PWM Shop Blog

The PWM Shop Blog (formerly called the Editors’ Blog) is your reliable source of woodworking information, videos and advice from seasoned woodworkers, and the best place to learn the latest happenings in the woodworking industry and the woodworking online community.

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Woodworking Contest

Enter Your Best – You Could Win $1,000

Just a reminder that the submission deadline for the 2015 PWM Excellence Awards is June 14 (voting will open for the Readers’ Choice winner from June 17-24). In short: There is no entry fee – the only thing you have to lose is a few minutes work by filling out a form. You can...

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Don’t Play the Cards, Play the Person…

Scene: Mid-project in a chest-build class. Stage focus, a single bench with a busy student. Commotion all around at other benches just outside the lighted center stage. (Instructor enters from shadow stage right, voice heard before being seen) Instructor: Be sure to focus on your line, sawing to the waste side, keeping your dominate...

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Crazy Low Prices – Good for You (But I think It’s Insane)

OK…I’ve been tasked with letting everyone know that through Sunday, we’re running a 40-percent off, “Friends and Family Sale” at ShopWoodworking.com (and all other FW Community online stores: WritersDigestShop.com; NorthLightShop.com (art in all mediums), MyDesignShop.com (graphic design); and many more – you can find the full list on our corporate site at fwcommunity.com). The...

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Curve Challenged?

Draw a straight line on a piece of paper. If it’s easier, put two dots on the paper and connect them. Not too bad, right? Now draw a circle. Freehand, no compass or tracing the bottom of a can. Does it look like a circle? Not as easy as a line. I remember trying...

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I am a Hopeless Antiquarian

I’ll just come out and say it: I’m a hopeless antiquarian. For those of you who already know me, that will come as no surprise – but you should know it wasn’t always that way. My fascination with all things pre-industrial didn’t blossom into its present potency until I attended the National Institute of...

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Handplanes, Handplanes, Handplanes

“Handplanes” is the third-most common topic of question we get at the magazine. (First is “workbenches”…specifically, “What wood should I use to build one?”* Second is “finishing.”) For those just getting into to handplanes, I usually recommend Christopher Schwarz’s article, “Coarse, Medium & Fine” (which first appeared in Woodworking Magazine, and is included in...

Marking Knives legend

An Intro to Marking Knives: Part One

Among the first woodworking tools that I bought were two marking knives. In this entry I will talk about those first knives and the way I use them. In the coming entries, I will show other knives that I own and demonstrate how even a simple utility knife can do a good marking job,...

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Woodworking in America 2015: Kevin Drake

For Kevin Drake, founder of Glen-Drake Toolworks and creator of the Tite-Mark marking gauge, the most important factor for successful woodworking is what happens before the tools touch the wood. Understanding how tools work, and constant practice, is the real secret to becoming a better woodworker – and it took careers unrelated to woodworking...

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A Visit with Toshio Odate

Most of last week, I was in Connecticut to film a video with teacher, sculptor, author, artist and woodworker (also, excellent chef) Toshio Odate, along with our video editor, David Thiel, and studio manger Ric Deliantoni. I’d prepared (of course) a long list of questions and subjects to discuss with Toshio…but when we turned...