Feature Articles

Below, you’ll find the full text and images of free articles from past issues of Popular Woodworking Magazine – step-by-step project plans, how-to articles on hand tools and power tools, shop techniques, hand- and power-tool reviews, visits to incredible workshops, shop layout ideas and more. Plus, you’ll find free articles and videos our editors and contributing editors have written and filmed for our woodworking blogs on all things woodworking. Scroll down below to browse.

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‘Milkman’s Workbench’ Without Screws

The portable “Milkman’s Workbench” from the June 2013 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine has attracted a lot of attention, judging from the e-mail piling up in my Inbox. The No. 1 question: How can I build the bench without wooden bench screws? One answer: wedges. Reader Ilkka Sivonen of FInland built the bench without...

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SAPFM Demos at Lie-Nielsen Show, April 5-6 2013

The crates for the April 5-6 Lie-Nielsen Hand Tool Event arrived yesterday (thank you, kind neighbor, for your forklift help); it’s tempting to open them and dig into the bronze, wood and steel goodness inside. The free event is next Friday (10 a.m.-6 p.m.) and Saturday (10 a.m.-5 p.m.) in our office and shop,...

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Taming the Circle Cutter – the Tool I Love to Hate

Perhaps the headline should read “the tool I hate to love.” Every now and then I need something round, or an odd-sized hole, and I turn to the “adjustable circle cutter.” I know it as a “fly cutter” and it is never my first choice. It’s a simple device, but it looks scary, and...

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French Dovetails or Sliding Dovetails

Before I jump onto my soapbox to spout off, I’ll share a bit more about drawers for my upcoming workbench. I plan to have two stacks, each with five drawers. Sizes range from a small 2-3/16″-deep drawer to the deepest, bottom drawer at 3-3/8″ deep. My SketchUp drawing shows an exploded drawer, including how...

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American Trestle Table

One of the oldest designs for a dining table is also one of the most highly engineered and contemporary. But will its unusual dimensions work in a modern home?  By Christopher Schwarz From the Autumn 2006 issue of Woodworking Magazine Traditional trestle tables have a bit of an austere reputation. They show up in...

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For Fun: The Song of ‘Rooney O’Chisel’

This morning, I’m listening to the newest album from The Avett Brothers, “The Carpenter.” It’s a delightful acoustic and folky album, and as a bonus the CD cover looks like a traditional seal of a brotherhood of carpenters. (Listen to them perform the song here.) I’ve always liked songs about the craft, like Guy...

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One-Stop Shop for Furniture Design

All woodworkers know that improving their bench skills and learning new workshop techniques are necessary parts of becoming a better woodworker. Just as important but often overlooked, however, is developing your design skills. I’m always eager to improve my knowledge of furniture design and further develop my eye. Whether your tastes lean toward ornate...

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Don’t Leave Home Without Essential Layout Tools

Whenever I leave town to teach a woodworking class, I make two stops to pick up a supply of two essential things for project layout. The first stop is the office supply store for a box of Bic .5mm mechanical pencils. Next stop is the “big box home center” for a dozen lumber crayons....

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Cut Accurate and Clean Rabbets

By Christopher Schwarz From the Spring 2004 issue of Woodworking Magazine, pages 8-11 When I was taught to cut rabbets in my first woodworking class, we made them with two cuts on the table saw. You’ve probably seen this technique in books and magazines before. For the first cut, the work is flat on...