Lately, everytime I go to the garage whether it be to get something, or work on something I tend to always come back with bruised/scratched shins. The garage is a somewhat of a mine field. It never really started as a workshop, so tools and machines just accumulated as they came with no order or planning and each one made it more and more stuffy and cramped. My wife just asked me ‘why don’t you take everything out and reorganize the place’.... hmm.. that means spending...
Last night when I was just about ‘done’ with stuff at somewhere around 10pm, I was picking around this site. I noticed that many of you had maps on your home pages which showed exactly where you lived. I liked that feature very much, as it helped me learn more about each woodworker and the proximity of his or her location. Nova Scotia always sounded so exotic to me when I lived near Chicago. I pictured icebergs floating with little penguins and polar bears lounging on them an...
There had to have been some excellence in toolmaking in China’s imperial era. We can judge by the 2000 year old museum furniture—still in perfect condition—that hand craftsmanship was once as close to perfection as it can get. Well, what you have for hand tools today are pictured below. The Mujingfang tool company produces the best hand tools domestically. I do have some Muji planes and chisels that work quite well. Still, nothing here compares to what the Japanese are turn...
The population of Martelle Iowa is in the neighborhood of 350, so one could use the phrase thriving metropolis comfortably. We do not have door to door USPS delivery, which is a little bit of a bummer, but it does have a tremendous upside. The excitement I get when I hop in the care and drive all the way across town to check my post office box. It is almost like Festivus all year round, without the pole or ‘airing of grievances’. Actually I don’t care for mail, but last Thursday I mad...
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 ...
(continued from Lee Valley Interview, part I) Following my interview with Robin Lee, President of Lee Valley, I took my Canadian Film Crew with me as I headed to my “local” Lee Valley Store, which is just an hour away, for my very first public appearance as MsDebbieP, the Canadian LumberJock. The weather was the hottest that we’ve had all summer and, boy oh boy, was the hat and coat ever hot! Inside, Don Riley, the store manager, gave me a tour, starting with the warehouse area i...
Whether or not you ever visited my old website, take the time to visit it now: ThisWoodwork.com I have taken the time to entirely re-build the website in order to provide more features as well as making it easier to add posts so new articles should come more reguarly! You can now upload your own project or workshop tour by visiting: http://thiswoodwork.com/submit-project/ Hope you enjoy the new layout, let me know if you have any ideas, as wel as what you think at ThisWoodwork.com ...
In the past, most old guys like me jealously protected their shortcuts and tricks to guard their job from competitors. I’ve seen many old fellows actually turn and place their bodies in front of their work to keep someone else from seeing how they did something, and they were not too bashful about doing so either. But, a lot of the old knowledge is disappearing now and some hard-learned things may disappear forever. I’ve learned a few tricks in my six decades of work related experience, and w...
I use a lot of “found” wood, it usually has to be split into smaller pieces to work with. One of the main tools I will need is the wood wedge. Starting with a bow saw and a hatchet, I cut some trees where Ms. Charming and I are clearing out around our garden. A couple of these were dogwoods. Dogwood is easily cut with a sharp axe when “green”, but when it is dry, it is extremely tough and difficult to work with edge tools. This toughness really make it good wedge m...
Judging by the damage that appears on old wooden planes, patience soon runs out when we handle things that are not operated by a switch! Sometimes this damage is terminal but often with a little care and lots of determination the wooden plane will work again. This video shows the basics of how to handle moulding planes. There is a lot more to investigate and much of that is to do with sharpening, especially when the moulding plane is complex. It’s hard to know how much interest ...
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