Remarkable Things

It is a remarkable thing to me, an older man, an old man, seeing where everyone is around the world that reads my blog. People watching my videos afar, looking at what I type up and then sending me messages. I post a blog one day in the morning and by midnight 18,000 people might have read it. The numbers diminish each subsequent day but the content gets read for years then. Chiagozie Ugor in West Africa, Fernando Cela Pinto, Dmitry Glazov are all names to make me think, but more than that, the outcome has become one of identity, association and sharing—a sharing of interest separated by thousands of miles and many cultural alternatives. I think I will always be amazed that a craft can be so unifying and indeed bridge building too. Think of it! Someone in Mali is building my workbench right now. Someone else in Egypt just Googled how to use a #4 bench plane and then a Kiwi found out she’d been left a plane by her grandad on the South Island. These are remarkable things aren’t they?

When I first started I could readily tell where people were from. Today that’s impossible. I like it though. I think of the affiliations we all have and the willingness of all to share in the community plan from a spirit of generosity and care. So someone there in United Emirates illustrates a struggle with a tool and another in Melbourne, Australia reaches across the great divide to become the human bridge of knowledge and care and both. In India a family builds workbenches for a home-based workshop. The husband gave up his day job after years of doing two. He writes me a message via FaceBook and tells me he is getting more and more orders. He was an unhappy accountant but now he’s a very happy woodworker making many things.

So I return to my own workbench and develop my idea. I just finished off the coat racks and drawings this past week and now I have set out my stall to make sleigh bed and a small table and something else, I forget what. I need some shelving for my home workshop and I heard from my friend that there is a place nearby that jas some heavy plywood at a good price. Hope it’s still there when I go tomorrow. I’ll hook my trailer on because i just discovered some non conventional pallets made out of 2x12s and 4x4s and they too will make either some good shelving or good staging. Waste not want not!


Of course next week we will start filming the new series. I am excited about that. Lot’s to do! Oh, and you might like the latest YouTube video I did on reading the grain. I think it might help you if your struggling a bit to understand some things. Here is the link.


  1. Hi Paul,
    Thanks for your effort and daily new ideas for us all around the world who love working wood like you do.
    Had to smile about the pallette wood you mentioned … I can’t stop myself collecting pallets left at the streedside with the thinking “I could make this and that out of it” 🙂 My kids workbench is entirely build out of pallette wood too!
    Cheers from the Italian Alps

    1. Well done u, my son would call us skippy dippers. I’ve picked out ( and as Paul once said ask the owner?) some lovely oak ….mahogany …..parana pine….my neighbour had his front cladding replaced with plastic,ugh, so now I have an amazing stack of cedar wood ( don’t tell Paul but I passed it thru my thicknesser)
      I made Pauls rebate plane with a lump of beech used to stack timber …..together with depth stop and fillister…….a really superb tool……….ALL THIS CHAT AS A RESULT OF …..PAUL…

      1. Paul,
        I am a member of a number of groups on face book, tools, workbench building…etc. You are frequently quoted and links posted for your instructional youtube videos, You get far more air time than you know. Thank you for all you do and your encouragement. It means a great deal to me.
        From another older begining woodworker,
        Rich Oberg

  2. I was reading articles from The Woodworker Charles H. Hayward and I saw a workbench very similar to the build you use. There is allot of information and am looking to learn about the historical design influence. There are tons of hand tool techniques in the articles and now we have videos that further support self teaching. Thank you for the videos

  3. So I was looking for fly tying box ideas and ran across Paul’s youtube channel. Several hours later I knew I just had to have a woodworking bench and hand tools. Where did that come from? It’s like a missing part of you that you never knew you were missing. So the search for planes, chisels and saws begins.
    Today my wife came home with an antique loom for me to restore. Someone is trying to tell me something.

    Thanks Paul

    From just north of Texas, the great state of Arkansas,

  4. Paul,

    Thank you and everyone on your team for helping you share your knowledge all over the world. Christopher Columbus’s ship barely made it back, it limped to Portugal before Spain and if it wasn’t for the “Ship’s Carpenters,” where would we be Now? By you sharing your life’s lessons and stories, I am gaining and improving my life’s lessons and stories.

  5. What a delightful man you are! If you had been around 50 years ago perhaps I would not have studied analytical chemistry. The earth is a bit of a better place because of you and the woodworking craft. I will continue at 76 to watch your videos and continue playing over and over the Masterclass DVDs. A joy you are.

    My continued best to you and your family.


  6. Hi Paul, thanks for a nice update, I love the coat rack design.

    Have a awesome day,


  7. Hi,
    If all of us notice that what we have in common is more than what divide us, maybe this would be a better world.
    I guess that’s why you get messages from Africa, Asia, the Americas and from Portugal! ?

    I follow your videos in YouTube and your blog. It’s a wonderful thing when someone with such a great knowledge does find motivation to pass it on to others.


    Many thanks,

  8. Remarkable things! Working with our hands, as our ancient ancestors did to survive. Although we can survive now by other means it can be a very soothing and regenerative experience to apply ourselves in such a fundamental manner.

    Thank you, Paul, for being the deep thinker that you are and for your efforts as a teacher – there is no more noble human effort or aspiration.

  9. As “YODA” might say:
    To reach to the pople through their hearts and dreams a worthy thing is!

  10. Hi Paul,

    just stopped by from Germany using my lunch break once again to read your latest thoughts.
    Many thanks – looking forward to seeing the upcoming events, Olaf

  11. A lot of us just watch and listen from afar. You are inspirational in your woodworking and your teaching.
    From Delray Beach, FL

  12. Your calm voice and mannerisms bring me into an arrested state of concentration like a good book. That is a rare thing these days. Being older I find watching your channel most restful and renewing.
    My hands hurt too much to do all the things you do but that doesnt stop me from wanting to try.


  13. What I find heartening is the number of young people who are gravitating to traditional crafts/skills in a digital age. They are reconnecting to tangible, more permanent things instead of being merely gadget operators. I just turned 70 and my 30-something daughter has been teaching and blowing glass at several different studios for a number of years. Her business is thriving and she sells her wares to as far away as Australia. We live in central Minnesota, USA. She plans to open he own studio in the near future. I applaud the young people like her, along with us geezers, who are reaching back for such fulfillment and satisfaction while carrying on and preserving these skills.

  14. Hi Paul,

    Always pleasant to take in a video or two, looking forward to working on the coatrack for our home in the land of the dinosaurs, Drumheller, Alberta, Canada


  15. I have been enjoying Paul’s blogs (and other material) for some time. How pleasant is it to read readers “comments” that are so positive. Hat’s off! Please keep it up.

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