Dados for Lunch – Yum!

I got a good start on my kitchen island over the weekend…but then Monday came along and work intruded. Loath to let my momentum falter, I decided on sawdust for lunch instead of my usual diet of Diet Coke and pretzels. So I headed to the shop to cut the dados for the two...


12 Rules for Tool Chests

Christopher Schwarz has produced some terrific blog posts recently on the topic of hand tool storage. For those of you who read those posts and decide to build a traditional tool chest, the following excerpt from the Chris Schwarz archives may be very helpful. It provides some additional depth on each of the key...


Lie-Nielsen Open House (and a Crazy Dutch Chest)

Last weekend I attended the Lie-Nielsen Open House at the company’s factory in Warren, Maine, and got to hang out with a lot of contributors to Popular Woodworking Magazine and work together on an unusual Dutch Tool Chest. What’s a Dutch Tool Chest? Check out the October 2013 issue to find out. Every year,...

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In the Arms of the Angles (Rake, That Is)

Even if you care nothing for backsaws, I urge you to watch the video below to the sad, bitter end. And as you do, imagine Sarah McLachlan’s plaintive voice saying, “Won’t you help?” (To see the actual promo video for “Super-tune Your Backsaw with Matt Cianci,” visit — Megan Fitzpatrick


Free Video of the Month – How to Use a Bench Hook

Christopher Schwarz begins this classic, free and highly necessary instructional video by saying, “If you have a backsaw, you need a bench hook.” Take a few minutes to watch and learn the following details on using this basic hand-tool jig: 1. Make accurate crosscuts 2. Use the bench hook fence properly for western backsaws...


3-Legged Stool in 2 Days (or 1.5)

Bob Lang’s “Make a 3-Legged Stool” video shoot and class is moving along at breakneck speed – not because we need to rush through it, but because all the class participants are doing so well. Yesterday, Bob walked the nine students through the layout – which is in my opinion by far the trickiest...


Eat Ice Cream, Build a Shaker Side Table

I’ll be at the Marc Adams School of Woodworking in Franklin, Ind., to teach “Make a Simple Shaker Side Table” on Sept. 21-22, and I plan to eat soft serve ice cream from Marc’s always-available supply for lunch both days. There are still a few open seats; I hope you’ll join me. The class...


First Look: Bad Axe ‘American Kid’ Backsaw

Among the things I like about Mark Harrell’s Bad Axe saws is that there is a wide range of customization options on what are essentially production tools. That is, not only can you choose your filing and from among several plate thicknesses, you can also select from among back materials and colors, saw nuts...


(W)racked with Indecision

I don’t know why, but I didn’t like the idea of a saw till on the floor of my tool chest full across the front, walled off from the rest of the floor space (like what Christopher Schwarz installed in his “Anarchist’s Tool Chest“). Instead, I put my panel saws on the underside of...