• Building a compass plane

    A compass plane is a tool for carving out concave surfaces, like chair seats and boat parts. However, until recently I have not really considered buying or making one because I was always able to find a work around. When I started building stools and chairs though, I got more serious about adding some tools more

  • Building a Set of Kitchen Chairs

    Chairs 1

    It all starts with a prototype Before I started on the project of building a set of kitchen chairs for my son I thought I better build a prototype. Since I had never built a chair before I thought I had best start simple. And what could be more simple than this chair. Four legs more

  • Examining Stool Samples

    Lately I have been making stools. As I mentioned in a previous post, staked furniture is something I had not done. So I tried it, and as is often the case one thing leads to another and now I have done four of these. With the last three being variations on a theme. So I more

  • Building a White Oak Sideboard

    White_Oak_Sideboard

    On a recent trip home to visit I ended up coming home with a trunk load of home sawn White Oak. (Too bad I was not driving a truck ūüėČ After staring at it for several months in the corner of my shop I finally determined that I would build a small sideboard with it. more

  • The “right” amount plane iron camber

    perfectshaving

    Not another article on plane sharpening! Sharpening a plane, or sharpening anything for that matter is always interesting to talk about. This is because so many people are so sure they have in fact reached sharpening Nirvana. And they can’t wait to tell you about it, and why your way is silly. Nevertheless, I think more

  • Three Legged Staked Stool

    stool-profile-sm

    My first staked furniture Over the years I have made many stools and such, but up until recently I have never made anything with staked leg construction. After receiving a Lee Veritas reamer and taper tenon cutter for Christmas (very nice) I had to make something with it naturally so I made a small table more

  • Never practice your mistakes

    Things music taught me Before I was anything else, I was a musician. My mother was a church organist and a choir director. Some of my earliest memories are of sitting on the end of a pipe organ bench looking up at all those pipes listening to my mother practice. When I came of age more

  • Building a small frame saw

    frame saw parts

    I have a great rip saw. It is an old Disston that has been re-sharpened almost out of existence. But it has the cool tote with the hole for my index finger, it feels good in my hands and cuts like crazy. However, there are jobs that are better done with other types of saws. more

  • My work bench turns 30

    my benches

    I don’t have a Roubo bench or a Nicholson bench. But I do Have two benches that have been with me for a long time. They have both undergone changes over the years, ¬†both cost me next to nothing to build, and they are both better now than ever. So I thought I would give more

  • A new tote for an old friend

    New_Tote

    Finally fixed my ol’ #26 Stanley. I bought this plane about 6 years ago at a flea market for 3 dollars. The sole was completely useless so I immediately put a new maple and purpleheart sole on it. The back tote was broken but tight so I did not worry about it at the time. more

  • Building the Melencolia plane

    melencolia_plane

    My next project (I hope). Like many woodworkers I have been fascinated by Durer’s “Melencolia I” woodcut. It is filled with amazing details and more than a few sweet tools. I have already made a couple of “Melencolia Squares” and have even had a wack at reproducing the batten in the lower right corner. But more

  • Oh, Strop it!

    And really enjoy your chisels Every once in a while I discover something, purely by chance, that is so obvious that I absolutely can not believe I never saw it before. Recently I had just such an epiphany through simple laziness. I have used several systems of sharpening over the 40+ years I have been involved more

  • It takes 100 years to grow a tree

    Form over function, style over quality, the never ending quest for acceptance and validation from a culture with no anchor and no compass.

  • Building a plane to match my plow plane

    finished

    Recently I built a fixed fence style plow plane that cuts a 1/4″ groove 1/4″ from the edge of the material. I did this to avoid building a good movable fence which very likely would have been more work than building the rest of the plane. I realized as I thought about it, that most more

  • Faux Follansbee chest in reclaimed lumber

    When you don’t have nice fresh Oak… I have admired Peter Follansbee’s coffer chests since the first time I saw one on the WoodWrights shop. I grew up where there was a lot of Oak so I have always had a soft spot in my heart for anything Oak. However for the last 25 years more

  • Building a plow plane

    finished plow plane

    Building the 1/4″ plow plane Once again I needed a tool and decided to build it rather than buy it or use the power tool equivalent. I have done this before with a molding plane. This weekend that tool was a 1/4″ plow plane patterned after the groove cutting half of a tongue a groove more

  • Building a dollhouse

    Building the perfect doll house Growing up as a boy with only one sister I can’t say that I have ever spent much time thinking about doll houses. However, having a young granddaughter can change all that that in a hurry. One look at her and I was ready for my crash course in the more

  • Home brewed oil finishes

    finished

    One of the first finishes I ever put on a  project, now over 40 years ago was a boiled linseed oil finish. It was simple and cheap and there was no way to mess it up really. It was not long though before I read somewhere that you could make an even better oil finish more

  • Drop Leaf Table in Alder

    Finished alder table

      Previously I wrote about a small drop leaf table that I was trying to prototype and refine. I have finally finished what I think is the table I am happy with. It is roughly 36″ square when fully extended and roughly 12″ x 36″ when fully closed. This table was really quite enjoyable to more

  • Building a new molding plane

    New hollow plane

    Building a new molding plane Recently I needed a router bit that I did not have. I looked at my favorite router bit store and they had nothing in the size I needed. So, I was left with no real alternative but to build a plane in that profile… right? (it sounded good in my more

  • Split top saw bench

    Split top saw bench

    Building a split top saw bench from salvage After burning off some excess calories hand planing some rough cut fifty year old salvage lumber into usable material I realized it was just the right amount to build a saw bench similar to one I saw here. I liked the design of the that saw bench more

  • Hand tool workout

    tools

    As I have gotten older, my doctor gets more and more persistent in telling me to get more exercise. I guess that’s normal. However, I pretty much hate conventional exercise. It has always seemed like the most pointless use of time and energy on the planet to me, so it has been a challenge to more

  • Drop leaf table prototype

    Drop leaf table qrtr

    Recently several young friends of mine decided to get married. As a couple of them were looking through some of my woodworking magazines they stumbled across this little drop leaf table in an old issue of Woodsmith magazine and fell in love. Their appartment is small and I have to admit to liking many things more

  • Modern Woodworking Myths

    Workshop overview

    I have been deeply enjoying the modern revival of hand tools and classical woodworking techniques. I have been a fan of Roy Underhill since the beginning of his career. And Chris Schwarz is  a fantastic spokesman for this movement. However, as with all things, when they gain a certain amount of popularity many things get more

  • I will never see a saw the same again

    Backsaw

    Recently, I built a dovetail saw using parts from Blackburn Tools. It was a fun project but far more challenging than I anticipated. I bought all the metal parts as a kit from Blackburn Tools, I already had the rosewood and figured it would be a fairly simple project. This was before I started cutting. Shaping more

  • Tool chest or wall storage?

    Sharpening bench

    Lately it seems there has been endless buzz around building tool chests. Recently I joined the fray and built a small Dutch tool chest myself and found it to be an extremely rewarding project. However, in practice I am not sure a tool chest is always the right choice as a way to organize and store more

  • Finished cedar strip canoe “Hourglass”

    Finished canoe

    Finally finished the canoe¬†Hourglass. Hourglass is a 15′ cedar strip canoe with a Whitehall type transom. This canoe was built as a double paddle cruiser for one person. But the seating is flexible enough to provide room for a passenger. It could even be used as a fishing boat with an electric trolling motor and more

  • Small Dutch Tool Chest

    My grandson is coming of age and wanted some tools for Christmas. This was just the excuse I needed to build a small dutch tool chest. I opted to build a smaller than usual Dutch tool chest with no lower storage. As he was only 10 I did not think he needed a very big more