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Drawer Construction Details Make Life Easier

Drawer Construction Details Make Life Easier

Woodworkers are shy people – especially at the beginning of their journey. They make parts or assemblies oversized and then plane, sand or rasp them to fit. On one hand, this makes sense. It’s easier to take wood off than to put it back on. However, the other hand is already done with the job … Read more »

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2 Great Uses for a Saw’s ‘Nib’

2 Great Uses for a Saw’s ‘Nib’

If you own a saw that has a “nib,” a decorative nipple-looking thing on the toe of your saw, someone will ask you what it’s for. The best answer is: It’s decorative. But that doesn’t stop woodworkers from coming up with uses for it. Here are two good ones. 1. As a place to tie … Read more »

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Build a Bench, Help a Serviceman

Build a Bench, Help a Serviceman

One of the biggest obstacles to beginning woodworkers is carving out a space to work in, and building a bench to work on. Recently, I built a pair of portable workbenches that are closely based on a now-disappeared commercial bench from the 20th century. These small-scale benches clamp to almost any surface, from a kitchen … Read more »

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Permission to Sand – Granted!

Permission to Sand – Granted!

I’m always bemused by woodworkers who boast that they never use sandpaper. I usually say something to them such as: “Then I guess you don’t like old-school technology.” When they look confused, I add: “Egyptians used sandstone to abrade wood flat. Sanding is older technology than planing, which is a Greek or Roman invention.” As Continue reading»

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My Introduction to the ‘Polissoir’ – Roubo’s Wax Polisher

My Introduction to the ‘Polissoir’ – Roubo’s Wax Polisher

For most modern woodworkers, wax is not a finish. It goes on top of the finish and creates a barrier to scratches. But after reading the forthcoming translation of A.J. Roubo’s “L’Art du Menuisier,” it’s clear that wax was once a fast and beautiful finish for furniture. That is, when assisted with a tool that’s Continue reading»

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A 500-year-old Shavehorse

A 500-year-old Shavehorse

There are some woodworkers who say that shavehorses weren’t used in chairmaking – according to the historical record. But shavehorses were definitely used in the mining industry. Check out this 1556 illustration of a guy working at a shavehorse from the Latin text “Georgius Agricola: De Re Metallica.” The gentleman looks like he is not-so-merrily Continue reading»

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& Saw Sharpening">Another Great Place for Saws & Saw Sharpening

Another Great Place for Saws & Saw Sharpening

There are still millions of excellent vintage saws in the world, and the only thing standing between them rusting or chewing through wood is a good sharpening. Many beginning woodworkers are intimidated by sharpening their saws. That’s OK. When you are ready, buy these two DVDs from Ron Herman (“Sharpen Your Handsaws” and “Handsaws: Tune-up, Continue reading»
 

Veritas’s New PM-V11 Steel Coming Soon

Veritas’s New PM-V11 Steel Coming Soon

Unlike many hand-tool woodworkers (and turners), I’m not much of a steel nerd. I’m not on a quest for the steel that promises the ultimate in edge life. The reason I’ve not experimented with lots of exotic steels is that every time I used CMP-10V, CMP-3V, D2 or whatever I found that these steels achieved Continue reading»
 

Campaign Chests on a Budget

Campaign Chests on a Budget

When I had a bunch of woodworkers over to my house recently, they spent some time looking over the Campaign chest I finished recently for an upcoming issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine. Their first question: “How much did all this hardware cost?” The answer: About $700. They gasped, but after examining the hardware on the Continue reading»
 

Correct the Skew on a Plane Blade or Chisel

Correct the Skew on a Plane Blade or Chisel

Some woodworkers would rather stick their hand into a running disposal while naked than turn on a dry grinder. So when they need to correct the skew angle on a skewed plane iron or skewed chisel they are at a loss. I even met a guy who would just buy a new blade rather than Continue reading»
 

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