28 October 2008

Stanley to Offer New High-end Chisels

According to Chris Schwarz(one of my favorite woodworkers) of Popular Woodworking and Woodworking Magazine fame, Stanley is soon to release a set of high-end chisels based on the Everlasting chisels of yore. You can read more about them here...

New Stanley Chisels to be Offered

Oh and they're also designing a new line of high-end planes as well.

Time will tell if these new innovations from Stanley Tool Works will pay off.

Rob Cosman Dovetail Video...Let the Competition Begin!!!

Not to be outdone, Rob Cosman(a phenomenal hand tool woodworker) has met the challenge of Frank Klausz's 3-minute dovetails.

Rob Cosman Dovetail Video

How to Properly Use a Small Square

Small squares, be they combination squares or fixed machinists squares, are staples in the wood shop. The proper use of such squares is critical in obtaining square stock and square joints. I learned this the hard way when first venturing forth into the world of working wood.

At first, I used the arm of the square, instead of the base, to check for square. Of course, everything looked square....until I tried to put it together. Only then, did I find out that I must have been using the square incorrectly.

Here's a picture of how I was using the square incorrectly. Notice how the arm(beam) of the square(the vertical part in the picture) is flush to the end of the board, but the base(the part with the logo on it) is out of square. If you only look at the long arm, you'll be sorely disappointed.

The following photos demonstrate the proper way to use a square. In this first photo below, notice that I have the base of the square flush with the side of the board and away from the end of the board. In this fashion, I can now ensure that I'll be measuring the end of the board for square in relation to the side.

The next picture demonstrates the second correct position. Notice that the base of the square is still flush with the side of the board and I have simply slid the long arm of the square into contact with the end of the board. In this case, the end of the board is square to the side. At least my table saw is set up correctly. LOL

This last photograph shows the same board, now intentionally cut out-of-square. I've used the same technique to keep the base of the square flush with the side of the board and the out of square end is easily demonstrated.

The last thing to mention about using these dmall squares is this. After the base of the square is flush with the side, s-l-o-w-l-y slide the long arm of the square until it just touches the end of the board. Do not force the long arm of the square after it has touched the end of the board If you do, you'll get an inaccurate reading. Trust me on this, I know!!!

I hope this short tutorial makes using the squares in your shop more accurate and more pleasurable.

Remember, without a push from a user, a plane is an expensive decoration and not a tool.

Lie-Nielsen Bench Chisels

For a gift recently, I received a set of Lie-Nielsen bench chisels. I must tell you, without a doubt, that these are the best bench chisels that I have ever used. In fact, just to protect them, I made a sliding top chisel box just to store them.

These chisels are made tough and while I love my antique user Stanley 750s(example in picture), nothing beats the L-N chisels for sharpness, strength of the hornbeam handle and edge-holding capability.

I have used these as bench chisels for paring and the like and have also used them to chop out dovetail waste with both an oak wooden mallet and a metal Japanese hammer. The tops of the handles don't even show dents! Now that's what I call durable.

The beauty, fit and finish of these chisels is unmatched. They were essentially dead flat on the back from the factory and cut wood very nicely straight out of the package. Endgrain was a slight problem though, so I spent 5 minutes on the bevel of each chisel and developed a razor edge. The handles fit snugly into the socket with no play whatsoever. I also like the fact that the handles are not finished with a gloss film finish. I have used chisels with such finish in the past and found them to be somewhat slippery.

If you want a set of high quality chisels that you'll never have to replace, choose these premium quality chisels. While they are a bit pricey, the price is worth it, as these are the best chisels I've ever used.

07 October 2008

...and this is why Frank Klauz is the BEST!!!

Watch Mr. Klauz(my all-time favorite woodworker) make dovetails in three minutes....get this....with a bowsaw and no chiseling!!!!

Frank Klausz 3-Minute Dovetails

Enjoy and get out that bow saw!!!! LOL


05 October 2008