Chris Schwarz's Blog

Getting Ready for Woodworking in America

For the last few weeks I’ve been joking around that our woodshop has turned into a sweatshop. As of this morning, I don’t think that joke is funny any more.

For the last few weeks the staff, lead by Senior Editor Robert W. Lang, has been building all the appliances and jigs that the instructors need for the hands-on clinics at our Woodworking in America conference next week. Oh, and we’ve also been milling the lumber that the attendees will be sawing, chopping, paring and planing.

There are bench hooks, planing boards, saw-filing vises and myriad other jiggery piled up everywhere in the shop. The jigs were built using poplar we had in the wood rack, ash left over from Lang’s “21st Century Workbench” and even some cherry buried in the bottom of the rack that I’d bought to build my wall-hung tool chest.

I’m glad to see that cherry go, actually. As part of the deal I struck with the seller years ago, I bought 90 board feet of low-quality stuff to buy a load of amazingly wide, clear and beautiful black cherry.

We’ve enlisted everyone, from Publisher Steve Shanesy on down to Drew DePenning, our associate editor for the web, to help screw, nail and glue parts together. Thanks to all the help, I’m sure we’re going to make our deadline. That is, as soon as I get my hinder away from the computer and screw together about 38 saw-filing vises.

Or maybe we’re not done yet. This morning 250 board feet of poplar arrived at our loading dock. Maybe there are more jigs to build.

– Christopher Schwarz

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2 thoughts on “Getting Ready for Woodworking in America

  1. Christopher Schwarz

    Actually, two or three of the jigs will show up in our Jig Journal column in Popular Woodworking, including the saw-filing vise and the cool planing board that Bob developed.

    Chris

  2. .

    Will you be posting drawings for any of the jigs? Specifically, I’m interested in the saw-filing vise. I’m guessing it’s better than the one I cobbled together several years ago.

    Thanks!

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