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When Someone Asks How Do You Hold a Plane…

…You Will Say Some say this way is correct. It’s the only way… …Then you will say but I have been taught that this is a better way… …and then this way, now this, and this, and this, and this, and this……. But when the wood takes me in a different mood I can adopt…

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George Said, “Stand and Watch!”

It was a few days after I started that George began working on some oak boards that came from Jack the foreman joiner to be “Cleaned up!”. I wasn’t exactly sure what cleaned up was so I asked George how we cleaned them up. George said we had to wash them, “You know, with soap…

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No More the Ordinary!

I’m never sure when it started, a point where you could no longer determine what something is by its name. A form of sensationalism was somehow loosed and we lost sincerity to titles declaring ‘not ordinary’ that hid what was, when all said and done, intrinsically quite the ordinary. All the handsaw makers followed suit…

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George Took the Blame

George laughed as we lifted the massive frame from the bench to flip it over for planing the joint line levels. We’d done this many times with smaller frames, no problems, but this time I felt the contortion in my face expressing the reality that this was different, it was just too heavy for me.…

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Design and Technology Teacher?

I would like to talk to an experienced Design and Technology teacher living and working here in the UK for a few minutes. Ideally two, one male and one female. If that’s you, please leave a comment which automatically gives me your email and I will email you in private. Thanks, Paul

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About George—Day Two

    “Over here!” George said to me. “That’s where you will be working when you’re on bench work and I’ll be keeping my eye on you.” He pointed to the vise on the opposite side of the bench he worked at. His side was loaded with hand tools while my side lay empty. He…

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Flexing Your Muscle Power

Someone told me I had to get an impact driver. It was silly really, I felt. He didn’t know me at all. He didn’t know my financial circumstance. He didn’t understand me. He couldn’t know I didn’t want one because he would only be able to see his own perspective. More importantly he couldn’t see…

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More Spokeshave Reality

I am never sure what to make of thick thin, hard, softer when it comes to plane irons and spokeshave blades. They have all worked for me through the decades but many reviews are biased one way or another depending on whether, hovering somewhere in the background, you actually derive income to some degree or…

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The Stanley 151 Spokeshave Works Great

I was a little surprised that the Stanley 151, red and black version, could still be had new. I’m not sure why but Stanley upped the anti with their most basic spokeshave. Following the poor work of Draper spokeshave I asked Izzy to buy in a new Stanley. People new to woodworking need a good…

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Vise Toe-in Out

Quick release and cast-metal woodworking vises are not all created equal. Some are intentionally made low grade, others high. Some are intentionally engineered with something we call toe-in, meaning the top edge of the front vise jaw touches and aligns with the rear vise jaw but the lower area has a 3mm or so gap.…

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