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Well, this has nothing to do with me, other than I was there to watch it happen. Now I get to see it again, from the comfort of my own home.
Here’s the blurb:
The Slöjd Tradition
with Jögge Sundqvist
Learn some of the methods and techniques behind Slöjd, the self sufficient tradition from Sweden that emphasizes hand work and handicraft. Jögge Sundqvist walks you through the process of making a spatula and a cheese board from green wood. He also demonstrates different types of letter carving and decorative carving.
Jögge Sundqvist is a Swedish woodworker and carver who started learning knife and axe work at the age of four, at the side of his father, Wille Sundqvist. Jögge works in the Slöjd fine craft tradition making stools, chairs, knives, spoons, and sculptures painted with artists’ oil color. Jögge is also a teacher, writer, and gives lectures about Slöjd tradition and techniques.
And the preview:
I’ve never been what you might call a frequent poster, but since I started this blog I don’t think I’ve gone this long without offering up content before. It’s been over six months since I last posted, so I guess it’s about time I remedied that.
In fairness, I should point out that since the beginning of the summer, our little family has been going through some difficult times. One of our number has had some fairly serious health issues to contend with, and for a while all our time was taken up with hospital visits and suchlike. For a few weeks there wasn’t a great deal of time for fun in the workshop.
The long road to recovery still stretches out before us but things are slowly getting back on an even keel. A few weeks ago I started a little line of Snowpeople on the lathe, to be ready in time to sell around Christmas time. I have made a separate blog (link on the side bar) to showcase them for friends and family, but most of them are on sale now at a local shop.
Before I started on them, however, I did manage to finish a project that I had begun before our troubles kicked off in the summer, and this is the main subject of this post.
Working with wood is my main pastime, but I have always thought that leather can greatly enhance a project, and so I try to incorporate it wherever I can. I have amassed a few rudimentary leather working tools over the past few months, as well as leather related paraphernalia (eyelets, rivets, press-studs, needles and thread and the like) and I needed to build a dedicated box to house them. So, inspired by this video, I have done just that.
The box is made from cherry and walnut and incorporates hand cut dovetails and housing joints. The main box has two dividers, a lift out tote and storage in the lid. There is also a drawer for some of the smaller components. This drawer showcases my very first attempt at half lap dovetails, and is subdivided into 12 compartments.
Obviously, since this is a box for leather working tools, I needed to incorporate some leather into the design. This comes in form of leather handles stitched to the wood, as well as a leather clasp to hold the drawer closed. I also made a leather decal for the top with a modified version of my logo burned into it. The box was finished with my oil/varnish/turps home brew.
All in all, I am very pleased with the results, and the box has been of great use to me in the production of my little Snowpunks. I’ll be up to my eyes in them for a while yet, but I must try to post more often in future. I feel a New Year’s Resolution coming on…
Filed under: Joinery, Projects, Pyrography, Tools Tagged: cherry, leather, walnut
If you’ve seen anything from us then you’ll know it’s not exactly text book stuff.
Our approach comes from a heap of passed down knowledge finely blended with many hours of doing at the bench.
Then there’s the dash of weirdness that my mind adds in.
I like to understand stuff. How it works.
I’m obsessive like that.
But it’s a simpleton’s way of thinking.
I don’t pour over books or know fancy words.
This past weekend I began the scary phase of every one of my woodworking projects, and that is the time when there are a lot of almost finished, unassembled parts lying around waiting to be destroyed.
First things first, on Saturday afternoon/evening I spent two hours milling up the final two boards needed to complete the project. Well, it was about an hour milling up and an hour cleaning up. Rather than calling it a night, I wanted to get in a little actual woodworking, so I attached the cross brace to the back legs. I did not want to mortise out the legs because they are thin to begin with, so instead I dadoed the brace, 3/8 of an inch, planed it down, chamfered the edges, and sanded it smooth. I was satisfied with the appearance, so I attached it with some decorative brass screws. Thankfully, it added some much needed stability to the legs. Admittedly it took longer than it should have to lay out the dadoes, but I wanted the fit to be dead accurate, and I really didn’t want to waste a perfectly good board just by being careless.
Overnight Saturday we had a wind storm, so I spent a portion of the morning and early afternoon cleaning up the back yard, which really ate up the prime hours of the day. But I soldiered on and decided to get as much of the drawer unit finished as possible.
I took my sweet time with those dadoes, because I only had one crack at it, and once the kerfs were all sawn I used a chisel and router plane to get to finished depth. The fit was nice, so I moved on to what I believe is the most challenging part of this project, the ogees on the drawer compartment sides.
Considering that nearly all of the furniture I’ve built to date has been in the Arts & Crafts style (as well as some Shaker pieces), laying out and sawing an ogee with a coping saw is not my strong suit, but I decided to give it a try regardless. I used a compass and my limited artistic ability to lay out the ogee on one of the drawer unit ends, clamped both together, and started sawing. The results were mixed; I should have stuck closer to the line, but in the end it was done. Afterwards, I spent a good hour using a spoke shave, chisel, and rasp to get the pieces in shape. In the end, I wound up with more of a sloping cove than a true ogee, but I am not unhappy with it, and once it is sanded down I think it will look pretty good.
The last task of the day was adding rabbets to the side pieces of the drawer unit, which I did with a moving fillister plane. I could have pushed it and fitted the drawer dividers as well, but that part should be simple, and I didn’t want to push it, as it was getting late and I had a lot of clean up to do.
After clean up, I once again brought all of the parts into my family room for safe keeping. I attached the “ogeed” ends to the drawer unit top and placed it on top of the desk. I liked the open appearance, so I think what I may do is leave the space in between the two drawers without a back, just to see how it looks. If I don’t like it, I will simply add the filler piece, but I think that open area may add some lightness to the desk, and I could always bore out a space for an inkwell cup there.
Happily, so far none of the pieces have been damaged in any way. By the end of next week the desk should be ready for finish, as the only thing really left to do is make the drawers along with finishing up some light sanding. I’m hoping that my lovely wife steps in and does the finishing for me, as she is much more patient than I am when it comes to stuff like this. Otherwise, I am in the home stretch. And for those of you who celebrate the holiday, have a Happy Thanksgiving.
There are numerous jigs for cutting dovetails with a router. My go-to is the Keller pro series model 1601. It’s simple to use, though unlike jigs that cut pins and tails in one fell swoop, it takes two operations (and two different cutters) — one for tails, another for pins. The resulting joint is so attractive, with wide tails reminiscent of hand-cut joints, that I think it’s worth the extra time. […]
Aldren A. Watson, Hand Tools, Their Ways and Workings, 1982
The only plane I owned when I started working with wood was a Stanley No.5, Type 4 plane. It wasn't tuned properly, the tote was a replacement my grandfather had made from a walnut board that never did fit the plane quite right, and because it was a Type 4 the depth adjuster knob turned the opposite direction from the later Stanley. It had most of its japanning and the sides had a wonderful patina on them that I later discovered was really rust. The iron was not original to the plane, the original iron mostly likely got worn down to nothing or was stolen from the plane while it was at a job site. I have no idea when my grandfather acquired this plane, perhaps he got it through a trade or barter for some carpentry job he did in the early part of the 20th century. I know he didn't buy it brand new, if I remember correctly, Type 4 Stanley planes were manufactured between 1874-88, my grandfather was born in 1881!
It was my smoothing plane, jointer plane and when pressed into service it was a really big block plane. I remember at the time I read in some woodworking book that No.5's were called "jack" planes because, as the author stated, you could use them for just about anything - dimensioning stock, smoothing stock and jointing edges, it was a "the jack of all trades" kind of plane. It was all that I needed, I didn't have much money back then, new tools were a luxury, I got by with what I had.
As time went on and I gained more experience in wood working, I purchased several Stanley No.4 smoothing planes because books and magazines stated those were "the planes" a woodworker should own and use. I spent quite a bit of time and effort to "tune" those planes, again, according to the information found woodworking books and magazines. Which each new plane I flatten the sole, I sharpened the edge of the chip breaker so it mated perfectly with the back of the iron, the iron was regulation shaped and sharpened and you know what? I never could get those planes to work the way I wanted them to. The iron would chatter or dig in at the wrong place, there was always something about those planes that fought me at every turn.
Whenever frustration would set in with a No.4 plane I turned to my faithful No.5. If I kept the iron of the No.5 sharp the plane always worked when I needed it to. Maybe it worked well for me because of the longer length or that it was the first plane I learned to use. The only other size plane that works well for me as a smoothing plane is a No.3 plane, we all know a No.3 is a smoothing plane.
Today, I use the No.5 to thin down classical guitar tops, backs and sides, I need to be fairly precise when doing this activity. Tops and backs need to be within the 1.8mm-2.3mm range, sides a little less than 2mm, I find that the the added weigh of the plane helps it go through the wood better, thus easier for me to control; the extra length takes care of the high spots on the wood better than a regular smoothing plane and it is much lighter and more wildly than a No.7. I have never set up a No.5 plane to be a scrub plane, I have a No.40 Stanley scrub plane for that, one of the No.5's has an iron set up for smoothing, the other No.5 has a toothing plane which is used to help dimension guitar parts.
I sold the No.4 smoothing planes and an extra No.7 jointer plane last year in an effort to downsize my tool collection. I don't miss the No.4's and I tend not to recommend them to people just getting into woodworking, I suggest it may be better for them to start with a No.3 smoothing plane and I tell them that Alan Peters thought a No.7 was the best one to use.
Once you have decided what your focus is in woodworking, be it making Federal style furniture, Welsh stick chairs or classical guitars, you will discover what tools work best for you and when you do, stick with them!
You can read all about it on the Crucible blog if you like.
Filed under: Crucible Tool, Uncategorized
|I have a new obsession|
|I like the round leg a lot more than flat ones|
|my square herd|
|saws are done|
|Stanley 78 rabbet plane for Miles|
|original blade on the bottom|
|the only problem|
I have found several rods on ebay but I am reluctant to buy because I don't want to get a bent one. Stanley still makes replacement fence rods (along with other parts) for the 78 but they are out of stock right now. St James Bay ebay store doesn't have the fence rod for sale but he does have the cross grain spur. I will wait and keep checking for the rod. I still have to rehab it so I have plenty of time.
|nice feature of the 78|
|this one is full of ????|
|slightly out of square on the left|
|seems to be out of square more on the right side|
|starting with 80 grit|
|got my idea after 10 strokes|
|thanx for the tip Walter|
|fits just as good with the lid flipped 180|
|the shiny look is the epoxy|
Thanx again for the great tip Walter.
|the saw glue up went south|
|I can still open the crack|
|back to sanding the #6|
|ten minutes later|
|I thought they were clean|
|last run with the 80 grit|
|more crud coming out|
|80 grit done, on to 120|
|nice shine off of the 120|
|done up to 400|
|streaks at the top of the cheek|
|ready for paint|
|the only tricky spots to paint|
|30" piano hinge|
I marked and planed the hinge recess with the 140 skew block plane. I am really liking this plane for doing rabbets. It is a sweet tool to use.
|I'm happy with this|
|the hinge rabbet is too deep|
|shaving from making the panel grooves|
|no longer hinge bound|
|trying to get some inspiration|
|hiding my lines.|
|rounded the ends|
|holder for the combination square|
|the parts of the holder|
|bonus - it isn't as thick as the spacer|
|this is magnetic too|
|this may change now|
|holders glued in with hide glue|
|wasn't what I was looking for|
|got lucky twice today|
Who invented the combination square?
answer - Laroy S Starrett did in 1877
The other day I was rummaging around in an old box of scraps, and I pulled out a chunk of wood that I had completely forgotten about.
It doesn’t look like much, but I’m pretty sure it’s my first woodworking project (not counting the tree forts I built with my brothers when I was a kid). It’s a doorstop cut out of a 2X4.
I vaguely recall making this to prop a door open at a local church fellowship hall. I used only one tool to make it: a circular saw. Looking at the uneven surface, I recall that the sawblade was small (or I didn’t know how to adjust the depth), so it didn’t cut all the way through the 2X4. So I cut part the way through it, flipped the workpiece over, and finished the cut from the other side–very unevenly. I can’t believe I was happy enough with my work to put my name on it, but I must have been.
The only reason I share it here is that it’s the first project I signed and dated. I was a teenager back then. I’m pretty sure I “carved” my initials and the year with a flathead screwdriver and a hammer.
It was not exactly an auspicious beginning to my woodworking avocation, but in one respect it was a telling start. I represents a moment in my life when I looked at problem and came up with a solution that required only the tools and materials I had on hand. And while I now have a lot more tools and a lot more materials on hand than I used to, this is still the approach that defines much of my work. Whether it’s a need for a storage crate or a small table or a wooden spoon, I still delight in making what I need with my own hands.
Tagged: door stop, doorstop, signature
Our local Scottish Country Dance club, the Thistle & Ghillies, had our annual St. Andrews Day dinner & ball last night. Good times. And while most of the dance was done to recorded music, my wife Monica, on piano, and I on one of my fiddles, did play for the waltz at the end of the evening. We're not a big enough group to have live music all the time.
We do, though, regularly play for the Boise Contra Dance Society dances, on the second Saturdays September through May. If you're in town, come on by and dance with us.
Here's another shot of last night's St. Andrews Day dance.
Fall is maybe my favorite time around here. Great Blue Herons are a daily occurence lately. This first one Rose found on a walk we took recently.
The other morning I went out to start the fire in the shop, and spooked three of them before I knew it. So the next day, I looked before barging out the door. Wouldn’t have seen this one, but for the reflection in the river:
And of course, turkeys.
Back to work for me now. Too many distractions…
At this point you may be wondering why Lost Art Press would ever have invited me to write a book about kitchens. This cabinet is a monstrosity: a plywood base without so much as a counter overhang, its floor-scraping doors hung on surface-mounted butt hinges and adorned with giant cherry decals…topped by an upper section that not only doesn’t match (to put it mildly), but offers a textbook example of the need to gauge shelf thickness according to depth, load, and span.
So let me assure you that I do not consider this cabinet an exemplar of the kitchen furnisher’s art. The key to its value (at least, to me) is its size: It’s only 18″ high — a toy, apparently made by someone of modest means for the delight of someone he or she loved. It is a perfect illustration of the kitchen’s magnetic appeal.This is not the first toy kitchen cabinet I’ve been fortunate to have been given by Kim. The first was the colorful “Just Kidz” playset from 11 years ago; Kim made sure that I was the winner of this particular prize in a Thanksgiving parlor game played at a condo on the Delaware beach during a Nor’easter. I was charmed by the tiny plastic version of the kitchen-in-one promoted by the Hoosier Manufacturing Company in the 1930s that incorporated storage, cooking, prep space, and a sink. You can dismiss these toys as gender-role enforcers along the lines of the Suzy Homemaker appliances my childhood friend Faye got on birthdays and holidays (kudos to my parents for agreeing to my requests for such gender-bending gems as Tonka Toys and a Thingmaker), but I’ve found that boys who visit my shop are just as intrigued as girls by the “housekeeping playhouse.” Such is the draw of the kitchen.
As for Kim, my friend in a high place, she’s also the one who hooked me up with a treasure trove of information about post-war construction, remodeling, and design published by the United States Gypsum Company (who knew?) that I’ve mined for info to use in articles and books.
Here’s a recipe I made last weekend in my own kitchen: my favorite pound cake, made in this case with dried Montmorency cherries that Mark brought back from a recent trip to northern Michigan. The recipe is adapted from one for pound cake in New Recipes from Moosewood Restaurant. Those hippies knew their dairy products.–Nancy R. Hiller, author of Making Things Work
Filed under: Uncategorized
I have let my children use an axe since they were very small. At first they used one together with me, so we helped each other to hold it correctly and stand in the correct position, legs lightly spread to give a good stability and to avoid hitting the shins if the axe should slip. Later when they turned a bit older they would split small scraps of wood on their own while in the shop with me, and proudly carry the tiny pieces into the house and present them as kindling to Mette.
Even today, if we go the the summerhouse, one of the first things they help find are a couple of axes, so they can trim some of the wild saplings and split firewood. I am totally confident in that they use the tool with the necessary respect, and I have never had the reason to remind them about how to use it safely. So I guess that all the education and practice has paid off.
I think that an axe has a strong appeal to a child, because it is a real tool, and a smaller model is not just designed to be a toy, but it is really a smaller version that is fully capable of doing the same type of work as a large axe can do.
|filler pieces sawn out and fitted|
|left over from making the spacers for the squares|
|better but still stymied on how to secure it|
|out of the clamps|
|layout for the splines|
|whacked a quick spline jig|
|spline slots sawn|
|one frog hair wider than an 8th|
|found some walnut to use for the splines|
|I only needed 8 and I got 14 total from two pieces|
|splines all glued in|
|I can open up the crack easily - saw handle from latest buy|
|It goes all the back|
|glued up with Old Brown Glue|
|working on Miles's saws|
|cleaned and shined up|
|repeated for the second saw|
|second saw handle|
|rip saw handle with 2 coats of shellac|
|3 hours later I sawed off the proud on the splines|
|flushed the splines|
|the last two to be done|
|sawing it apart on the saw|
|it's still together|
I used a saw to break the thin web of wood holding it together.
|it is safer doing it this way|
|two sides are off|
|a few round trips later|
|cleaning up the corners|
|this piano hinge is too small|
|back up hinges in case I don't get a piano hinge|
|sawing out a base for the japanese square|
|still zero ideas on how to secure it|
|trying a tip from Walter|
|working on Miles's #6 is batting next|
|painted the frog seat|
|scrapes off easily|
|the top of the side wall got painted too|
|I can scrape it|
|or use sandpaper (this is 220)|
|one is nice to have and the other is a must|
|see the black stripe|
This was my saturday in the shop. Worked on a lot of different things but nothing to show for my efforts to say ah about. Maybe I'll get to do that tomorrow.
Who made their debut in detective comics #27 in 1939?
answer - the caped crusader called Batman
We are featuring a set of tables by Kerry Pierce in an upcoming issue of PWM and we needed to ship them back to his home in Lancaster, Ohio. So instead of paying over $100 for shipping, we jumped in the car to make the delivery. Kerry repaid us with a shop tour and we spent some time in his home talking about what he likes in furniture style. It was a great […]
And the music was good and the music was loud.
Malcom Young gives an eight minute clinic on rhythm guitar.
Before heading out for Charleston, S.C., to visit my dad, I added a couple face vises to my circa 1505 Holy Roman Workbench. These vises have no screws and no real jaws. Instead they clamp the work with a wedge.
The vises are merely large notches in the benchtop, so “installing” them took about an hour of time.
These “vises” – if you can call them that – are based on paintings and drawings of workbenches that Suzanne “Saucy Indexer” Ellison and I have dug up during the last 18 months for my next book. In this case, I’ve made a notch in the end grain of the benchtop and in the edge of the benchtop. Both sorts of notches are shown in paintings and I want to sort out if there’s any difference between them.
I cannot say yet if they work differently, but I can say the notch on the edge grain was much easier to saw and bash out. When I return home on Sunday, I’ll get to work installing a wide variety of other long-forgotten bench accessories that Suzanne and I have unearthed.
As I mentioned earlier, the scope of this book has expanded far beyond where it began, with Roman workbenches. The workholding schemes we have found are ideal for both low benches and high benches. And both sorts of benches – high and low – have always existed side-by-side, as they do today.
I’m also exploring how low benches developed lots of accessories for building chairs (both shaved and turned), boats, baskets and all sorts of items that require steam-bent wood. I think I’ve also convinced Suzanne to write a chapter of the book that will detail the paintings we’re exploring and the socio-economic conditions in which they were made.
Oh, and the book is also part travelogue. It begins at the summit of Mount Vesuvius and ends below the ground in a German forest.
Believe it or not, all these disparate elements are stitched together without any Kierkegaardian leaps.
So, after a lot of thought, I’ve decided to title the book: “Ingenious Mechanicks: Early Workbenches & Workholding.” We’re on track to finish writing it by the end of 2017. So we should have it released by March 2018.
— Christopher Schwarz, editor, Lost Art Press
Personal site: christophermschwarz.com
Filed under: Roman Workbenches, Uncategorized
The saw handle on my R Groves rip had been damaged and poorly repaired. It happens and it’s not uncommon at all to find a saw horn damaged. The repair popped off at some time and I have put off the repair proper until I found the right time; that’s something I rarely do because […]
I read a bit up on the various ideas behind it on the Internet, and it seems as there are a two models normally employed, both tapered along the length of the protruding part of the steel:
One version has a cylindrical shape of the tapered part all the way.
The other version has got a not completely rounded shape of the tapered part. (popular called eccentric)
I guess that the eccentric model can either be of an elliptic shape, or it could just be a circular shape with part of the perimeter moved inwards.
I am going to try to make a set of drawbore pins based on the last idea. I can't really see any advantages of a pure elliptical shape over the flattened circular shape, but there is a lot more work involved in making a tapered elliptic piece of steel compared to the flattened model.
After a bit of testing to try our some ideas I had regarding how to do it, I ended up with this way of getting the wanted result:
First a piece of steel is mounted as usual in the 3 jaw chuck, and the far end is supported by the live center.
I adjust the compound rest to a 1 degree taper, meaning that the including taper will be 2 degrees.
I then take some passes only using the compound rest, to make a tapered section. I stop when the thin end is approximately half the diameter of the steel rod.
I then have to move the main apron to continue the taper. That is because the travel distance of the compound rest is only 2.75". Once I have completed the taper to its final length, I stop.
The next step is to remove the old hole for the live center, so I can make a new one.
The new hole is made eccentric by adding a distance piece under one of the jaws in the chuck. In this case the distance piece is an old washer.
I leave the washer in place and make sure to orient the steel bar in the same way, and again use the chuck and the live center.
The eccentric mounting of the live center and the washer between the steel bar and the jaw now causes the entire piece to be wobbling in the lathe. Or more correctly it is eccentric mounted with a throw equal to the thickness of the washer.
I bring the turning tool into contact with the piece and repeat the process of making a small taper. I removed 0.6 mm (3/128") while making this second taper.
The result is a nice and shallow taper and if the piece is rotated there is a slight difference of the aforementioned 3/128".
As far as I have understood the idea of this is that you insert the flattened part into the drawbored holes, and then you twist the tool to tighten up the joint.
I am going to try to harden the drawbore pins before making some octagonal handles for them.
So far I have made two sets, 4 - 8 mm (5/32" - 5/16") and 5 - 10 mm(25/128" - 25/64")
Glue-ups are always a stressful moment – you have a short timeframe to correctly align the parts you’ve been working on for some time, and failure to do so can compromise your results. So, I figured I’d share some tips that I’ve learned over time, through many a stressful and suspenseful glue-up. 1. Do a dry-run. You can set aside all the clamps, look at your project and feel good […]