I got my seedlac from shellac.net. On their website, they say that they ship internationally.
Restoring and preparing the cutting iron and the cap iron The #151 flat-bottomed spokeshave is now the commonest of all spokeshaves in use for general woodworking and the traditional wooden pattern from 17th century origins is no longer a production model because it generally ceased being produced in the 1920s because of the #151 success. Buying them new or secondhand usually requires some remedial work to different parts of the tool. The following will show you the important steps to making any #151 spokeshave work beautifully regardless of the work you do with it. It’s almost always best to dismantle all of the parts of any tool and remove all of the components. This is good advice provided you know how to reverse the steps and put it all back in the right way. A problem occurs if the seller puts the parts together without actually knowing which things should be where. The most common problem I encounter with the #151 is that the blade almost always arrives with the cutting iron the wrong way round. No matter what you do with the spokeshave assembled incorrectly it will never take a shaving. The photos given here show the different parts assembled correctly. Study them and keep them close to hand when your spokeshave arrives to compare what you have. It’s not a bad idea to still take a picture to recall how things arrived anyway regardless of right or wrong. Degrease and derust the blade and cap as necessary using the same tools we used in the previous blog post for restoring the body of the spokeshave. The blade will flex to flatness in the extender holder when you cinch down the cap iron but flipping the bade over to remove the burr and polish the flat face cannot usually be flexed to flatness by hand and so hopefully the blade is indeed close to flatness. We will assume it is flat as in 99% of cases that are indeed flat. If yours is not flat and you are using the extender holder you should flatten both sides of the blade so that it is not flexed in the holder when holding the bevel to the abrasive otherwise the bevel can be curved along its length when removed from the holder. Establishing the bevel at 25-degrees begins with the coarsest abrasive at 250-grit. One advantage of installing the blade in the extender is you can use the 25-degree angle of the extender to guide you for the bevel angle if you are sharpening freehand. You can also use this extender in a honing guide of you prefer. I find one important advantage of using the guide and extender in tandem with one another is one, the amount of pressure you can apply and two, it virtually guarantees a square result almost without thinking. With the bevel established at 25-degree we can further hone with a few strokes at a slightly elevated angle, usually up to but never more than 30-degrees. The 30-degree cutting edge is now refined on a 600-grit and then a 1200-grit abrasive. Doing this effectively ‘thickens’ the cutting edge to an acceptable and effective working cutting edge. The band width width of this 30-degree secondary angle or bevel is best around 2-3mm only. This creates a strong enough edge to maximise resistance against edge fracture. Finishing at 1200 is usually a fine enough cutting edge for 95% of work. Removing the extender from the honing guide allows you to draw the bevel in the extender on a strop charged with abrasive chromium oxide. Working the flat face is the same as a plane iron except it is not as essential to create a dead flat face unless you want to. You should remember that polishing the bevel is only half the sharpening. The flat face should always be finished to the same level as the bevel, so if you went to chromium oxide abrasive, which is around say 15,000, then the large flat face should be the same. The extender does not allow work on the flat face but it’s not necessary anyway. Abrade, hone and strop the flat face. The flat face is best polished out on a flat piece of hardwood such as maple or beech. Apply the abrasive compound directly to the wood and trail the cutting away from the abrasive rather than pushing the edge into the abrasive and the wood. Now the cutting iron is ready for installing and using. Its important to check the inside face of the cap iron. The above two pictures show the result of introducing the cap to the coarse plate and then further abrading until the whole edge is flattened. It must be flat or flattened along the very edge where it will meet the large flat face of the cutting iron. Flatten it on the coarse abrasive only. It’s not the whole face that needs to be flat, just along the cutting edge. Along the end edge of the lever cap, the face-edge that leads and faces into the throat of the spokeshave, file a straight edge with an 80-degree (or thereabouts) back bevel along it. You can soften this rake with abrasive 250-grit abrasive taking care not to round the underside of the edge formed as an gap will provide a leading edge for shavings to lodge and cause clogging in the throat. With the blade in the spokeshave and registered on the adjusters feel in the mouth (carefully) for the cutting edge and advance or withdraw the iron unit it feels somewhat even or flush with the rims of the throat. Now install the cap on the centre setscrew and advance the adjustment screw at the top of the cap until it feels relatively tight but not fully cinched. Often times you will find the setscrew in the centre cinched down, which people feel is the way to lock the blade in place and that can easily seem right because the blade is indeed tight and immoveable. Cinching the cap onto the cutting iron this way negates the ability to adjust the blade but also causes other important elements to be non functional too. The centre setscrew is there to use as a fulcrum point to transfer pressure to right behind and along the cutting edge with the lever cap. Adjusting the setscrew so that a reverse fulcrum takes effect necessitates a precise setting of this setscrew. We work both the centre setscrew and the cap setscrew in unison until the proper distance is set for the centre setscrew. To establish this we look at the gap at the top of the cap. That’s the red component. Look at the gap . The larger the gap without bottoming out the adjustment screw at the top of the cap, the nearer the cap iron marries to the blade at the cutting edge and the greater the pressure where it’s really needed. This translates into a vibration-free assembly capably engaging the work.
The post Final on #151 Spokeshave Restorative Work Series – Maybe!!! appeared first on Paul Sellers' Blog.
For 20 years, I talked for a living. All day, every day. Spent two weeks working by myself; then went up to the Lie-Nielsen Open House. Someone stuck a camera in my face & I wouldn’t shut up. (the youtube video done by Harry Kavouksorian, posted on Lie-Nielsen’s website) :
Here’s some photo views of the open house. it was a great one. See their facebook photos here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10152214121253016.1073741897.100708343015&type=1
A few months back I had one of those very long antiquing days. When I am driving somewhere, I try to plans the drive to maximize the number of antique shops and museums. I started the day with a 90 minute drive to my favorite four acre antique shop. Many of the painted chests from this shop were covered in the 172 pictures in a PREVIOUS BLOG.
Then a mile down to an always interesting auction house. And a drive to Stantonsburg only to discover most of the good shops are closed on Wednesday. Who knew? Next was a drive south hitting every promising antiques shop until I ran out of time in Lumberton, NC at 6:00 PM. I did visit lots of dealers and took too many pictures.
And now I’m going to share.
First amazing piece it this attractive chest of drawers:
that doesn’t have any drawers.
Ever see a chest you really like but aren’t sure what the primary wood is?
Just look in the drawers.
I do have a fondness for painted armoires. This one is no exception.
It has some very nice details on the door.
I really liked this piece but no place to put it and no patience for sitting through an auction watching people buying stuff I don’t care about.
And the last preview is my favorite lock.
For those new to this lock, the lock has two bolts. One is high and goes to the right. The other bolt is low and goes to the left. Both drawers have appropriate mortises for the bolts. This lets you lock two drawers with one lock.
I really want one of those locks. If anyone knows the name of this lock or where to buy one, I would be forever in your debt if you shared.
To see more of these and lots of interesting things (bellflowers), click HERE.
This violin back plate is still several millimeters away from its final surface. The outside shape is not finished, the corners overgrown clumps that will slowly evolve. In the meantime, I like seeing the steps before the end, before the completion. At this stage, I am flailing away, taking off as much wood as I dare. I like seeing the leftovers, the curls of wood that will be swept up, destined for the fireplace, the compost heap, or the trash, depending on my whim at the time.
With luck, it will live a long life as part of a violin, making music, interacting with the human world. With more luck, someone will really enjoy its shape, its existence.
The scene here is obviously only potential. What will it look like? What will it sound like?
Permance, though, is perhaps nearly as fleeting.
I leave for England Saturday to teach two classes for the New English Workshop at Warwickshire College, but before that English experience, I have to tend to another.
Today I started roughing out the parts for two more Roorkee chairs in sapele that will incorporate some interesting details. One of the details will be this little piece of brass awesomeness.
If life doesn’t go off the rails I hope to get the legs turned tomorrow.
While in England, I’ll mostly be teaching and sleeping. I’m teaching two tool chest classes, which are about as grueling to teach as they are to take. But I am going to get to meet David Savage on Tuesday, which I am greatly looking forward to.
And I know some of the students in the class, so I’m packing extra ibuprofen for the inevitable hangover(s).
This is my first teaching assignment in England, and I hope it’s not my last. The Germans didn’t seem to mind my occasional nudity. I wonder if how the Brits will?
Better yet, perhaps I should pack one of my wife’s dresses….
— Christopher Schwarz
Filed under: Campaign Furniture, Woodworking Classes
A few weeks back I posted about router bit storage. At the end of the post I suggested that readers send me photos of their storage solutions and I would write a follow-up post showing those photos. Many readers shared photos of how they store router bits. I must say that the solutions were innovative and creative. But I was a bit disappointed that no one shared any of the […]
I was looking for one thing & found another. Last week when I wrote about the wood carrier that I learned from Daniel O’Hagan, I knew I had a shot that I took very quickly one of the last times I was down there. Couldn’t find it so I gave up. Today I found it while looking for some other photograph that is now more pressing.
Glad I didn’t see Daniel’s when I made mine – that way we get 2 interpretations of one form. 3 if we count the published one. Daniel’s versions worked for many many years.
Here’s mine from last week. I have more of this sort of thing to make in late August/early September.
For review, here’s the one from China at Work
Len Hovarter of Hovarter Custom Vise has developed a simple and inexpensive quick-release leg vise mechanism that looks quite ingenious. Like all of Hoverter’s vises, they work on the age-old principle of unicorn magic. They slide in and out smoothly without a threaded rod. Then they engage the work with a short turn of the handle. Kelly Mehler has a twin-screw vise with a Hovarter on it and I can […]
During my early research into Roorkee chairs I received at least a dozen e-mails from chairmakers and fellow woodworkers with this simple message: Turn back; the Roorkee is a bad design.
Many of these woodworkers had sat in mid-20th century versions and reported that it was like falling into in gunny sack with an anaconda. There was no support for your lower back (or any other part). And after a few minutes you lost blood circulation to your legs.
The Roorkee chairs I had built to that point weren’t like that at all. So I persisted in refining my chairs based on what I’ve learned about building Windsor-style chairs during the last 10 years. The result is a chair that I can sit in for hours at a time. Others agree with my assessment. Last weekend I took one of my Roorkees to the Lie-Nielsen Open House where people lined up to sit in it all weekend.
So what’s the difference between the chair in “Campaign Furniture” and the killer gunny sacks? Take a look at the chair above.
This is a mid-20th century copy of a copy of a copy of a Kaare Klint chair that was made to maim you. Mark Firley of The Furniture Record blog bought a pair of these chairs on my behalf so I could study some of their details.
There are several things that make this chair somewhat uncomfortable. Here is a short list.
1. The material is a flimsy vinyl backed by jute. So it actually is a vinyl-covered gunny sack. You might be able to get away with a thin material in the seat, but not for the back. The back offers no support.
2. The back is too short. This short chir back presses your flesh back above your lumbar. A thick material (such as 8 oz. leather) that reaches to your lower back supports the lumbar region quite well.
3. The thigh straps are flimsy and narrow. Out of the four thigh straps that came with the chairs, three were broken. Without these straps, which run under the seat from left to right, your legs get pinched on the front rail and go numb. I’m going to make a wide, leather thigh strap for this chair and see if it helps.
4. The rails directly under the arms. These prevent the arm straps from stretching too much (a good thing), but they are uncomfortable after a short while. Imagine relaxing your arms on dowels; that’s what it feels like.
To be fair, this chair has its charms. The tapered tenons fit into their mortises with a slight compression fit. This makes the chair feel stable and still allow it to move to adjust to an uneven floor. I’m going to have to play with this idea in my own chairs.
The other charming thing about it is its overall look. I can only imagine how many wife-swapping parties this chair saw.
Speaking of that, I had better burn the vinyl upholstery.
— Christopher Schwarz
Filed under: Campaign Furniture
I’ve gotta say this about old Andre, he never stops larnin’ me. Over the weekend I built another set of his winding-sticks-on-stilts as I call them, so that I could photograph them for an essay in the book. I have been trying to incorporate them into my own work practices for the past several months, and doggone if I can’t already see how they will make my work so much more efficient than it was previously. His approach to flattening rough stock is insidiously ingenious.
You can read more about these gems and how they are used in the upcoming To Make As Perfectly as Possible: Roubo On Furniture Making (Lost art Press, 2014?)
I am often concerned that when people discuss hand tools of different types someone declares that a particular make or type is the only one to get because of a particular quality that that tool might have. All too often and in the same breath they then dismiss other types in order to bolster their opinion or choice or purchase of that tool. Those of you who read my blog will see that through the years I have tried to counter adverse opinions on say the Stanley #4 plane because so many untruths have become accepted yet the basis for its being rejected is actually unfounded. Point in case is the declaration that the #4 Stanley plane with its thin iron chatters. If I give a #4 plane to someone to use I defy that them to make the plane chatter. Some years ago an ‘expert’ woodworker declared that the #151 spokeshave couldn’t be made to work and probably would not be made to make a shaving. Of course that was far from true, but the problem was that 12,000 people and more read the erroneous article and the editor said it was too late to counter what was said.
Whereas I do know a well-made and well-set and sharpened wooden spokeshave performs exceptionally well, there are many aspects of woodworking that a #151 will do better. The reason for this is the simple fact that the blade of the 151 doesn’t form the sole of the spokeshave but passes through the sole in like manner to say a plane. In a wooden bodied spokeshave the thickness of the shaving is determined then by setting blade deeper than the wooden body so as to form a step-like presentation to the wood. In the very narrow field of chair bodging, generally making parts from green wood and even dry wood, this spokeshave is more ideal than the others. That doesn’t mean that the others will and do work well also, just that it works better. In essence this sets it apart from the 151 and others in that the 151 cutting action is very different. In the bedded angle of the #151 the iron is presented at a steep angle and protrudes through the sole so that the sole is continuous and level on both ‘fore and aft’ aspects of the cutting edge.
Of course the other dominant feature distinguishing these two spokeshave types is the bevel up aspect of the wooden bodied spokeshave (above)…
…and the bevel-down of the metal-bodied type of the #151.
As I say, for chairmaking, where a bodger might decry the #151 as inferior to the old wooden ones, the wooden spokeshave works best and is therefore declared superior. On the other hand, others might declare the Veritas superior to any other because of its tighter mouth opening and superior engineering and metal alloys and such. Indeed, I love these spokeshaves because of these features which are well thought through aspects of the design. You see each perceives and expounds from their small and even very narrow sphere of working wood and therefore declare the merits bests suited to their sphere. Fact is that these statements can be true only on a very limited level. Further fact is that they are all good, all indispensable, all highly developed and all provide uniquely different services in the field. Then for some reason the #151 in the minds of the uninitiated becomes some kind of clunker because of adverse press by writers, bloggers and magazines. Some time back I blogged that the UKs The Woodworker magazine writer wrote something very close to “it won’t make a shaving” and pits himself against a hundred thousand woodworkers that have owned and used a #151 for half a century and people stop buying what is a truly remarkable tool.
The #151 spokeshave emerged from the casting foundries of western makers to provide a lifetime tool that worked less well for chair bodging than it did woodworking joinery and furniture making. On the one hand the wooden spokeshave was indeed used mostly for making spikes, spindles and spokes of every different shape and size. Ladder rungs and chair slats, wagon spokes and spinning wheel components came from the long, with-the-grain cuts that peeled and pared the wood along the grain. With its different presentation, the #151 performed much different work in cutting coves and convexes with equal alacrity. Did that mean the wooden spokeshaves couldn’t do this? Not at all, just that here there was a new alternative that worked and worked well.
Veritas came ut with their version of the spokeshave with wooden handles for comfort and shock absorption, tighter mouths and finer adjusters. Superior in quality the tool works well and especially so in those areas where really fine work is required. Will it take a heavy cut like the #151? No, not without changes to the mouth, but that wouldn’t be practical because that would change its performance for fine work.
My conclusion is this. With spokeshaves there is no one size fits all although you could choose one of these and be happy making adjustments to make them suit the task each time you reach for it. Each of the types discussed will perform differently for different tasks. Bodging chair makers work primarily with long grain cuts and minimal crossgrain work and so like the wooden spokeshaves best because that’s what they do best. The #151 type spokeshave with its open mouth is a work horse of a tool and will tackle almost any and all work well and can be refined for fine work too. I like owning the Veritas spokeshaves for fine-tolerance work but have no hesitation pulling them out for almost anything I do.
The post In Defense of #151Spokeshaves…and Wooden Spokeshaves and Veritas Spokeshaves too appeared first on Paul Sellers' Blog.
The cedar boards used for the new back started like this:
But after staining, shellacing, and waxing, they almost look at home:
The gallery was very challenging. Someone had painted part of the interior at some point and it was very difficult to sand it off without disassembling the whole thing, which was outside the scope of this repair (and budget). I did the best I could, and applied many layers of gel-stain which sits on top of the paint a bit. Lots of shellac, lots of sanding... and it is ok. Much better than it was, anyway.
Not a lot I can do about the door wood not really matching the interior desk surface, but it is all cleaned up and refinished and nicely smooth to the touch. The new hardware works great. The drawers are waxed and operate smoothly. This thing is ready for another hundred years of use and abuse.
I have a few things to write about tonight. First, welcome to the scads of folks who showed up here after Chris wrote his piece about my new career. http://blog.lostartpress.com/2014/07/14/peter-follansbee-has-left-the-building/
Just to give you an inkling of what you might find here, my first & foremost specialty is 17th-century carved oak furniture. Like this:
But for quite a few years, I have carved spoons that I learned through Drew Langsner, Jogge & Wille Sundqvist. In recent years, the spoons have taken off – for which I am quite grateful. Expect many spoon posts here; and a DVD soon.
And then there’s the new/old directions; the wood carrier posted recently is a good example of the sort of thing I hope to be making from time to time that has been on a back burner for 20 years! http://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/2014/07/08/i-knew-i-shoulda-made-2/
And baskets like this too:
Soon, I will build a dedicated bowl lathe – similar to what we used at the North House Folk School where I was recently a student of Robin Wood’s. I have some cherry bolts just waiting to be turned into bowls. http://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/2014/06/05/bowl-class-tip-of-the-iceberg/
As I said the other day, I’m just back from Lie-Nielsen, and just about to go back up there for 17th-century style carving. If you want to see where else I’m teaching this year: Lie-Nielsen this weekend, then Roy’s place (that one’s full, I think.) Heartwood in Massachusetts, and Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking. here’s the link - http://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/2014-workshop-schedule/
But today it rained, so stupid me thought I’d get the “making a living” bit rolling. So I spent an inordinate amount of time fiddling around with creating an Etsy site. I’m not completely sold on the idea, but will try it a while. When I have sold spoons here on the blog, the clunky way I set it up resulted in me spending more time at the desk & computer than hewing & carving. So this is my first attempt to change that. Right now, it’s just what boxes and stools I have left around the house. I’ll add spoons and hewn bowls next week. So if you’ve been waiting for the spoons, here’s your notice – say Monday afternoon. Here’s what I got with making the site – how come 10-yr olds can do this & I struggled with it?
Sidan eg har brukt mykje tid på å lære meg å løype never og tekkje med never og torv, prøvar eg å få praktisert litt kvart år. Denne sommaren arbeider eg med andre del av tekkinga på taket på det gamle våningshuset på Grytøy bygdetun. Grytøya er ei øy i Harstad kommune i Troms og ligg nord for Hinnøya. Bygdetunet har ei omfattande samling av gjenstandar og eg har nytta høvet til å fotografere denne høvelbenken som er ein av desse. Eg har ikkje funne noko informasjon om kor benken kjem frå eller kven som har brukt han. Eg går ut frå at han har vore brukt på Grytøya og at han er frå ein av gardane der.
Høvelbenken er av tilsvarande type som høvelbenken frå Holstvollen i Bymarka i Trondheim som Thor Aage tidlegare har skrive om. Også høvelbenken frå Li i Suldal er ganske lik i uforminga, men manglar baktange og rekka med hakehol. Ein vesentleg forskjell er at benken på Grytøya har høvelbenkskuff. Denne kan kanskje vere ei modifisering av ein eldre benk som har vore veldig lik benken frå Holstvollen. Dette er altså ein type benk som går att ulike stader i landet i ulike versjonar. Det vanlege er å finne desse utan understell så det er vanskeleg å seie korleis slike understell har sett ut eller kor høge benkane har vore.
Arkivert under:1,8 - 2 meter, Framtang med skrue, Hjulmakarbenk
Happy People: A Year in the Taiga is a 90 minute documentary film produced in 2010 by Werner Herzog and Dmitry Vasyukov. It follows the life of some trappers and villagers from the village of Bakhtia, along the Yenisei River, in the Siberian Taiga.
Siberia is a land mass that composes most of eastern Russia, and is larger than the size of the United States. It is largely forested, and life in much of the area has not changed much in over a hundred years. Many of the ways they sustain their lives is very similar to the ways we saw Dick Proenneke live in the documentary about his life, Alone in the Wilderness.
You may remember from a few years back on this blog, I wrote a pretty detailed account about Dick Proenneke and his adventures in Sustenance Woodworking with Hand Tools. The post is titled; The Craftsmanship of Dick Proenneke.
Dick moved to a remote region of Alaska, in the Lake Clark Wilderness and built his cabin in the late 1960′s. He developed a homesite for himself at Twin Lakes, beginning with a Cabin, Shed and Cache, and branched out from there as a naturalist, filmmaker and rather prolific daily journal writer.
Happy People is about the lives of a village of woodsmen and trappers who live by the seasons, doing whats in front of them. One of the main characters in the 90 minute documentary, Happy People: A Year in the Taiga is a man named Genadi Soloyjev.
Genadi shares with us his story of becoming a trapper in Siberia in the early 1970′s and his philosophical understandings about a Sustenance Lifestyle. He speaks at great length about woodworking and the antiquity of what is known and understood about working wood. We get to watch as he works while visiting with us, adeptly performing the work he needs to accomplish.
We learn of how he feels about the tools of this work, the skill, and the craftsmanship. We watch as Genadi shows us his skills with an axe, maul and wedge. The axe is and has obviously been a tool of his lifestyle for years, and he wields it as if he were simply pointing a finger.
I have to admit, this is one of the better documentaries I have seen in a long time. Not many documentaries produced lately are as absorbingly informative, while at the same time relaxing as I found this documentary to be.
My grandparents were from an older generation and lived long lives. I got to see and learn a lot of these sorts of tasks when I was young. They had much to do and did what needed done. They didn’t over-think the methods, but went with what they had once been shown to do, and those methods worked great. Still do. My folks came up learning this and in many ways, it was passed on. I remember similar philosophies shared with me when I was young, and so much of Genadi shared as he spoke was familiar to me.
Genadi shares some of these philosophies with his son as we watch, while admonishing in a mentoring way what will happen if we do not observe the nature of the wood itself. In another woodworking moment, Genadi shares a stream of philosophical thought that I’d like to share:
“As they say, you can take away anything from a man. His health and wealth and such like, but you can’t take away his craftsman skills. Once you learn a trade, you’ll always know your trade for the rest of your life. You agree?”
“Naturally, you pick up things from others as you go along – A bit here, a bit there, add your own improvements. You gotta see something – someones gotta tell you something. And you know, you can’t reinvent the bicycle. All these techniques have been invented long before your time, honed to perfection over the centuries.”
I feel it is worth 90 minutes of your time when you can sit and have a look. Please enjoy! Full screen capability and english narration is available.
Photo Credits: Happy People: A Year in the Taiga.
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