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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.


Butterfly and Piano Hinges – April 2018 Issue of PWM

The April issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine will have a reference article on eight types of commonly used hinges. Describing the uses and installation of so many varieties takes a lot of space, leaving little room for illustrations of hinges in use. The editors and I agreed that a series of...

Tapered vs. Cylindrical Tenons

When dealing with round tenons, you have an important choice about their shape. Should they be tapered (like a cylindrical cone)? Or straight (like a dowel)? The engineering answer seems obvious: use a tapered tenon. This form of joint gets tighter the more you use it, like a Morse taper on...

PopWood Playback #1 | Top Woodworking Videos of the Week

Friends of the Shop Blog, I want to share with you a new series on our YouTube channel called PopWood Playback. We’ve kept an active channel over on YouTube for years. We have over 1,000 videos posted – but the vast majority of them are excerpts from premium long format videos. Starting this week, we...

Hand Tool Basics

Book Giveaway: Hand Tool Basics

Thanks for all the great comments! The winner of this book giveaway is “Mike.” Stay tuned for more fun giveaways. If you’re interested in a copy of “Hand Tool Basics,” it’s currently available at ShopWoodworking.com. I’m kicking off 2018 with a giveaway of our first book of this year which is...

Frank Klausz Dovetails

Watching Frank Klausz Never Gets Old – Effortless Dovetails

Yes, you’re right, Frank Klausz cutting dovetails isn’t exactly new. In fact, I’ve been watching Frank cut dovetails for 25 years. But guess what, it never gets old! This master craftsman not only makes the woodworking look effortless and nearly flawless, but he makes it entertaining! He has so much to...

Setting up a (Real World) Workshop

I’m in the final stages of setting up a new workshop in Covington., Ky. It’s my seventh (!!) workshop. I could probably write a book on the process, but instead I think I’ll sum it all up here. During the last 20 years I’ve visited and written about some of the...

Make New Brass Look Old

One of my current jobs involves adding a few cabinets to a 1912 kitchen. The kitchen’s lone original built-in has frame and panel doors hung on traditionally mortised brass butt hinges. The original hinges are unswaged, or what the English shops where I worked early in my career called solid-drawn brass...