Author Archives: Megan Fitzpatrick

About Megan Fitzpatrick

Megan is the editor and content director of Popular Woodworking Magazine. She prefers using hand tools because they rarely make loud noises. Unless they fall off the bench.

The 2014 Fred West Memorial Tool Chest

Fred West Commemorative Tool Chest Giveaway

If you’re a hand-tool woodworker, you have – at least in large part– Fred West to thank for the astounding number of high-quality hand tools available today, though you may not know it. But if you’re a maker of high-quality hand tools, there’s little doubt you had the pleasure of knowing Fred. Fred was...

Furlongs of tools

The Lee Valley Tools Collection

Last week, I took a quick trip to Ottawa to visit Lee Valley’s headquarters for a press event – and gosh do I wish I could spread the news, but I can’t…yet. There will be a couple of “reveals” in the near future for the company, the first at the 2014 International Woodworking Fair...

Jay Gaynor, from a 2005 article, "A History of Historic Trades," in the Colonial Williamsburg Journal.

Jay Gaynor: A Brief Remembrance

I am sad to report that Jay Gaynor, director of Historic Trades at Colonial Williamsburg since 2001, died today (July 31, 2014). Jay was formerly the curator of Mechanical Arts at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, which he joined in 1981. Prior to that, he was co-owner of Jamestown Tool Co., makers of reproduction 19th-century...

The process for making a strike button includes turning a dowel, parting off buttons and drilling the button hole with a center bit.

Strike-button Repair for Woodies

In the October 2014 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine (which mails to subscribers in about a week), Bill Anderson has an article on common fixes for vintage wooden planes – in other words, we want to encourage you to get those wooden planes off the shelf, fix them up as needed and start using...

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Handle with Care

Make your own door and drawer pulls for a custom finishing touch on your work. by Gary Rogowski from the February 2012 issue, #195 pages 36-39 It’s the grip that counts. A limp handshake is as bad as a poorly designed handle. OK – that’s a stretch. But there is something to a well-designed...

The Lie-Nielsen facility, in Warren, Maine (at 6:30 a.m. on Friday, July 11; the drive up from Portland didn't take as long as I thought it would).

Lie-Nielsen Open House Slide Show

Apologies for the delay in posting this; I took a few days’ vacation in Maine after the Lie-Nielsen Open House, then the last 10 days or so to catch up (well, to try to catch up…I’m not quite yet there). A lot of folks have e-mailed with questions about new tools on the horizon...

Carl Bilderback

Thank You Carl Bilderback

Among the many great people I’ve met while on staff at Popular Woodworking Magazine (PWM), one of my favorites is Carl Bilderback. Carl is a retired carpenter who has extraordinary skills with both hand and power tools (and he has vast collections of both), and a deep and abiding passion for the craft. He’s...

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Almost-forgotten Handsaw Tricks

by Carl Bilderback pages 64-65 from the October 2006 issue This article also appears in the book “Handsaw Essentials.“ About 35 years ago I was using a handsaw in what I considered the usual method: Cut, blow the sawdust off my pencil line and then cut some more. The foreman on the job was...

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A Guitar Stand of Clever Design

At the Lie-Nielsen open house last weekend, luthier Patrick Sebrey, of Union, Maine, brought along a clever maple guitar stand on which he put the finishing touches during the two days of technique and tool demos. At first glance, I thought the piece was a musical instrument — perhaps a variation on a harp...