During the Woodworking in
America conference, several readers brought along some boards of nasty
wood for me to try to tame during my lecture on scraper planes. I was
able to plane or scrape all the woods, except for one.
Texas ebony. Also known as the dreaded Ebenopsis ebano. Just seeing that taxonomic nomenclature gives me heebies.
I couldn’t plane the stuff (though planemaker Ron Brese managed it with
one of his supertools). At the end of the conference, the reader who
brought the wood, Steven Schafer, promised to send me a pallet load of
the stuff for me to play with.
I laughed. People promise me lots of stuff. Beer. Their first-borns. Weasel pelts.
But dang if Mr. Schafer didn’t come through. This morning on our loading dock was the pallet he promised with a quick note.
Funny guy, Mr. Schafer.
— Christopher Schwarz