Everyone Should Cultivate Manual Training

Does this mean we should neglect our intellect? Absolutely not. In fact, the opposite. We should strive to cultivate both mind and body to become the most perfect specimen we can become, daily. I came across this passage while reading a bit this morning from Amateur Joinery in the Home (1916) by George and Berthold … Continue reading Everyone Should Cultivate Manual Training

The World is Your Workshop

In Britain and Ireland, the Romany Gypsys and the Traveller community are often associated with low-skilled work such as scrap dealers, horse traders, musical entertainers, or more nefarious activities outside the societal norms.  However, there were plenty of skilled craftsmen and craftswomen providing goods and services to people around the country. Below is an image … Continue reading The World is Your Workshop

Joinery Journey

Joinery doesn’t have to be a mystery or an unknowable. Have a read of Mr. Merritt’s take on joinery. I’m looking forward to more!

HILLBILLY DAIKU

I love joinery.

There is something magical about fitting two or more pieces of wood together.

Before the advent of mechanical fasteners, joinery reigned supreme.  At that pre-industrial time is was the cheapest, fastest and strongest way of building with wood.  As nails, bolts and screws became less expensive they began to displace joinery for building with wood.  Mechanical fasteners required less skill and were faster. Thus the products produced became less expensive and the structural and aesthetic compromises were  accepted as “progress”.  Machines too brought an end to joinery’s reign.  Some joints that can be “easily” cut by hand are either impossible to cut with a machine or the setup is too costly.  So joinery was simplified or abandoned to accommodate mass production.

I have no intention of delving into a philosophical diatribe on the pros and cons of the industrial revolution.  My intent with the preceding was to…

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More Joinery

Here's a beautiful trestle table coming together in Andy Rawls' studio; spotted on his Tumblr this morning. Seeing this makes me realize I can't wait to get some projects done over the three day weekend.  It makes me a little sad to say something like that.  Choosing a job for pay instead of a love … Continue reading More Joinery

Art of Joinery in House Construction (or how I re-learned my original trade)

I have been re-studying joinery, amongst other things, recently and am currently deep in Moxon's The Art of Joinery.  I have built many structures in my life and documented quite a few for historic preservation.  Last night, I made it through another oldie from the 1920s Woodwork Joints by William Fairham which really set my … Continue reading Art of Joinery in House Construction (or how I re-learned my original trade)

Tool Caddy

From Affine Creations: "Rooted in my love of Mathematics and geometric simplicity, I create visually strikingly pieces of wood art that are also household items." Beautiful work.  I love the detail in the finger joints.  You can find more of his excellent work here: Affine Creations.  Here are a few of his other projects.

More on the Dovetail Theme

Graham Haydon of the Joiner's Workbench shows a fun experiment while showing off his new dovetail saw from Skelton Saws.  Graham joins a couple 1 x 6's in three minutes and does a pretty good job of it.  This is what I imagine some apprentice doing back in the pre-industrial era when he's showing off … Continue reading More on the Dovetail Theme

Dovetail Instruction

Instructions from a real master craftsman.  I am completely hooked on dovetails and the timing for this couldn't be better.  This is a real class-like instructional video and I can hardly express my appreciation for his work.  It's over a half hour long but worth the watch. From the YouTube description: "The dovetail is the … Continue reading Dovetail Instruction