In preparation for summer teaching I recently spent some time making a couple new pump drills for demonstrations and hands-on activities. While some modern tools were used in the production, these are entirely hand-made with no purchased parts or plans. As I have only made two of these previously I spent a little time perusing … Continue reading Pump Drills
I cleaned out my recently revamped tote that holds the my key leather working tools. It was good to see the bottom of the box again and pull out the non-essential items. The less used items have their own canvas tote bag of similar proportions. The above photo shows how the handle removes to access … Continue reading Leather Working Tote
As I sort and cull my tools (and life) I want to share some past projects that may seem too simple to consider. I am not always on the path to a handmade life but I'm also never far from it.
Looking through old books online I'm constantly reminded of how easy we have it in the 21st Century. I still remember seeing my grandfather and great-grandfather ripping the occasional board by hand. Neither had a table saw and it was often too much trouble for a single cut to replace the blade in the circular … Continue reading Rip Cuts and Table Saws
A shaving horse is an invaluable tool if you create or work with odd-shaped objects that are otherwise difficult to clamp or need to constantly move around. A horse, in combination with a small bench of the same height can act as a fairly complete workshop that is reasonably portable and adaptable. Carpenters, furniture makers, … Continue reading More Shaving Horses and My Mobile Set-up
Reposted from 2008; what a different life it seems now. Here is one of my favorite old shave horses. It is made from a plank chainsawed from an enormous pin-oak limb that came down during a storm years ago. It weighs quite a bit but the weight means more stability when using it as a … Continue reading Shaving Horse
Talk about convergent timing ... It seems that Paul Sellars was reading my mind when he put up another useful video early today. This is a bit of a ramble I've been pecking around on for a while now. Sometime in the 1980s we seem to have forgotten how to sharpen our own tools. That … Continue reading Don’t be afraid, sharpen your knives!
These are nearly the same type I make. A frame saw is a useful and simple introduction to woodworking and tool-making. If you are interested in woodworking, Paul Seller's blog has a lot to offer. From Paul Seller's: If you have not yet made one of these you should. They are quick and simple to … Continue reading Making a frame saw
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
I have been working on a bow-making tutorial for quite a long time now. Trying to be as explicit as possible while not dumbing everything down is a tricky narrative to follow. Just gathering the appropriate images of the process is time-consuming and difficult but truly, a good image is worth a thousand words.