Stains, dyes, and even most “clear” finishes change the appearance of the surface to which they are applied. (For the clearest finish, a water based urethane or super blonde shellac are among the best choices.) Decorative finishing effects can be applied by using a combination of stains, dyes, paint, or other means. Recently, I had … Continue reading Painting, Staining, Dyeing and Burning Wood
The internet is a great resource, but trying to find inspiration for a design without spending hours can be difficult. I find the most efficient way is to scan through the results of an image search. But a search for “dining table” isn’t likely to be very fruitful. Think carefully and add some key words … Continue reading How I Find Inspiration Online
Cabinetry is not something that I do very often, but when we decided to redo our half-bathroom, I decided to custom-build a cabinet with a live-edge counter top and a shelf to better utilize the oddly-shaped space behind the door. The cabinet was pretty standard, but I didn't have any edge banding. With all the … Continue reading A Built-In Cabinet with Live-Edge Counter Top
Recently, I needed to shape the inside of some blind (non-through) holes. My first thought was to wrap sandpaper around a dowel, but then I found the perfect tool in round chainsaw files. They are supplied with a "safe" smooth end that doesn't cut. I cut off the ends with a rotary tool, then ground … Continue reading Simple File Modification to Work in Blind Holes
The push blocks that I use in the shop are not fancy, but they afford me excellent control and are cheap to make. I make half a dozen at a time and leave them around the shop at different machines. Besides being used as safety accessories, they also get abused as mallets, cauls, anvils, blocks, … Continue reading My Push Blocks
Slow down and take your time. Make something extraordinary. This has been my mantra lately as I have been developing several items for production. Some have been in the active development stage for over a year, which is unusual for me - usually once something is started, it is completed within about a month. I … Continue reading Make Something Extraordinary
If you own a set of digital fractional calipers or are caliper-curious, you need to know about Compression Jaws. This video (5:55) shows you what Compression Jaws are and how they work. https://youtu.be/KyLzoFiOt08
A reader recently wrote to me asking for advice on what router bit to use for surfacing wood. He has been using standard straight bits that have been effective at levelling the Douglas fir end grain but left some tearout which required a significant amount of extra work to remove. What determines quality of cut?When … Continue reading What Router Bit to Surface a Slab?
I've just completed five new cribbage boards with some pretty interesting aesthetics. Please have a look at them on my Games & Puzzles page. When removing the bark with a mallet and wooden wedge, I uncovered this wild pattern on the inner bark. I think that the sapwood of this cherry tree was home to … Continue reading New Cribbage Boards Available with Wild Textures, Colouring and Grain Patterns
I am continuing to work my way forwards through back issues of the since discontinued magazine Woodwork. If you are proficient with the tools at your disposal, the decision to use either hand tools or power tools can be based on pleasure or efficiency. I use a combination of hand and power tools, and my choice … Continue reading Power Tools vs. Hand Tools, and When Can You Modify the Design?