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PWM Shop Blog

Formerly called the Editors’ Blog, these articles offer hands-on advice, woodworking tips and techniques from the editors and contributing editors of Popular Woodworking Magazine


This blog includes free videos, tool reviews we didn’t have room for in the printed magazine and tidbits of the day-to-day life here at the magazine and in the world of woodworking.


Chris Schwarz
Chris Schwarz RSS FeedRead Chris’ Blog »

Chris Schwarz Blog

Contributing editor Christopher Schwarz is a long-time amateur woodworker and professional journalist. He built his first workbench at age 8 and spent weekends helping his father build two houses on the family’s farm outside Hackett, Ark.— using mostly hand tools. Despite his early experience on the farm, Chris remains a hand-tool enthusiast.

Chris’s blog focuses mostly on hand tools and hand work. Chris also writes short tool reviews, book reviews and generally gets the inside scoop on new hand tool introductions before other blogs.


Chris Schwarz
Arts & Mysteries RSS FeedRead Adam’s Blog »

Arts & Mysteries with Adam Cherubini

Arts & Mysteries is one of our most-read columns in Popular Woodworking Magazine. Whether you sympathize with Adam Cherubini’s approach to working wood entirely with hand tools or think he’s simply a glutton for punishment, I think we all can agree on one thing: Adam’s column is never boring.
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Wooden Tool Box

Portable Tool Box Build

After posting this image of a tool box on Facebook, I soon had many comments such as, “Made one of these 30-odd years ago at college during my apprenticeship,” and “Made one of those in 1975 before I went to uni.” Freddy Roman had also picked one up. It’s not a common design within the...

planing_seat_IMG_1187

A (Still) Better Way to Plane Chair Seats

For many years I’ve used the following trick to plane irregular-shaped objects: Screw a square block to the underside of the piece and then clamp that block in my face vise. It’s a trick that I showed in my 2007 book “Workbenches: From Design & Theory to Construction & Use.” (Psst, the second edition...

what do you call a group of woodworkers contest

What Do You Call a Group of Woodworkers? A ’Grove!’

Thanks to Bill Lattanzio, we now have a collective noun to describe a gathering of woodworkers – a “grove.” Bill was the first of several readers who suggested “grove” as the most appropriate term for a group of woodworkers. The blue-ribbon task force advisory panel steering committee I chaired also selected “grove” as the winning...

A Veritas Bevel-up Jointer Plane, a.k.a an Olympic prize

The Hand Tool Olympics: Sawdust, Fun & $2,500 in Prizes

London, 2012 – Usain Bolt runs the 100-meter dash in 9.63 seconds. Mexico City, 1968 – Bob Beamon flies 29′, 2″ in the long jump. Berlin, 1936 – Jessie Owens wins four gold medals. Impressive Olympic feats – but can they saw straight? Cut a dovetail? Forget the runners and jumpers and gymnasts – the real...

Tallow

Mutton Tallow Tool Lube – As Seen on Instagram

In case you don’t follow rarewoods.us (also known as Travis Knapp) on Instagram, I share with you this cool (and inexpensive) tool lube solution he’s now offering: mutton tallow in a tube. For just $5, you get the convenience of keeping your hands clean while swiping greasy tallow (greasy is good!) on your plane,...

Beech mallet for a froe 3

The Best Design For a Round Mallet, Part 1

  What is the best design for a round mallet? It has to do the job, feel good in your hand and remain comfortable as you use it. Three weeks ago, while at Peters Valley, I had a chance to make a few mallets and try out their feel and comfort levels. Round mallets...

detail_1300_noahs_ark

You and Your Puny Moxon Vises

We all know that Joseph Moxon didn’t invent the Moxon vise. But perhaps the Italians did? I spent a fatigue-fueled weekend researching some red herrings and stumbled on this circa 1300 hand-drawn illustration of the construction of Noah’s Ark. I found the plate in “Les Rabots,” a fantastic modern book on handplanes in French....

paper towel dispenser

Turn a Paper Towel Holder & More with Tim Yoder

I came to the Popular Woodworking team with an interest in woodworking, but since working here, I seem to have been drawn specifically to woodturning. I find it fascinating, and as with any craftsmanship, it is inspiring to see the passion and care someone puts into a piece, regardless of its use or size....

PW04

Romanticizing Tools (Without Shame)

I learned how to make tools from two places: 1.With Hammer in Hand (The book about the Dominy workshop) and 2. American museum tool collections. When I looked at these collections, I saw an overwhelming majority of tools in which clearly aesthetics were an afterthought. Plain grain (stability), few decorative embellishments and apathy toward...