Reader Questions

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

Tips on Fore Planes and Flattening Panels

I recently bought your “Coarse, Medium, and Fine” DVD, from Lie-Nielsen. I wanted to thank you for it, I found it very informative and useful. I have two questions: 1. Would a low-angle jack plane qualify as a coarse plane for basic work, if used diagonally cross grain, with a cambered blade, and a...

Spray Finishing: Siphon Feed or Gravity Feed?

What kind of sprayer do you recommend for applying a lacquer finish: gravity or siphon feed? Could you use the same sprayer for applying a stain? Thanks for your time and keep up the outstanding work on the Woodworking Magazine and blog. - Andrew Craig, Portland, Oregon I use a siphon-feed cup-gun sprayer, which...

Introducing the Future to the Past

Louis Bois is a lucky guy. Recently he purchased the beautiful carver’s vise shown above, which was made by the French firm Forge Royale. He’s been looking for background information on the vise and the manufacturer and has come up empty-handed. But there’s hope. Back in 1981, The Mid-West Tool Collectors Association reprinted a...

Roubo Workbench? Nope. Call it the Rob-O

Robert Giovannetti of Crystal Lake, Ill., built a Roubo-style workbench like the one featured in the Autumn 2005 issue. He wasn’t completely satisfied with its workholding properties and sold the bench to an eager buyer. Then this week he sent me photos of his latest workbench, which incorporates details from many workbenches. He likes...

Tweaking the Roubo Bench While the Glue Dries

I continue to get a letter about every other day about the Roubo-style workbench I built for the Autumn 2005 issue. I’ve been trying not to clog up the weblog with too much Roubo stuff, but as the glue dries on the web frame in the Creole Table this morning, I thought I should...

Getting Started in Old Hand Planes

I am just now starting to acquire the tools necessary to do some woodworking, but the money is very tight right now; so I’ve started looking some local flea markets. I was recently one of the largest local flea markets and there was a vendor that had several old planes. And I have some...

Can I Alter the Base of the Roubo Bench?

Question: I’ve been using sawhorses and an old door for a few years and curse every time I start a project that I need a real bench. So I’ve been mulling over my options for some time and have decided that I needed to build my own bench because I thought ready made benches...

An Update on the Roubo Bench

I’m getting about a letter a day from people interested in building (or taking me to task) for the Roubo-style workbench shown in Issue 4. Reader Dan Chaffin, a furniture maker in Louisville, Ky., had three good questions about the base, then bench stop and the holdfasts that have come up a few times...

More Questions About the Roubo Workbench

Question: I am a beginner woodworker, so I don’t have a workbench yet. I’ve been looking and wondering if I should make my own bench or buy a starter one. Then I read your article and found that doesn’t seem to be too hard to actually build one. I need a table saw, a...