Recent comments

Re: UPDATE: Mortise and Tenon Joinery by Hendrik Varju

Put me in the hat. Hey DanRM, the last thing I ever won was an Olivia Newton-John album in about 1973 or 1974, so I guess we are both due for another win. :-)

Re: AWFS: A Super-Glue for Furniture Makers?

And yes; I, too am interested in how long a chair will hold together with the typical 250 pound adult male American sitting down, sliding forward, sliding back, standing, sitting, standing, sitting, standing ...

Re: AWFS: A Super-Glue for Furniture Makers?

So here's how this works. A couple of people who know how to build and grow a business get together with a couple of engineers, presumably tops in their field. Like the "ORIGINAL" developers of Super Glue. The engineers design, develop and prototype something new. The management puts together a company in such a way that they look like a Great Investment. Capitalists invest in the company allowing the prototype to grow into a product. At this point, the company launches a press-release blitz and tries to raise as much free and carefully selected paid advertizing as they can to create a buzz. The product goes into production and if at all successful or promising, Woodcraft sells a lot of it, Fine Woodworking gets a new advertiser, the investors sell the company to a larger one and retire or if they are still young, take that money and try to do it again. Remember: "money, money, money, money, money makes the world go 'round."

That said, I use a lot of different adhesives for a lot of different purposes from luthiery to epoxying bolts into concrete and I will examine the pros and cons of this new adhesive and see if and where it will work for me. If it proves superior to another glue in real life, then I'll use it. If not, I won't. It's certainly too early to form preconceptions about it. To those too conservative to try it, I would suggest that white glue is also a very modern adhesive, compared to hide glue, for example. Or pitch.

Re: A Nutty Alternative to SawStop Technology

BTW, the guy standing behind him has an orange vest on. That has to count for something...

Re: A Nutty Alternative to SawStop Technology

chevypdx is on the right track. The fact that this guy works like this and has done it long enough to be able to produce such nice work tells me that he is very aware of safety, respectful of the saw, and most important, understands the forces involved. In addition to chevypdx's observations, I would also note that his right hand is resting on the saw table. This is a very important safety consideration and one that everyone should become familiar with. If the hands are well anchored to the table and the blade grabs the work, he might get a bruise on his forehead, but his fingers aren't going to wind up in the blade because they are attached to his hand which is resting on the table away from the blade.

I used to cut pebbles in half when I was in the fountain business. I used a regular MK-101 tile saw with a sliding table and I just hand-held the pebbles - down to 1" diameter - as I slid the table through the blade. Notice I did not say that I pushed the pebble through the blade. By anchoring my hands firmly to the table I was able to ensure that all my fingers remained intact, which they did.

I also use this technique with the bandsaw. I have put in a tremendous amount of time in front of the bandsaw. If you are cutting a small piece and must hold it close to the blade, you rest your left hand firmly on the table, hold the wood with your fingers - I do keep them as far from the blade as is practical - and cut slowly. If the saw grabs, you are not leaning on the piece and it cannot pull you into the blade.

It seems like the kind of thing that should be common sense, but it is not. Instead, too many people rely on technology to keep themselves safe, rather than on their brains.

And one thing that freehand cutting does is keep you focused. If you are not able to focus, then maybe it's not for you.

I do agree about the face shield, though. His biggest risk is that a grab will pup the nut up and give him a knot on the forehead. :-)

Re: Hidden Genius: The Extraordinary Furniture of Roentgen

That desk is amazing, but geniuses still exist even in the world of TV and smart phones. If I win the lottery, I will find someone to build me such a desk and prove it. :-)

Re: Neckties and Tablesaws Just Don't Mix

It's an ugly tie. Chop it.

Re: Should Woodworkers Say Goodbye to Ebony?

About re-planting. Plantation grown wood is generally pretty crappy compared to natural. What they should probably do is to re-plant two or three trees where they cut one, then come back in a few years and select the best of them to allow to mature. Something like that. Do what grows the healthiest trees and the best wood, not what grows the most.

Re: Should Woodworkers Say Goodbye to Ebony?

This is utterly and completely admirable. It is admirable from an ethical perspective. It is admirable from a business perspective. It is admirable from an environmental perspective. And it is admirable from a human perspective. I am in the market for a new mandolin and I actually hope it has colored ebony on it. The color won't affect the tonal qualities, just the appearance and I think it will give each instrument an individual character.

Now, what is he going to do about spruce, hard rock maple, and mahogany?

Re: Stephen Colbert Takes the Sizzle Out of SawStop

I think Saw Stop's mistake is in not starting with OSHA. They are in the business of industrial safety, not consumer safety. I bet the majority of those missing fingers are from professional hands, not amateur. Those guys are in a hurry and that's a recipe for accidents. All manner of guards and protective gear are required on the job site and this would just be another. Once manufacturers are geared up and competing, it will not add nearly as much cost to the machine as it currently does to the low volume product made by Saw Stop. I find it bizarre that people who complain about all the annoyances of safety gear and guards would complain about something that gives you so much safety without getting in the way at all. Look at a Saw Stop saw. You don't see the technology at all and you won't interact with it, either, unless it is to save your finger. What could be wrong with that? Somehow this has become one of those moronic Right -vs- Left contentions. I sure wish people would just stop and think about things before committing themselves to a political position on something that isn't political.

Re: AWFS Tool News: Say Goodbye to Numb Hands from Sanding

What is this infatuation with bigger, heavier, more powerful. What ever happened to the right tool for the job. My old DeWalt ROS was getting tired after who knows how many hundreds or thousands of hours of use, so I went to replace it. But DeWalt no longer makes it. They replaced it with a bigger, heavier, more powerful one. Pah! What a disaster that was. Now I can't sand any more boat hulls until my rotator cuff injury heals. Thanks, DeWalt.

So a new, even bigger, heavier, more powerful one from Bosch? Count me out. Doctor's orders.

Re: Router Injury Sparks Reflection on Safety

You have to be thinking all the time. Once I was nailing two pieces of 1x cedar (1-1/2" total thickness) together with a brad nailer. I opened the side-loading nailer and it was empty. I dropped in some 1-1/4" nails held the two pieces together with my left hand and shot a nail. It left a divot like it always does, nail or no nail. And the pieces just fell apart again. So I opened the nailer and everything looked fine. I shot a test nail and it shot. So I lined up my two pieces again, held them tightly, carefully lined up the nail gun with the existing divot and shot another nail ... into my finger. What the heck?

It turns out that there had been one 5/8" brad left in the nailer from a previous task. It was too far into the mechanism for me to see and it was too light to shake out. When I shot the first time, it went 5/8" into the 3/4" piece - not far enough to come out the other side, much less tack the two pieces together. When I shot the second nail, it pushed the little one on through ahead of it. 1-1/4 plus 5/8 equals 1-7/8. The excess 3/8" went into my finger. Thankfully it wasn't more.

You can bet that I am more careful to check that my nail guns are really empty now and I don't put my finger directly beneath the nail even if I'm sure the nails aren't long enough to go through.

Re: Could This Tool Change Everything?

I'm with you, Ocotillo Mike. I like mine blended on a hot day...

Re: Is the Radial Arm Saw on its Last Legs?

I forgot to mention: with a proper reverse-raked blade the RAS will not pull itself towards you.

Re: Is the Radial Arm Saw on its Last Legs?

I find it interesting that you have never seen one of your authors using a radial arm saw, and yet you seem to value their opinions of it. The opinion of someone who rarely or never uses a tool are valueless, regardless of whether the tool is a radial arm saw, a table saw, a skill saw and shooter board (way under-rated) or a chainsaw.

What it mostly boils down to is style. It is apparently stylish to use a table saw and to brag about all the brands and features and stuff. That's fine for people who are trying to impress you with their tools, but is not useful for people who are trying to do work. You can do a lot of work on the RAS without a lot of talk.

Safety - the RAS is as safe or safer than a table saw. Why?
1. You are always wary of the blade. It is when you lose respect for your tool that accidents happen. RAS users do not lose that respect. I don't know many woodworkers, but I know three who have removed fingers with a table saw. All three said they had become jaded and just forgot about the blade.
2. Yes, the blade can grab and move toward you, but the travel is limited and remains in-line with the arm. Since you are always aware of where the blade is going, it won't hurt you (unless you suffer a heart attach from the surprise.) I have had a few bad grabs in the 31 years I have been using my saw and none resulted in anything worse than marred wood and the need to partially re-adjust the saw.
3. It won't grab the material and throw it at you. Or a family member, pet, through the wall, etc.
4. This is big: your control hand is grabbing a handle which is connected to the blade, so the blade cannot get it. Your guide hand is (or should be) pressed to the table and just barely holding the workpiece. Assuming it is not on the groove, your control hand cannot accidentally wander into the path of the blade as it can with a table saw. Think about it: on the table saw you are often pushing the wood or holding the side of the wood with your hand and your hand is moving. Just a bit of inattention and there go your fingers as the wander into the blade. Yes, you are supposed to use guides and push sticks, but I've seen videos on your own site where a craftsman is pushing the work into the blade with his hand and coming pretty close to it, too.

Footprint: yes, the saw has the footprint of a table saw, but not exactly the same workspace requirement. It sits against a side wall, not out in the middle. In small shops there is no middle for a table saw to sit in. The material only moves through the blade in one direction (ripping) and so the actual work area of a radial saw is long, but not wide. The table saw needs some real acreage to use unless you want to move the saw around all the time.

Versatility: the Radial Arm saw can not only rip, crosscut, miter, compound miter, etc., but it can be adapted to do many other jobs, too. I once paid a few dollars for a collet for the "auxilliary output shaft" (the other end of the motor) and a couple of heavy duty router bits (3/4" round-over and 3/4" beading groove) and made hundreds of feet of 2x beaded trim right there on the job using my "overhead router".

My RAS is now setup on a stand (HTI, I think, it's been 15 years since I bought it and I don't remember for sure.) It has infeed/outfeed rollers that fold down. This combination allows me to rip plywood out to almost 24" without an assistant. It makes it much easier to crosscut long material, too. Having used both, I would take this setup over a table saw any day for my uses. I've done everything with this from making quality cabinets for my wife's store to building construction to bird houses to cutting kindling (very quickly!) out of my scrap. I have not done the really super finicky small woodworking projects like jewelry boxes, but if I did, I would probably rather use a super high quality table saw for that.

Re: Guitar Stand

This should have been first place. The jewelry box and tool box are nice, but this guitar stand required serious creativity as well as woodworking skills. Very well done.

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