Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Join the Popular Woodworking Team!

Popular Woodworking is hiring a Web Producer to work on popularwoodworking.com, newsletters, social media and more – in short, all things related to the Popular Woodworking brand on the ’net. The Web Producer’s role is to be the online “face” of Popular Woodworking and increase both traffic to and revenue from the website(s), E-newsletters, and social media. He or she must be social-savvy, business-minded and have first-hand knowledge of woodworking, […]

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LED Shop Lighting

When I selected the lighting for the Dream Shop, T8 fluorescent lights were the obvious choice. LED technology existed but was still cost prohibitive. Even two years after the build I considered retrofitting the space with LED bulbs and once again I couldn’t justify the cost. But in 2017 (five years after the initial Dream Shop build), it’s a whole different story! I’m now in a new space in Colorado and I have the opportunity to install completely new fixtures and these days it seems like LED is really the way to go.

We’re working exclusively with American Green Lights who designed and supplied our lighting solution. The fixtures are PerformaLUX SL Series in both single strip 24 W models and 5-strip 60 W models. These units can save 50-60% compared to traditional fluorescent lights, have a lifetime of 120,000 hours, and feature a CRI of 92-95 (for color accuracy).

For my installation, the situation was pretty much ideal. I have an attic above my garage that gives full access for wiring. There was an existing light circuit already in place so all we needed to do was tap into that circuit and expand the line to the various fixtures. It was still a lot of labor and took two guys all day with an extra two guys helping for a few hours in the afternoon. But it was well worth it for the finished result.

Below is a special supplemental article written by my friend Vic Hubbard, an energy efficiency expert. He has some thoughts on LED lighting fixtures and options that you might be interested in.

I was listening to the recent discussion on lighting for the workshop on Woodtalk. While I am not what I would call an expert, I hope that I know enough to help you make some good lighting choices. With the rapid advancements in LED technology, the lighting article I wrote for The Wood Whisperer published in June, 2013 needs a facelift. The majority of the information, however, is still applicable.

What has changed? Inside of the energy efficiency field, which is my day job, we knew LED was going to be a disruptive technology. Most of us have been surprised at how quickly that has happened. When the Illuminating Engineer’s Society of North America (IESNA) put forward the recommendations for new and aggressive efficacy targets for lighting that phased out the average T12, the 100 watt, and then the 60 watt incandescent, soon to be followed by the 40 watt incandescent, the LED market started to take off. Since then it has been making huge strides in both technologies associated with control of that light and efficacy, or how many lumens per watt are created.

You can now buy a wide variety of LED lamps and luminaires. There are many lamps for the home, like candelabra lighting, PAR (flood lamps), and standard A19 Edison lamps (the shapes we’re all used to). Fortunately for consumers, light manufacturers continue to use the form-factors that work with the fixtures we’ve all grown up with and have become accustomed to in our homes, work environments, and other public spaces. Lamps for reading, canned lights, etc., all have maintained the same screw in base and, with few exceptions, the same familiar shape. Lots of innovation and the icing on the cake is that prices have also dropped dramatically.

Another lamp that has been very successful in the marketplace is the tubular LED (TLED). You can find both T8 TLEDs and T5 TLEDs, the former being the most common. Not even five years ago, the payback for retrofitting a T8 fixture from fluorescent to TLEDs was beyond 35 years. The paybacks with incentives for energy efficiency are now usually between two and five years for businesses with normal 8 to 5 operation hours. Also, the quality of the TLEDs are very good.

If your existing fixtures are near end of life, you’re lighting a new space, or just want to jump into LED there are a few things to consider. How much light do you need? This will vary based the operations you perform in the space. You’ll want more lumens, or foot candles in areas where you do more precise or finer work and less for the general purpose areas. What color of light (Kelvin temperature) do you want? Where this was discussed in the last article, I will add that the most common color I see go into production areas is 5000 Kelvin. As I know many are getting into filming in addition to woodworking, I asked Christopher Landy, a fellow woodworker who also works in the film industry as a lighting designer, his opinion. “I shoot everything 4200, sometimes 4600 – 4800. That gives me a dynamic range of colors. If I shoot 5600, the engineers have to take the blue out and if I shoot 3200 they have to take the red out. So, when I shoot in the middle I am able to get a wider range of color.” However for his home shop he uses warm lighting, as he likes the “romantic glow” warm light gives to his basement shop.

If you’re retrofitting existing fixtures, you have several options. You can go the way of the TLEDs, a retrofit kit or all new LED fixture. If you go the way of TLEDs a google search will yield a very large selection. If you want to make sure any tubular lamp is the quality listed on the specification sheet, be sure to check the Design Lights Consortium Qualified Products List (DLC QPL) (http://ift.tt/2kQm3rE) or look for this symbol . If you already have a product in mind, simply enter the model number and the manufacturer in the QPL. If you don’t have an idea which product to buy, you can use this list to find a make and model. There are basically four types of TLEDs to consider. “Plug and play” (UL type A) will run off most existing T8 and some T12 ballasts and you simply replace the lamps. Ballast compatibility must be verified and running through a ballast typically will draw at least a couple more watts per lamp than the watts on the specification sheet. Ballast-bypass/line voltage/direct wire linear LED (UL type B) requires the ballast to be removed and the line voltage wired directly to the socket, or tombstones. This may also require you to replace the sockets with either shunted or non-shunted tombstones, depending on the manufacturer’s specs. LED driver retrofit kit (UL type C), while the least common is still an option. Finally, hybrid/dual technology linear LED (UL type A&B), which can be “plug and play” or direct line voltage. For most lay persons, I would suggest “plug and play” for a retrofit. It is the most simple of all the options. However, if you’re comfortable doing electrical work or will have a qualified electrician doing the work, all the options are worth looking into. If you are happy with the amount of light you have, a simple one to one replacement will do.

If you’re doing new construction or need more lighting in an existing space the first thing to do is figure out what type of LED you may want to use, get the specification sheet and complete this simple calculator. http://ift.tt/2jQJKmj, which will give a good ball park for the number of fixtures and the cost for running them. You’ll need to know the square footage of the shop. If the shop is broken up into more than one room, calculate your needs for each room separately. For desired foot candles, IES recommends 20 – 50 foot candles for your basic shop procedures like milling and 50 – 100 foot candles for finer operations such as hand work, sanding, and finishing. I have an average of 45 foot candles in my shop and use task lighting at my work bench and a raking light for inspecting how well I’ve sanded and finished a piece. When you get to “Ballast Factor”, you will use 1.0 if you’re installing an LED fixture. If you’re using a T8 fixture and “plug and play” TLEDs, you’ll need to google the ballast to find the ballast factor. I would stick with the 0.60 for the Coefficient of Utilization if you’re using a standard T8 troffer with T8 ballasts and TLEDs. If you’re looking at LED fixtures and have white walls, and ceiling, check the specification sheet, but you’ll likely be OK using 0.80.

Other tools you may find useful. This calculation will inform you of payback, whether you’re doing a retrofit or deciding between fluorescent or LED for new construction.

***Savings per month = ((Existing System Wattage – LED System Wattage)*hours per month)/1000=kWh, kWh*Electricity Rate. Divide the cost by this number and you’ll know your simple payback period.***

I use an app in Google Play called Light Companion for determining foot candles. It is able to be calibrated, but was only off by 2 foot candles from my professional unit.

No matter which direction you go, I encourage you to purchase two to four fixtures from somewhere with a liberal return policy and hang them in place. That will let you know if you like the color, if you’re getting enough light and if you are getting shadows because the beam angle isn’t wide enough. In the case of shadows, pick a fixture or lamp with a wider beam angle or less wattage and lumen output and install more of them. Again, the calculator will be a great place to start. Good luck and have fun in the shop.

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Compression Bits. CNC Tooling Basics for Woodworkers: Part Three

Compression Bits

Part Three: More End Mill & Router Bit Details In my last post, the focus was on the cutting edges, or flutes, along the sides of an end mill. If you’ve missed the previous segments on CNC mills, here’s the intro and part one. As suggested earlier, two-flute end mills designed for woodcutting and router bits almost always work best. We’ve reached the end of this tooling primer but before we […]

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Monday, January 30, 2017

Sharpening Router Cutters By Hand—Simple Works Best

I like simple, unfancy, non-invasive sharpening methods as most of you reading my blog and watching my videos will know. Simple things, simple systems that are not at all simplistic but work effectively and efficiently. So I strive to find them—not just for me but for you too. A question about router cutters and how to …

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Tool Lubrication & Asher’s First Eggbeater Hand Drill – Part 2

Giving a toddler an open-geared eggbeater hand drill is risky business because the gears can pinch their fingers and ultimately scare them away from woodworking tools for a while. Therefore, the logical solution is an enclosed-gear drill. Many companies used to make them (see the Stanley Continental No748A, and Stanley 610 for example) but since practically almost all of our drilling industry went corded then electric cordless, the number of […]

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Top Tips On How To Effectively Choose Woodwork Projects

Woodwork can be a highly pleasurable activity for those individuals who enjoy creating items with their hands; however, finding the correct woodwork projects can determine the level of enjoyment had.  While you may be interested in creating a wooden rocking chair, if you do not have the correct skill it may be frustrating and place woodworking in a bad light.  To ensure you appreciate the art of woodworking, it is recommended that you choose the projects most suitable for your needs and abilities.  How do you do this, you may ask.  This article will provide information on how to effectively locate the projects appropriate for you.

1. Knowledge Of Tools

Safety is essential when completing any physical activity and understanding the technique used is important.  When referring to woodwork, it is necessary to know not only how to cut and whittle wood but also how to utilize the various tools.  It is only with an understanding of the tools that you will be able to complete the project successfully, safely and without any frustration.  Fortunately, there is a great deal of information on woodwork and education can be gained using textual and video tutorials.

2. Knowledge Of Wood

In addition to the understanding of woodworking tools, it is important to be aware of the different types of wood and how they must be managed.  Each wood has unique characteristics and these characteristics influence the manner in which they can be worked; for example, unlike hard wood, soft wood will tear and split when cut against the grain.  Before beginning a project it is recommended that you complete some research on the wood used.  This will save time, effort, and cost for any additional wood that may need to be purchased.

3. The Quality Of Plans

One factor that is rarely considered is the quality of the plans.  A high quality woodworking plan is one presenting with a great amount of information including the recommended wood, how much wood is required, the tools required, and the number of clamps needed.  The more precise a woodwork plan, the greater the accuracy of the project and less chance of error.  There is nothing worse than being mid-project only to realize the plan is void of information on how many clamps to use or which tool is best for a specific project task.

4. Consider Your Level Of Skill

While it may be tempting to undertake woodwork projects for rocking chairs or vanity tables, this can be overwhelming for an inexperienced woodworker.  When choosing the ideal project plan, it is advised that you admit to your level of skill and choose something exciting within that category.  Of course, larger and more intricate projects do hold certain appeal but it is possible to find something as exciting in the beginner stage.  Use the less ambitious tasks to develop skill allowing you to gain experience so that when you do create the adorned rocking chair it will be of a high standard.  Yet, do not be fearful to complete something more daunting once you have experience; you will be amazed at the results if you set your mind to it.

5. Use Pictures Or Videos

While the quality of the woodwork project plan should be specific, it is beneficial to gain pictures or videos of the project as additional assistance.  By having visual aids you will be able to visualize the overall result, or at least what the item should look like once complete.  Due to the increase in the popularity of woodwork, it is quite easy to locate videos or magazine articles on woodwork projects using online facilities.

6. Be Patient And Relaxed

The final tip to effectively choosing a woodwork project is to remain patient and relaxed.  Wood cannot be pushed beyond its own characteristics and this is a matter one must be aware of when engaging in woodwork.  Unlike steel and plastic, it is necessary to treat wood in specific ways in order to obtain a specific result; for example, some woods require overnight soaking to be placed in a certain position or it may crack.  To cope with this type of activity, patience is essential and you must be aware of whether or not you are able to be patient.

7. Ensure You Have The Correct Tools

In addition to having knowledge of the tools, it is a necessity to own the tools before attempting a project.  The basic pieces of equipment include a saw, a drill and a sander; however, there are different items needed for different woodwork projects.  Be aware of the various tools as listed on the project plan to ensure the project can be completed from beginning to end.

Final Words On The Matter

Woodwork can be enjoyable but to begin a project you will require a certain project plan.  Using the information above you can make an informed decision on which woodwork plans are suitable for your project needs.

Top Five Wood Work Tools

Whether you like working with wood to create something artistic or want to learn to make your own furniture, you need to have the right tools to work with this medium. Tools wood allow you to cut, sculpt, chisel and polish a piece of wood to create a sculpture or a practical object. Here are five tools you should have with you if you want to work with wood.

5. A Workmate Or A Bench

You need to have a workspace for your creations. Working with wood can be messy, which is why you should have a dedicated space for your projects. You need a Workmate or a larger bench where you can safely cut wood and make your vision come to life. You should also invest in clamps to secure the pieces of wood you want to work on and get protective gear.

4. A Saw

You can use different types of saws to cut wood. A circular saw is ideal for cutting larger pieces of wood but a table saw is also a good option. You are going to need a hand saw or a router to cut smaller pieces. These tools allow you to cross cut wood and to straighten edges. A jigsaw or a coping saw can be used for rounded cuts and to work on details.

3. A Mallet And Chisels

Using a mallet and chisels is the best way to add details to your creation. This is going to be your primary tool if you want to work on a sculpture and will also come in handy to add a personal touch if you want to create wooden furniture. You should invest in a collection of chisels so you have different sizes and shapes to work with.

2. A Power Drill And Biscuit Joiner

Being able to drill holes and create joints will open up new possibilities. These tools wood are not necessary if you want to sculpt to create something artistic but being able to join two pieces of wood together or to drill holes so you can add screws will allow you to create more complex objects and pieces of furniture.

1. Files And A Sander

Finishing is very important and you need to invest in a collection of files and in a quality sander to get the result you want. You might also need a block plane and a smoothing plane to polish surfaces. You might also want to get some varnish or some paint if you want to add this type of finish to your project.

Make sure you have all the tools you need before getting started on a project. Choose quality tools that will last a long time and don't hesitate to invest in a large collection of tools if you plan on working on several projects. Always test new tools on scrap wood so you can get used to them and find the right gestures before working on your sculpture or piece of furniture.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Friday Live! – Shop Progress Update

This week, I show off the new shop since we’re almost done with phase 1 of the conversion. Time to make some sawdust finally! The topic rundown is below and don’t forget you can help support the show on Patreon! 

0:40 – Kansas City Show Recap

1:25 – Denver Maker Meetup Recap

Denver Area Makers Facebook Group

4:15 – Thanks to Joseph Muench

6:35Andy Klein’s Miter Fold Blade

7:15 – January Giveaway Wrapping up – Enter Now!

8:35 – Marc has dermatitis

10:22 – Marc in Woodcraft Magazine

10:43 – Shop Update Tour

19:55Arcade Cabinet Video Released

20:25 – How do you plan on keeping dust out of your living space?

21:34 – Does plywood need a backer veneer?

23:25 – Can you use too much cold press veneer glue?

24:12 – What recommendations can you make on shop lighting?

26:48 – Do you know when the next Powermatic 15% off sale will be?

28:20 – What’s the longest board you can run through your table saw?

28:54 – Does the jointer fence rest below the table saw surface?

30:30 – Will you be filming the removal of the door rails?

32:03 – What are your thoughts on pen turning?

33:21 – Recommendations for sign appropriate wood?

34:37 – My jointer seems to be milling a bow into board, what’s wrong?

36:02 – Do you know what the student discount at Austin Hardwoods is?

36:20 – Will you mount the dust collector on the wall in the future?

36:46 – How long do you run these videos?

36:58 – Can I use my Festool router and track to drill dog holes in my benchtop?

37:53 – Patreon Thanks!

39:35 – Marc is pre-diabetic.

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CNC Tooling Basics, Part 2: End Mill & Router Bit Design

As I mentioned in my “CNC Tooling Basics for Woodworkers” post, there are a lot of little details that go into the design of CNC end mills and router bits. Only a few are important for most digital woodworkers, so, this is a streamlined primer focused on the basic details you need to know when choosing router bits and end mills for use on a CNC. First, a diagram of […]

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Thursday, January 26, 2017

Dustin’s Budget Farmhouse Table

For many years I wanted my own 7’+ table that I could fit at least 8 people around. I met a wonderful woman when I was in High School and we dated for a little while before both moving on and getting married. After 16 years we found our way back to each other. We are building a new family together and love family dinner. So, I built us a table that she will keep at her house until we are married. This is a farmhouse inspired table and rather than distress the top to make it look like it had 30 years of use, we decided to finish it smooth and we will put the dents and dings and stains in it ourselves over the next 30 years so we can remember each one. Pretty standard mortise and tenon joinery on the legs/apron and biscuits for the tops. I also wanted to show that even though I have a bunch of expensive lumber, if you have a tight budget, a few good tools, and a little time, you can build something that is perfect for you. This entire table is built from 2x6x8 lumber from the Big Box store that I milled myself for $175. I used cheap flat black paint, Minwax stain, and finished with Wiping Polyurethane. Now we are ready to make our memories with this new table and the money I saved can go towards an engagement ring :) You can also see my Step-back Cupboard in the background.

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Intern Woodworking—On We Go!

Hannah comes in to learn woodworking with me It’s been a year since I move house and home, workshop, studio and woodworking school too, so I make no apologies for not having in-house training going on for a while. Hannah comes in to work with me now. She’s keen on woodworking of course and wants to pursue …

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Learn About Jointer Knives From Doug Dale

helical head cutters for a jointer

In the video below, Doug Dale discusses the evolution of jointer knives, and shows how he changes the segmented cutters on a helical head.If you’ve ever been to the Marc Adams School of Woodworking outside Indianapolis, you’ If you’ve ever been to the Marc Adams School of Woodworking outside Indianapolis, you’ve surely met Doug – he’s been an instructor there for more than a decade, and is charge of keeping […]

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Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Coming Soon: A Handmade Dustpan

Almost every plastic or aluminum dustpan I’ve used has been disappointing. The aluminum ones bend too easily and make it impossible to capture fine dust. And plastic ones are just that: plasticy. So like any half-decent woodworker, I set out this fall to build my own. Shopmade dustpans were once a common sight, so it’s not like my idea is original. But finding plans for a rotating dustpan with a […]

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Bartop Arcade w/ Raspberry Pi

Nicole and I are big gamers and we both have fond memories of early PC and console games. While our two kids and business prevent us from diving into games like we used to, we’ll always be gamers at heart. So when my buddy Brian Ibbot from Coverville asked me to help him build  a bartop arcade w/ Raspberry Pi, I jumped on the opportunity.

Because I just moved to Colorado and my regular tools weren’t powered up yet, the challenge was to build this project with portable power tools only. Fortunately, that means the tools and techniques demonstrated here are much more approachable and hopefully you’ll be encouraged to build your own.

Originally, Brian sent me a link to this Instructables plan. I was planning on simply building that version but had trouble making complete sense of the measurements, technique, and details, so I decided to scrap it and go my own way. That said, the original inspiration came from that plan and the console layout was pretty much copied and incorporated into our design. So thanks to Rolfebox for his hard work. Download the FREE plans below and the resource links provided are linked to our Amazon affiliate account, so any purchases help support the show. And if you’re so inclined, feel free to help us out on Patreon so we can keep producing awesome free content like this Bartop Arcade! Wood Whisperer on Patreon

The Tools

  • Table Saw
  • Jig Saw
  • Miter Saw
  • Router
  • Sander
  • Brad Nailer
  • Hand Tools – Flush trim saw, chisels


  • One sheet of 3/4″ plywood or other sheetgood
  • (optional) One piece of solid face frame stock (1 1/2″ W x 8′ L x 3/4″ T) for edgebanding
  • (optional) 1pc of 1/8″ plexiglass for the marquee

Download the Plans


The Music

My buddy Andrew Allen does some amazing jazz renditions of classic video game music and he just release his new album JazzNES. Check it out here.

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Large Breadboard Worth a Brag

Back in 2007 I saw a breadboard platter in the Penrhyn Castle kitchens that really grabbed y attention for a few reasons. At first glance the breadboard might have been mistaken for, well, just a breadboard, but twin tenons through the breadboard end fascinated me because back in my apprenticeship we made some sycamore draining …

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Workshop Setup & Handplanes: Two Books on the Horizon

One of my resolutions for the new year is to post more updates about our progress with book projects and share tips or ideas I learn from them … and so, a quick update from your friendly neighborhood book editor: We have a couple of great titles coming down the pike. I’m currently editing “The Practical Workshop” which covers workshop setup, organization and optimizing your workspace. The book is compiled from our magazine archives […]

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Learn Some Of The Basic Tools Wood Workers Use

Working with wood is very exciting and for a lot of guys a great way to use their hands and work with some tools. However, not all of the tools wood workers use are going to be power tools. Since this is the case, people should know more about the different hand tools. This way they are able to get the right tools and know it is going to work for their needs. Without this, people are going to have some problems in getting the right tools for the basic jobs they are going to do and this can often lead to the job never being completed.


One of the most basic tools wood workers use is going to be the handsaw. These handsaws generally are going to be a lot harder to use than the power saws, but they are going to be something that a lot of people will want to start off with because it teaches them how to use a saw, but also the clamps as well since these will need to be used to hold the wood in place. So a handsaw is a very useful tool for wood workers to start to use since they will be able to learn how to use a saw and start to learn the value of the other tools that are going to work in conjunction with the handsaw.


These are an item that needs to be considered as a tool because they are used more often than most of the other items in a shop. The reason is the wood worker will use clamps to hold the boards together while waiting for the glue to dry, but also to hold the boards in place when they are cutting some of the boards with different saws. The clamps also make it easier for the wood to be worked on as well, without having to worry about it moving for find painting or if the wood worker is talented for the etching of the wood with a fire brand.


This is an item that a lot of people will recognize as the tool that is used to drive in the nails. However, depending on the type of hammer they can also be used to move wood into spots, but it can also be used to correct some of the problems the wood has had. For example, if a board has come out of line it may be easy to simply tap it a couple of times with the hammer to get it back into place easily.


The square is going to be used to make sure everything is in square and can be very useful when people are building some of the projects they are working on. The square is going to be used to help make the straight lines the wood worker needs to have, but also going to be great at helping to get people having a square product that is finished for example, if people are making a wooden box they will want all the edges to come together perfectly to create the square look they are used to seeing.

Misc. Tools

These are going to fall into a category that the wood worker is not going to use each day, but they generally will have in the shop for working on the tools or even for completing some of the other projects they have to do around the shop. So these are tools like screw drivers, staplers, vice grips, pliers, wrenches, and some of the other tools that you would find in a typical shop.

When people are thinking about going into wood working they need to realize their are quite a few basic tools wood workers use. By knowing about these tools it is rather easy for people to start of with the basic tools and start to build their shop up. Then they will be able to get the work done in their shop and know that it is going to be perfect once the work is completed. Without this, people may have some difficulty in getting the first project completed in their shop.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Dealing With the Flakes in Woodworking

So you dinged a corner or some wood flaked off. If it’s cherry flake is quite common, in maple much less so and oak it can be ultra common for such things because of the medullary rays. It happened on my current cherry dresser-build when I didn’t need it. Not quite during filming but near to. …

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Tommy Mac’s Toolbox

tool box

Combine power and hand tools to improve your joinery skills. by Thomas J. MacDonald first published in the December 2012 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine Building a toolbox much like this one was a real turning point in my woodworking career. It was 1999 and I had begun classes at Boston’s North Bennet Street School’s Cabinet and Furniture Making program. At the time, I was a pretty good carpenter and […]

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Monday, January 23, 2017

Assembly of an Oneida Dust Gorilla Pro Cyclone Dust Collector

Before we get into this assembly video, let’s address the elephant in the room: what happened to the ClearVue? Just like my table saw, I took the move to Colorado as an opportunity to try something new. One less tool to move and work around as I get the new shop together and one more chance to gain perspective on a different brand. In addition, Oneida offers stands for their cyclones and that’s a feature I wanted in the new shop. So after a few pleasant phone calls with the folks at Oneida, we are now working with them directly on the dust collection solution for the new TWW shop. And just to clear the air, I have nothing negative to say about Clear Vue. Their cyclone served me well for over a decade and I am lucky to have gotten to know the kind folks that run the company. But now I also feel lucky to know some of the great people behind Oneida!

My sales guy Mark had a bunch of questions for me about my shop and after doing some smart people math, he determined that the 5HP Dust Gorilla Pro (single phase) was the right model for me. We added a 55-gallon drum and an extension to the filter stack that would further improve air flow. I realize it’s just dust collection but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t super excited to receive this delivery.

The pallet was packed well and I was especially impressed with the way they packaged the motor. In the past, I had to install the impeller myself. That usually involved some careful work to make sure the screws are torqued properly and I usually just hoped for the best. Oneida saved me the work and gave me peace of mind by doing this for me at the factory. By the way, the picture above was sent to me ahead of time as standard practice prior to shipping. Large shipments can be something of a mystery so it was awesome getting to see the pallet ahead of time so that I could prepare my space.

The installation was simple but somewhat labor-intensive. These are heavy-duty steel components so you have to expect them to be heavy. If you can get a helper, please do so. While a fairly strong person can do most of the work alone, there’s one part that absolutely requires assistance: the final motor installation. I don’t know how much the 5HP motor weighs exactly but even with two people, it’s going to be a little tricky to walk it up a ladder and drop it onto the blower housing. Take your time, exercise caution, and be sure to eat your Wheaties that day. Because I was alone and didn’t have someone to help me lift the motor, I employed some good old fashioned “Jersey ingenuity.” To be perfectly clear: I DO NOT RECOMMEND DOING WHAT I DID. Neither Oneida nor I endorse this method and we insist that you follow the instructions in the manual. In spite of the obvious hypocrisy and covering of my posterior, the video will show you how I used an appropriately weight-rated rope, pulley, hook and chain to hoist the motor above the cyclone and set it down into position with my truck.

Because the system isn’t powered up and I don’t have the ductwork installed, I can’t give you any feedback on its performance yet. But what I can tell you is that this cyclone is built like a tank and lives up to Oneida’s reputation for world-class quality. Everything about it is big, beefy, and well thought-out. The cyclone body is made from thick gauge steel. The blower housing is made from thick plastic as a single smooth mold. The HEPA filter is massive with tons of surface area. And the motor looks like it was taken off of a jet plane. To say the least, my expectations are high and at this point I would be inclined to keep small children and pets away from the inlet.

As with many of the products featured on The Wood Whisperer, the cyclone was provided by Oneida in exchange for exposure in a video. As always, my opinions are my own. 

To learn more about the Dust Gorilla Pro models and features, click here.

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Sunday, January 22, 2017

Screwfix Sash Clamps Upgraded (UK)

When I lived in the USA I discovered a line of sash clamps made for Harbor Freight, a US chain supplying DIY building and engineering products, mostly low-end quality. The clamps were  made from extruded aluminium boxing with an alloy head and shoe and whereas they were not at all a top quality, they were …

Read the full post Screwfix Sash Clamps Upgraded (UK) on Paul Sellers' Blog.

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Saturday, January 21, 2017

Cool Nailmaking Video from Austria

Blacksmith Peter Ross recently sent me a link to the video below that shows production nailmaking of shoe nails in a town in Austria. These guys are working at breakneck speed – forget those modern videos you see of amateur smiths working in their garages. If you’ve never read about pre-industrial nail production, it was a hard life. In the United Kingdom and its colonies, nailmaking was many times a […]

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Stop Spelching with an Unlikely Ally: Sandpaper

When you shoot end grain with a handplane, you have to be wary of spelching – when the end grain breaks off at the end of your stroke. There are several ways to avoid spelching; one of the quick ways is to use sandpaper. This trick works best when you are just trying to clean up some end grain by removing tool marks. If you are instead trying to correct […]

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CNC Tooling Basics for Woodworkers

Part One: Questions & Answers about Mills & Bits Yes, the topic of CNC mills can be complicated. Because of the overwhelming minutiae of design detail and a bewildering number of choices, there’s more than enough to intimidate any CNC user. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. Fortunately, woodworkers have a fairly narrow focus: Cutting wood on a CNC. We have special considerations to consider but the good […]

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Friday, January 20, 2017

Compass Saws Versus Table Saws-Or What’s the Difference?

Compass saw, are they still valid saws? Well, in my view, yes! Especially if you do indeed want more from using hand tools than their mechanised alternatives. You’ll be surprised how effectively they work provided you do indeed understand basics manufacturers of mass-made saws usually don’t. We’ll cover that as we go. Working on the …

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Finish for Maloof-style chair

I got a call from a fellow who made a Sam Maloof-style chair and screwed up the finish using Maloof’s formula. I thought, how can you screw up a Maloof finish? Maloof combined three products – polyurethane, linseed oil and tung oil – to give him the look he liked on his chairs. Then he wiped on and wiped off several coats of the finish, rubbing each coat with his […]

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Tool Lubrication & Asher’s First Eggbeater Hand Drill – Part 1

Asher, who turned two last week, shows a promising appetite for woodworking tools. He is a frequent visitor to my home shop, where he examines the tools that he can reach. Mainly he’s drawn to clamps, bench bulls and, recently, a great looking Craftsman hand drill that I salvaged from the trash two months ago. When I say “I salvaged from the trash” I mean I actually picked it up […]

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Free Gift

Congratulations! You’re entitled to a free gift from the Wood Whisperer! Get immediate access to the Greene & Greene Mirror Frame project for FREE! Simply go here, add the project to your cart, and use the coupon code wwshowsgift.

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Thursday, January 19, 2017

Sharpen a Scraper – Ron Hock Shows You How

sharpen a scraper

Sometimes, a smoothing plane just can’t get things smooth enough (think reversing grain) – and if you’re a handplane user, you probably prefer not to pick up the sandpaper (thought it’s sometimes unavoidable). In that case, you turn to the handy card scraper. A scraper can perform miracles that a plane cannot…except that Ron Hock says once you turn a burr on the business edge of a scraper, you’ve basically […]

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2-Day Contest: Wall Shelf Build-Off from Chris Wong

Chris Wong of Flair Woodworks has set up another fun 2-day “build-off” for January 28 & 29 – and this time, it’s for a wall shelf. The idea is to have all participants simultaneously build a piece over a 48-hour period and share pictures along the way. A similar contest in 2013 – the Shop Stool Build-Off – was a lot of fun. I followed along over the weekend on […]

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Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Keith’s Multi-Purpose Game Board

A neighbor asked if I could build a marble game board to replace a very old version that had been in their family for years, but was deteriorating and becoming unusable. The request was fairly simple and inexpensive. It basically involved drilling multiple holes in the top of a 2-ft square board (1/2 inch plywood sufficient), finished with minimal paint and sealer to meet her expectations.

Although my “client’s” request was simple, in my mind I had a vision for something much more elaborate and sophisticated. At the time, I’d been wanting to experiment with customizing woodworking pieces with inlay techniques. I told my neighbor if she would allow me to upgrade her request by adding a checker board inlay on the reverse side of the game board, I would perform the work “gratis.” She accepted, my work began, and the results are illustrated in the accompanying photos.

To complete the checker board upgrade, I made custom checker pieces. And the result leveraged my new found skills for creating inlay solutions. Each checker included a shiny penny inlaid on each side (heads vs tails).

The overall result turned out very well. In fact, upon presenting the finished product to my neighbor, tears came to her eyes, followed by smiles and a hug! A happy customer…the true measure of success!

As part of this project, I learned an alternative for planing wood without investing in a conventional joiner, planer, or drum sander. Specifically, after inlaying the checker board pattern in the game board base, I had to plane the top of the completed checker board so that the wooden checker pattern was flush with the surrounding base. After doing some research, coincidentally, I watched a YouTube episode of the Wood Whisperer (thanks Marc!), and built a “sled” using birch plywood, which, when used in conjunction with a plunge router, met my needs. This nifty “sled” will come in handy on future projects.

Materials, Cost, Labor:
Game Board Base: White Pine
Inlay woods for checker board: Bubinga and Oak
Checker board pieces: Oak (12 pieces natural, 12 pieces stained w/ Antique Cherry)
Checker board pieces inlaid with pennies
Marble board stain: Antique Cherry
Marble board holes: Drilled with 1/2 inch Forstner bit, and painted w/acrylic enamel colors (red, blue, yellow, and green)
Overall finish coat: Shellac (clear)
Total material cost: Approx. $100
Hours spent: Approx. 40

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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Traditional Danish Workbench

I was thrilled to see the article by Bill Rainford in the current issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine in which he gives directions for making a traditional Danish workbench. It’s been a long time (more than three decades) since Tage Frid provided these directions, and lots of new people have taken up woodworking in the meantime. For my money, this Danish style is the most user-friendly of all workbench styles […]

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Monday, January 16, 2017

Good Morning Monday!

Last week was busy The year is cracking along nicely already and we have many new beginnings taking place. Part of Phil’s role as manager of woodworkingmasterclasses.com is to make sure everything is filmed and packaged on time. This past week he’s been making an additional workbench as well filming and soon our work in filming

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Assembly of a PM2000 Table Saw

I have been running a PM2000 in my shop for nearly 10 years and the move to Colorado afforded me the opportunity to sell the old one and replace it with a newer version that features a 50″ fence and the heavier duty workbench extension. For those wondering what happened to the old saw, it’s actually a cool story. We needed the cash to help with the move so we offered the saw up for sale. This was around the time we were running our Woodworkers Fighting Cancer charity auctions and our buddy Joseph Muench generously stepped up and bought the saw. But he didn’t actually want it for himself. Instead, he donated it to the charity auctions. The winner of the auction was Guild member Socheat Sou and the proceeds went to the 2016 WFC charity drive. So a big thank you to Joseph for his generosity and to Socheat for giving my saw a great new home.

So let’s talk about the new saw. The PM2000 comes in several configurations and variations including 3HP, 5HP, 30″ fence, 50″ fence, a router table extension, and a workbench extension. The model I have is the 3HP 50″ Workbench model.

This video is more or less an instruction manual for the assembly of the PM2000 table saw. As many times as I’ve assembled tools, I always find it easier to follow a video over a traditional manual so I thought this might be of use to new PM2000 owners. Even if you don’t have a PM2000, you might be interested in seeing the assembly process.

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Sunday, January 15, 2017

The Best Way to Stamp Your Work or Tools

A name stamp is a great investment to mark your tools as your own, especially if you attend woodworking classes or work in a shop with others. It’s also a good way to stamp your finished workpieces for posterity. Most woodworkers, however, approach the task like Thor might. They raise their hammer high and swing a mighty blow against the stamp to do the deed in one whack. And they […]

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Saturday, January 14, 2017

557 The New Workbench is Here!

For years I’ve been saying I was going to build a new workbench for the basement workshop, and after just as many years of not doing it, it’s finally happened!

old and new workbench

The old and the new side-by-side during construction

The “design” of the bench is simple, and the dimensions are perfect for a smaller shop like mine considering the goal turned from making a monster bench like we’ve seen in magazines, or elsewhere and instead turned to constructing something that would simply help me build projects easier than ever before.

new workbench

Already hard at work!

Today’s episode isn’t a construction video for “HOW I built the bench” but instead it’s a “TOUR” of its simple features, materials used in the construction, and a little bit about how I determined the dimensions and joinery.

Items mentioned in the video:
WoodRiver Tail-Vise Screw – Amazon.com
Veritas Tail-Vise Screw – Lee-Valley
Workbenches: From Design And Theory To Construction And Use – Christopher Schwarz

If you’re wondering about the episode I mentioned regarding building the plywood top for the old bench, you can find it by clicking here to visit episode 290.

Episode available for download in the following formats:
|1080HD Video||720HD Video||SD Video|

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A Future Starts With a Single Cut

Paul, I so want to be a woodworker but I don’t really see how to do it. Every where i turn it’s not really what I am learning the way you show it. Any help would be appreciated. Alex Ontario, Canada   Answer: His hands were gnarled, veins rose in periodic knots beneath a parchment

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Friday, January 13, 2017

Friday Live! – Farmhouse Table & Dust Gorilla

Today we’re talking about the new Farmhouse Table project as well as my new Oneida Dust Gorilla Pro. We’ll also tackle your questions from the chat room!

And don’t forget to check out our Patreon campaign to get some cool bonuses and help support the show. Wood Whisperer Patreon!

Here’s the topic rundown:

1:35 – Craftsy Visit

2:45 – Stickers from members

3:40 – Farmhouse Table Guild Build Starts Today

4:48 – Shop Update: Dust Collection

9:16 – What happened to the Clear Vue?

11:53 – What kind of spray tip should I use to spray paint?

13:03 – Is there a problem applying finishes in colder temperatures?

14:20 – Updates on the Kansas City Woodworking Show.

16:00 – What are the pros and cons of beeswax on tools for protection?

16:26 – Have you had rust on your tools since your move to Colorado?

17:00 – Should I let wood and tools acclimate to my garage temperature before I start working? (Shop heating)

17:54 – Is the dust collector one phase or three phase?

18:25 – What are your favorite wood to work with and why?

19:10 – What tools will I need for the farmhouse table?

21:19 – Are you going to any other Woodworking Show?

22:02 – How do I clamp acute angle joints on a flag shadowbox?

23:45 – When are you coming to X location?

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Win 2 Tickets to the KC Woodworking Show & Meet Marc!

Win 2 Tickets to the Kansas City Woodworking Show & a Signed copy of Hybrid Woodworking

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So Long, and Thanks for all the Fish

I was cooking breakfast for a few friends at my family’s house on Lake Barkley when I received the call offering me the online editor position for Popular Woodworking Magazine. I was beyond ecstatic. My friends woke up, we hugged long enough to feel uncomfortable and celebrated that night. After years of working hard and dreaming, I finally landed the job I was working for. I’ve been rewriting this post […]

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Thursday, January 12, 2017

Brian’s Low Entertainment Center

I must have watched the videos on the Low Entertainment Center a half dozen times. It looked like a fun project using skills I had not tried before like making the dados with the router. It was a good experience to push my talents as a woodworker. First time cutting dados with the router, and making mortise and tenon style doors. Great detail and instruction in the videos!!

This was my spin on the project. Rather than the sliding doors, I went with the mortise and tenon cabinet style doors with 170 degree Euro style hinges. The whole project is made from 3/4″ Red Oak plywood for the top, bottom and vertical sides, the trim and door stiles and rails are solid Red Oak, and the door inserts and back are 1/4″ ply. I stained it with two coats of Minwax Espresso, and topped with 2-3 coats of Minwax wipe on Poly. Some of the dimensions were changed from the plan to fit the space.

I left out the angles on the trim top and bottom because I added the trim after the cabinet was assembled, since I did not trust my circular saw not to tip and ruin my work to that point. I think the squared up look fit the piece just fine, and gave it that modern look. I have not decided on hardware for the doors so they are still bare. I also moved the outer sides out to the edge of the top and bottom so the trim covers the joint of sides at the edges.

I really love the inset section of the back to allow room for a surge protector and get the furniture right up against the wall. Great addition to the plans!  Thanks to Marc for being such a great resource for expanding woodworking knowledge! Keep up the good work!

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Woodworking in America 2018

The title above is not a typo. May of this year marks the third bi-annual Handworks, an event that draws more than 2,000 woodworkers to Iowa every two years for two fun days of trying out the best in hand tools and hanging out with like-minded folks (I’ll be one of them). I know that Woodworking in America is an investment. Not only is there a fee to attend (we […]

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Use Hardboard Templates Instead of Prototypes

If I had the extra time and material, I’d build a full-blown prototype of every new design I create. Prototypes let you see in three-dimensions all the mistakes and awkwardness you cannot see on a two-dimensional plan. And fixing the design is usually obvious when you have a prototype on your workbench. As much as I love prototypes, they are not always necessary or even possible. So here is what […]

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Table Saw Setup in my Near Future…I Hope


Most of my house rehab work to this point has been destruction rather than construction. For that, I’ve used a small kit a hand-held tools, both hand and power. I’ve gone through probably 50 blades on my reciprocating saw (there were a lot of plaster walls and inappropriate mid-century built-ins to take out), used up many multi-tool E-cut blades and spent a lot of quality time with my sledgehammer and […]

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Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Where Should I Visit in 2017?

I receive many requests from woodworking enthusiasts in many countries and regions asking me to visit to teach and inspire and of course many places pique my interest. But it can’t totally be based on the highest number of requests in a given region or just where I personally might want to visit. That said, I feel that it’s important for

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Win a Portacube MiterSaw Workstation or a WoodWonders Puzzle Book!

We have a great giveaway sponsored by Portamate and WoodWonders for the month of January! Learn about both of the prizes below and make sure you enter before January 31st to support these generous companies!

Congratulations to Stan P. from Royal Oaks, CA and Chris M. from Troy, IL! They are our winners from last month of the Arbortech Mini-Grinder and VerySuperCool Tools T-Square Fence! Click here for a consolidated list of all the past winners and prizes.

Thanks to our friends at PortaMate and Affinity Tool Works we have a Portacube PM-8000 STR Miter Saw Workstation to giveaway to one lucky reader! Released just last month, this revolutionary miter saw workstation has tons of features. Weather you need a portable miter saw stand or extra work surface, the compact Portacube STR is the perfect addition to your work space. It’s compact footprint of 31″ x 29″ stores easily in almost any workshop. And with it’s heavy duty 10″ wheels it can be easily moved around your shop or work area. When the built in extension wings are fully extended you get up to 7 feet of working surface when your miter is in the storage position. The extension wings also contain adjustable tool tables allowing you to adjust them to the height of your miter saw. One of the most unique features is the rotational table top. When using your miter saw it utilizes universal tool mounts allowing it to fit almost any miter saw up to 26 1/2″ wide. When you are done with your cuts it easily rotates your miter saw back into storage and gives you up to 7 feet of flat working surface for other projects you may have.
*NOTE – Miter Saw is not included

See a demo of the Portacube Miter Saw Workstation!

Our next prize is a book from Brian Menold over at WoodWonders. This new puzzle book is geared for beginner to moderate woodworkers interested in starting to make puzzles as a hobby and to any puzzle enthusiast interested in knowing how it’s done. It features simple designs from many of his favorite designers such as, Stewart Coffin, Jos Bergmans, Yavuz Demirhan, Tom Jolly, Primitivo F. Ramos, St├ęphane Chomine and Ken Irvine. Enter today for your chance to win a signed copy!

Use the widget below to enter the giveaway. If you take advantage of every option, you’ll get as many as 9 entries! If you don’t see the widget below, you can also try the mobile version that lives on Facebook. If you are on a desktop computer and don’t see the widget, try the following: clear your cache, turn off pop-up blockers, turn off ad-blocking plugins, and/or try a different browser.

What’s up for grabs this month!

PortaMate and WoodWonders Giveaway

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Shape a Mallet Out of a Branch Part 2

After cutting the branch to length, sawing around the neck and chipping away most of the wood around the handle, the time comes to grab a half-round rasp and begin rounding over the handle. Once the handle looks cylindrical enough I ask my students to imagine what kind of handle they want to form. I show them some mallet drawings and together we choose the one that best suits them. […]

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Monday, January 9, 2017

Cutting Tools for Digital Woodworking

When woodworkers talk about their favorite hand tools, they might mention a treasured handplane — perhaps a superb pre-WWII Stanley Bedrock smoother outfitted with a Ron Hock blade or a beautiful set of hand forged Fujihiro chisels.  A hybrid woodworker might have a Felder combination machine with a slider and tilting shaper or perhaps a carefully restored and finely tuned antique 16” Oliver jointer. The point here is clear. Woodworkers […]

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Screwing up the Finish Won’t Ruin Your Project

I say this often. I’ve written it many times. Maybe I get the insight from the many years I’ve spent refinishing furniture. No matter how good or how careful you are, stuff still happens, and you have to strip off what you’ve done and start over. Every professional or semi-professional refinisher knows this because they’ve had to do it. But woodworkers making new projects usually don’t do that much finishing, […]

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Sunday, January 8, 2017

The Basic Tools Wood Working Requires

Wood working is a terrific skill to pick up. With enough experience, you can create an incredible variety of beautiful and useful objects - everything from tiny pocket trinkets to serious pieces of furniture. Although the ideal tools for your own wood working projects will depend on your personal tastes and the types of work you end up specializing in, certain tools are practically universal. These are some of them:

The Table Saw

Of all the tools woodworkers use, none is more versatile than the table saw. If you are only going to invest the money and space in buying a single mounted power tool, it should probably be a good table saw.

The really technical name for a table saw is a tilting arbor saw. "Arbor" is just another name for the axis around which a saw blade spins. Thus you can see that the ability to tilt and make angled cuts is one of the table saw's key features. A good saw is easily capable of handling both perpendicular stock (an operation called cross-cutting) and parallel feed (rip sawing).

When it comes time to pick out a table saw, there are two key factors to consider: blade size and table size. Bigger blades translate into an ability to handle thicker stock, and 10 inches is more or less the default size. Table tops come in all sorts of different sizes. Larger tables are more useful and flexible, but you have to buy the tool that's going to fit in your shop and in your budget.

The Drill Press

When you get right down to it, a drill press is little more than a vertical jig for a hand drill. In fact, you can buy just this sort of jig to stand in for a drill press. No matter how much you spend on the equipment required, you'll find that fixing your drill in place for vertical use adds an incredible amount of precision to it.

Drill presses are sold in both tabletop and free-standing versions. Most basic presses rely on muscle power to move their drill bits down, but the upward return motion is typically handled by a spring. The drill press is basically defined by two measurements: the depth and the throat. The depth is the distance between the drill bit at its highest extension and the table which supports your workpiece. It's fairly easy to adjust the depth to accommodate thicker pieces. The throat is the distance between the axis of the drill and the press's support column. It dictates how far from the border of a piece you can drill.

Look for a drill press that delivers some useful extra features. A movable table makes depth adjustments easy, and a depth gauge is useful for making the press even more precise. Shop around for press attachments that will make it capable of other jobs besides pure drilling. With a few quick modifications, a good press can also handle grooving, mortising, and sanding work in otherwise hard-to-reach spaces.

The Lathe

The is one of the tools woodworkers might or might not find indispensable depending on their individual focus. If you intend to do a lot of work that involves turned cylindrical components (e.g. balusters, furniture legs, etc), then a lathe is an absolute necessity. If your interests run more towards joinery and cabinetry, you may be able to do without a lathe for quite a while.

A lathe is a relatively simple tool; the most difficult part of adding one to your workshop is finding sufficient space for it. The lathe is powered by an electric motor in its headstock. This is one of the two attachment points used for workpieces. The adjustable end is called the tailstock. Pieces are clamped between them and spun at high speed; material can be cut away with a variety of different chisels and gouges.

Most lathes have an adjustable tool rest that can be positioned very close to the workpiece when the tool is in use. If you intend to turn hollow pieces like bowls, make sure you get a lathe that works for face-plate turning. This is turning without the tailstock, where the piece is screwed directly to the headstock.

The three tools described here are of course far from the only ones that play a useful role in your wood working shop. With each of these tools wood working tasks of certain types definitely become much easier, though. This means that you'll almost certainly be interested in adding them to your shop sooner or later.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Tips To Find The Best Tools Wood Workers Can Use

Buying new tools can be exciting for multiple reasons. However, when people are getting tools wood workers would be using they can find it is rather difficult to find the right tool at times. This is when people should use some tips to help them in finding the best tools possible. Then they will not have to be concerned about the tools not working properly. Without the tips, it is very easy for people to buy a tool that cannot be used by the wood worker and this can easily lead to them feeling like they did not get the right tool.

Find Out What They Have

This is going to be one of the first things for people to do when they are looking for new tools for someone. That is they need to make sure they know about the tools the person already has in place. by knowing about the tools the person already has it will be easy for people to find the right tool they do not have and know if they will use it or not. For example, if they already have five planers of different sizes, but someone finds one that is a different size the wood worker does not have, the chances are good they will use this tool.

Determine If The Tool Will Be Used

As mentioned before figuring out the tools wood workers already have should be the first step. However, if people are unsure about the tools still they should determine if people will use the tool or not. If they do not have a tool that is like it already and there is a wide selection of tools available then the chances are good it will not be used. However, if the wood worker has twenty of the item and each one is different, like the planers before, then their is a good chance they will end up using the tool versus having it sit on the shop shelf.

Ease Of Use

Just like everyone else in the world if an item is easy to use their is a good chance the tool will be used. However, if the tool is difficult to use the chance of it being used will be greatly reduced. So people need to realize this when they are looking at the tools and try to figure out how difficult it is to use. If they watch a video on the tool with an expert using it, though, and they seem to have an easy time with the tool then it could be easy to use or easy to learn with.

Job The Tool Does

Often times people tend to overlook this and will just buy a tool because it was their. However, they need to make sure they know about the job the tool is going to complete. This way people will be able to get the tool that is going to do the job and know it will help people out. Without this, people may end up getting a tool only to see it not being used because it is not going to do the job that people want it to be doing.

When people are looking at getting tools wood workers can use they will often need to be picky about what they are buying. This often means using some tips to ensure the proper tools are being purchased. If the wrong tools are purchased it generally means people just wasted their money on the tool. By using some tips, though, they can buy the right tool and know it will get used for the purpose it was bought for.

Monday, January 2, 2017

What To Consider When Buying Tools Wood Workers Use

Buying a tool is a great thing to do. This is very true when people are buying tools wood workers use because they are going to be doing something and getting something people can use to better themselves with. This is the point in time people ought to know more about what they need to consider when getting these tools. This way they can start to get the tools they need to have and know they are going to work for their needs. Without this, people may end up getting the tools they do not need and be disappointed because they did not get the tools they do need to have.

Function Of The Tool

This is going to be one of the main things for people to consider and that is what kind of function the tool is going to serve. Normally people do not think about this at first and they end up getting a tool because the box makes it look great. Then they get it home and get it out of the box and realize that because it looked cool and seemed like it would do the job people need it to, that it is not going to complete the job they have for the tool to do.

Ease Of Use

This is something that people all over the world will agree with and that is they want to get a tool that is very easy to use and not going to take up a lot of time and effort to learn how to use. The easier the tools are to use and learn how to use the more likely people are going to be to use the tools. So this will help people in getting to know about the tools and if they will be used or if they will not be used. Without this people may just by the tool and never use it because it is to hard to use.

Brand Of The Tool

This is another aspect for people to consider and that is the brand name of the tool. Usually people will want to use a tool that has a good brand name to go along with it. So people need to make sure they know about the brand of the tool and if it is one they recognize and know will be around for a while or if it is a brand that is fairly new without much information on the company available yet. So this is something else that people need to think about when they are looking at these tools.

Maintenance Schedule

Each tool that people use in their shop is going to have some type of a maintenance schedule. Since this is the case, people should make sure they know about the schedule the tool has to guarantee they are able to use the schedule and keep up with it. Usually this can be found by looking and reading on the box, but in some cases it can be found by looking up the product on the Internet. Either way this will make it easier for the tools wood workers use to keep functioning.

When people are looking at new tools, they will find they can be very expensive as well. This is when people should know what to consider when they are buying tools wood workers use. By knowing these things to consider it will be easier for people to buy the tools they know the wood worker is going to use and know just all the different aspects of the tools that are being purchased.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Top Wood Work Tools You Should Own

If you're interested in wood work, then there are a few tools you will definitely want to have. Some tools are a must, while others are not that important. With that said, here are some of the top tools you should have.

1. Claw Hammer- The most basic tool you want for woodworking is the claw hammer. The ideal size is 20-ounces, as this is light enough to hold but it is still heavy enough to get the job done. A claw hammer is a must because it doesn't matter what type of project you're working on, the chances are you're going to be using nails to put something together. Just make sure you don't choose just any old claw hammer because you want one that is durable and reliable and one that is not to heavy, which is why you should choose a 20-ounce claw hammer.

2. Utility Knife- Another tool is the utility knife, but there are various types  but most people choose to use one that has disposable blades. A good knife will last you for a longtime and it will be strong enough to handle many jobs, such as scribing wood or cleaning mortise joints. A good utility knife will have a handle that is easy to grip and strong blades but try to get a knife with disposable blades because this will allow you to change the blades as they become worn down.

3. Chisels- You'll want to purchase a few chisels because they come in handy, regardless of the type of woodworker you are. Chisels are useful because you can use them to clean out joints, as well as saw cuts. The best chisels are made with alloyed steel or carbon steel and they will be equipped with a good grip. Ideally, you want to get chisels that have hardwood grip, but make sure you get an assortment of chisels because having various sizes will help you work more efficiently.

4. Levels- It doesn't matter what kind of woodworking project you are working on, you will want to have a few levels. You can get a 6-foot-level, 48" level and an 8" level. Having these three sizes will come in handy for all types of projects. Levels are important to woodworkers because they allow them to make sure everything is level and that the plumb is vertical.

5. Screwdrivers- Every woodworker needs a good set of screwdrivers. Make sure you choose screwdrivers that have been built to last because the last thing you want is to wreck your screwdriver the moment you put a little bit of force on it. Quality screwdrivers may cost a bit of money but they are well worth it.

Keep in mind that when it comes to wood work, there are many other tools you should get. However, screwdrivers, levels, chisels, a claw hammer and a utility knife are the top ones you must have. If you are planning to take on a woodworking project, then make sure you have those tools.