I'm a hand tool woodworker living in Queensland on the Gold Coast in Australia. I primarily build timber clocks but have also added fine furniture to my list of projects. I enjoy working with wood in fact I love it, it's a deep rooted passion I inherited from my grandfather who was a successful cabinet maker before he passed away early 1940. Unfortunately I have never met the man but the gene did not pass me by, working wood is the only thing that makes sense to me.
Wouldn’t you just give up your job to work in anyone of these workshops.
Isn’t it ironic though how these factories are manned with a real workforce and our factories are filled with machinery and robots.
Isn’t it also ironic how in this video hand work is dominant in a mass production environment and in our workshops and that’s even including in one man shops- handwork is non existent
Isn’t it ironic how they will inlay, carve by hand with no cnc, perform marquetry and still manage to mass produce these state of the art pieces of furniture and yet we say it’s too time consuming so we need a cnc or laser.
Isn’t ironic and I will stop on this one because I could go on forever and this is the the best one yet. Why build it when it’s cheaper to pay China to make it for us? This mentality is the reason why our craft and apprenticeships have gone with the wind.
This is the deal we all got from these corporate scum bags and middle sized businesses. They don’t employ because they don’t manufacture in your country anymore. They pay another country taxes, wages and enrich them and to add insult to injury they consider you so stupid by importing these goods back into your country and then expect you to buy from them. And guess what? you do, even though they made you redundant.
Anyway I didn’t want to get all philosophical but after viewing this video this is what came to mind and my blood started to boil.
Bosnia is a country filled with talented crafts persons that go back to the Ottomans. . In a country that has 60% unemployed youth and 40% unemployed adults, the people have gone back to crafting by hand creating an income for their families without having the need to rely on hand outs from the government. The video above is just one example of this. It’s skill that has been passed on from generation to generation and you see this knowledge being passed on to a little boy at the end of the film. The language spoken in this video is Bosnian with English subtitles.
This is the type of furniture I one day aspire to build and master. I think to truly become a master one needs to focus on one aspect of woodworking and get very bloody good at it. To learn all aspects of woodworking and to master them all is impossible due to a very short life span we all live. I hope you enjoy this video as much as I have.
I’ve taken a caption of the recent article from lee valley. How many of us actually thought about setting the depth stop in the way it is shown in the photo? Below is a pasted small article from lee valleys article.
When setting the depth stop, your first instinct may be to measure the depth of cut and set the stop collar against the bottom of the height-adjustment nut. This approach works, but it’s rather inaccurate and seems to require two and a half hands to hold everything.
A better way is to set the plane on a flat board and slowly lower the blade until it just touches the surface. Next, put something of equal thickness to the total depth of cut required between the nut and the stop collar and tighten it up. This can be a thickness block or a drill-bit shank. The latter are readily available in most woodshops, usually come in 1/64” or 1/32″ increments, and are accurate to 0.003″ or better. Their only disadvantage is that they leave off at 1/2″ or 3/8″. You could also use a dial caliper (photo).
Using something of equal thickness to the depth of cut.
Being a woodworker and a steampunk illustrator (amongst other things), I really like to have tools that reflect my personal aesthetic. This saw was designed using a modern Disston blade, ground and altered to fit and flow with the custom tiger maple handle I created. It’s crosscut and cuts like a dream with its Japanese style teeth and feels marvelous in the hand. I don’t mind the few nicks it gets in it over time as it all becomes history on the wood.
Amazing how sometimes when browsing the net you come across something that blows your mind away. Just like this guy who made that handle. Not once has it occurred to me to do this. It’s a brilliant idea for those who have saws from the big box store with those ugly-looking handles. Now you can replace those ugly plastic handles by making your own traditional wooden ones, and one that fit’s your hand. One thing you can’t do is sharpen those saws as the teeth are specially hardened teeth. They’re meant to be throw away saws as soon as the teeth get blunt. In Australia they sell for about $30, and in the US I’m sure it will be much less. Anyway, If you don’t want to spend a few hundred dollars on an oldie, then this may end up being a good inexpensive viable option.
If you use canning salt instead of urea, you do not have to heat the bottle. This is the same tip Don Williams gave to me two years ago. He said he keeps the bottle in his pocket just to keep it warm. The trick is though to get the salt mixture spot on for it to work properly. Don at the time was in his experimental stage.
The Stanley 79 is very simple to use. Adjust the fence height by releasing the two thumbscrews on the back, and set the fence height to the height of the tongue, and re-tighten the thumbscrews to lock the fence height. To set the blade protrusion; release the thumbscrews on the front lever cap and move the blade forward in small increments. By either tapping the end of the blade with the peen of a small hammer, or by pushing the blade forward with your fingers. Lock it in place and make a test cut on some scrap first. Once you’re happy with the settings, you may want to check that everything is locked down tight, before you commit to using the tool.
I got the fit I wanted, and the tool goes back in the deep dark jungle of my drawer once more, where it will hibernate for many months until it’s needed again. No wonder the tool was like new when I bought it. It really is one of those tools you rarely use, but when you do you’re glad you have it.
Issue 9 is available for purchase for a low price of US$5.00 from my store at Etsy. The charge is to help cover the cost of materials which is blowing out exponentially in this country.
The Nicholson workbench was the biggest project I have endeavoured to build for the magazine to date. The new 8ft workbench has replace my 5ft bench and I love it in every sense of the word. Unless your solely making boxes this is the bench to be working on. I don’t know how I ever managed to live with the frustration working on such a small 5ft workbench for all those years. The workbench as all my projects was entirely done by hand with no corners cut. It’s a big project that’s labour intensive but well worth the effort.
With the help from my editor Matt McGrane the project is easy to follow. Upon purchase of the magazine you will receive several high quality PDF plans that are clear and easy to understand. Everything has been served to you on a silver platter, all you need to now is reach out a take it.