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Woodworking Skills from the 1800's

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Review by MsDebbieP posted 1017 days ago 2091 views 0 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Woodworking Skills from the 1800's No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

This book review is from the November 2011 issue of our LumberJocks’ eMag

Toolemera is donating another book for a free draw! (See below for details)
The Art and Craft of Cabinet Making by D. Denning

This is another of the historic books, this one being written in 1891. This book doesn’t hold as much appeal to me due to it being a lot of words and fewer diagrams. But—some of the headings listed in the contents had me turning the pages to take a look. For example, don’t you just want to know about “Ordinary Joinery Not Cabinet-Making” or “Sham Antique Furniture”, especially remembering that this book was written in 1891?

And what about an “Extemporizsed Cramp”? I didn’t even know what a cramp was until I saw the drawing and now I know how to make one, although, as it is stated in the book, “[...] accuracy is certainly a necessity [..and so…] they may be beyond the powers of the novice, who [...] will find it advisable to get them made for him.

The book seems to break down all the components of cabinet making and discusses the “how to’s” the “don’t do’s” as well as the use of the hand tools to build the components and put them together.

From what I see and understand it is an all-inclusive look at how to build exceptional cabinets based on the tried and true techniques of our master craftsman of the past.

[Edit: See Gary’s comment below for more information on the book and the author. Thanks Gary!]

My Ratings of The Book
Layout and Appearance: Too much reading for me, but appears to be a wealth of knowledge!
Instructions: Precise instructions, or it looks that way to me.
Content Selection: It seems to cover “everything you’d ever want to know about cabinetmaking”
Overall: Thumbs Up! I love the fact that this is wisdom from the past and is what I see as the basis of all woodworking today.

WIN A FREE BOOK

One random draw winner will receive a copy of the book.
To enter your name in the draw, click here and answer the two easy questions.
Deadline: December 10, 2011

Another big thank-you to Toolemera for the donation of books for free draws here at LumberJocks.com.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)




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MsDebbieP

18615 posts in 2794 days



16 comments so far

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Gary Roberts

136 posts in 1655 days


#1 posted 1017 days ago

For perspective, Denning was referenced heavily by other craft authors of the late 19th Century, who did tend to wordiness. Engravings also cost hard cash so you typically found fewer illustrations prior to 1900 in craft books. Denning in particular liked to describe things.

He was frequently referenced by other craft writers as a primary resource on cabinet making theory and practice. Even though I have not yet been able to dig up any biographical information, he was held in high regard by his contemporaries.

Is it a general How-To book? I wouldn’t call it that. It’s more a dialog dictionary of facts and opinions from the British viewpoint, many of which have passed from our lexicon. Denning also wrote titles on Wood Carving, Fretwork, Staining & Polishing. His Fretwork & Marquetry in particular is a classic.

-- Gary Roberts, http://toolemera.com

View MsDebbieP's profile

MsDebbieP

18615 posts in 2794 days


#2 posted 1017 days ago

thanks for that Gary … I know the book is filled with a wealth of knowledge but it’s a bit out of my league, woodworking-wise, thus the reading was a bit much for me to digest.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)

View mgfranz's profile

mgfranz

12 posts in 1680 days


#3 posted 1017 days ago

If you want the electronic version of this book, (not as cool as an actual hard cover copy though!), you can read it at Archive.org

View AttainableApex's profile

AttainableApex

338 posts in 1466 days


#4 posted 1017 days ago

wow the online version is awesome, you can even download it. thanks mgfranz

-- Ben L

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helluvawreck

15623 posts in 1500 days


#5 posted 1017 days ago

It sounds like a nice book. Thanks for posting.

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

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MsDebbieP

18615 posts in 2794 days


#6 posted 1017 days ago

I hope you still put your name in for the draw. There’s something special about holding in your hands something that was written 100 years ago+.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 1749 days


#7 posted 1017 days ago

thank´s for posting MsDeppieP :-)

who can say no to an oppetunity to get a goood book with great knowledge to consume…. :-)

Dennis

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Smitty_Cabinetshop

9817 posts in 1252 days


#8 posted 1016 days ago

Great resource, thanks very much!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive

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mafe

9492 posts in 1723 days


#9 posted 1012 days ago

Hi Gary, it looks really interesting, and it is wonderful you publish these old books.
Nothing like paper – it is made from wood!
Thank you,
Mads

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

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Gary Roberts

136 posts in 1655 days


#10 posted 1012 days ago

I recently heard from the printer that all the materials in their products meet stringent standards for renewable resources. While I’m not sure what that means, from what I can gather it means no new trees were killed to make the books

-- Gary Roberts, http://toolemera.com

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mafe

9492 posts in 1723 days


#11 posted 1012 days ago

I think it basicaly means that if you take wood you plant wood and that is fine.
But I was not joking, I love books! If you saw my apartment you would know that I have a book bug, never been too fond of the electronic books, books is books for me, electronic media is good for active media.
Perhaps some day we will stop to make it the old way, but I still think people will love the old books.
I do!
Smiles dear Gary,
Mads

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

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Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 1749 days


#12 posted 1011 days ago

OOH YAH Mads´s living room is actuly more like a library …. with books from floor to the ceiling
if it wasn´t for the window and doors he wuold have had many more in there …. LOL
and I love your room Mads
its so wonderfull to come into a room filled with knowledge of how to´s like that :-)
I wish I had room for my books at the moment they are in moving box´s :-(

take care
Dennis

View Gary Roberts's profile

Gary Roberts

136 posts in 1655 days


#13 posted 1011 days ago

Organized by Library of Congress subject headings, Dewey Decimal System, British Library System or something else?

-- Gary Roberts, http://toolemera.com

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mafe

9492 posts in 1723 days


#14 posted 1011 days ago

Chaos and cosmos, some by space, some by size, far most by subject.
All by heart.
;-)

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View Gary Roberts's profile

Gary Roberts

136 posts in 1655 days


#15 posted 1011 days ago

I get it, you use the Discworld’s Unseen University’s Library cataloging system. Very smart.

I’m thinking of doing mine by size and color.

-- Gary Roberts, http://toolemera.com

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