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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.


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Hide Glue Part 1: Overview and Introduction

You can’t really talk about repairing antique furniture without explaining hide glue because it was the glue used on almost all furniture made before the 1950s. So, with this post I’m introducing what I hope will be a series of posts in the coming months on hide glue. I’ve written about hide glue many...

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Coming Clean About Being Clean

After working with woodworkers all over the world for short periods of time and (in some cases) many years, I can say these four words that might make your woodworking easier: Clean up your crap. I’m not a natural neatnik, but when it comes to working in the shop, every day ends up with...

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The $500 Maslow CNC

  The Maslow $500 CNC kit No doubt about it, the Maslow CNC is unique. Let’s start with the detail that got your attention. Yes, the price of the Maslow really is $500. Actually, it could be had for as little as $350 if you have a couple of sheets of plywood, a few...

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Caution When Buying a Spray Gun

I was teaching a hands-on finishing class, including spraying, a while back when a student brought me a spray gun he had bought a year before from another teacher who was selling a line of spray guns. The spray gun wasn’t working right and he couldn’t figure out why. We fixed the problems, but...

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Wendell Castle on his Creative Process

It will be among my enduring regrets that I didn’t arrange things to tag along on our recent visit to  Wendell Castle’s home and studio. The video team, along with American furniture scholar Oscar Fitzgerald (he was on our on-screen interviewer), spent a couple days in New York at Castle’s home and studio to...

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Book Review: ‘Good Clean Fun,’ by Nick Offerman

As you’d expect, Nick Offerman’s latest book, “Good Clean Fun: Misadventures in Sawdust at Offerman Woodshop,” is funny and inspiring – and that is key in attracting new woodworkers. Let’s face it: Many of us are often far too serious and prescriptive when it comes to tools, techniques and talking shop. A little levity...

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How Myths get Started

I’m bouncing off of Chris Schwarz’s August 25 blog post where he describes how myths can get started. I’ll leave you to read what he says, but basically Chris realized that a simple joke can lead to a myth that gets repeated everywhere and never dies. Chris is talking about the woodworking world, which is...