Tools

Woodworking tools are useless until you learn how to use them efficiently. Whether you prefer hand tools or power tools, the editors of Popular Woodworking Magazine have collected the very best information on choosing and using tools of all kinds. Here you’ll learn a range of essential information from how to tune up simple hand tools to safe and smart power tools practices and advanced techniques taught by the trusted experts in the field.

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The Only Handplane You Need?

Editor’s note – This post and video originally appeared in The Wood Whisperer Guild, an innovative and high-quality website with tons of woodworking information. Many thanks to Marc Spagnuolo for making this paid content available for free on the Popular Woodworking site! Buy Marc’s book, “Hybrid Woodworking,” in our store for an exclusive video...

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3 Jigs for Handplaning

For many contemporary woodworkers the plane’s position as the iconic tool of woodworking has long since been replaced by the table saw, but for the traditional woodworker it remains our most important and most varied tool. One special advantage – apart from the pleasure and safety in using a plane rather than a machine...

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Soup Up a Veneer Saw with Mario Rodriguez

Once at a woodworking show, I witnessed Frank Pollaro making up veneered chess boards. He must have produced more than 30 pieces and each was perfect. The seams were tight and clean; there was no tear-out or split veneer. What impressed me most was that he was getting these results straight from his veneer...

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Diablo General Purpose & Crosscut Finish Blades

by Chuck Bender page 16 In recent years, Freud’s Diablo brand has become synonymous with high quality, high tech, reasonably priced circular saw blades; these new blades should only enhance that reputation. The D1040X (general purpose) and D1090X (fine crosscut) blades feature unique grind angles on the teeth. Both are alternating-top-bevel blades, but they...

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Arbortech TurboPlane & Mini-Turbo

by Chuck Bender page 14 If you are into sculpting wood or forming sculpted furniture parts, the Arbortech TurboPlane and Mini-Turbo are two tools that could make your work much easier. Although they are sold separately, they work well as a team. The TurboPlane is an easy-to-handle, relatively safe 4″-diameter power carver that fits...

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SuperMax 19-38 Drum Sander

Attention to detail makes this machine a top-quality addition to any shop. by Chuck Bender page 14 The first thing that comes to mind upon seeing the SuperMax 19-38 drum sander is the company’s focus on quality. It’s evident in everything from the castings to the precision-milled drum to the thoughtful placement of the...

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5 Mistakes Beginners Make with Block Planes

When I teach beginners, one of the most common phrases I hear is, “I cannot get this (insert tool name) to work. What’s wrong?” They hand the tool to me and the fun begins. Though block planes are dirt-simple handplanes, there are some important points about them that are rarely discussed in the literature....

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Tightening the ‘Stay-Set’ Chipbreaker

Last week I took my new Clifton No. 5 to teach a full-size toolchest class at The Woodworkers Club in Rockville, Md. Several of the students used it on their toolchests, which they made using cherry, pine or poplar. The plane did quite well – the iron stayed sharp through planing up an entire...

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How to Stop Your Rabbets from Sloping

Cutting a square rabbet with a rabbeting plane is a challenge for beginners; usually they cut a rabbet that slopes in toward the shoulder or away from the shoulder. When I teach people how to use a moving fillister plane, here are some tips I offer them to assist their efforts. 1. Don’t hold...