I needed to make a sign for local church. I first started out just constructing using butt joinery, but it was way too weak. I changed to using a half lap joint so I took the chance to film what exactly a half lap joint was and how to make one. Enjoy.
One day this workbench may be done. It is made from construction lumber. 4×4s, 2×6s and 2×4s. Other than being a functional piece for my “shop”. I wanted this to be a learning process for joinery I have not attempted. The size is about 4’x2’x35”. The small size has been depicted by my small space, the front portion of a 1 car garage. My one goal was to complete the structure of this workbench using no hardware, i.e., nails, screws, bo...
and I mean literally – we’ve had a snow storm here, and the garage is covered with more than a foot of snow. It was blazing outside and the high winds were blowing snow all over the place. my garage is unheated, but neither of those stopped me from making the most I could with an open window of time I got this weekend. I caved in, and ordered an Incra router plate for the top when they just posted the phenolic version on sale for $35 (they had a 10% off last week). I really ...
Past experience has made me very wary of dowel joinery. I don’t need a Dowelmax…I don’t want a Dowelmax…I can’t afford a Dowelmax…but yet I find myself on the verge of buying one. I believe I am suffering from Dowelmaxitis. This is a psychiatric illness brought on by reading too many fantastic Dowelmax reviews, written it seems by fellow sufferers who have succumbed to the illness and finally bought a Dowelmax.Can anyone offer an antidote. Surely there m...
Every project’s layout phase, for me, is like spring training – what happened last season is a foundation to build upon; all things are possible when starting fresh. And it’s also an opportunity to set goals that, upon further review, seem almost unattainable. I find myself in that situation right now on something in the shop that’s been underway for a couple weeks. One specific joinery element I’ve decided to incorporate into the build is the mitered dovetail...
Well, due to a posting about first dovetails by mikeswoodshop, I decided to (somewhat) chronicle my journey with hand cut dovetails over the last year or so. My first attempts were far worse than anything here, but have been thrown away, so I don’t have pictures. I think the most heinous ones went into the wood stove. I figured that if I could get some heat out of them, they would at least be good for something. It wasn’t until my fifth or sixth joint that it occurred to me ...
While I would like to believe that I could dedicate enough time each day to run to the shop and chop a set of tails, I know that I’m kidding myself. But I’m determined to give myself the practice necessary to improve my sawing and chiseling skills, in the hopes that I can develop the kind of muscle memory I see in some of the really good woodworkers. To give you some context, I started this hobby around early 2006. I am, by no means, an excellent woodworker, but I strive to c...
On Saturday, I had my last session of Introduction to Japanese Woodworking at Laney College in Oakland, CA. It’s taught by Jay Van Arsdale, an active woodworker working professionally in the Japanese style in the bay area since the 1970’s and the author of a well known book on Shoji. His class is hands down the best woodworking instruction I’ve ever had. If you’re at all interested in hand tool woodworking and are curious about Japanese tools and live somewhere in t...
Hi friends here we are again back in the shop and making and marking up the next to do’s for this saw till project I have been working on. This project is just what is needed for my fast growing collection of handsaws as you will see…..lol. This is a piece that has brought some more expansion in the learning of joinery, and getting a chance to exercise some new lessons learned. Pic 1-2: I needed to make a pair 1×2 mortice’s on each side for my rail to joint into t...
Many of you probably cut dovetails with power tools & jigs —and so do I. But for some projects, I really prefer cutting them by hand and I never tire of learning how to do it better. That’s what took me on one of my recent video “treks” (journeys), where I filmed the segment I’ve posted here — this time to the shop of master cabinetmaker Craig Vandall Stevens. In this two-part series, Craig (who studied under James Krenov) uses only a saw, chisel, and several sh...
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