Woodworking in America

October 1st, 2011 9 comments

Day two of Woodworking in America was as good as expected! Much was learned and much fun was had. Hand tool Olympics, done, with much heckling 🙂 Read more…

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Preparing for WIA

September 27th, 2011 7 comments

A few months ago I somehow got conned into participating in the Hand Tool Olympics at WIA, and whats more I’m part of a blogger team; I’m sorry Ian and Steven. Seeing as most of my hand tool woodworking involves Japanese saws I’m kind of the team handicap. (did I mention I’m sorry guys?)

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Blogger Community Party at WIA

September 23rd, 2011 8 comments

Come one! Come all! Please come hang out with us, we need friends! 🙂

A small group of ruffians spent much of last years Woodworking in America conference hanging out together. So much so, that George Walker called us out as the “American Chopper crew”; for whatever reason, I guess we look disreputable to the design master.

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DIY wooden iPhone Dock

September 8th, 2011 9 comments

I finally made the leap from a desktop as my main computer to a laptop.

I’ve been waiting ever since the 11″ MacBook Air was introduced, for Apple to put a decent processer in it. Finally that time as come and I jumped in and grabbed an i7 11″ Air.

Unfortunately my desk needs some rearranging to work with my new mobile lifestyle. I had to dump one of my monitors, and I need to make a stand to raise and angle my Air a bit, and maybe mount a few USB peripherals, we’ll see…

I haven’t had much time in the shop this summer as I’ve been building a coop for our ducks, managing a large garden and doing numerous outdoor things; but I had an itch to work with some hardwood so I decided to throw together a quick iPhone dock. I had some scrap Wenge and Cherry laying around so here is a quick gallery of the process. Read more…

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The most important tool in any shop

January 19th, 2011 2 comments

It’s my contention that there is only 2 tools you MUST HAVE in any woodworking shop.

1. A saw of some kind (Sure you could probity cut wood with a chisel but it sure would take a long time, and while I’m pretty good with a hatchet a saw is a lot more versatile). If I only had one saw to choose from I would grab a 240mm Ryoba (Is it cheating that it’s 2 saws in one? :-D).

2. A workbench

Thousands of articles and books have been written on the subject and I’m certainly not an expert. If you want the current definitive book on the subject, go grab “Workbenches: From Design And Theory To Construction And Use” by the master himself, “The Schwarz”.

Long story summed up:

1. You need something relatively flat.
2. You need to be able to secure your work to the bench
3. You don’t want to bench to move or flex while you are working

Since I started on this woodworking journey almost 2 years ago I’ve made do with a 2×4 construction lumber table that was screwed to the wall.

As I started down my journey of hand tool usage I quickly found defecates and came up with solutions to those defecates.

Using the principles found in Fine Woodworking’s Getting Started in Woodworking video series I was able to add an MDF laminated top and a quick release vice.  That bench served me very well and I was able to get started for less than $100.

Due to a recent move I was forced to leave my starter bench behind attached to old house. Luckily for me the original owner and builder of our new house was a woodworker and left this great bench! (that’s a Stanley #608 jointer on there for size reference)

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