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Be sure to visit the Hand Tool Headlines section - scores of my favorite woodworking blogs in one place.  Also, take note of Norse Woodsmith's latest feature, an Online Store, which contains only products I personally recommend.  It is secure and safe, and is powered by Amazon.

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Hand Tools

Locks

Peter Follansbee, joiner's notes - Thu, 02/08/2018 - 4:33pm

Chests, cupboards, boxes, cabinets – most any wooden furniture that opened and closed had an iron lock in 17th-century New England (& old England for that matter). It’s rare that they survive, even more unusual is a customer who wants to pay what it takes to get locks on their custom furniture. I have such a client right now, for 2 boxes and a chest. So I get to a.) show how I install a handmade lock, and b.) first, re-learn how I install a handmade lock. I do them so rarely that each time is like doing it for the first time. The lock above was made by Peter Ross, blacksmith. http://peterrossblacksmith.com/ His website is perpetually under construction. His iron work is top flight. We’ll get the tacky stuff out of the way first – if you want locks that are so-called “museum-quality/period-correct”, expect to pay for them. This lock, with escutcheon and 2 keys was $650. I suspect Peter still undercharged me, given the amount of work that goes into these. OK. Now to install it.

I cut a test-mortise in a piece of scrap to make sure I was on the right track. Then proceeded to the box. First, bore the main part of the keyhole.

The real dumb thing was to build the box, then decide it wanted a lock. So now, how to hold it for all the chopping, paring, etc? Because of the overhang of the bottom/front, I had to prop the box up on a piece of 7/8″ thick pine. I put some bubblewrap between them so as to not mess up the carved front too much. Then to hold the lid open with something other than my forehead, I cut an angle on a piece of scrap, and clamped it with a spring clamp. Not traditional, but worked well.

After scribing the layout based on the lock, I sawed two ends as deeply as I could.

After chopping some of that waste out, I had to re-score the end grain. I switched to a very sharp knife for this part. worked great.

Alternated scoring with the knife and paring with this long-bladed paring chisel.

Once I got to the stage for testing the fit, I realized I needed a hole bored in the scrap below for the sleeve to fit through. Once that was in place, I swiped a black sharpie over the lock, and then tested it. Left black marks where I needed to adjust things.

Some back & forth til it fit the way I wanted it. The slot on the top edge of the lock is for the staple from the lid to engage the bolt. So I needed to get the wood out of that slot.

Ready to be nailed in place. I bored pilot holes, and drove the nails in. I backed them up out front, thinking some might poke through. As it happened only one did, in a low point in the carving. So no trouble at all.

Then needed to open up the keyhole a bit. A rare appearance of a file in my woodworking. I bored a small hole first, then opened it up with the file.

The escutcheon, nailed in place. I had to snip the ends of these nails off, so they wouldn’t mess up the lock. In this application, they are as short as a wrought nail can be just about.

Then, some fussing to locate and excavate the housing for the staple. Here, I locked the staple to the lock and impressed its position by using the sharpie, and closing the lid & leaning on it. That left a mark so I could see where to cut into the lid.

Knife and chisel work again.

 

I got this part done, then had to pick up speed because it was getting dark. So the final photos will be another day. It’s 99.9% done. An adjustment is all that’s left.

 

Scroll saw Tune up

Journeyman's Journal - Thu, 02/08/2018 - 2:09pm

This is a video on blade calibration to make it run true and vibration free. I was very nervous in the video and when I’m nervous my mind usually goes blank. Hope the video is beneficial to you.

Categories: Hand Tools

Could You Tackle These Mouldings?

Lost Art Press: Chris Schwarz - Thu, 02/08/2018 - 11:54am
Moulding-1

FIG. 1. CABINET WITH BROKEN PEDIMENT INVOLVING USE OF RAKING OR SLOPING MOULDINGS. It is interesting to note that this piece dates from about 1740, and it is in the manner of William Kent.


This is an excerpt from “The Woodworker: The Charles H. Hayward Years” published by Lost Art Press.

Of course, you realize that the feature that makes this work awkward is the fact that the moulding which forms the pediment slopes upwards towards the middle. It necessitates a different section from that at the sides, and introduces an interesting problem in mitreing. The pediments of doorways, windows, and mantelpieces often had this feature.

A little reflection will show you that the moulding which runs around the side of the cabinet, the return mould as it is called, must necessarily be different in section from the sloping mould at the front (raking mould, to give it its technical title). Apart from anything else, the top surface cannot be square but must obviously slope to agree with the raking mould, and its top square member must be vertical. The whole contour, however, is quite different because it would otherwise be impossible to make the members meet on a true mitre line. These points are at once clear from a glance at Fig. 2 (A and B).

Moulding-2

FIG. 2. HOW SECTIONS ARE PLOTTED. A is section of side return mould; B is raking mould; C and D are alternatives for centre return moulds.

Before proceeding farther, it will be as well to explain that so far as the centres of these broken pediments* are concerned there are two distinct methods that can be employed. In the one the same section is used for the return as the raking mould, so that the square members of the moulding which would normally be vertical lean over at right angles with the raking mould. The pediment in Fig. 1 is of this kind; also that shown at C in Fig. 2. In the second method the section of the return is different, and is arranged so that all normally vertical members remain vertical as at D, Fig. 2. This latter method naturally involves considerably more work but has a better appearance. Both methods were used in old woodwork.

To return to the outer corners, the first step is to fix the contour of the return moulding since this is the one which is seen the more when the cabinet is viewed from the front. Draw in this as shown at A, Fig. 2, and along the length of the raking mould draw in any convenient number of parallel lines, a, b, c, d, e. Where these cross the line of the moulding erect the perpendicular lines 1-7. From the point x draw a horizontal line. With centre x draw in the series of semicircles to strike the top line of the raking moulding, and then continue them right across the latter in straight lines at right angles with it. The points at which they cut the lines a-e are points marking the correct section of the raking mould, and it is only necessary to sketch in a curve which will join them (see B). The same principle is followed in marking the centre return D, but, instead of drawing the semi-circles, the vertical lines 1-7 are drawn in the same spacing as at A (the reverse way round, of course).

Moulding-3

FIG. 3. ASCERTAINING MITRE LINES.

Having worked the sections the problem arises of finding and cutting the mitre. This is explained in Fig. 3. The return mould presents no difficulty, and it is usual to cut and fit this first. It is just cut in the mitre box using the 45 deg. cut. Note that the back of the moulding is kept flat up against the side of the mitre box, the sloping top edge being ignored. Now for the raking mould. Square a line across the top edge far enough from the end to allow for the mitre, and from it mark the distance T R along the outer edge. This T R distance, of course, is the width of the return moulding measured square across the sloping top edge. This enables the top mitre line to be drawn in. The depth line is naturally vertical when the raking mould is in position. You can therefore set the adjustable bevel to the angle indicated at U and mark the moulding accordingly.

Worked and cut in this way the mouldings should fit perfectly. We may mention, however, that you can get out of the trouble of having different sections by allowing a break in the raking mould as at Z, Fig. 2. The mitre at the break runs across the width, and the one at the corner across the thickness.

The method of ascertaining the sections of mouldings should be used for all large, important work. If, however, you have a simple job to do requiring just one small length you can eliminate the setting out altogether. First work the return mould and cut its mitre. As already mentioned this is at 45 deg. and is cut straight down square. Fix it in position temporarily and prepare a piece of stuff for the raking mould. Its thickness will be the same as that of the return mould, but it will be rather narrower. Mark out and cut the mitre as described in Fig. 3. If preferred the adjustable bevel can be used entirely as in Fig. 4. The tool is placed so that it lines up with the slope of the raking mould, and the blade adjusted to line up with the mitre (see A). This gives the top marking.

Moulding-4

FIG. 4. FINDING SECTION BY MITREING FIRST

Now set the bevel to the slope of the raking mould as at B. Mark the back of the mould and cut the mitre. Offer it up in position and with a pencil draw a line around the profile of the return mould as in Fig. 4. Work the moulding to the section thus produced.

Meghan Bates

*A broken pediment is one in which the raking moulds, instead of meeting at the centre, are stopped short and are returned as in Fig. 1.

Categories: Hand Tools

New Online Course @ 360Woodworking.com

360 WoodWorking - Thu, 02/08/2018 - 9:51am
New Online Course @ 360Woodworking.com

This week I posted a new online course to which all current members have free access. The project is a Chippendale Fretwork Looking Glass. (If you are a current member, and please make sure that you are logged in, click here to jump to the article, which includes information at the bottom on how to download your course.)

If you’re interested in what this online course is all about, plus learn a bit about the project itself, take a look at the course in the 360Woodworking.com store (go here).

Continue reading New Online Course @ 360Woodworking.com at 360 WoodWorking.

Barn Workshop – Build A Classic Workbench

The Barn on White Run - Thu, 02/08/2018 - 5:35am

And speaking of workbenches, you’ll have the opportunity to work with me at The Barn building your own version of either a basic Roubo or Nicholson bench in Southern Yellow Pine.  Thanks to my adapting David Barron’s innovative system for building laminated Roubo benches, and the elegant simplicity of the Nicholson bench, you can arrive empty handed (except for your tools) on Monday and depart at the end of the week with a bench fully ready to go.  The only likely hindrance to this outcome is if you spend too much time simply looking at the mountain vista on the horizon.

The finished bench does not include holdfasts or vise mechanisms; if you want those you can supply your own or I can order them for you separately.  And if you prefer a 5-1/2″ slab for the Roubo bench rather than the 3-3/4″ slab, there will be an additional $100 materials fee.

============================================

The complete 2018 Barn workshop schedule:

Historic Finishing  April 26-28, $375

Making A Petite Dovetail Saw June 8-10, $400

Boullework Marquetry  July 13-15, $375

Knotwork Banding Inlay  August 10-12, $375

Build A Classic Workbench  September 3-7, $950

contact me here if you are interested in any of these workshops.

drawer prep......

Accidental Woodworker - Thu, 02/08/2018 - 1:00am
I was hoping to get the 4 1/2 together sans the knob and tote but it didn't happen. I started to do it but noticed a paint boo boo that I had to touch up. Tomorrow I should be able to get it put together without the wooden parts. The knob and tote still need to stripped and sanded so I can put a finish on them.

came in today
I'm thinking of using this on the 4 1/2 tote and knob. The only problem I see with it is that I've used shellac on every one of the other rehabs so far. I if put on this one it will stick out like the red headed stuttering step child. I've been thinking about it since I put it on the bench on which way to go with it. I think I'll put it on the 4 1/2 and if I like it, the 5 1/2 will get it too. It has shellac which I can easily strip off.

600 grit shine
Right below my baby finger is a patch on the lever cap. The sanding up to 600 grit blended it into the lever cap and made it noticeably less visible. I spent a few extra minutes sanding it more but I don't think I'll get it any better than this. I thought of buying another lever cap but I am going to keep this one.

the paint boo boo
I got this when I scraped the seats down here. I also have another one on both cheek walls and up by the upper frog seats. I got the ones here from sanded the frog seats.

drawer stock 1x8 - actually 7 1/2"

48 inches long
If I am lucky I could get two boards out of each about 3 1/2 inches wide. If I go this way I can get one drawer out of one board. That isn't always the case though. Straightening out one edge can eat up a lot of width if it is bowed or wonky in any other way. I don't have good luck with planing multiple boards to the same width and that is where I tend to lose a lot of width.

I bought 4 boards because my original intent was to use two boards to make one drawer. I am going to stick to that because I want the drawers to be 4 1/2 inches deep. Allowing for the groove and bottom will give an interior drawer depth of 4".

brown and red knot
The brown knot is on the side of the board I'll be keeping. After the drawer is done I'll epoxy the brown knot so it won't shrink and fall out.

this brown knot fell out
This knot was there when I brought this home. No matter as it is on the waste side of the board.

the knot board will give up the two backs

some weird grain about 2/3 of the way down
The straightest grained boards will be used for the sides. I don't like the grain swirl in this board so I'll use it for the fronts.

reference edge and face
 I ripped this a 16th over. I will plane the reference face flat before I cross cut out the drawer parts.

they are pretty straight and flat
I was very encouraged after looking at these tonight. I bought them on sunday and before I sawed them out they looked like this. Usually 1x pine from Lowes cups and bows after one day in the shop. Tomorrow I'll flatten one side and remove any twist. I'll let that sit and sticker for another day. I might get to dovetailing by friday.

scraped the front knob
I sanded it after I had scraped all of the finish off.

filed a fresh burr
raising a burr on the knife is very easy to do and it only takes a few seconds. I file the bevel on the sheet rock knife a few strokes. That puts a burr on the opposite side and it usually lasts long enough to scrape the whole knob.

ready for sanding
I can tell I scraped all the finish off because there isn't anything shiny left anywhere on the knob.

My father-in-law is out the ICU and on the regular ward. He may be discharged tomorrow to the rehab unit which is next door to the hospital. It doesn't look like he'll be going home but to a nursing home after rehab.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
Did you know that Henry Stanley of "Dr Livingston, I presume....." fame fought for both the south and the north in the American Civil War?

Bob is right

Oregon Woodworker - Wed, 02/07/2018 - 7:03pm
On a recent podcast, Bob Rozaieski talked about efficiency with hand tools and one of the subjects he covered was choice of wood species.  He advises staying away from white oak and hard maple.  I know he's right.  It was brought home to me recently as I was doing some learning exercises so I could cut better half-blind dovetails.  I used scraps, sapele for the fronts and douglas-fir for the sides and back.  I have been working with white oak a lot recently and this was so much easier and more pleasurable I could hardly believe it.  The fact is that woods like mahogany, cherry, walnut, pine, poplar and even soft maple are much easier to work with hand tools.

The problem is that there are sometimes good reasons to work with white oak.  I really like arts and crafts furniture, much of which is best in white oak.  In addition, white oak has properties that make it very desirable, like for the outside table I made recently.  It rains a great deal here in the northwest and white oak's rot resistance is important.  I like the way white oak looks too; it seemed just right for the kitchen work table I made recently.

I did ask Bob about it and he responded at some length on a subsequent podcast (beginning at about 10:30) with a number of good ideas that are worth your while.  Nevertheless, there is just no getting around the fact that white oak is difficult to work with hand tools.

I have been thinking about how to reconcile the difficulty of working white oak with the fact that it is very desirable for some projects.  For starters, there are projects I have used white oak for that would be as good in a species easier to work.  My days of making small oak boxes are mostly over.

I am going to increase my use hybrid techniques for some operations when I am working white oak.  I will still use hand tools for many operations.  Sawing, making mortise and tenon joints, jointing are examples of things that hand tools work just fine for, though I do drill out the waste in my mortises.  The things that I have found most difficult when working white oak are making grooves, dadoes and rabbets.  It would be one thing if I had pairs of plow and rabbet planes so I could always work with the grain, but that's not going to happen.  Working against the grain in white oak with these planes is sometimes too difficult and/or time consuming and it's not very enjoyable.  It can be done, I've done it, but it's laborious.

This is only speculation, but I wonder if this last issue is one reason arts and crafts furniture is traditionally made with quartersawn white oak.  My experience is that it is a lot easier to work with than flatsawn material.

I like Greene and Greene style box joints a lot and that keeps you from using secondary woods for drawer sides.  Recently, I used vertical grain douglas-fir for half-blind dovetails, which I like a lot, but it splits very easily.  I dislike poplar because of the greenish cast in what I see at my supplier.  Alder is plentiful and inexpensive here and I think that will become my secondary wood.  It's hardness is comparable to poplar.

One of the things that puzzles me is why white oak was preferred in the arts and crafts era.  Was it because power tools were becoming more available?  Was it because it was affordable?  Was it an aesthetic choice?  Bob points out that most of the mortises in arts and crafts furniture were made with machines.
Categories: Hand Tools

Glue Ups & Grain Direction

The English Woodworker - Wed, 02/07/2018 - 9:54am
Glue Ups & Grain Direction

Gluing up can be a frantic time.
And if you’re like me, it’ll be messy too.

But how much should we be planning ahead, before we get it all stuck together?

When we glued up the top for our Hall Table build, we received a few questions on this topic.

They were good queries, pondering over grain direction and alternating growth rings.

So I thought we’d cover this in a little bit of detail.

Continue reading at The English Woodworker.

Categories: Hand Tools

The Issue Four Packing Party

The Mortise & Tenon Magazine Blog - Wed, 02/07/2018 - 9:51am

The arrival of Issue Four is right around the corner – and with each new issue of M&T comes the fine, established tradition of the Mortise & Tenon Packing Party! Now that we’re publishing twice per year, we’re doubling up on these tremendously fun events. We’ve had folks travel from all over to help wrap each new issue in brown paper, affix a special trade card with wax seal, and place it in a mailer with a handful of pine plane shavings.

Everyone shares good food (wood-fired pizza, home-baked goodies, and more), locally-roasted coffee, excellent conversation, and an overall fantastic time. We don’t send anyone home empty-handed - we've got plenty of M&T goodies to go around. The “show and tell” opportunity is my favorite part, as everyone pulls recent projects, old tools, and books out of trunks and backseats to get passed around and discussed.

The dates for our Issue Four Packing Party are March 23-24, Friday and Saturday, in Blue Hill, Maine. We’re looking again to rent a house for those who will need accommodations, so please let us know if that is important to you!

If you are interested in signing up to join us, please send us an email right away at info@mortiseandtenonmag.com. We can’t guarantee anyone a slot just yet, but we will be operating on a first come, first served basis. Our Issue Three party was a blast, and we look forward to seeing new faces and old friends again as we launch Issue Four!

- Mike

 

Categories: Hand Tools

When you lose the muse

A Woodworker's Musings - Wed, 02/07/2018 - 7:52am

Looking back over 2017’s activity, I see that I posted only four times.  Four posts!  Not too long ago I’d post four times a week.  So what’s happened?  After nearly sixty years of woodworking have I had enough?  Has “the muse” deserted me?  Perhaps.  But I doubt it.

The last twelve months have included a fair amount of travel and a move.  Yes, a move.  Gone are the days of being confined in my “little shed”, tripping over lumber, blowing fuses, etc.  The new abode includes a 2 1/2 car garage that will become the shop.  Of course there’s a fair amount of preparatory work to be done; insulating, heating, painting (white, white, white).  Then there’ll be new tills and racks to build, getting the lighting just right, sorting through boxes.  All that has to be complete before I can start back to work on a number of projects that remain unfinished.

While attempting to relocate the muse, I have made a few notes to myself:

1.  Running out of room for furniture – Hmm – What to do?

2.  Explore some areas of the craft that you’ve been away from for a while.

3.  Share as much information about “trade” geometry as possible.

Wherever the road takes me…

Categories: Hand Tools

Building Bench #18 – III

The Barn on White Run - Wed, 02/07/2018 - 5:37am

With the bench “assembled” I turned it over halfway and rough trimmed the bottoms of the legs. Even though I was handling it by myself, wrestling with a 350-pound behemoth is fairly straightforward if I am careful and make sure I am actually handling half or less of the total weight, which is the case if I am rolling or spinning it.  With the legs cut to rough length I rolled it the rest of the way over so I could work on flattening the top for a couple of hours.

With the bench on its feet, but on a rolling cart so I could move it easily,  I set about to installing the planing stop I had already glued up.  I planed it such that the fit was very tight, counting on a few humidity cycles to induce ccompression fit on both the stop and the mortise in which it resides in the hopes of establishing a nice firm fit in the end.  I’d wanted to put a full width (of the block) toothed tip on the stop but I did not have the piece of scrap steel in the drawer that could suffice so I just used what I had.  I filed the teeth, drilled and countersunk the holes for some honkin’ big screws and assembled the stop.  I also excavated the top of the bench so the entire assembly is flush.

photo courtesy of J. Rowe

photo courtesy of J. Hurn

With that I cut and affixed temporary(?) stretchers to the legs to support the shelf, Kreg screw style (without the Kreg jig), which on a decently built Roubo or Nicholson bench is the only functional purpose for stretchers.  If mortised stretchers are needed to stabilize the bench structure, it wasn’t built well enough.  Using scraps from the pile I cut and laid the shelf boards and attached the vise and for now, it was done.  Come summer I will flatten the top again and call it quits.  As it was the bench served my needs perfectly in Williamsburg to give me both a perfectly functioning work station and a focus for my sermon on workbenches and holdfasts,

Woodworking Is The Sport—Practice, Practise, Practice

Paul Sellers - Wed, 02/07/2018 - 3:55am

Craft Can Have Different Meaning Some times we lose sight of the meaning of craft. To some, perhaps most, it’s now become more a pastime—something you do when there is nothing to watch or you have nothing else to do. Schools have also succumbed to become somewhat dismissive of true craft to substitute what we […]

Read the full post Woodworking Is The Sport—Practice, Practise, Practice on Paul Sellers' Blog.

Categories: Hand Tools

almost no shop time.......

Accidental Woodworker - Wed, 02/07/2018 - 12:26am
My father-in-law is still in ICU and his condition is unchanged. The doctors think that when he fell last week that it was caused by a stroke he suffered then and there. He also has mild dementia and that is getting worse with each passing week. It makes me sad me that he doesn't recognize his wife of almost 70 years anymore. He won't be going home but will going into a nursing home when and if he is discharged. That and this hospitalization, is the only time that he has ever been apart from his wife.

When I got home I could have spent more time in the shop but I didn't. I was thinking of my wife's father and my father. He passed on when he was 69. I could have gone and seen him at the hospital the night he was admitted but my wife's best friend was his nurse and she said he needed to rest and I should come see him the following day. He died the next morning at 0625 and I never got to see him. Not going to see him when I could have is a regret that I still feel over 20 years later.

frog is done
It took me a few minutes to get going here.The sanding broke me out of my funk but I didn't get the plane put back together. No matter as I didn't have much interest in doing that. I got the frog face sanded with 400 and 600 grit. I believe I found another step to add to my rehabbing.

been a while since I posted a blurry pic
What the pic is attempting to show is the comparison between the knob on left with Autosol on it and the knob on the right which was done with Bar Keeps Best Friend. I'll be putting Autosol on the knobs from now on. I will clean them first with Bar Keeps and use Autosol on them. The Autosol imparts a much higher shine and regular readers know how much I like shiny things.

Autosol on the frog
The pic doesn't show it that well but this frog looks great. I can still see a few scratch lines here and there but the face is shiny. I think I could shave with this because I can see myself in it. This may seem like a wasted step because who will see it? Me, and I will know that I have done it. I think it is just one step in the whole of making the plane look as good as I possibly can.

rough looking heel ends
I tried to sand this with the 150 grit sanding stick and it just laughed at me. It barely sanded a bit on the top and bottom edge. I reached for file because Ive found it is quick and easy to file any parts of the plane.

less then a minute on each side
The roughness is gone and there is bit of shine. I sanded it with the 150 grit sandpaper and it looks better now. Not as shiny smooth as the toe but much better than what it looked it.

who knew?
I sanded the lever cap up to 600 grit but the shine isn't as good as the frog face or the plane body. It is better, to my eye, then the patina look it had previously. I have sanded the caps on past rehabs but it was to remove rust, not raise a shine. I finished the plane body sanding too but didn't do the Autosol. Decided to quit here for the night. The sun will still rise tomorrow, I think.

tote 80% ready, knob 0%
Looking at these two pieces of wood made me think of what would happen to them if my dance ticket got punched tonight? Would someone even bother to put the 4 1/2 back together? Would they even know what these are for? While I was eating dinner I realized that it wouldn't mean diddly squat to me. But as long as my dance card is still active it will.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
Did you know that Brazilian jockey Jorge Ricardo recently tied record holder Canadian jockey Russell Blaze with 12,488 wins?

Making Winding Sticks for Flattening Workbench Tops

Wood and Shop - Tue, 02/06/2018 - 5:29pm
WHAT ARE WINDING STICKS? Winding sticks are traditional tools used for aiding in flattening boards for furniture making. They help a woodworker know when there is "wind" or twisting in their board. With the introduction of power tools, the use of winding sticks has dwindled because the power jointer &

Storefront Open this Saturday (Feb. 10)

Lost Art Press: Chris Schwarz - Tue, 02/06/2018 - 4:30pm

10. Douro Chair with Case by Allen(1)

The Lost Art Press storefront in Covington, Ky., will be open this Saturday with lots of interesting stuff to try and to see. Here’s what you’ll find if you pay us a visit.

  • An authentic Douro chair. I’m studying this chair and its transit case for an upcoming commission. This chair is great fun. It fits inside its case. The case turns into a side table.
  • Lots of blemished books for 50 percent off retail. (Cash only, on these, please.) I’m picking up a sizable load of returned orders and books with dinged corners from our warehouse for the Saturday event.
  • Megan Fitzpatrick is finishing up a Dutch tool chest.
  • Brendan Gaffney is building a beguiling bookcase using persimmon panels that use “recording.”
  • The Electric Horse Garage is complete. We have HVAC, electricity, machines and no leaks. Our machine room is simple, but if you saw what we started with in September you might be impressed.

The storefront is at 837 Willard St. in Covington, Ky., and our hours Saturday are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

If you are looking for other fun stuff to do in the area this weekend.

  • Go on a tour of the New Riff Distillery (in Newport next door to Covington). It’s a gorgeous facility. Plus you should stop at Braxton Labs, next door to the distillery, and try some of the unusual beers they are cooking up.
  • Sunday is the final day for the Durer exhibit at the Cincinnati Art Museum. Totally free and totally awesome.
  • Get a cinnamon roll or brioche tart at Brown Bear Bakery in Over the Rhine, my new obsession.
  • Lil’s Bagels (the best bagels I’ve had outside New York) have opened a window on Greenup Street in Covington. Get there early because they sell out almost every day.

— Christopher Schwarz

Categories: Hand Tools

Drawer Fitting

David Barron Furniture - Tue, 02/06/2018 - 9:34am

I've been able to spend a little more time on the walnut chest and with the drawers glued up it was time to carefully fit each drawer. I made a nice tight drawer support from 1" ply, to ensure the thin sides were fully supported and didn't flex during planning, higher angle planes with a super tight mouth were needed to avoid tear out on the highly figured sides.


When I get close to the required fit I use sandpaper for final tuning, it's amazing how easy it is to go too far!

The drawers are fitted from the rear, this should enter quite easily as the rear is a shade wider than the front, see previous posts for the process.


The fit at this stage makes sure the drawer can come out of the front but still binds a little at the rear. Final fitting will be done with the drawer bottoms in place.


The walnut is looking gorgeous, I can't wait to get some finish on!


Categories: Hand Tools

Building Bench #18 – II

The Barn on White Run - Tue, 02/06/2018 - 5:05am

While the glue for the laminated slab was setting I turned my attention to the legs and their integral tenons.  As in previous efforts the three laminae of the leg are glued up with the center lamina off-set from the outer two by a distance equal to the thickness of the slab plus a smidge, using decking screws and fender washers as the clamping mechanism.  These are removed after they have done their duty.

If I did my layout and glue-up of the top slab correctly, and cut the dovetail pins accurately on the tops of the legs,  the double tenons are a perfect fit for the mortises already created in the top slab so all that is needed to put them together is a gentle tap to drive them home.  Since the bottoms of the legs need to be trimmed to matching lengths ex poste the protruding excess is no bother to me.

Before I do that, however, I de-clamp the slab after letting it sit overnight and spend an hour or so getting the underside flat enough to seat the legs evenly.  I do not care about the underside being smooth, merely flat.  A sharp scrub plane and fore plane make short work of it, as I said it was a little over an hour to get it to an acceptable point.

For this bench I did something I had not done before and remain unsure as to whether I would do it again.  Since I was installing a vintage screw and nut from my stash I decided to inset the nut into the back side of the front left leg, where the leg vise would be installed since I am right handed (if you are left handed it goes at the other end).  Doing this was no particular bother but I am unconvinced of its efficacy or necessity.  I also cut the through-mortise on the lower leg for the pin bar of the movable chop/jaw.

Before long I was assembling the bench and as you can see the space was ridiculously tight with not only this bench but two ripple molding machines being tuned up for the conference.  Since this is the only heated working space I have, everything that needed to be worked on for WW18thC was there.  It got to be pretty chaotic for a while.  I am not particularly tidy as a workman and that shortcoming becomes really evident at times like this.

At this point the bench was assembled and I was at the 12-hour mark for the project.

closing in on the 4 1/2......

Accidental Woodworker - Tue, 02/06/2018 - 1:17am
I have noticed a few issues with rehabbing so many tools lately. Doing this generates a lot of dirty, fine metallic dust. And I mean a lot of it. I have had 4 eye infections doing these and I'm sure it was from having dust on my fingers and wiping my nose or forehead. I said that I would wear gloves and dust mask but I wasn't very diligent in doing that. Another problem was getting the dust on my clothes and bringing it upstairs. That wasn't to bad of a problem but one plane I did, the dust it generated had a stench to it that would make a buzzard gag. So when I resume rehabbing in a few weeks I'll try to remember to use gloves, a dust mask, and wear a work apron.

from coat #1
Before I put on the second and final coat, I removed this from the sole.

ten seconds with 400 grit - you don't need a heavy grit
the body will be ready tomorrow
the frog is 99% done
I scraped the paint from the edges and sanded it with a 150 grit sandpaper stick.

trying toothpaste
I sanded this just enough to remove the paint. I am curious to see how toothpaste will work. I put it on the left side only so I could compare it to the right side.

I don't see an improvement
Both sides had scratches from the 150 grit I just used and the toothpaste didn't touch them. I also don't see a difference in shine between the two sides. I'm not giving up this yet and I'll try another brand of toothpaste. I am thinking maybe this sensitive toothpaste doesn't have much abrasive in it. I'll stop a Wally World and get a cleaning, whiting brand. That should have some abrasive in it.

WOW
 I didn't use Bar Keeps first but went right to the Autosol. The shine I got here is 10 times better than what I can get with Bar Keeps. I will try it on the rest of the knob and see how shines that up.

tote scraped and sanded to 120 grit
The tote and knob will hold up getting the 4 1/2 back together. I still have to scrape and sand the knob and spray on a few coats of shellac. I may hold off on the shellac because I bought some Tru-Oil and I should have it by thursday. Steve said that is what he uses on his tote and knobs so I may try it on this plane.

Stopped here because I got an email from my wife telling me that her father is in the ICU. The doctors said he had a stroke and has bleeding on the brain. We won't know anything for few days but it seems things aren't as serious as it seems. My fingers on crossed on this.

accidental woodworker

trivia corner
Did you know that baseball pitching great Sandy Koufax won a college athletic scholarship for basketball?

Repairing the Foot of a Walnut Table

MVFlaim Furnituremaker - Mon, 02/05/2018 - 7:32pm

A few weeks ago, my wife and I, were visiting thrift shops in Cincinnati when we ran across a round walnut table for $20.00 at Goodwill. There was nothing special about it. It had a dull flat finish and was missing the extension wings that go in the middle. It even had two feet that were broken. Anita asked me if I could remake them and I told her I could, so we took it home.

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In order to fix the feet, I grabbed some scrap walnut and glued pieces to them to re-sculpt the feet.

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Once the glue dried, I cut the arch of the foot with my band saw, then I sawed off the sides with a hand saw.

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Next, I stuck the leg on the lathe and turned the pad of the foot.

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I then brought the foot over to my workbench and carved the rest of the foot by hand using chisels and rasps.

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After shaping the foot was complete, I started to sand the leg with 80 grit sand paper working down to 220 grit.

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With the foot finished, I was happy with the way it turned out as it matched the other two. I then repeated the same steps for the other broken foot.

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Noticing the top was solid walnut, I decided to sand off the dull stained finish. You can see how bland the table was when we bought it.

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A few minutes of sanding, the table was really starting to shine again.

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After applying three coats of hemp oil, you can see how the table has been brought back to life having much more character between the sap and heart wood of the walnut. Looks much nicer than the boring spray toner stain that was on it before. This piece will be a nice addition in my wife’s booth as a display table.

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Makes Me Look Bad

Lost Art Press: Chris Schwarz - Mon, 02/05/2018 - 6:05pm

Lee Carmichael of Chattanooga, Tenn., sent me a link to a video yesterday. Lee purchased the Hancock Candle Stand video I did last year and has built several of these tables since.

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Lee has been woodworking as a hobby for the past fives years with the goal of building all of the furniture in his home. He and a friend made a short video of one of his table builds; it’s way cool.

 — Will Myers

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