Western and Eastern tools might not be as different as you think.
By Bob Rozaieski & Wilbur Pan
From the April 2011 issue #189
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At first glance, Japanese woodworking tools and techniques seem like the platypus of the woodworking world. Beginning in the Edo period in the early 1600s, Japan isolated itself from the rest of the world, especially the West. A policy of Sakoku meant that no foreigner could enter Japan and no Japanese could leave the country – under penalty of death in either case. This policy continued for more than 200 years until the mid 1800s, when Commodore Matthew Perry forced the opening of Japan to the West.
Blog: Visit the Logan Cabinet Shoppe and view hand-tool podcasts.
Blog: Wilbur’s blog, “giant Cypress,” often discusses Japanese tools.
To buy: “Japanese Woodworking Tools: Their Tradition, Spirit, and Use” by Toshio Odate.
In our store: “The Care and Use of Japanese Woodworking Tools: Saws, Planes, Chisels, Marking Gauges, Stones.”