Reader Questions

When readers ask us a question that we think others would like to read, we post it here, along with our answer.

Questions on Glue, Nails and Drawbores

Adrian Mariano writes: I just watched your DVD (“Forgotten Hand Tools” from Lie-Nielsen Toolworks) in which you advocate the use of nails and drawbores to overcome the flaws in the glue. And there were a couple things I was wondering about. One is the question of glue longevity. If I glue together a tabletop...

How Do I Sharpen a Rasp?

John Griffin-Wiesner writes: Thanks to your blog posting last week which alerted me to the closing of Auriou, I purchased my only three Auriou rasps. While explaining them to a non-woodworker friend on the phone he asked if rasps ever wear out or need sharpening. Huh. I never thought of sharpening a rasp. But...

If Roubo and Holtzapffel Designed Workbenches

Reader Wendell Wilkerson is designing a workbench and has combined elements of the Roubo-style Workbench from Issue 4 and the Holtzapffel Workbench from Issue 8. I think it looks a lot like the Dominy workbench at Winterthur (if you took off the iron end vise). He has a couple good questions, which are below,...

Strategies for Using Southern Yellow Pine

Question: When is your book on workbenches coming out? I read the    excerpts in your magazine this weekend and decided to purchase it before I attempt a bench of my own, I can’t wait. I have acquired some Southern Yellow Pine that I intend to use on my bench (it’s fire-rated 2 x...

Some Details of the Parallel Guide

Question: I’m watching your commentary on this one quite carefully: I’m planning to build a bench this year or next and have wondered about torsion boxes instead of slabs. Also, could you post a picture of the hinge at the bottom of that leg vise? - Karl Rookey It’s not really a hinge at...

Wedged Tenon v. Drawboring

Question: Looking over the current and past issues of Woodworking Magazine, I see how drawboring or wedging a mortise and tenon joint will improve the strength and fit of the joint.  But is there a reason to pick either drawboring or wedging over the other technique in terms of the strength or durability of...

About Holes and Cracks and Benches

Question: A couple of questions regards to my Roubo bench project: 1. Regarding laminating the top: I’m not the best laminator in the world. Ihave about a dozen small cracks on both top and bottom of the Southernyellow pine top. Tried filling them first with Titebond III, then Hot StuffSpecial T (sold at Lee Valley),...

Resharpening a Scraper Plane

Question: I’ve noted that you’ve recently mentioned that you’ve been looking into scrapers, so I thought that maybe you could answer a question that I have about scraper-plane blades.  Recently I acquired a Stanley #12 scraper plane and the three Lie-Nielsen scraper planes (modern versions of the Stanley #112, #85, and #212).  I am...

How Flat Should Benchtops Be?

Regarding benchtops, how flat is flat enough?  When I use winding sticks on my top, they line up, but it cups down its length by about 1/16″ at its center.  How anal should I be with this?   - Jason Myre Benchtop flatness seems more important for hand work than for machine work. If...