October 2016 #227

The October issue features round, lidless Shaker boxes with a contrasting rim. Shaker expert John Wilson steps you through the process of making this classic, and almost forgotten, traditional form.

In “Soap: Making a Clean Finish,” Christopher Schwarz shows you a traditional Danish surface made from soap. Both safe and simple, this soap finish will give your next project a soft and subtle sheen!

Build an elegant, versatile tote suitable for hauling everything from hand tools to handicrafts. Striking joinery and bent lamination and make this project one to carry with pride.

If you like tuning up old handplanes, Jameel Abraham has your next challenge in “‘Old Arn.’” Learn about finding and restoring old woodworking machinery – just don’t get too addicted to this satisfying area of interest and neglect building!

Joshua Klein shows you how to paint with beer and sets a shellacked chest on fire as he teaches about grain painting, an ancient technique for high-class ornamentation on a peasant’s income.

In “Tool Test,” you’ll read about Wood Turners Wonders’s Super Nova magnetic lathe lamp, David Barron’s magnetic dovetail guide and the new 14” Bayonet Precision Carcase Saw from Bad Axe Toolworks.

Learn about using a story stick with Peter Follansbee in “Arts & Mysteries”; Bob Flexner teaches you how to deal with white water rings in “Flexner on Finishing”; in “Design Matters,” look at doors and the lessons they teach us with George Walker; Vic Tesolin talks about the advantages of woodworking as a hobby over a career in “End Grain”; and more!

Rediscover a Shaker Classic

A rim and box in contrasting species is an elegant eye-catcher. by John Wilson pgs. 28-33 Open boxes, as useful as they are attractive, were not made to hold sweets for the table. Instead, they were for something that makes me wince: expectoration of chewing tobacco. These round open boxes with rims were filled...

Soap: Making a Clean Finish

This traditional finish from Denmark is simple, safe and tactile. by Christopher Schwarz pgs. 34-38 When I tell fellow woodworkers and customers that I use soap as a finish on some of my tables and chairs, they think I’m joking. Then, when I pull out a Mason jar filled with soap finish to show...

Finger-joined Tote

An elegant exercise in bent lamination and joinery. by Bill Heidt pgs. 39-43 When I started taking woodworking classes, I needed a convenient way to carry my tools. After looking for just the right toolbox, I decided to design something to meet my specific needs with some elements of style and craftsmanship to make...

‘Old Arn’

Finding and restoring vintage shop machinery. by Jameel Abraham pgs. 44-49You pick up an old handplane at the local flea market. You clean it, flatten the sole, tune the adjusting mechanism, hone the iron to a frightful edge. That first shaving. You know the one. Full length, full width, the sound. You are grinning...

‘According to Fancy’

by Joshua Klein pgs. 50-55 When most people think of period furniture, they think of high-style carving or inlay. This hyper-focus on exceptional examples skews our impression of pre-industrial life. The truth is, very few people lived with that kind of refinement. Far more common were simplified, vernacular representations of forms in vogue in...

Revisionist History

by Megan Fitzpatrick pg. 8 For an upcoming issue, I’m working on what will be – what was supposed to be, anyway – my first pure reproduction. That is, instead of my oft-used approach of adapting and designing a piece or style to meet specific needs (e.g., my Shaker-inspired coffee table from the August...

Super Nova Magnetic Lathe Lamp

Three LEDs and a 30″ flexible neck deliver durable, excellent task lighting. by Rob Porcaro pg. 16 Good lighting can make a big difference in the quality of your woodworking, especially hand-tool work. Without it, there is little hope of accurately sawing to a layout line. It is also key in evaluating a surface...

David Barron Magnetic Dovetail Guide

by Megan Fitzpatrick pg. 18 If you’re struggling for cut perfection on your dovetails (or you’re just learning to cut this important joint), a magnetic dovetail guide from U.K.-based furniture maker and teacher David Barron is just the ticket. These guides are made of sturdy anodized aluminum and feature recessed rare-earth magnets – covered...

Tool Test: Bad Axe ‘Bayonet’ Precision Carcase Saw

by James McConnell pg. 18 If there is any remaining question in the hand-tool world regarding the all-around capabilities of carcase saws, Mark Harrell has offered a definitive answer with the introduction of the new 14″ Bayonet Precision Carcase Saw from Bad Axe Tool Works. The Bayonet is both fast and deadly accurate. With...