Popular Woodworking Tool Tests

Here you’ll find tool tests and reviews from the editors and writers of Popular Woodworking Magazine. Culled from woodworking articles, videos , and blogs, we put both hand tools and power tools through their paces so you’ll know which ones pass muster and which ones are better left on the shelf. Whether you want to stay up to date on the latest invention introduced to the woodworking world or are searching for the finest hand-made handplane being produced today, you’ll find it here, from a source you can trust.

Tool Test: Beadlock Pro

It’s a well-known fact that a mortise-and-tenon joint is the strongest woodworking joint (if it’s made correctly). On the web, there have been lengthy discussions about loose-tenon construction , creating mortises in the two mating pieces then installing a single loose tenon that fills both mortises. With an improvement to the Beadlock system, a...

New Jig Saw Blades From Bosch

Bosch has just announced the introduction of a revolutionary new blade for jigsaws. Designated the “T 308B Xtra Clean for Wood,” this blade promises , and delivers , better cuts than we have ever seen from a jigsaw. A couple months ago we received some samples for testing in our shop, and late yesterday...

Tool Test: Mortise Pal

While surfing around the woodworking sites, I found mention of this jig for cutting mortises. It’s a Mortise Pal (mortisepal.com). If you have a plunge router (weighing less than 12 pounds), a 5/8″ outside-diameter bushing and an upcut router bit, you can create mortises for mortise-and-tenon joints and loose-tenon joinery using a Mortise Pal....

Tool Review: Veritas Dovetail Saw Guide

Lee Valley Tools sent out a new product release for a guide used for cutting dovetails. It’s not really a new guide, but a new angle for the guide. The reconfigured Veritas 14Ã?º Dovetail Guide (05T0205) has a 14Ã?º-angle cut instead of the 7Ã?º or 9Ã?º slope that’s associated with the oft-quoted dovetail ratios...

Sharpening System in a Box

Norton IM83 Portable Waterstone Sharpening System I’m not the most organized person in the world. In fact, I’m without argument the messiest person in our office and shop. I do OK if there is a system in place that I can follow without thinking too much about it. But if there isn’t a place...

Tool Test: Craftsman Three-base Router Kit

In our June 2007 issue we reviewed two-base router kits. You can read the full review in Adobe PDF format by clicking here. One of the routers in the test, from Craftsman, was nearly identical to the router from Bosch. As summer ended, we began to get calls and e-mails from readers telling us...

Tool Test: Wooden Miter Plane from Philly Planes

Vintage wooden-bodied miter planes are fairly rare birds (at least in the Midwest), so I was quite eager to try a new one made by Philip Edwards in England. While I’m well-versed in metal-bodied miter planes, I had to educate myself a bit on the history of the wooden ones before putting Edward’s plane...

Tool Test: Veritas Small Plow Plane

Plow planes are workhorse of the hand-tool shop when it comes to cutting joints with a plane. With a plow plane you can, if you are so inclined, cut many of the important joints for a carcase: rabbets, grooves and even tongues. Before electric power tools became affordable, plow planes were even a status...

Glen-Drake Wild West Joinery Saw-New Idea in Sawing

I’m confident with most hand tools, except for the saw. I can go months without using a plane or chisel, pick one up and get the results I want. Not so with the saw. I don’t get enough practice to begin with so I make warm up cuts before making a critical cut, and...