Which tools do you really need? Some of you have asked about the tools you should buy to get going. I will try cover them over the next few days. I am not really a minimalist when it comes to hand tools and because there is no one size fits all tool I can expand…

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The woodworker’s knife Knives for woodworkers are often called striking knives or layout knives because we strike and lay out the cut lines of shoulders, cut around hinges and other hardware and trim and fit veneers and thin or small sections of wood to size. There are indeed many different knives to choose from, ranging…

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Tapes as a rule for woodworkers It is hard to get romantic about retractable measuring tapes, after all, they are about as utilitarian as it gets. Tape measures have replaced rigid folding rules because of their convenience, and tapes are more accurate today than they ever were, so even low-grade tapes are generally quite accurate.…

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The combination gauge Two gauges common to woodworking are the marking gauge and the mortise gauge and both are essential primarily to joinery. Mortise gauges tend to be more expensive because of the addition of the adjustable extra pin point and so we find a unique gauge we call the combination gauge.  It makes good…

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So you need a dovetail saw. I think that many people think that a dovetail saw is for cutting dovetails and though that is true, it is not so much a dedicated saw but simply a small saw we use mostly for cutting smaller joints and that includes dovetails. A well-sharpened well-set dovetail saw is…

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A bevy of #151s in my arsenal of spokeshaves. In the minimalist tool kit is a spokeshave we refer to commonly as a #151 after the product numbering system used by the Stanley Rule and Level Company. This flat-bottomed spokeshave was another tool rejected by craftsmen for many years because it ‘stock’ to the surface…

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This is my hammer for chisel workI know that it doesn’t look much, but I have used a Thor 12-712N Nylon Hammer for at least two years and really like the way that they handle my chisels. There are other weights and sizes, but my favourite is 1 1/2″ – 38mm model. When I bought…

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Warrington hammer Hammers are important tools in the furniture makers arsenal but we don’t really need large ones and less so claw hammers. I have owned this hammer since a boy. I bought a 16oz Stanley claw hammer at the same time. That was in the days when there was only one maker and all…

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  • Thomas Olson on Sharp TalkingI also love to sharpen. One of the greatest ways I know to relax.
  • Dennis Sheehan on Sharp TalkingAs a plumber I drilled or cut many round holes usually anywhere from 1/2” through 8” and the benefit of a sharp bit and new worm was self evident at the end of the day . The master…
  • Joe on Sharp TalkingThanks Paul. I followed your advice regarding diamond stones. Have my three and have never looked back. They work well and I'm blissfully ignorant of any other way and happy to rem…
  • Patrick Sadr on Sharp Talking"I do use a coarse abrasive, cloth-backed, to reestablish a damaged bevel and so on, or if I have gone out of square." Paul could you please go on about this? I do vaguely remember…
  • Brandon Wilson on Sharp TalkingPaul: *is an expert and a Sellers and talks about sharpening* Also Paul: *complains when "expert sellers" talk about sharpening* (yes, I know I'm not the first and probably won't b…
  • Jerry Stark on Sharp TalkingI certainly agree with Paul on this one. The more time I have spent wood working, the more I have realized that it is better to build skills than it is to buy machines. (I could ha…
  • Samuel on Sharp TalkingIn relation to sharpening Paul has taught me the word “acuity”