is, NEVER let choosing a topic be the limiting factor if and when you decide to start a podcast or blog.

Even when you have writer’s block or think what you’re currently doing in the shop is boring, someone will contact you and thank you for the inspiration and information.

Does this mean ALL the content will be good? No way! But that’s okay too. Because sometimes you just need to get it out there so you can learn. Of course this also means you’ll get the occasional jerky comment telling you the content isn’t great, but that’s okay too…it means someone’s viewing it and that’s what you wanted in the first place!

Categories: Hand Tools

Thoughts on Design from a Letter Carver

Design Matters - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 3:57pm

It’s really special when an artisan can design something profound in a tight discipline. In a world where bling draws the spotlight, I’m always thankful for someone who can craft an extraordinary wine, shotgun, handplane, or chair. Here’s a short video about Martin Wenham, a letter carver who offers some insights about design. Take a moment to savor his thoughts and work. I’d like to thank Dave Fisher for sending me this link.

 

 


Part 3: Filling the guts of your Dutch Tool Chest-Lid panel saw fixtures

Hand Tool Journey - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 3:55pm

I created two fixtures similar to Christopher Schwarz in order to dock two panel saws (rip and XC) to the inside lid surface. After trial and error, I came up with these fixture dimensions:

P21-Dutch-Tool-Chest-Panel-Saw-Fixture-Dimensions

The rip saw’s handle faces to the left while the XC saw’s handle is located to the right-hand side of the lid. When the lid is open, the teeth face upward. Since each saw is wider toward the handle than the toe, the groove to house this portion of them is longer. I laid the saws one over another and determined a rough placement of the fixtures.

P22-Dutch-Tool-Chest-Panel-Saw-Fixture-Placement

This helped me to then measure the width of the corresponding fixture groove, from the saw spine to the tip of the teeth. With this done, I laid out the fixtures…

P18-Dutch-Tool-Chest-Panel-Saw-Fixture-Laying-Out

…and cut the stopped grooves at the router table.

P20-Dutch-Tool-Chest-Panel-Saw-Fixture-Routed-Slots-And-Shaped

The longer grooves barely had 1/8” between them and the ends of the fixture. So to keep them from breaking, I reinforced them with plywood pieces to prevent breakage. I subsequently revised the fixture dimensions you see posted above.

Note the “Base Line” in the above photograph. The spines of both saws will rest in the same plane with the lid open.

Next, I cut the long notch at each fixture end, then drilled a hole (about 5/8” in from the end) and countersunk it to accommodate the mounting screws.

The 4” placement of the fixtures from the front edge of the top of the lid allowed enough clearance between the fixtures/saws and fully-loaded tool rack for the lid to properly close.

With the lid done, I turned my attention to completing the fixtures for the top section of the chest. And that’s the subject of the next post.

###

© 2014, Brad Chittim, all rights reserved.


Categories: Hand Tools

The Where and The Why.

Rundell & Rundell - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 2:36pm
So after about 10 hours in the car I arrived just before dark at my next stop and the original reason for me coming to the States. To make a Brian Bogg's style 3 rung ladder back chair with Jeff Lefkowitz. Jeff has been teaching people how to make Brian's version of this iconic Appalachian chair for a number of years now and has made chairs with Brian, Pete Galbert and Curtis Buchanan in the past too. So his knowledge of chairmaking is quite broad.

Jeff  and his wife Cathy were also very kind in offering me a bed for the duration of the course which meant that travelling to the workshop of a morning was a short walk along a wooden boardwalk as opposed to a trip in a car. Jeff and Cathy have lived in their house on the outskirts of Strasburg, Virginia for over 30 years. It's set off the beaten track a little, on the side of a hill and surrounded by forrest on a couple of sides and farms on the others. 

Whitetail in the woods.

This young doe was and others like her, often with fawns at foot, were a common site. 

Tony left, Jeff right

Also on the course was Tony, from Great Barrington in Massachusetts, who had actually made a chair with Pete Galbert a week or so before I arrived in the States. Apparently Tony had found out about Pete after Jeff had told him that I was going to visit Pete when I arrived. It's great how these connections come about. After chatting for a day or so, I found Tony had a very similar eclectic range of careers like me, prior to getting involved with woodworking. And, after a few days with Tony in the workshop, it's obvious  he's made a good choice.

The first thing that is apparent when you walk into Jeff's shop is how well it's set out. Two rooms are connected by a large opening, with machinery in one and a bench and hand tools in the other. 


On the machinery side of things, there's pretty much everything you'd expect. Table saw, jointer/planer, thicknesser, mitre saw, drill press, bandsaw, lathe,  dust extraction etc etc. What is surprising is how well it all functions in the space it's contained in. It's done well.

Good low level chair makers bench.

The bench room is no different, a well thought out workbench with simple but effective wood racks on one wall, mass clamp storage through to sharpening stations and plenty of cupboard space. Handy rolling benches also offer good storage and effective clamping stations.




 Good food for thought in all of it.

The Beast in Question

Now about the chair. You might ask why a windsor chair maker would want to make a ladder back chair? No? Ok well I'm going to tell you anyway. Returning to the home of the chair I make reminds you instantly that Australia is not the ideal place to make American Windsors.

Our wood essentially just does not cut it. Before I get a barrage of emails telling me that I'm barking up the wrong tree ( pun intended ), let me expand on the last comment. 

We have timber that splits well and we also have timber that bends well, but a lot of those species, such as Blackwood, Mountain Ash, Celery Top Pine etc etc are not easy to come by, in that tall straight examples are generally locked up in National Parks or other areas that are no longer accessible. Other species that meet certain criteria well, often fail elsewhere, say by being too heavy. So that leaves bifurcated garden, paddock or street trees often as the only option. Not ideal chair wood. 

With 30" spindles this is not the sort of chair you want to make with short grain issues!

When you add into the equation the long lengths needed for parts like the crest rail for a Continuous Arm ( 1485mm/49-ish" ) or say spindles for a Comb Back arm ( 760mm/30" ) that's when problems arise. Even species like the Pin Oak ( Quercus Palustris ) which thankfully were planted in plentiful numbers, just aren't the same as the Red Oaks of the U.S.

Which brings me back to the 'why?'  I want to make traditional wooden chairs. Chairs with great joinery techniques, chairs without screws, nails or epoxy being the critical element holding them together. But having made Windsors for a few years now, chairs that are more suited to the timbers I have to work with. 

I've been making one of the more difficult traditional US Windsors for years now and dealt regularly with the limitations of our timber in making it well. The Continuous Arm for instance, is not the right chair for the place I live and work. 

Which is why when I return, I'll be offering Windsor chair courses and chairs that fit that criteria more closely. The ladderback is one of those chairs. No, it's not a Windsor, but 50mm/2" thick seat stock is also becoming difficult to source, so in a way it fits the bill even more so.

But it is also an exceptionally strong and well made chair, and the alterations Brian Boggs has made to the traditional design, mean that it is also exceptionally comfortable. It's not the end of me making and teaching the Continuous Arm Chair. It's just the beginning of making and teaching even better chairs. I hope you enjoy the journey.





Categories: General Woodworking

Stock preparation for chairbuilding extravaganza

Mulesaw - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 2:19pm
The summer holiday is upon us with all that it means = not too much time for woodworking. Next time I get home from the ship the plan is to have a chairbuilding extracaganza meeting, where a couple of woodworkers will try to make a Welsh stick chair.
The meeting is going to be held at my place, and I am going to supply the elm for the seat blanks.

This means that for once I actually have a purpose for sawing with the mulesaw.

going through 24" of old elm isn't easy, so one plank takes more than 1 hour to saw. Yesterday I had to rearrange the motor for the mulesaw, because the flat belts kept slipping. Now I have made the setup, so there is no clutch between the electric motor and the saw, but still it is not a fast saw.
The good thing is, that the surface looks nice, and the board is flat.

Compare the size of the log to the standard barrel next to it.

Close up of the saw blade.

A look from the outfeed side.



Categories: Hand Tools

From Picture Frames and Making Wood Work

Paul Sellers - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 2:03pm

Today I made picture frames with different moulded shapes using moulding planes, smoothing planes, rebate planes, scratch stocks, screws and tenon saws of different types and sizes. The work was different using so many tools for so small a project. The demands were high, tight tolerances essential and I felt the tension build until alI the parts came together in exactness. The tools were cast iron and steel as well as wood and steel. I used dedicated tools and improvised by making tools as I went. DSC_0076 So many times we think making a tool for a task takes longer than setting up a router and sometimes that’s true but often not. A tool made is seldom a one time use tool so economy figures in in different ways. I can make a temporary rebate plane in about 10 minutes from a chisel and a piece of scrap wood. It’s not complicated to do this and most of us have an old chisel or a spare one. Anyway, I was rewarded with a new tool to use and all the components for the next filmed series making picture frames that are very different than anything you might have seen before or ever bought or made or ever considered. I will be interested on your take on it when it’s online in a couple of months DSC_0104 There are a series of rebates formed and some of the methods I use to form them will be quite unique to see I think. I am so glad we don’t need to use a chopsaw or jump through the hoops of making a tablesaw sled for the mitres and that we make a perfect mitre guide with two knife cuts and two saw cuts in under a minute. DSC_0071 Much of what I do is about speed and efficiency yet without compromising my lifestyle of lifestyle woodworking that’s so effective and tangibly real I would find it hard indeed to live without it. I know, some of you out there might be saying ‘get a life, Paul,’ but this is the life I love living.The neat thing for me is that I don’t need to prove anything and at the same time I prove everything I believe in. There is no competition between the machine and the hand in my world. I have used both and find both useful. I find undeveloped skill is often diverted to machine dexterity and thereby skills, I mean the skills that could be passed on, apprehended and lived with, lie dormant and unused in most people’s lives. I find that simple and honest. Trying to prove one over the other seems to me to be like comparing an apple to an orange or even say a sledgehammer to a nut. DSC_0096 Another thing I did this week was restore a couple of tools I picked up from the Woodfest Show a couple of weeks ago. Here is a very ugly paring gouge used mostly in pattern making. The gouge itself fell victim to someone who knew nothing about the tool and thereby a careless hand at sharpening. The important part of this type of gouge is only partly the bevel on the inside of the hollow. The very important part is the rounded outside. In this case and the case of a second one I retrieved from a mass of rusted tools in a box the bevel was badly ground and hacked at and the outside round was badly distorted by inappropriate abrading. I felt the best tack was to break off the end and rework the cutting edge. DSC_0064 DSC_0061 I clamped the main body of the gouge in the metalworking vise to reduce the risk of an uneven fracture into the cannel. There is no guarantee. Two swift and firm strikes with a cross peen hammer effectively separated the waste from the wanted. DSC_0008 From snapping off the former bevel I squared off the end of the gouge to give a new start point to grind the in-cannel bevel. DSC_0018DSC_0024 I used the corner of the grinding wheel to create the new in-cannel bevel of 25-degrees. It works well to do it this way and frequent dipping in cold water keeps the temperature of the steel tolerably low enough to prevent excess heat build up resulting in burning the steel. It’s best to take your time with this. Especially strive not to burn the steel and keep the tool moving from side to side around the cannel and so avoid stopping at any fixed point on the corner of the wheel as this will definitely burn steel away fast. DSC_0052 I got very close to the edge and left only about 0.5mm of a square edge left. From here its abrasive paper on a suitably sized dowel going from 250 to 400 and then in increments of 200 to 2500 in steps of around 200 or so. DSC_0065DSC_0066 Beyond that the same dowel can be wrapped with leather and charged with buffing compound. The bevel is now completed. The outside round surface should be polished already, but a final buffing with a leather strip or strap or the rough side of a leather belt charged with buffing compound completes the sharpening and I have vary nice gouge for the rest of my life.

The post From Picture Frames and Making Wood Work appeared first on Paul Sellers' Blog.

Categories: Hand Tools

Is That Fret Slot Deep Enough?

Doug Berch - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 11:44am

More than once I had found myself perplexed by a fret that would not gracefully seat itself completely in a fret slot. More often than not the problem was the slot being too shallow for the tang on the fretwire. I saw the slots to an appropriate depth when making a dulcimer fingerboard but by […]

The post Is That Fret Slot Deep Enough? appeared first on Doug Berch.

Categories: Luthiery

Cleaning a record with wood glue, with impressive results. Props...

Giant Cypress - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 9:18am


Cleaning a record with wood glue, with impressive results. Props to the maker of this video for using Miles Ahead for this demonstration.

This demo uses Titebond II. Being a fan of hide glue, I wonder if hide glue would work as well. But since hide glue dries harder than PVA glues, I would guess that peeling the glue layer off might be harder with hide glue as opposed to PVA glue.

I Build Stuff Too.

The Furniture Record - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 9:13am

A few months back in blog titled The Ones That Got Away , I wrote about two auction items I coveted but apparently not enough to win. One of them was this salt box:

I didn't win this one.

I didn’t win this one.

For a friend’s birthday I made this saltbox:

I turned the knob, too. I couldn't find a brass equivalent.

I turned the knob, too. I couldn’t find a brass equivalent.

I was pleased with the build. Only thing I believe I got wrong was the angle of the cut-a-way for the lid. I didn’t pick the color, the recipient did. My mistake was picking up a milk paint sample chart from an antiques dealer 80 miles from home. I did find a local dealer but would have preferred she had chosen one of the General Finishes acrylic “milk paint” over the mix-me-up powdered genuine milk paint. She also wanted a more primitive finish, not the smooth and uniform finish that I usually try for. Just like Peter Follansbee not letting me make the English jointed stool too pretty when I took the class at the Woodwright’s School.

If you read Chris Schwarz’s blog at either Popular Woodworking or Lost Art Press, you know he has been writing about historic squares in the past month or two. The squares looked like an interesting project, relatively quick to build and not requiring much material. (No trip to the Hardwood Store.) As a woodworker with ADD, I am always looking for a diversion and something to keep me from doing what must be done. These fit the bill.

Walnut, I have lots of walnut.

Walnut, I have lots of walnut.

It was a rewarding build. Hadn’t really used hollows and rounds to any great extent. I scratched the bead on the Melencolia square with a #66 beading tool. The challenge is to figure out the sequence of using the planes and the best way to rough out the molding profiles before using the molding planes. I have been taught it is best to use a block or other plane to remove most of the wood before switching to the hollows and rounds to refine the shape. Block planes are easier to sharpen than a molding plane.

From the front, the Melencolia squares, the Wierix squares and 'Der Schreiner' squares.

From the front, the Melencolia squares, the Wierix squares and ‘Der Schreiner’ squares.

I made multiples because it is easier to make longer moldings than shorter ones. I have learned my lesson there. Now I have to find something to do with the spares. Always my problem, what to do with the stuff I make. Not a bad problem to have. Beats gout.


The July 2014 issue of The Highland Woodturner

Highland Woodworking - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 7:39am

JulyHWT2014Ah, the middle of Summer, usually the hottest time of the year but also the usual time for vacations and relaxing. If you’re currently on vacation right now we invite you to sit back in your hammock or adirondack chair and enjoy our July issue of The Highland Woodturner. If you’re not on vacation and sitting at your office desk right now, we still invite you to CLICK HERE and maybe keep the browser covered so the boss doesn’t see you checking out some new woodturning project ideas and tips.

This month’s Woodturning stories and tips include:

Vacuum Chucking: Initial Impressions- Curtis Turner shares his experience in Vacuum Chucking, a system used to help “reverse mount a bowl or platter to provide total access to the bottom of the item.” Curtis goes over his process and the advantages and disadvantages he found when using this system.

Turning with Temple: Long, Thin-Stem Goblets: Temple Blackwood shares his step-by-step process of turning long, thin-stemmed goblets, which make great wedding presents!

Show Us Your Woodturning Shop: This month we take you on a tour of Dennis Purcell’s woodturning shop in Austin, Texas where he has a variety of turning and woodworking tools, including a new “old” lathe.

Popular Woodworking Presents: Woodturning with Tim Yoder: In this 30 minute episode brought to you by Popular Woodworking, Tim Yoder demonstrates the process of turning a Roman Canteen.

Improve Your Turning with the Oneway Woodworm Screw: Phil’s July turning tip gives you a recommendation on how to use the woodworm, the funny-looking screw that comes with chucks.

All of this and more in our July issue of The Highland Woodturner.

The post The July 2014 issue of The Highland Woodturner appeared first on Woodworking Blog.

Categories: General Woodworking

The Gentleman’s Valet – Part Eight

The Unplugged Woodshop - Tom Fidgen - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 6:38am
  We’re winding down in the Valet project, and here, in the second to last installment, I’m applying the molding. When you think of molding, you probably think of hollows and rounds. The truth is, moldings can be any shape or size, and you don’t...
Categories: Hand Tools

Why I Lay Out Dovetails with Dividers

Chris Schwarz's Pop Wood Blog - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 5:13am

Rob Cosman showed me how to lay out dovetails using dividers about 12 or 13 years ago, and I have never looked back. I’ve caught a lot of crap for using the divider method from fellow hand-tool woodworkers who say that laying them out by eye is much faster. I don’t disagree. However, there are some advantages to taking the extra time and use dividers. 1. My work looks more […]

The post Why I Lay Out Dovetails with Dividers appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: Hand Tools

Last Call

The Workbench Diary - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 3:34am
This is a detail shot of the Fisher property from an 1824 landscape. His yellow 1814 house is on the far right. Photo: Brad Emerson

My family and I are heading out to go to a church camping trip today so this is the last opportunity to remind you all of this Saturday’s lecture at the Fisher House. The official write up says, 
"On Saturday, July 26th Joshua Klein of Klein Furniture Restoration will present his research on the furniture produced by Jonathan Fisher (1768 – 1847) of Blue Hill. The talk titled, “The Fashioning Hand of Jonathan Fisher: An Inside Look at the Parson’s Furniture” will begin at 1:00 pm and will be followed by a guided tour of the collection.

This exciting new research has uncovered a rare look into the productive life and mind of this farmer-artisan of 19th century Maine. The surviving body of furniture, tools used to produce them, and diary entries recording their creation are a uniquely comprehensive record unparalleled by any other chair or cabinet maker of preindustrial Maine. Klein will discuss how a close investigation of Fisher’s furniture reveals to us insights into the complex relationship between the parson’s religious devotion, intellectual pursuits, and craft skills."
Yes, somehow my wife and I double-booked this Saturday. I will have to leave the campsite and drive a couple hours to the lecture only to turn around to go back to camping. Oh well. It’s all fun stuff anyhow.

As an aside, I’ve made a little bit more progress on my tool chest… Bottom boards, plinth, and becket cleats. Next up is the interior storage. Oh and I was playing around with some paint yesterday. I decided to grain paint this chest like the mahogany graining so common in Maine in the early 1800s. I’ve not done that before so I am making up some sample boards. 

The Chest in the white

The dovetails are reversed on the plinth (for added strength)

Becket cleats of poplar I had laying around

This is the 'mahoganized' sample board sitting against the chest.

Categories: Hand Tools

The Uffy TH-T-1825XP 18 Gauge Brad Nailer

Popular Woodworking Editors Blog - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 2:30am

Part of my job at Popular Woodworking Magazine is to talk with tool manufacturers and get their newest innovations into the PWM shop to test and review. I tend to do things in a big way, which means I have a small mountain of things to review crowding the shop, my cubicle and the storage area in the front of the PWM offices – it’s a big pile. And with […]

The post The Uffy TH-T-1825XP 18 Gauge Brad Nailer appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.

Categories: General Woodworking

Mathieson Bridle Planes

Hackney Tools - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 11:55pm

If you hunt for the older generation of tools from quality makers, as I do, you’ll know how excited I am to have found these yesterday. A Mathieson Sash Fillister (No.14) and Mathieson Plough Plane (No.12). If anyone has a suitable (grooved set) of Mathieson plough plane blades, please let me know, I need to locate a set as the plane has none.
I’ll shoot some pics of the planes in use soon.
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Mathieson Bridle Planes_2
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Mathieson Bridle Planes_7

Categories: Hand Tools

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by Dr. Radut