Four friends and I drove down from Minneapolis to Cedar Rapids for the 2015 Handworks Event. I was quite pleasantly surprised by how good it was. We were only there on Friday, but it went on for the whole weekend. Wow, where to start! Lots of vendors, Lots and Lots and Lots of tools, and many well known names in the woodworking community; Chris Schwarz, Roy Underhill, Ron Hock, and many more that you would recognize. Here is a really blurry picture of me with Mike Siemsen. Chris S...
In my above video I share a must-have book for new and seasoned traditional woodworkers: “The Anarchist’s Tool Chest” by Christopher Schwarz. You can see the original review on my blog post here. “The Anarchist’s Tool Chest” is one of my absolute favorite books on the subject of traditional woodworking. Chris Scwharz displays his unfiltered humor, and no-nonsense approach to modern day woodworking anarchism: (1) build your own quality furniture instead of buying throw-away furniture...
10 Steps to Getting Started in Traditional Woodworking with Hand Tools #11: |Step 10| Learn how to Finish the Wood
Step 10 is one of my favorite steps, because you get to see the true beauty reveal itself in the wood, and the grain patterns shine forth! I’ll admit it, I’m not one of those woodworkers who love complex finish recipes, but I love making it as simple as possible. In the above video I introduced quite a few of the well-known finishes used by woodworkers (there’s probably a lot more) but I encourage everyone to experiment and find out which finishes they like the best. My favorite, easies...
10 Steps to Getting Started in Traditional Woodworking with Hand Tools #10: |Step 9| Learn how to Fasten, Assemble & Glue-up Woodworking Projects
Every project has different requirements for assembling, gluing, and clamping, but these videos can help with some basic tips. It’s important to have plenty of clamps so you don’t miss clamping a vital area of a project. 9.1 Fastening I used to think that using nails, and other fasteners, wasn’t part of traditional woodworking. But then I took a week-long class at Roy Underhill’s “Woodwright School” and learned that cut nails and other fasteners is actually very traditional. And it’s...
10 Steps to Getting Started in Traditional Woodworking with Hand Tools #9: |Step 8| Joinery: Learn how to Layout & Cut Joints
People called “Joiners” cut joints in wood, in order to get the wood to fit (and stay) together. There are many, many different joints for many different applications. I’ll keep adding joinery videos below (I’m starting with the more basic joints and will move on to more complex joints), so keep checking back. Before watching the videos, checkout this cool woodworking joint chart! (credit: David Royce). 8.1 Learn How to Cut Dovetail Joints Here’s a very detailed 15 step video t...
10 Steps to Getting Started in Traditional Woodworking with Hand Tools #8: |Step 7| Learn how to Layout & Mark the Wood
Before you can accurately cut joints to fit your wood together, you need to learn to accurately measure and layout your work pieces. My below videos will help you understand the different marking, measuring, & layout tools. They’ll also show you how to use them! If you don’t see what you’re looking for, don’t worry…I’m always adding more videos! Understanding Marking, Measuring, & Layout Tools: Precision is a major key to enjoying woodworking with hand tools. But, like all...
10 Steps to Getting Started in Traditional Woodworking with Hand Tools #7: |Step 6| Learn to Prepare Wood: Square, Flat, Straight, & Smooth
In order for wood joints to fit together properly and for edges to glue together tightly your boards need to be perfectly square, straight, and smooth. Although this process isn’t as quick as “milling” boards through power tools, it doesn’t take all that long, and is much more satisfying. Check out the video tutorials below, and choose your favorite! My Favorite Videos about Dimensioning & Squaring Boards with Hand Tools: Here are a few of my favorite videos about squaring and pr...
10 Steps to Getting Started in Traditional Woodworking with Hand Tools #6: |Step 5| Learn How to Design Woodworking Projects
You can definitely find plans for furniture and projects that other woodworkers have built, but I personally love the creative bliss that comes from designing my own projects. I also love looking at furniture in antique stores and on Pinterest to get ideas (See my Pinterest photos). But I always customize for my available space. Use Free Woodworking Design Software Ever since I was a kid I have drawn my “inspired” furniture sketches in a sketch book (or the back of a napkin), but...
10 Steps to Getting Started in Traditional Woodworking with Hand Tools #5: |Step 4| Learn how to Use Woodworking Hand Tools
Step number 4 gets into actually using your new or old traditional woodworking hand tools to create something! But just like a bike a car, or a sword, these tools will work properly and get you where you want to go (e.g. building something beautiful) if you learn how to wield them properly. So check out these videos, and come back for more…I’ll be adding more and more videos over time; beginning with the fundamental tools and moving onto the specialty tools. 4.1 How to Use Hand Planes ...
10 Steps to Getting Started in Traditional Woodworking with Hand Tools #4: |Step 3| Learn how to Refurbish, Tune, & Sharpen Tools
My wife loves to say, “hun, I think you love restoring hand tools almost as much as woodworking!” I think she’s right. There’s something magical about taking an antique (and very well built) woodworking hand tool and bringing it back to working order. Removing the rust, tuning up the parts, and sharpening the blade gives a feeling of satisfaction; especially when seeing the finished result. I get a feeling of a connection with the past, with my ancestors, with a time when things were made ...
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