Paring

Opening My Mouth

Whatever step I take next in this process of making a jack plane (see part 1 here), I like to have my muse close by and through looking at then trying to replicate, I gain more respect for the tool making art. From a distance the simple rectilinear form of jack, try and jointer...

A miter shooting board with added shimmable faces.

Beyond the Vise: Miter Shooting Board

Many shop-made workholding devices for hand tools can be fairly crude, made quickly from scraps. Shooting boards aren’t like that. They’re precision instruments, and need to be made with care. Because they act as reference guides, any errors in their alignment will result in errors in your work. Miter shooting boards are particularly tricky...

Face Vice 1

The Least Popular Vise

When I built my bench I wanted a cost effective vise that I could build myself. I had a choice between the popular leg vise or the less-liked face vise. One thing I was sure about was that I did not want a leg vise with a pin. I know there are some clever...

A square planing board, bench hook style.

Beyond The Vise: Planing Boards

On several occasions I’ve taught hand tool woodworking in locations that weren’t really setup for it. The challenge I faced was hand planing workpiece faces on tables or workbenches that didn’t accommodate the operation. My solution was a planing board. I’ve seen several different styles. A sticking board is a particularly specialized one, long...

Intro_Moxon_Workbench

Moxon Vise Omnibus

The title of this post is a bit of a misnomer; there’s simply not time enough for me to track down and link to everything we have written about the Moxon vise, or the many posts on other sites about the same. But I’ve taken a  stab at it, because at least once a...

FORP_overall_IMG_0098

Happy Birthday, You Big French Baby

It usually takes a year for a new workbench to settle down, and for me to put enough hours at it to form a half-decent opinion. Every bench has plusses and minuses. I’ve never encountered a bench that was 100-percent perfect. And I’ve never encountered a bench that was 100-percent crap. (OK, that last...

wierix1_IMG_8746

Build a Wierix Square, Step 1

A customer asked me to make a Wierix try square for him this week, and because it’s silly to make just one wooden square, I’m making a batch of five this week and am documenting the process here on the blog. If you don’t know what a Wierix square is, it’s an old style...

threadbox_German_IMG_8718

Threadboxes: One More Song the Radio Won’t Like

Whenever I write about threadboxes, my personal blog gets swamped with spam from the Pacific Rim. So batten down the firewalls, mateys. I started writing about the Moxon double-screw vise in 2010 (original post here) and have made many of them using a threadbox and tap that you can buy from many reputable woodworking...

planing_door_IMG_8470

Do it With Your Mortise Full

Here’s a basic trick for planing up the rails and stiles for your doors. If you use power sanders, move along quietly to some other blog entry. The random-orbit sander was pretty much invented to solve this problem that occurs in traditional work. So you’ve cut the joinery on your rails and stiles and...