Monthly Archives: October 2013

Woodworking In America (Day 3)



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Today was the final day of Woodworking In America.  It was only a half day and there were only a handful of sessions.  I attended the session offered by Don Williams on historic finishing techniques.  This session was one of the best of the conference.  Don covered the finishes, tools, and techniques used in period furniture.  I can’t wait to build some projects to put what I learned into practice.

I’ll provide some more details when I get to finishing the end table project I started earlier in the year.  The basement remodel will have to get finished first.

Until next time . . .

Woodworking In America 2013 (Day 2)









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I wish Woodworking In America was more than two and a half days long.  Today was another great day of sessions.  The first session I sat in on was carver Mary May demonstrating how to add life to leaf carvings.  I really need to invest in a good set of carving tools and really get my feet wet.  If you are interested in learning wood carving, Mary has an online carving school you should check out.

The next session was Roy Underhill demonstrating “The Mystery Mallet” (see the photo above).

After Roy’s class, I hit the marketplace and competed in a couple of Hand Tool Olympics events, bought a couple of tools, and had some lunch.

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The whole afternoon was time well spent with Peter Follansbee as he demonstrated the process of building a 17th century joyned chest.

I could have spent all day learning from and talking with Peter and been happy.  This session alone was worth the trip to the conference.

Tomorrow is the last day of WIA.  I’ll post a summary of the day tomorrow night.

Until then . . .

Woodworking In America 2013 (Day 1)

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Today was a great day at the Woodworking In America conference in Covington, Kentucky!  I just wish there were six of me so I could attend all the sessions offered!

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My first session was blacksmith Peter Ross discussing hardening and tempering soft tools.  I’m afraid I could easily fall down the blacksmithing rabbit hole if I’m not careful.  In this session, Peter described and demonstrated how to (re)harden and temper tools.

Next, I sat in on Chris Schwarz’s session on Joinery Planes.  This was  a great refresher on using plow planes, rabbet planes, shoulder planes, and router planes.

After the Scharz’s session, I had about an hour and a half, so I hit the marketplace and spent most of my tool allowance in about 30 minutes.  Then I hit the Hand Tool Olympics.  Today’s events were crosscutting, boring a hole with a spoon-bit, and cutting tenons.

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In the afternoon, I went to see Ron Hock discuss sharpening edge tools.  This was a great session.  I may have to pick up a copy of Ron’s book The Perfect Edge, the Ultimate Guide to Sharpening for Woodworkers.

The last session of the day was with Peter Follansbee, the master joiner at Plymouth Plantation, demonstrating 17th century carving.  I am always amazed and inspired by Peter’s work.  Here are some samples he had at the conference.

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This session included added pre-show entertainment courtesy of Roy Underhill from the Woodwrights Shop.  I’m glad I was at this session to get these photos.

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Today I also had the pleasure of meeting Caleb James, a chair and plane maker whose blog I follow.  If you haven’t visited Caleb’s blog, I highly recommend it, especially if you are interested in chair or plane making.  It is chock full of great information.

Tomorrow’s sessions promise to be just as good as today’s.  I can’t wait for 9:00 tomorrow morning.  I’ll post a summary of the day tomorrow night.

Until then . . .

Out the door. . .

Finished gate - painted

Finished gate – painted

This weekend I finally got the gate I built for some friends out of the house and installed at their place.  The gate was a lot of fun to build, but it was nice to get it out of the way and checked off the to-do list.

The only real challenge in hanging the gate is that the post to which we attached the hinges wasn’t vertical, so we had to attache a section of 2×4 to the post so the hinges could be screwed into the post and keep the hinge pins lined up.  The patch is a little ugly, but once a coat of paint is added, it shouldn’t be too noticeable.

Here are a couple of photos of the gate after we got it hung.

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