Aimed at those new to saw sharpening, this instructional video is 2 1/4 hours long and covers the theory, the tools and the practice of sharpening western saws. You get to look over my shoulder as I sharpen four saws – two backsaws and two hand saws. I’ll explain the saw sharpening process and how you apply it to different scenarios. I really hope you find it useful. As to the production quality, I’ve done the best I could. I had to record it outside, so there is a bi...
When I did my research, I found a number of good saw vise designs on the web. Some were simple, whilst others were more complex. The fundamental requirement of a saw vise is that it clamps a saw securely while you sharpen it, everything else is just icing. So it can be as simple as sandwiching the saw plate between two pieces of wood in a vise on your bench. Last December, I had the privilege of attending a saw sharpening class with Paul Sellers at Penrhyn Castle in North Wales. At the beginn...
The Humble Hand Brace - A Beginner's Guide to Restoring, Buying and Using #8: Part 8 - Tips and Tricks on Using a Hand Brace
Sorry it has taken me so long to post the final part to this blog series. Life just gets in the way sometimes. However, here it is and I hope you enjoy it. In this episode I wanted to look at using a hand brace and explore some of the so called hints and tips out there to see if they really are useful. I’ll also show you how to get in touch with your inner level. I’m assuming you’ve sharpened your auger bits like I showed you in the last episode. A sharp auger bit is paramount for drilling...
You know I said at the end of my last post that I’d post a picture of each saw and tell you how I was going to sharpen them and why? Well I lied. :-) The temptation of my restored backsaws, a saw vise and a bundle of saw files was just too much. I had to sharpen a saw, but which one? I thought about it for a while and settled on the little Spear & Jackson 8” Dovetail saw. Remember this one? I chose it for two reasons: For a dovetail saw, the depth of cut is quite big at 50mm. ...
In the last shop update, I briefly mentioned a grooving plane that did not work so well. The idea was to have a tool that could quickly make the grooves in the bottom of draw and box stock to accept the drawer/box bottom. The new design really rocks, so much that I made three sizes (widths): 1/8”, 3/16”, 1/4”. Although these are intended for making the grooves on drawer and box sides, I have been discovering more uses for the flexible design of these planes: Shop Jou...
A few months ago I bought two nice pieces of highly figured maple. 8/4, 9” wide and about 4’ long. And the best part… I got it cheap. So it has been in my shop while I sat around trying to decide what to do with it. I made up my mind. About 16 months ago I made a spice cabinet out of pine and dyed it to look like walnut. I love it, loved everything about it. But I want to make another one, a better one, one from awesome wood. So, thats what I am going to do. This is...
Ever since I saw Mafe's router plane I’ve had the desire to make one. As I do most often I look here on LJs for inspiration. Well, I found it. As I searched I came across this gem of a router plane made by Tinnocker. Tinnocker got his inspiration from Mafe’s design as well. I used a picture of Tinnockers design to come up with my version of a router plane. The body of the plane is hard maple. The handles are from some old chair spindles I had laying around, The plane iron is a ...
The Humble Hand Brace - A Beginner's Guide to Restoring, Buying and Using #6: Part 6 - What to Look for when Buying a Secondhand Brace and more
I thought I’d mix it up a bit in this part of the blog and record a video where I: Discuss what to look for when you pick up a secondhand brace and consider buying it. Mention variations in design and size and why you would use one size over another. Address Racerglen’s question on restoring plated braces. Answer lysdexic’s question as to why the Yankee 2100 represents the pinnacle of brace development. YouTube only allows uploads up to 15 minutes in length (...
Yesterday, I took every tool that was in my main tool chest out of the box and cleaned and vacuumed out the box. While I was at it I laid my tools out on the work bench and cleaned and inspected them and took some of the bigger Stanley planes apart one at a time and cleaned all the parts. The iron in three of the planes needed sharpening so I did that before I reassembled them. I then put a few of the tools and put them in other drawers instead and put some other tools with these because this...
Did you know that saw handle making was a profession in its own right in the 19th century? Young men underwent an apprenticeship lasting 12 months before they could call themselves a saw handle maker. It seems a long time doesn’t it? One year, just to learn how to make a saw handle. However there was quite a lot of detailing to do on a 19th century saw handle. Some features were purely for decoration, whilst others had a distinct function. The handles in the following photograph from two o...
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