The Editors Mailbox

The Editors Mailbox

Fine Woodworking Magazine Goes Digital

comments (25) June 28th, 2011 in blogs

thumbs up 16 users recommend

digital issue

At long last, Fine Woodworking magazine has gone digital! We've just launched a new viewing feature which allows users to view our magazine online in a digital format. To get things started we're offering up a FREE preview issue for the entire FWW community. Going forward, an FWW online membership will give you access to browse recent issues at the click of a mouse. The new issue viewing platform allows you to flip through the magazine as if it were right in your hands. It features a whole host of user-friendly options you may find helpful when viewing our magazine, but those who still enjoy receiving FWW in the mail need not worry, we're not discontinuing our standard print edition. This is just an added bonus and convenience for online members who can access FWW anywhere, print pages right from the magazine, enlarge photos and text, and continue to download individual articles via our PDF files which launch with every issue.

Browse the FREE preview issue now!

Members can now browse all of the latest issues online.

***UPDATE: We would like to clarify that the online issue viewer is not yet compatible with the iPad. An update to the code is soon to arrive, which will make it compatible. We are limited to what Apple allows us to do on their platform and will be accommodating our format as soon as possible. Our video workshops and 90% of our other videos have been updated for compatibility and function on the iPad. In addition, online members will continue to be able to view PDF articles from the individual article pages. ***

Want more of Fine Woodworking in a digital format? Try one of our NEW interactive ipad apps:

bandsaw ipad app

tablesaw ipad app

router ipad app

posted in: blogs

Comments (25)

Blue_Rocco Blue_Rocco writes: oh and Apple sucks too. You lied about the Android version, and I refuse the buy Apple because of all the extra costs they tap you for, then you sign up for it and it still doesn't work.
Posted: 11:23 am on June 5th

Blue_Rocco Blue_Rocco writes: Wow, really bummed! You send me an email telling me I can use my tablet.... the one I use Sketchup on. then when I follow ALL the links, I FINALLY get to this, which tells me you lied, it still doesn't work, and I just wasted an hour trying to figure out why it didn't work! This Sucks!!
Posted: 11:19 am on June 5th

MikeGalvin MikeGalvin writes: still no Android version. Why not PDF version. Listen to your customers, or you will lose them.

Posted: 11:17 am on September 6th

user-2600149 user-2600149 writes: I'm a new digital subscriber and frankly was a bit let down at the apparent lack of FW to be more current with their digital information. So much of what is referenced are very old articles and tool reviews and many of the sketches and ideas that appear, when magnified (i.e. on iPads), have text that is only blurry and difficult to read. Also, given the Internet trends and iPad emphasis, FW still does not yet have their website completely in sync with iPad for all things. What year is this and what have you guys been doing back east? I guess I am only paying for a partial portion of their digital content, but my subscription rate is full price? Perhaps staying with buying intermittent issues of the print mags is a better approach? At least we'll then be assured that all things sync properly, and that the data is up to date.
Posted: 8:55 am on June 18th

Bob vO Bob vO writes: I'm glad you are making FW available on iPad, but what about android users, which number about 10 times the number of iPad users. I'd like to read FW digital on my Kindle Fire or my Android tablet too. Why start with such a small market segment as the iPad?
Posted: 8:44 am on April 23rd

AeroClassics AeroClassics writes: So where are we on this? I am really only interested in a PDF version. I want to store and save. Portability is the key. I want to use my iPad because of the convenience and I want to use my PC for the larger screen. Popular Woodworking is offering subscriptions that provide a PDF and it is great! Can take it easily into the shop on my iPad for reference.

If and when I can get a PDF, you will get my money! Until then I will remain a web site subscriber.

Posted: 1:47 pm on November 14th

Brian Biggs Brian Biggs writes: The issuu basic is free also, but it's no longer available via right click from the readers on these pages. I've tried chrome, firefox and IE 8.
Posted: 10:15 am on January 3rd

EricAnderson EricAnderson writes: Oh, by the way...

The Zinio app is a free download.
Posted: 9:41 am on January 1st

EricAnderson EricAnderson writes: iPhone Life magazine uses Zinio (a magazine reader app) to provide their print readers a digital experience on the iPhone, iPad and other readers such as the Kindle Fire. I have the Fire and I have downloaded the iPhone Life magazine using the Zinio app.

I really don't have any use for a digital copy of the magazine on my computer. If I can read it on the computer, I would rather use the printed version. I like the digital version when I am in places where I do not have the magazine.
Posted: 9:39 am on January 1st

Brian Biggs Brian Biggs writes: Ok, figured it out. Thanks!
Posted: 8:57 am on November 23rd

Brian Biggs Brian Biggs writes: Still no iPad version?

Issuu is $20/mo, on top of the FWW subscription *sigh* too rich for my blood
Posted: 8:38 am on November 23rd

zigmonde zigmonde writes: Guys

You can actually read this on the ipad,There are two ways to do this but first you will need to sign up for an account at After sign up go back to your PC and select the FWW digital issue that you would like to view on the ipad and bring it up to the viewer,then right click and click on read on Issuu,this then takes you to the Issuu web site which will automatically open the FWW issue. Below the FWW cover you will see various options but the one at the far right allows you to download this issue of FWW as a PDF which can then be dragged into I tunes books section which will open in Ibooks on the ipad when you sync.

Option 2

Locate the issue of FWW that you would like to read on your PC and right click to read on Issuu,when it has opened on Issuu note the web address for this page,then type the same address into safari on your ipad. You will now be presented with the cover page of FWW,again at the bottom of the cover you will see at the far right a download icon,tap this and safari will open a new page where you will be presented with FWW as a full page,just tap this page anywhere and at the top of the screen you should see the open in ibooks button,just tap this and FWW will open up in ibooks under PDF's. I have done this both ways and it works fine.

One other point that I should make is that when you search on Issuu for Fine Woodworking you get over 100 pages which suggests to me that they have loaded every issue from no1 to the current issue on the site. The above also works for Fine Homebuilding
Posted: 5:21 am on October 16th

Neil_Tribe_Arts Neil_Tribe_Arts writes: What a disappointment. If you want to satisfy your readers and get on board with digital publication, then for heaven's sake you need to offer a downloadable PDF. Limiting it to the option of viewing online is a real mistake. I actually can't believe you are serious. Serving the PDF content in this way gives the subscriber a really substandard experience.

Self contained PDFs are so flexible in the features that can be used and the way the publication can be navigated that it's almost painful to see them bastardised by a cludgy online delivery like this.

I'm sure I'm not the only person put off by this. I was going to subscribe to FWW when I heard about the digital version but I'm pretty sure I won't be now.

I know the above may come across as a little negative but for a constructive suggestion I urge your staff to go take a look at the digital versions of a publication called Lenswork. It is available as a paper publication, an extended digital version sent to subscribers on DVD, and also the new 'Portable Edition'.

Brooks Jensen and his staff really have pushed themselves to find ways in which they can take advantage of the PDF format to deliver a fantastic experience to their subscribers. Check it out at

Thanks for listening

Posted: 2:56 pm on July 6th

Grumpy_Geologist Grumpy_Geologist writes: Digital edition ONLINE ok for read and toss. I want either the magazine or a PDF that I can download and keep on MY computer and not risk a provider changing their mind in 6 months or a year. Don't like flash. Cant mark or highlight pages I want to come back to. Printing is a pain.

If you are offering free viewing to suscribers - ok - to pay for this "service" - no way

I detest the whole concept of digital only from the providers web sites. So many poorly executed catalogs from commercial providers that must be driving business away rather than attracting it. I refuse to scan through 60 pages to get to the article I want to read or the product I was interested in buying.

That's my opinion and worth every cent you paid for it.
Posted: 7:44 pm on July 3rd

NikonD80 NikonD80 writes: Well I think it's brilliant. 9 out of 10 to FWW for this.
To make it the perfect 10 you'd need to be able to have an online archive of previous issues. [hint-hint ;) ]

Posted: 7:40 am on July 1st

AlanWS AlanWS writes: It is not too bad, but a pdf is much better.

When it's made big enough to read, it's pretty annoying to have to scroll right and left to see the entire page width when the window is big enough, but the image does not reach its sides.

I read a lot of stuff online, but this is not good enough to use.
Posted: 9:23 am on June 30th

boatin22 boatin22 writes: what are the chances that older issues will be coming online? I just subscribed, and would LOVE to read older articles...

Posted: 5:27 pm on June 29th

Marhk Marhk writes: Nice job! You’re headed in the right direction.

I liked using the viewer. Two suggestions: 1- make the dialog at the top of the magnified view disappear after a bit. I found it to be in the way. 2- It appears that there is a problem if I wish to print an article. Do I really have to print a page or 2 at a time. Am I missing something. How would I select a range of pages? Also note when going to paper view the view was very pixilated. I guess that’s a temporary bug.

Now if you can just fix the loss of log-in info. I hate having to repeatedly log in.
Posted: 5:18 pm on June 29th

bko bko writes: I would prefer PDF's (like some of your competitors do). The new format is not really very easy to navigate, nor is it portable to. PDF solves both problems.
Posted: 1:05 pm on June 29th

tmu tmu writes: I prefer the method of viewing the current issue of FWW that's already in use by Don't really care to look at all of the advertisements and I like the option to save an article.
Posted: 6:12 am on June 29th

jakecornette jakecornette writes: I don't think the request is that unreasonable considering half the page talking about the new digital version of the magazine has ads for FWW iPad apps.
Posted: 10:07 pm on June 28th

GarageWoodworks GarageWoodworks writes: Web-designer NOT developer.
Posted: 8:38 pm on June 28th

GarageWoodworks GarageWoodworks writes: Nice job FWW! It cracks me up when iPAD users ask web developers to bend over backwards. Send your complaints to Apple.
Posted: 8:24 pm on June 28th

Greg Jones Greg Jones writes: The digital edition appears to require Flash, which I do not use on my computer nor is Flash compatible with the iPad, where I prefer to read my digital content. Why not make the editions available as a PDF download and/or create an iPad app to view the digital issues?

On a similar topic, please also consider using a different video format (HTML5) for your online videos, for the same reason stated above.
Posted: 7:55 pm on June 28th

Dean7 Dean7 writes: It looks fine. Although, your Editors Mail Box article says “…and continue to download individual articles.” However when viewing in Paper view, I could not see how to save an individual article, nor in Magazine or Presentation view. I would like to know how to do that. I’m probably dreaming, but it would be nice to download all pages together and have a copy just like our “printed copy” subscribers.

Also, in Paper view, when I clicked on a page number in the magazine contents page I got an ISSUU message that says “Page Not Found”. I can manually enter the page number at the top and get there. I would like to see this fixed. It does, however, work in the Magazine and Presentation view once you get to (find) the contents page.

Posted: 4:18 pm on June 28th

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