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RogerBean's Woodworking Reviews

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Learning French Marquetry

Learning French Marquetry

06-25-2014 06:09 PM by RogerBean | 11 comments »

I’ve been off-line for the past two weeks, so my LJ activity went completely dark. But I’ve now returned from two delightful weeks at the American School of French Marquetry. I wanted to up my box game a bit, and thought some study with two extremely talented and accomplished craftsmen would be one way to do it. I also owe Paul Miller (shipwright) for his encouragement to attend. There have been a number of blogs and posts about the ASFM school, so I won’t attempt to repeat what’s ...

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New Gold Standard of Scrapers

New Gold Standard of Scrapers

03-30-2014 07:00 PM by RogerBean | 18 comments »

I don’t do a lot of reviews, reserving my efforts for those items I feel work extraordinarily well, or might be of particular interest. Scrapers may not sound all that exciting, but I find that I keep mine close on the bench at all times and use it on just about every project. For years I’ve been using the standard sheet metal shapers that cost about $7. I have all the usual shapes. I recently purchased all three of the new Stewart-MacDonald “Ultimate Scrapers” and these are by far the ...

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Wooden Boxes, Skill-building techniques for seven unique projects.

Wooden Boxes, Skill-building techniques for seven unique projects.

09-27-2013 06:00 PM by RogerBean | 23 comments »

Fellow LJ Dennis Zongker has produced a really fine book that will be valuable to furniture makers and box makers alike. At 240 photo filled pages he explains how to make several of his masterpieces that we Lumberjocks have marveled at when he first posted them. Dennis is really good at what he does, and it certainly shows up here. All done up in a rich, Taunton-quality publication. The book is structured around seven stunning projects, each covered in its own section. The reader can c...

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SmartHinge - The new premium box hinge

SmartHinge - The new premium box hinge

09-05-2011 10:16 PM by RogerBean | 12 comments »

Hinging a box project is one of the most troublesome and intimidating parts of box making. But, there is a really easy way. The SmartHinge is the best looking, easiest to install premium brass box hinge available. Emphasis on easy. SmartHinge is the latest entry into the premium box hinge inventory. These hinges are the brainchild of Andrew Crawford and Rolls Royce engineer Clive Jarman. They are solid brass, precision machined “side-rail” style hinges highly polished to a mirror fini...

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Help Making Perfect Inlays

Help Making Perfect Inlays

08-14-2011 03:42 PM by RogerBean | 19 comments »

First thing I noticed when I opened the box, was that this is a quality tool. Machined and anodized aluminum, with the A2 corner chisel itself cleverly held in place with several small magnets. I first had the opportunity to use the prototype for this jig at Andrew’s workshop in Shropshire, England. I was there to learn, and when we got to the topic of inlay, Andrew produced a small flute case with a routed inlay groove pre-cut to use as a demo. He produced the prototype jig and said “...

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Fundamentals of Inlay DVDs

Fundamentals of Inlay DVDs

08-23-2010 11:01 PM by RogerBean | 8 comments »

I’ve had the recent opportunity to spend some serious time with Steve Latta’s three DVD set produced by Lie Nielsen. Many of us are inspired by the great inlay work of traditional furniture, but find it intimidating to begin cutting little grooves and the like into our newly created masterpiece. So we often pull up short, and fail to finish the piece with the inlays it calls for. Or, we can try the trial and error method at our peril. Neither is necessary any longer. These videos show yo...

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A box making vacation in England

A box making vacation in England

05-23-2010 01:23 AM by RogerBean | 6 comments »

For the aspiring cellist to spend three days with Yo-Yo Ma would be something special, certainly. For an aspiring box maker to spend three days one on one with Andrew Crawford is similar. Earlier this month, I had the pleasure to visit Andrew’s shop in Shropshire, England, and had such a great experience others might like to hear about it. Andrew builds what I consider “traditional” boxes. I confess to a clear preference for boxes that look like boxes. Many types of containers fall into...

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