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It’s getting to be that time of year. Halloween is in just a couple weeks and before you know it the shelves will be stocked with holiday stuff – heck, some stores already are. The weather’s turning cool and its the perfect time to get in the shop and make gifts for your friends and family. With the holidays in mind, I thought it would be nice to focus the […]
The post Book Giveaway: Woodworking Projects for the Kitchen appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.
|Miles's new plane|
|my #6, type 4/5, at the forefront|
|why I had passed on it the first time|
|road test with a new iron|
|almost 20 years old|
|the two rabbets|
|rabbet on the inside of the lid|
|the other rabbet is on the outside|
|back to new box|
I had planned on gluing the banding into the lid rather then the bottom. Changed my mind after I got a comment from Sylvain that it might interfere with the rubber bands being in the bottom. Makes sense as the lid would be going into the inside of the bottom rather outside it and hitting rubber bands. I think he saved me a bit of potential frustration and it possibly going airborne.
|glued until tomorrow|
|checking the lid is twist free|
|miters look good|
|got my one complete shaving|
|my 5/8" match planes|
|it's not the tongue iron|
|the groove plane is very well made|
|used 1/2" stock|
|the tongue is off center which it should be|
|iron is set too deep|
|the groove is too wide|
|much better groove shaving|
|pencil line is the depth of the groove|
|my other 3/4" match planes|
|ugly looking T&G|
|out of square|
|the tongue looks good so I'll work on the groove iron|
|stripped down the #6|
A Biblical cubit is 18 inches. How long is a Roman cubit?
answer - 17.5 inches
Leo from the US sent me these shots of his good progress with hand cut dovetails using one of my guides. He's using coloured dots which is good to see, this simple highly visual aid tells you which board goes with which, where the outside is and also which is the top of each piece.
Leo also made an alignment board but says that the best tip is to wear his reading glasses and improve the lighting. He's also doing lots of practice which is the ultimate way to get good at anything.
Today Raney and I shot this short video on how to sharpen dividers with an all-purpose tip. These instructions work with any dividers, including our own. Next up: How to modify the tips to do interesting things.
— Christopher Schwarz
Filed under: Crucible Tool, Uncategorized
The trick to fitting wooden pieces into impossible recesses is to learn about “ticking sticks.” These simple sticks – plus a sheet of paper – can make monstrous tasks into a easy job. Here’s how they work. “Ticking sticks” go by many names in the historical record, but they are the best technology for cutting a piece of wood to fit an odd opening. All you need to perform this […]
The post Fit Irregular (Impossible!) Shapes with ‘Ticking Sticks’ appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.
“Cold wax” grain filling with a rush polisher was integral to the finishing practices of the ancients. It was primarily used to finish solid wood cabinetry as opposed to the hot wax method, which was generally restricted to fancier work like marquetry.
The process is so simple that there is almost no explaining to do. The precursor step is to plane, scrape, and in some rare instances scour the wood with abrasives like sharkskin, glass paper, or horsetail rush. Then, the wood surface is scrubbed with a block of beeswax until there is a generous, but not continuous, deposit.
Taking the fiber polisher in-hand the surface is rubbed with as much pressure and vigor for as long as you can manage, first working at a slight angle to the grain, then its opposite angle, then finally with the grain. The friction developed at the point of contact between the tip of the polisher and the wood generates enough heat to turn the wax buttery and presses it down into the grain, filling it.
In some instances, as I had them do in this exercise, the surface is sprinkled with a colorant, usually powdered pigment or resin that has been ground into a fine flour. In this case I had them use some raw umber pigment to accentuate the technique (in the real world the colorant would be selected to best fit the coloration of the wood).
When finished any excess wax would be scraped off then the surface buffed with linen and wool rags until there is a uniform gloss.
For most plain solid wood furniture and cabinetry, this actually sufficed as the finished surface and nothing more would be done. You can see the resulting surface at the upper left corner of this sample board.
Today I realized that I couldn't really put it off any longer. There wasn't much work left to do on the plane save for sharpening the blade and make sure that it was seated well on the bed (frog). Flattening the sole and sanding everything once again.
I silver soldered the threaded part to the adjuster base, so it is not possible to do any lateral adjustment with this adjuster, only depth adjustment.
A recess was made in the front of the rear tote, by first drilling a series of holes and later chiseling the waste out. I painted the back of the base with a whiteboard marker, and I could see where it had rubbed off, that there was a high spot. The same method was later used to check and adjust the seating of the blade.
The rod with the adjustment screw could have been a bit longer, but I guess that you don't adjust such a plane all the time, and I prefer that the adjustment screw is not protruding too much form the plane.
It took a bit of fiddling to find the best initial position for the retaining ring and the threaded rod, so everything worked fine at maximum and minimum depth adjustment.
Eventually I had to file a bit more from the underside of the lever cap, to be able to slide it under the fulcrum pivotal rod (it has probably got some other name).
This caused the lever cap screw to be just in the shortest range. So I think that I will make a new screw with a 1/8" longer threaded portion.
Today I sharpened the blade and after doing that I inserted it in the plane and tightened the lever cap screw. With the blade in place and the screw tightened, I then started to flatten the sole of the plane.
The idea of doing this while the blade is in the plane and in tension is, that it could potentially distort the sole of the plane a bit, and therefore it is best to flatten while everything is as close to working conditions as possible.
I also took the time to mark the bed with MMXVII for sake of good order.
Our lapping plate is new, but still I am not convinced that it is 100% flat and true. But I guess it is good enough for a home made infill plane. And besides it is what I have.
After some more sanding I treated the wood with some olive oil. I guess that it will slowly be absorbed by the wood, and then when I get home I can give it some paste was or some linseed oil as I have originally planned.
I tested the plane to see if it would work, and it actually did. I was able to plane a small piece of Bubinga both ways. It wasn't the most dramatic grain run out, but it did its job perfect with the grain and against it.
Conclusion of the project:
This project required a lot of metal work and comparatively little woodwork. There was much more filing and sanding compared to my usual projects.
There were a few difficulties that arose during the course of the build, such as less than ideally positioned holes etc.
The Norris style adjuster is a cool feature, but I tend to think that hammer adjustment would have been better. It could easily just be my adjuster that isn't the best - but now it sits there. If it ever acts up or seizes to work, then I can always remove it and either fill out the gap left behind, or just leave it as it is.
I personally think that the plane came out all right. There are a few places that still has got some minor scratches, but it was meant to be a tool, not a sanding contest.
My favourite part of the plane is the front tote where it blends in with the sole. And the lever cap with the massive number C954 cast into the front.
If I had been at home I doubt that I would have persevered during such a project, but out here it is more a matter of doing something to keep myself busy in my spare time.
I am not sure that it works any better than a regular Stanley, but it looks better in my opinion, and besides, I think it is the only infill plane in the world that was made on board a ship.
Every woodworker who sees a downed tree quickly says a short prayer to the gods of nature and immediately thinks of turning that log into lumber. It’s just natural to want to see a natural resource being utilized and not wasted. And, of course, procuring some inexpensive lumber doesn’t suck either! But what does it take to rescue a downed tree? Well, a mill and some friends (with trucks!) would […]
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So… Why Build Your Own Wooden Plane?
When you can get a smashing Stanley No 5 for about thirty five quid, why hassle yourself making a wooden plane?
The thing is, No 4s are naff.
And metal jointers get expensive (for the good ones). And they often will need a fair bit of awkward work to make serviceable.
First a disclaimer: This is a recollection of impressions following the installation and test running of our new 6” Grizzly spiral Cutterhead jointer, that we bought at full price this fall. As many of you know, I teach woodworking at the Rudolf Steiner School in Manhattan. Our program is mainly geared towards hand tool work. To help us prepare stock for projects, shop furniture and to create projects for our […]
The post Grizzly 6″ Spiral Cutter Head Jointer – Impressions from Yoav Liberman appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.
If you don’t believe you can you won’t I am always interested in hearing people discuss issues surrounding furniture making and selling what you make. If you put your cell phones and computers away and stop listening to those who say it can’t be done you will likely do it just fine by just putting […]
Editor’s Note: This heartfelt story was submitted by Lynda Cheldelin Fell, the wife of one of our customers. The moment we read it, we knew it needed to be shared with the rest of our woodworking community!
In 2009, our 15-year-old daughter, Aly, a competitive swimmer and straight-A student, was tragically killed in a car accident while returning home from a swim meet.
Overcome with grief, my dear sweet husband, Jamie, buried his heartache. Managing commercial development projects, he escaped into 80-hour work weeks, more wine, more food, and less talking. His blood pressure shot up, his cholesterol went off the chart, and the perfect storm arrived on June 4, 2012.
Just minutes after we returned home from town, Jamie began drooling. A strange look came over his face. I asked if he was okay, but no words came. He couldn’t answer.
My soulmate and hero, my strong adorable, funny, brilliant partner in life, father of our children, and rock of my world was having a major stroke. At age 46, he was suddenly unable to speak, read, write, or walk. My world had come to a complete standstill.
Jamie was hospitalized for 17 days. When he finally came home, we faced an uncertain future of outpatient physical, occupational, and speech therapies to help Jamie relearn activities of daily living. Our days became filled with appointment after appointment with catnaps in between.
Little by little, Jamie’s hard work and determination paid off. He graduated from the wheelchair to a walker to a cane to solid footing. He relearned how to feed himself, bathe, pour a glass of water, and change his shirt.
It’s been five years now since the devastating stroke that robbed us of so much. Although Jamie has regained mobility, his entire right side remains numb. The speech center in his brain, which was destroyed by the stroke, is permanently affected. But his mind remains keen, and his intelligence isn’t wasted. He keeps it active by puttering around in his workshop—a workshop that once sat neglected due to an overworked scheduled. Now with nothing but time on his hands, my dear sweet hubby turns his pain into passion by making beautiful one-of-a-kind gifts for family and friends.
Slow moving and frequent rest periods prevent Jamie from making gifts as gainful employment, but delighting others with his woodworking brings joy to his day. A natural craftsman at heart, his attention to detail is unparalleled, and it’s evident that everything he creates with his hands comes right from his heart.
The American flag table below was a wedding gift to our niece. It took Jamie nearly a year, but his patience and determination produced a wedding gift unlike any other. A second American flag table is now underway for another newlywed niece.
Through losing our daughter and Jamie’s devastating stroke, his workshop has become a symbol of our own personal silver lining: what once sat neglected due to an overworked schedule is now a source of pride and joy—and serves as a powerful reminder that obstacles are often opportunities in disguise.
In this episode of 360 with 360WoodWorking writer, furniture maker and instructor Steve Latta is back to talk about Fine Woodworking Magazine. Listen as he talks about the various editors he has worked with at the magazine throughout the past 30 years, and learn about a few of the articles he is most please with writing. Plus, he shares his method of work. Are you “process” oriented, or “project” oriented?
Join 360 Woodworking every Thursday for a lively discussion on everything from tools to techniques to wood selection (and more).
|my miter saw|
|pit stop at the post office|
|out of the clamps|
|the opposite kitty corner|
|marked my saw line|
|carcass rip saw|
|the lid has some twist|
|bottom is twist free|
|both parts planed|
|the backside looks good too|
|miters rough sawn to length|
|tight fit with the miters - time to see if the lid mates|
|this side slipped on|
|back side isn't cooperating|
|pulled the lid off and the walnut came with it|
|a bit of fussing and I got it to go|
|got wax on the walnut|
|where I left off|
What is the longest river in North America?
answer - The Missouri River ( it beats the Mississippi by over 20 miles)
I've struggled with whether or not to write this, but things will be obvious over the next year, and because I do my own stunts in front of the camera here at the Oldwolf Workshop there will be no hiding the changes. So this is an effort to cut past a hundred separate conversations to one.
Next week I will be undergoing a surgical procedure known as Gastric Bypass. Essentially the intention is to surgically shrink the size of my stomach by ninety percent. If you want to know more the Wikipedia entry is very thorough. Because of this I should see significant weight loss in my near future,and admitting it now will lessen my immature (and inappropriate) response to claim I'm undergoing chemotherapy or high colonic cleansings.
But why do that, just eat a salad fatty. I can hear it even if it isn't said out loud, but it's only half the story. i've always been a big bruiser of a person. As a senior in High School I was strong and svelte with a six pack and still weighted in at 190#. After high school I gained weight, but was able to stay active and comfortable. Several years ago I blew out my knee and it was the start of a bad cycle.
The thing about the weight isn't just social acceptance or fitting into an airline or auditorium seat. The thing no one discusses is the pain. Up until a few months ago I had reached a point where everything I did hurt. I know cry me a river snowflake, but the pain isn't short term "oh I passed a kidney stone" it's chronically grinding and never ending. It makes every effort cost you twice as much and alters the scale on which you weigh just how much anything is worth it.
The toughest challenge is admitting you're not enough all by yourself to keep slogging through and gain any measure of sustainable success. I can see the lighthouse but I need help to turn this ship around. After several years of discussion with my doctor and my wife, this is my best option and once the decision was made to pursue surgery it was still almost a two year process to here.
This is anything but a rash and quick fix decision. I work in surgery, I have for almost 20 years. The only outcomes I ever see are bring back complications and usually bad ones. If I'm honest I'm scared to death about this, but I'm so tired of battling the grinding pain everyday I will face anything. The upsides of losing weight, resolving diabetes and high blood pressure and living a more comfortable, possibly longer life seem better than a poke in the eye too.
After next week I will be on weight lifting restrictions for four weeks. That limits what I can really do in the shop. Maybe I'll sharpen a few saws. I also picked up some models to put together in between scheduled walks and high protein meals. I'll keep myself busy and it's possible I'll write more here too, catch up with some of the things I've accomplished without recording here. Mostly I hope I can mangle my concentration down to read. I haven't managed to do more than scan the newer Roubo Tome from Don Williams and company. It's time I fixed that.
So from here on out it will still be the Oldwolf Workshop, only concentrated, with less fillers.
Ratione et Passionis
Soon my two oldest are cosplaying the Moon Sisters from the movie "Kubo and the Two Strings" They have the hats and masks and are finishing up cloaks made of feathers, but one of them needed a replica of a magic pipe.
I split off a section of riven red oak, mostly because I have a ton of it. and before I put it on the lathe I did what I considered would be the most difficult thing, drtilled a hole through the center. Well not exactly center, that is nigh impossible, but I drilled it close enough. Then I located the drill hole in the center points as I chucked the piece into the lathe.
I understand common sense thought that the conical points would spread the holes and cause the wood to split. I figured what the hell I'll try it and if it fails, I'll try something different. Turns out it worked just fine. This time. Will I be lucky in the future, I don't know. Probably not. But it was a cool way to center a hollow hole in a spindle.
A little time at the lathe and I worked down the bamboo-ish look of the movie pipe. A lot of skew chisel work which I find to be a fun challenge. After sanding I rubbed on and buffed off some lamp black oil paint.
I finished up the end of the pipe with my sloyd knife. Then turned my focus to the bowl
I chucked a small section of 1 1/2" diameter maple dowel into the lathe. Turned a 1/2" round tenon on one end and shaped a bowl shape on the other.
Then it was off to the drill press, Using forstner bits I drilled a 1/2" round mortise into the stem. Deep enough to expose the hole passing down the center. Then I drilled up from the bowl's tenon with a 1/4" bit, about half the thickness. Then down from the bowl's top with a 3/4" forstner bit.
The above pic shows the inbetween of the finishing. The bowl is done, the stem is about to get re-chucked on the lathe to undergo the final finishing stages, For the gold I used some gold buffing wax my daughters found at the local art store. It was very dried out and difficult to apply but kind of gave the burnished, well used and weathered look I liked. I finished over the wax with a coat of CA glue to give a shine finish, a fake Japanese Urushi if you will.
I assembled everything then passed my long drill bit back down the end and into the pipe bowl's tenon. This opened up the air passage between the stem and the bowl. I suppose you could really smoke out of this thing if you wanted but I'm certain it wouldn't be that pleasant.
I used a propane torch to burn and blacken the bowl and bubble the wax and CA glue finish. The weathering and wear this provided was spot on.
Best of all, Number 2 daughter was very happy with the result. And with stealing my sweatshirt to hang out in the shop on a cooler autumn night.
An enjoyable couple hour build, that kept me occupied and made a minimal mess because the shop was already prepped for the next day when . . .
. . . TA DA!!! The electricians showed up to run copper from the house to my new sub-panel. Four new outlets inside, one outside, and lots of room to run more in the future. I can become 220 capable now should I choose to be.
Very exciting times in the shop.
Ratione et Passionis
I’ve been back & forth lately. Maine, here, North Carolina – now here, then Martha’s Vineyard. Then here for a few weeks. Here’s some non-woodsy shots, mostly. This flock of shorebirds wheeled & spun – moments later Marie & I spotted a peregrine falcon bearing down on them. I love how they turn this way & that – and the color changes. this is the backs of these birds:
Semipalmated plover (Charadrius semipalmatus)
Dunlin (Calidris alpina) silhouetted against the water.
Those were at Plymouth beach. We went to Maine to see the Common Ground fair – took the kids for a walk one evening. The ocean is always the best place for playing – no place we go is more consistently engaging.
This is an island reached by a causeway. Lots of driftwood, which we don’t see at Plymouth much. Daniel peeked inside. I noted what happened to this log – the growth rings are separating completely. Some mad twist too.
Spoons growing everywhere. No cutting allowed though…
Back at Plymouth Beach, stretching is important. This is, I think, a Laughing gull (Leucophaeus atricilla)
And we hit the beach just right to see a bunch of migrating butterflies – many were monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus)
A couple weeks later, I was at Roy Underhill’s to teach a spoon carving class. Long drought has dried up the creek at the dam. Fish were dying, and black vultures (Coragyps atratus) came to clean up. There were turkey vultures there too – but these were the smaller black vultures.
Earlier, at home, found this cooper’s hawk (Accipiter cooperii) under the bird feeders one day.
and a rare moment when the blue jay (Cyanocitta cristata) was quiet and still.
Our friend Rick DeWolf has been infected with the horror vacuii – and made this gate to keep his dog in (or out, I forget which). Despite being able to make this, Rick is still coming to our hurdle-making class later this month. A couple of spaces left. there will be no carving though. https://www.plymouthcraft.org/riving-hurdlemaking-weekend
Once you grab a sledgehammer, it’s hard to put it down.
What began as a mild demolition of the interior of the Horse Garage at our storefront blossomed/became infected. Now I am neck-deep in a major construction project that requires all my skills, most of my time and nearly everything in my bank account.
The reward, however, will be that I’ll have a place for the few machines I own, and they’ll be steps away from my bench room. Also, the butt-end of our property will look a lot more like it did the day in 1906 that they constructed the garage behind the store.
In addition to time, money and muscle, this project requires the cooperation of the City of Covington. We’re in an historical overlay district. Luckily, city officials here are helpful and supportive. I’ve yet to encounter an unreasonable roadblock. But you do have to submit paperwork. Lots of it. And I don’t like paperwork.
Today we proposed our changes and backed them up with archaeological evidence, drawings and a fully signed and dated form. If this gets approved, then I will be on a fast track to build four huge doors, assist in installing a new membrane roof and weatherproof the building before winter arrives.
I’m optimistic. Not only because of the huge carrot dangling in front of me – a nice room for machines – but because of the help of the local Latin American community. The restoration of Covington is being built with the backs of the immigrant laborers, and my building is no different. While I’m on the roof and lifting concrete blocks every dang day, this job would be a nightmare without the help of Manuel, Hugo and a number of other strong backs.
I am not trying to be political here, just honest. They work as hard as I do. They push me to take on as much as I can manage. And they do it all with a laugh and a smile.
As we lift these 50-lb. blocks up into place I can think only of my great-grandparents on the Schwarz side. According to my grandfather, they arrived in the Dakotas from Germany in the early part of the 20th century and were put to work making bricks. They saved enough to move to St. Louis and buy a boarding house. My grandfather was a paper salesman and freelance photographer. My father was the first Schwarz to go to college and became a physician.
And now I’m back to the bricks.
Circular irony aside, it feels damn good.
— Christopher Schwarz
Filed under: Lost Art Press Storefront, Uncategorized
File this simple project under quick things to do with a couple of offcuts. A martial artist friend of mine asked for a candle holder for the sword class she teaches at Cincinnati Taekwondo Center. Students are challenged to put out the candle flames with their sword without striking the candles. The holder needed to accommodate 7 candles and include a way to adjust each candle’s height (the tops need […]