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03-18-2016 01:57 AM

Accepting Applications in South Chicagoland - Not Hiring Immediately - 17 replies

Hello folks. I’m currently growing my business to the point of needing an employee in the near future but it’s still a little ways off. I had a part-timer in for about three months and it worked out pretty well but it also let me know I need to work on better organization and systematization before an employee can be efficient enou...

02-14-2016 09:30 PM

Anyone Interested in Used Upcut Router Bits? - 11 replies

Just putting a feeler out here. I do a lot of CNC work that requires deep, clean cuts on solid wood right off the machine. Since it’s a very demanding task, router bits are replaced as soon as any hint of chipping or burning shows on the wood. The bits in question are single flute, Vortex 830 1/4” diameter, 1/4” shank upcu...

02-13-2016 05:57 AM

To Make a Small Fortune In Woodworking... - 20 replies

...Start with a large fortune. While funny, that joke doesn’t actually reflect reality. Reality is, a woodworking business that can’t turn a profit is simply based upon a poor business model. There are many woodworking companies that rake in piles of money. What about a cabinet company that makes Inc 500’s list of faste...

02-07-2016 07:20 PM

Getting my Very Own Harbor Freight - 28 replies

Just thought I’d gloat and let everyone know that they’re opening a new store 4 miles from my workshop. Unfortunately it won’t benefit me that much. Over the past 10 years I’ve made about 5 purchases and only one gets used with regularity (cannibalized dust collector used for extracting smoke from the laser engraver) . ...

01-22-2016 05:58 AM

Glass Front Trophy Cases: In Progress - 5 replies

Just a sneak peek at an ongoing project. These are three of the six cabinets that were installed late 2015. Better pictures will be available after the entire install is complete. Didn’t have much control over the lighting at the time. Sliding glass doors lock to project the contents from curious hands. Cherry exteriors with curly a...

01-22-2016 12:57 AM

That's the Way to Set the Bandsaw Guides - 12 replies

Get them as tight as you can without actually touching the blade. Due to slight rounding of the leading edge of the guides, the gap looks bigger than it is. Those are steel blocks.

10-09-2015 05:23 AM

Oily Rags = Very Dangerous - 62 replies

Spontaneous combustion is a hazard known to most of us but for those new to the woodworking scene (or those who are started to get lax due to complacency), oil-soaked rags will burn your shop down if not handled properly. A church in the Chicago area just suffered a major setback in their restoration project ( I wasn’t involved but I ke...

04-10-2015 02:22 PM

Stirring the CNC Vs. Handmade Pot With a Short Story - 7 replies

I rarely put anything from my company blog on the internet but there’s one thing I wanted to share. It’s a silly little short story I typed out last night as a preface to the newest blog entry. Since other people that read it (including non-woodworkers) enjoyed it, I decided to put it here for others. 5 Strategies for Woodworker...

03-25-2015 04:33 AM

General 260 Lathe, Accessories and Woodturning Chisels - 4 replies

I’ve been put in charge of selling some of the tools of a woodturner. He’s moved his shop into a smaller space and needed to get rid of the big lathe and a few tools that aren’t needed anymore. I’m still in the process of putting together all the information but figured I may as well get the basic info posted here. I...

02-12-2015 04:57 AM

Looking for Air-Dried Cherry in South Chicagoland (8/4 min thickness) - 14 replies

I’ll soon be working on a set of sculptures carved from glued up blocks of wood (think Wendell Castle). Projects of this nature are always easier with air-dried wood so I’d like to buy some in 8/4 or thicker boards if possible. I’m still working out the cutlist so exact quantity is unknown but roughly 30-40 board feet would...

11-26-2014 09:08 PM

Craigslist Sale on Graco Falcon Pump and G15 Gun - 0 replies

I was at a sale for a cabinet shop in Frankfort, Illinois and picked up a Graco airless, air-assisted setup for $600. There’s one left if anyone else wants to get it. For those who aren’t familiar with that type of spray gun, they’re designed for production spraying. The pumps pull finish out of a bucket or container inste...

11-21-2014 10:14 PM

Moving a Slider Table Saw - 31 replies

Today I was fortunate enough to snag an Altendorf F90 located a mere 60 miles from the shop for about $1,500. Now the fun part of moving the beast has to happen. My business partner and myself are capable of loading and unloading 600 pound objects but I suspect the saw is well over that and it’s going to be cumbersome due to size as we...

11-18-2014 02:45 AM

Cutting Edge Cutting Boards - 1 reply

Lots of woodworkers participating on this site make cutting boards for gifts or sale. Here’s a source of inspiration that others may find enjoyable. MTM Wood Cutting Board Products I’ve never made a single cutting board since there’s way too much competition in the field for my liking but it’s apparent that there&#...

10-23-2014 04:03 AM

For Want of a TRIAC, a Router is Running: Diagnostics and CNC Repair - 10 replies

This topic might have fit better in the blog section but I thought the CNC people would probably fail to see it and they are the folks who’d be interested in reading this. I’m not the only one around here using a shop-built CNC router and sooner or later, everyone will encounter the situation none of us wants to face: malfunctions...

09-25-2014 05:53 PM

Setting up a Laser File Like a Pro (Or a Ninnyhammer, Perhaps?) - 12 replies

A two-week gap between projects has given me badly-needed time to update the website and the current project involves making a basic tutorial for creating laser engraving files. I was just wondering if it makes sense to other people or not. For reasons unknown, I always understand my own writing perfectly whereas others may not. If anyone w...

06-17-2014 04:07 AM

The $100 Vacuum Table - 11 replies

No pictures yet but today I’d gone to the shop planning to mill panels for a kitchen out of 8 sheets of pre-finished ply. While programming the parts, I started thinking about how to clamp the stuff down and feeling too lazy to bother with complex solutions, decided to build a vacuum table instead of working on the kitchen. I’ll ...

06-03-2014 03:50 AM

Veneer Tech 2014 - Anyone Here Enter This Year? - 5 replies

I’m just curious if anyone here decided to try their hand at the annual veneer tech competition. The ad was in Woodshop News a couple months ago so I figured, why not? I’ve put in an entry and also convinced my former employer to enter that organ facade project I recently posted on this site. Just so no one is confused, the Vene...

05-15-2014 06:37 PM

Any Interest in Detailed Woodworking Plans? Informal Poll - 29 replies

I’ve seen people searching for good designs to purchase in various places and I’ve just started wondering how much interest exists out there if I were to start creating and publishing sets of plans on my website. Anyone that’s paid attention to my posts over the years will know that I’ve been doing highly detailed draw...

05-01-2014 06:25 AM

CNC and Custom Furniture - Applications and Techniques - 9 replies

I was recently asked how we utilize the CNC in our furniture shop and what software strategies are used for some of the more unusual applications (non-panel work). Rather than reply directly to the questioner by email I chose to create a post here so others can enjoy the information. Of course we do process sheet goods frequently. For cabin...

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