Personal Favorites

When we like something – a tool, a book or a web site – we tag it as one of our “Personal Favorites.” That’s what you’ll find here. Whether it’s from our Editor’s Blog or a woodworking article from the magazine, you’ll find it here. We may rant about a sandpaper that really is worth twice the price of any other, a piece of furniture that strikes us piece of furniture that in just the right way, or a great price on one of our favorite books500 Year Old Shaving Horses , you’ll find it here.

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A Visit to the Famous Maine Tool Barn

The first rule of buying old tools: If you think you might buy it, grab it. You can always put it back. So today I did a dumb thing. I spent a couple hours at the Hulls Cove Tool Barn in Maine with Joshua Klein, a woodworker and furniture restorer. That, however, wasn’t the...

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Building Roubo’s Campaign Bed at Fort Ticonderoga

Anyone who has read this blog for more than a week knows I have a thing for campaign-style furniture and the work of André Roubo, the 18th-century French woodworker and writer. Like many other 18th-century furniture writers, Roubo wrote a bit about campaign-style furniture, including beds, tables and chairs. I hope to build one...

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Work in Tight Spaces without Special Tools

When you have to work inside a carcase, there are a wide variety of specialty tools on the market – such as right-angle drills and drawer-lock chisels – to make your life easier. I try to keep a small tool kit. Not because I’m a tightwad. I’m not. But I travel a lot and...

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A New Cornerstone: The Bridge City TS-2v2 Try Square

Last year, I spent several weeks editing a museum book for Bridge City Tool Works: “Quality is Contagious: John Economaki & Bridge City Tool Works, 36 Years Through the Lens of Joe Felzman.” It might just be the most gorgeous woodworking book ever published – and I’ve published some pretty ones myself. As I...

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Next up: The Douro Chair

You would think that after 30 months of researching and building campaign furniture, I’d be ready to build something else. Such as something that didn’t collapse, fold or have copious amounts of brass hardware. But no. I am nuts for the Douro chair. It’s a reclining chair with leather cushions, yet it pre-dates the...

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Book Review: ‘Woods in British Furniture-Making’

I try to keep Adam Bowett’s book “Woods in British Furniture-Making 1400-1900” closed tight as much as possible. That’s because every time I open it, I lose at least an hour of my day reading a section of the book that I hadn’t yet discovered. “Woods in British Furniture-Making 1400-1900” (Oblong Creative, 2012) is...

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My Screwdriver’s Little Brother

At Christmas, my preference would be to receive nothing. But that’s not an option with my wife and kids. The kids got me some stickers for my tool chest (Johnny Cash, Foo Fighters and Nirvana). My wife bought me 12 beers I’d never tried before, she replaced some worn out socks and bought me...

The Proud & Unplugged, WIA 2013: Far Back, L-R/: Isaac Blackburn-Blackburn Tools; Raney Nelson-Daed Toolworks; Dave Jeski-Blue Spruce Toolworks; Joe Steiner-Sauer & Steiner Toolworks. Next Row, L-R: Deneb Puchalski-Lie-Nielsen Toolworks; Thomas Lie-Nielsen-Lie-Nielsen Toolworks; Christopher Schwarz-Lost Art Press; Scott Meek-Scott Meek Woodworks; Ron Hock-Hock Tools; Robin Lee-Lee Valley/Veritas; Next Row, L/R: Rhett Fulkerson-Nice Ash Planes; Matt Evans-Evans Wooden Screw Co.; Geoffrey Noden-Adjust-A-Bench; after Geoffrey and in front of Scott and Ron: Fred West; then, (tall in green long sleeves) Tony Strupulis-Raven’s Edge Toolworks; Front Row, L-R: Kylie-Gramercy Tools; Ben Selzer-Tools for Working Wood & Gramercy Tools; Katie Fulkerson-Nice Ash Planes; Mark Harrell and his beautiful daughter-Bad Axe Tool Works; Nick Dombrowski-Lake Erie Toolworks; Mark Hicks-Plate 11 Bench Co.; Seated: Joel Moskowitz–Tools for Working Wood & Gramercy Tools.
Photo courtesy of Linda Rosengarten, Hock Tools

A Tribute to the Patron of the Hand Tool World

One of the unseen forces in the modern renaissance of hand tool manufacturing is Fred West, a woodworker from West Chester, Pa. Well, to be more precise, you might not know who Fred is, but anyone who makes or sells hand tools in North America knows him on sight. Fred is clearly fascinated by...

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The Fear-Love Spectrum of Finishing

Every time I purchase lacquer at a professional paint store, I have the following conversation. Me: “Could you put that gallon in the paint-mixing machine for a couple minutes? That will save me some time.” Employee: “I’ll do it, but you won’t like it. You’ll create bubbles in the finish.” Me: “I’ll risk it.”...