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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
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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.


Bob flexner
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Flexner on Finishing Blog

Bob Flexner is a contributing editor to Popular Woodworking and the author of woodworking finishing books, including “Flexner on Finishing,” “Understanding Wood Finishing,” and “Wood Finishing 101,” available at ShopWoodworking.com. Bob is probably best known for defining the products used in wood finishing and organizing them into categories that make them easily understandable.


Created for a small space, this floating dining server is mounted on steel rods that are attached to the wall studs.

Pattern Routing Curved Shapes

Looking for some help pattern routing curved shapes? Here’s a quick way to do it based on a wall-mounted dining server project by former Popular Woodworking publisher Steve Shanesy. The full project – as well as other great simple yet elegant furniture builds – also appears in the book “Contemporary Furniture: 17 Projects You Can Build,” now available...

New Handles For a Mid-Century Walnut Dresser B13

New Handles For a Mid-Century Walnut Dresser: Part 2

After the terraced rhombus was formed, it was time to start coving. The required radius for the coves, as dictated from the original handle was 1”.  But, since the only round plane I have produces a cove of about 1-1/2”, I had to also rely on gouges, a 1” radius scraper and a sandpaper wrapped...

3d-carving-2

3D Carvings with a CNC Router

I use my CNC router mostly to make small parts out of solid wood, MDF and plastic. Until recently, I had never done any 3D work with it. Then I saw a photo from one of the students in Build a CNC Router, and I was inspired to try something new. Randy Winn posted...

FM_oak_IMG_5133

Don’t Forget the Quality of the Kiln

While I prefer to work with air-dried lumber, that’s not always possible for woodworkers who use a lot of wood or don’t have access to a dealer who air-dries stock. One of the major problems with kiln-dried lumber is that it is sometimes rushed through the kiln to get it to market. As a...

Workbench Wood

Take it Easy for Workbench Tops

When working with construction grade timber, aside from the knots, you’ll more than likely find “eased edges.” You could be concerned that things won’t look good, or have fears about less-than-perfect glue lines or the like. My thoughts are to accept what you have and turn things to your advantage; on a workbench project,...

Leaded-Glass

Add a New Skill (Leaded Glass) to Your Shop!

While growing up I had never been enamored of stained or leaded glass in my home furnishings – Tiffany glass lamps were usually a bit too frilly for my tastes. But that all changed when I visited Frank Lloyd Wright’s home and studio in Oak Park, Illinois. Suddenly the idea of geometry versus flowers...

atkins_cover

Free Download: ‘Atkins Saw Book for Home Craftsmen’

Shortly before my friend Carl Bilderback died last year, he gave me a carload of woodworking books, catalogs and other ephemera that he had amassed during a lifetime of tool collecting and woodworking. His instructions: Distribute the books to young woodworkers who can’t afford them. Since his death, I’ve done just that. And all...

Mortise-and-Tenon-tools-cover

The Best Mortise and Tenon Tools for Your Project

What are the best mortise and tenon tools to use for your project? This article originally appeared in the February 2014 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine as “4 Way to Make a Mortise.” by Robert W. Lang pages 44-48 The mortise-and-tenon joint is fundamental in woodworking. Along with the dovetail, this joint has been used for...

solvnets

Using Solvents to Date Furniture

Editors note: Bob Flexner’s blog will move to the Flexner on Finishing Blog at the end of April. You can find it here. A few years ago I was called to a long-time client’s house to look at a problem on their newly purchased eighteenth-century Chippendale dining set. I was excited. How often do I...