|Review by JuniorJoiner||posted 02-07-2009 08:27 AM||5555 views||1 time favorited||6 comments|
I have had a set of the Lie-Nielsen Joinery floats for a few months now, and unbelievably i have even found uses for them.
When i first saw these tools advertised on their site, I actually called my wife over , and showed her. Not from amazement or anything like that, but to tell her to never get them for me.
Apparently she pays as much attention as i would to her new shoes, because just short weeks later they arrived.
Smiling and being thankful, I put them all in the tool roll, and tossed them in the bottom drawer of my bench.
But, against my prejudice, i have used them and found them useful.
What these Joinery floats are, is basically a coarse single cut file , that cuts either on the push or pull stroke.
they are sized precisely in Sae, and have a fine fit and finish that you would expect for the lie nielsen price.
what they are intended for is precise fitting of mortises. Which is why i thought they were a strange choice of tool. usually doing mortise and tenon, you make the mortise first, then fit the tenon to the mortise. voila, no need to ever fit a mortise. and if you did, why not use the chisel you made the mortise with in the first place. or even a file or ironing rasp if you wanted to get fancy.
well, their use, as i have discovered, is to get good results without getting fancy, or spending alot of time on marking and setup.
Normally when i would make a through tenon, i would precisely mark the mortise location on both sides of the mortise piece, and carefully inscribe the back side of the mortise piece before i started pounding with the mallet for fear of blowing out a chunk of wood i wanted to stay there.
then , spend more time trying to trim everything precisely with my chisel against a guide block.
anyway, the problem with those actions is that you are trying to work end grain, or edge grain. neither of which is very forgiving.
These tools are built just for that purpose, and work well. sized for many different mortises, you can use them to trim the mortise sides, and since they only have one cutting face, you can work them without fear of damaging the surrounding hole.
I have found that in use, i can have mortises looking alot better with alot less work, and usually without the need to do tons of paring with a guideblock.
So, in conclusion , Lie Nielsen built a really good, useful tool. that most woodworkers would never buy or reach for. they have made my work better or at least more efficient.
Now if they would just make the tool I reach for the most, A panel saw.
-- Junior -Quality is never an accident-it is the reward for the effort involved.