Woodworking Techniques and Advice

The basics matter, so don’t jump ahead

Monday, 09 March 2009 15:26

The majority of woodworkers have acquired their knowledge on the job, from mentors or through self-study. There is an Achilles’ heel to this form of learning — the overlooking of basics. That’s because training starts at the intermediate level with the assumption that basics are understood.

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How to finish your ‘Simple Chair’

Thursday, 05 February 2009 15:42

Two layers of 3/4" Baltic birch plywood can be used for the bending jig’s base, vertical fins, cauls, clamp seats and concave bending surfaces. The caul softeners are scraps of dense, plush carpet wrapped around the caul’s face, stapled to its cheeks, and protected from squeeze-out with high-quality duct tape.

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Making complex bends from a ‘simple’ design

Tuesday, 30 December 2008 20:16

Have you ever considered a project that would bend and twist and require near-perfect grain orientation? One that tapered along its length at varying rates and then reversed its taper? Or connected several specific locations at different angles? Flexible as an archer’s bow in some places, and stiff as a hammer handle in others.

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Organization is key to cornice moldings

Wednesday, 03 December 2008 14:16

In the course of nearly 40 years of furniture making, I’ve made moldings and molded edges in just about every imaginable way. I’ve made them with a shaper and a router. I’ve made them with molding planes and bench planes. I’ve made them with a molding head on my table saw. I’ve even made moldings with the rip blade on that saw by feeding stock diagonally over the blade to produce a cove. I’ve made moldings with scratch stock. I’ve made them with a scraper (rounding an arris to create a radius). I’ve also made moldings by combining two or more of these fabrication methods by, for example, using a bench plane to reshape one side of a cove made on the table saw in order to change that cove into an ogee.

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Value of sliding dovetail construction

Friday, 31 October 2008 13:36

The benefits of interlocking, sliding dovetail construction have been well-known for a long time. They are self-squaring, self-aligning and self-locking, joining two cabinet components in a way that is very strong and that shouts “quality” to even the most casual viewer. But of even greater value to small- and medium-production shops is the fact that they allow all the components in a piece to be fully finished in the flat before the piece is assembled.

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