Friday, April 9, 2010

Build Your Own Bandsaw?

A friend sent me the link for an incredible photo essay on building a large bandsaw out of wood. This is a woodworking project that shows that sometimes time is as good as money. You'll find lots of other neat things at this man's sight, including a gear template generator for building wooden machines. Enjoy!

Photo courtesy of

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Sunday, March 14, 2010

Cool Piano Hinge Tutorial for Sketchup

I've been working on expanding my Sketchup skills and the guys that write that blog deliver a lot of great woodworking-specific information on using SketchUp. There is another excellent SketchUp tutorial on using components to create a simple piano hinge over at the Design. Click. Build. (DCB) blog. I followed the steps fairly easily to build my own piano hinge (shown above). The use of components makes the process quick and the file size relatively small (88k) for the number of curves in it.

In addition to the DCB blog I'm working my way through Google SketchUp for Dummies. I'm learning a lot there too, but from reading DCPit seems to me that for detailed work like woodworking plans, the clever use of components is an important skill that isn't a big part of the book: I'm about a quarter of the way through and the only mention of  components has been using pre-made components for windows and doors.

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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

French Polish Tutorial at Sauer & Steiner

On Saturday, Konrad Sauer posted a short illustrated tutorial on applying French Polish on his blog. It makes the idea of applying this finish, which I've always heard is tedious, almost approachable.

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Saturday, September 12, 2009

Very Small Router Bits Used for Inlay

About a year ago I saw a post by Jameel at Khalaf Oud Luthiery discussing his process for inlay. In it he mentioned very tiny router bits (3/32") which he used to route the most of the mortise. Today I found a site where you can get bits as small as 1/32".

Very cool. I expect this will be useful one day.

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Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Woodwright's Shop - Season 28 posted online

Good news for those of us whose public television stations refuse to carry Roy Underhill's show. The new year brought season 28 to the internet, and you can now view the episodes at the Woodwright's Shop Web page.

I'm especially looking forward to watching the one about Don Weber's recreation of a Viking Tool Chest.

UPDATE on 02/01/2009:

It has come to my attention that the direct link I've provided actually resolves to the Home page of The Woodwright's Shop. Here's how you can find the online versions I've been watching:

1. Click the link to view the episodes at the Woodwright's Shop Web page.
2. Click Schedule on the left of the page.
3. Click Watch Video on the left of the page.
4. Choose one of the three seasons available for online viewing.
5. Choose the episode you want to watch.

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Sunday, August 31, 2008

Updated Woodworking Link Farm

This morning I went through my Woodworking Link Farm to make sure the links still worked. I had to delete a few, but for many of them I was able to find the new address, and in the case of Bob Keye's Bench Pages, I was happy to find I could use a Wayback Machine link.

If you're looking to browse woodworking (and related) Web sites this could be a good start:

Even though I was going quickly through the links (to finish in one sitting), it was still fun to browse through these again.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Chuck Bender's New Blog

I just stumbled across a blog by Chuck Bender, who runs the Acanthus Workshop. He has started posting step by step as he builds an Oxbow chest. Already in the two main posts Chuck has introduced a couple of techniques that had not occurred to me, including the modification of router bits to create a custom profile, and erasing part of a profile with a well set straight bit.

The blog is called Parings - A woodworker's journal. Check it out.

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Friday, December 21, 2007

Carving Knuckles and Volutes: Peter Galbert

Peter Galbert just finished posting a series of blog entries on carving the knuckles and volutes on Windsor chairs. He describes the process carefully and accompanies it with clarifying pictures like the one above. If you've ever wondered about the layout and carving of these elements, take a look at these:
Photo copyright and courtesy of Peter Galbert

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Sunday, December 9, 2007

References for Traditional Cabinetmaking

You can get access to great old reference materials over at All of it is interesting, but for woodworkers (as opposed to tool collectors) I think the most valuable page is the free links page, which lists interesting old books divided by topic. The scanned page above is from Thomas Chippendale's book "The Gentleman and Cabinet-maker's Director", scanned and hosted by the University of Wisconsin library.

While you're visiting Toolemera, stop by the blog written by the proprietor, Gary. He has a great review of Christopher Schwartz's new book Workbenches: From Design and Theory to Construction and Use, and other thought provoking articles about or related to woodworking.

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Wednesday, December 5, 2007

The Village Carpenter blog

I found a new Woodworking blog that looks like it should have staying power. The commentary looks solid, and the work is great. Check out The Village Carpenter.


Saturday, December 1, 2007

Milkpaint Mohogany Recipe

Peter Galbert, the chair maker who writes the Chair Notes blog, just posted about how he makes milk paint approximate the look of mahogany.
"I have been trying to come up with a way to paint a chair brown without it looking flat. I have a beautiful mahogany railing in my house that served as my inspiration. I actually had to make some pieces to complete the rail and I didn't have any mahogany so I used poplar and my milk paint to make a solid approximation."
As you can see in his picture above, he has done a credible job. If you're interested, Galbert posted the exact proportions and colors he used.
Photo copyright and courtesy of Peter Galbert

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Wooden Door of a Mimber

I found this incredible combination of carving and decorative woodwork when I typed in "wooden turkey" on Google today. It is the door of a mimber, which I discovered is the Turkish word for the hooded pulpit from which the Friday sermon is delivered. This example is in the Aleaddin Mosque, Konya and was built in the Seljuk period, dated 1155.

Be glad I found this rather than the wooden turkey I sought. Happy Thanksgiving!
Photograph ©, which turns out to be a fun browse for pictures.

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Wednesday, November 7, 2007

"The Woodwright's Shop" On Demand

Roy Underhill, one of the heros of the early woodworking world, has produced 26 seasons of the PBS program The Woodwright's Shop. If you haven't seen this show, it is amazing even for those who might never use a hand tool.

Until recently, if you were in a market like Greater Boston, where the PBS affiliate doesn't carry "St. Roy", there was little option for watching the show: even purchase of episodes was impossible, since the VHS versions were out of print and DVDs have not been produced for sale.

Today I found that season 26 has been published on the Web. Now even in towns that don't love Roy we can all enjoy the show. Any time. At no cost.

So pull up a computer monitor and enjoy The Woodwright's Shop - Season 26.
Photo courtesy of PBS

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Monday, December 25, 2006

Wood Properties Resource on the Web

Merry Christmas everyone. Here's a little gift given by a friend of mine and passed on to you: the U.S. Forest Products Laboratory maintains a Web site filled with data about wood properties. Want to know about Summac or some other wood? You can find information about it fairly quickly, including its mechanical properties, Drying and Shrinkage, and Toxicity. Since part of the purpose of the site (and the Forest Products Laboratory) is to promote the use of American woods in industry, this resource focuses on North American Hardwoods and Softwoods.

Fun. Informative. Possibly indispensible if you are a wood scrounge (or an aspiring wood scrounge like me). Happy Holidays!

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