Hand Tools

And Now for the Chisel

Working on this little block has been an interesting experience, and I hope you’ll give it a try. Explaining it on the blog has made me think about a lot of basic things that have become habit over the years. The Gottshall block is a hand tool education, and one of the lessons is...

You Can Really Do That

One of the greatest moments in marketing history was the mass adoption of power tools following World War II. Before then, the standard thinking was that just about anyone could pick up a saw and cut a piece of wood. Within 20 years that notion became an eccentricity. If you want to sell anything...

Better Than a Knife

When you work with power tools, machine set up is everything. The quality of your joinery, and your entire project is based on your level of accuracy at that stage. With hand tools, layout is everything. You can’t depend on your table saw’s fence to make certain that every cut is the same, so...

Better Than a Pencil

One of the things that can overwhelm a beginning woodworker is the sheer number of choices to make about the simplest things. It doesn’t help that there is always someone waiting to tell you that there is a better, faster, easier, or morally superior way to do it. That improved method usually involves a...

Exercise in Layout and Marking

If you’ve taken the bait and are willing to make a Gottshall block, I suggest you ask yourself two questions before you start. What kind of woodworker do you want to be, and how will you know when you get there? There aren’t any right or wrong answers; this is something we do for...

Not a Problem

There is a T-shirt in the back of my closet with the phrase He Who Dies With The Most Tools Wins. We joke here about our various “problems”, as in “Chris has a saw problem”, and we get nutty some times when we learn about new tools, racing to get our orders in before...

Hand Tools for Power Tool Woodworkers

Confusing the Beginners-In Person I don’t make many personal appearances, but next Saturday, October 27, I will be at the Woodcraft store in Roswell, Georgia. I’ll be giving some presentations and hanging around to talk to people. If you’re in the area I hope you’ll find the time to stop by and say hello....

Confusing the Beginners-Another Tool List

I consider myself fortunate to share the Popular Woodworkingshop with two world-class woodworkers , Christopher Schwarz and Glen D. Huey. After many years of working mostly by myself, it’s refreshing to see approaches and techniques that are different from mine yet work just as well, or even better. As an old dog, it’s nice...