Sauk Rapids, MN, US

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Router bit vise holds tight

Valfor vise makes router bit setup easy

Hamler Scraper Insert For Bailey No.6

Paul Hamler's scraper insert for Stanley's No.6 Bailey creates a sweet scraper for flattening gnarly wood

Micro-Fence Micro Plunge Base

My new best friend for routing inlays

Groove Center Simplifies Lock Miter Joint

Valfor Tools Groove Center and 2-axis Depth Gauge combine to simplify router lock-miter bit setup.

New Hot Rod Powered Drivers from DeWalt

DeWalt just released news about a series of compact 20-volt lithium ion powered drills and drivers.

The Hodge-Podge Desk: Picking the right grain can make or break a design

Designing good-looking furniture includes paying close attention to grain patterns, grain orientation, and color. Roland Johnson will show you the easy way to pick good lumber at his Design to Finish seminar.

Small cordless drills offer big benefits.

Small cordless drills with real drill chucks make precision drilling easy.

Another Bench Vise Revolution from Hovarter

Len Hovarter has created an awesome quick-action leg using the same technology he developed for his revolutionary face vise.

Shellac, the last "brittle" finish?

Will water-based finishes be our only finishing material in the future? Not as long as we have alcohol-based shellac.

Roland Johnson is Sacramento bound with The Woodworking Shows

I had a great time at the Costa Mesa, California show this past weekend. The weather was California mild and the folks attending The Woodworking Show were Midwest friendly; what a great combonbsp...

Roland Johnson heads for Costa Mesa, California

I will be giving finishing seminars throughout the weekend at The Woodworking Shows in Costa Mesa, California.

Roland Johnson's Complete Illustrated Guide to Bandsaws hits the stands!

Roland Johnson's Complete Illustrated Guide to Bandsaws is at the bookstores!

Roland Johnson andThe Woodworking Shows in Dallas, Texas

I'm on the road with The Woodworking Shows again this season and it starts this weekend (Oct. 22-24) at the Big Town Exhibition Hall in Mesquite Texas, a suburb of Dallas.

IWF alert: Machine-setup gauge is the best we've seen

The Betterley Una-Gauge uses a dial indicator like lots of other similar gauges, but the ingenious attachments and $200 price tag are what make this a standout.

IWF alert: Avid reader offers thought for food

We treated Fine Woodworking reader Thomas Smith to lunch today at the IWF, and we came away the winners. He shared a great tip, and told us how to make better videos.

IWF Alert: Rikon 16-inch bandsaw has big-saw capacity at a small-saw price

Rikon's 10-336 has 12-inches of resaw capacity, the ability to run on 110volt power, and double roller guides. It's small enough to fit in nearly any shop but serious enough to provide big-saw ability.

IWF Alert: Router dust collector does the job on the cheap

Inexpensive router dust collector is a snap to install and allows bit changes with the collector in place.

IWF Alert: Little Bosch drill is a sweetheart

The new Bosch PS-31 12-volt drill-driver has a bigger drill's chuck and clutch, packed into a size that is bound to be handy in any woodshop.

IWF Alert: Oneida's new cyclone is a smart heavyweight

The latest Oneida cyclone is big and smart. It modulates its power automatically for increased efficiency for any size hose or port.

How to test furniture for a shellac finish

Learn how to discover what the finish is on that old piece of furniture you want to restore.

Quick-Acting Vise Reinvented: New Design by Len Hovarter

Len Hovarter, a mechanical engineer from Michigan, has reinvented the bench vise. Quick-release slide action makes this one smooth operator.

19th Century German Lathe in Minnesota

Great-grandfather brought this lathe to America from Germany in 1843.

Roland Johnson teaches No Fear Finishing at Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking

I will be teaching my No Fear Finishing class at Bob Van Dyke's Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking June 28- July 2

Handplane tuneup tips at Alabama woodworking show

I'll show you how to use a scrub plane at the Woodworking Show's Hand Tool Rodeo this weekend in Huntsville, Alabama.

Rodeo Wrangling in Texas

Contributing Editor Roland Johnson heads for Houston, Texas this weekend with The Woodworking Show's Hand Tool Rodeo.

Palm trees, sunshine and handplanes in Tampa

Contributing Editor Roland Johnson heads for Tampa Florida this weekend with The Woodworking Show's Hand Tool Rodeo.

Motoring to Motown

Contributing Editor Roland Johnson visits the Motor City this weekend with The Woodworking Show's Hand Tool Rodeo.

Goin' to Kansas City

Roland Johnson will show you how to make your old Stanley Bailey handplane perform at its best at The Woodworking Show in Kansas City.

Taking the plane to St.Louis

Handplane and card scraper seminars will be featured at The Woodworking Show's Hand Tool Rodeo in St.Louis, MO

Another handplane winner

Handplane giveaway at the Columbus, Ohio Woodworking Show

The Woodworking Shows

Clinics on rejuvenating handplanes and using scrapers

Handplane Giveaway Winner

Springfield Woodworking Show handplane winner

Handplanes in Springfield

Roland Johnson's handplane giveaway at The Woodworking Show in Springfield, Massachusetts.

Bosch Cuts the (Power) Cord

Wireless battery charging is on the way with so-called eCoupled technology

Contributing Editor to Give Seminar at Kansas City Woodworking Show

Goin' to Kansas City this weekend. I'll be giving clinics on handplanes, scrapers and designs at the Woodworking Show. Scott Beattie will be joining me on Saturday.

Recent comments

Re: The Woodworking Shows, Northeast.

The Woodworking Shows are hitting the Heartland: Kansas City this coming weekend Jan. 23-4-5. Always a good show, there are a lot of serious woodworkers in KS and MO.
Stop by and say Hi!

Re: STL 59: No Such Thing as Too Many Tools

Billg71, my apologies on the Powermatic 87 miss, I didn't get a chance to review the questions before the podcast and simply missed that is was an 87. Of course a blade speed of 4600 is sufficient for woodcutting, making the 87 a good woodcutting saw, but some older metal cutting saws have much lower max. speed which puts them out of the running as a good woodcutting saw, and I assumed.... As I mentioned in the podcast a blade speed in the three to four thousand fpm range is ideal, and obviously the 87 meets that spec. Sorry for the miss. The fact still remains that a slow saw is not an efficient woodcutter.

Re: What Really Happens on a Fine Woodworking Photo Shoot

Frank's right, it's a Collings. It's an MF-5 custom with an Engelman spruce top and quilted maple sides and back. Collings builds really beautiful mandolins and they sound as good as they look. If you want a good look at the mando google collings mandolin 1127.

Re: Hamler Scraper Insert For Bailey No.6

I just heard from mr. Hamler and the scraper inserts are all spoken for. I hope some FWW readers got chance to snap one up.

Re: Fine Woodworking On the Road: Come out and see us

Roland Johnson will be teaching a week-long finishing class at The Northwest Woodworking Studio in Portland in September 2012 (exact dates not set yet).

Re: Woodworking for bulldozer work: A good trade

I've traded woodworking for dirt work quite a few times. It seems that guys who like to dig in the dirt aren't too fond of the finer points of woodworking.
Years ago one fellow left his new John Deere backhoe and dozer at my place for a week. He told me to use them to my heart's content. Like a kid with a new sandbox toy I took them out to my back field and played. I dug holes with the backhoe and filled them back in and leveled them with the dozer.... for an entire day. We have to grow old but we never have to grow up.

Re: New Hot Rod Powered Drivers from DeWalt

Steve, you are correct. On the bottom of the press release I have, there is a disclaimer that states "With respect to the 20V MAX*: Maximum initial battery voltage (measured without a workload) is 20 volts. Nominal voltage is 18."

Re: Just Plane Trivia: Why Do They Call It a Frog?

Re: Just Plane Trivia: Why Do They Call It a Frog?

Lia, I still think we're right.......and there's something fishy about this Justus guy, I just can't quite put my finger on it.


Re: Shellac, the last "brittle" finish?

Biggest problem with shellac? No resistance to alcohol. Solution: a few coats of Carnauba wax. It won't completely stop that spilled wine from getting to the shellac, but it gives you a fighting chance to get the alcohol off the surface before it does damage the finish.

Re: How to test furniture for a shellac finish

We will work on more than flat panels, although finishing flat panels is the best way to develop the basic techniques for brushing, wiping or spraying a finish.
Surface prep, coloring, finishing and glazing frame and panel cabinet doors will provide a lot of insight into working with moldings and surface texture and we'll practice applying finish to both horizontal and vertical surfaces. We also work with a variety of different wood species to get a feel for how they accept color, how to blend sap wood and how to tone-down or accentuate differences in grain patterns or color.
I also encourage my students to bring in a small (emphasis on small here) project of their own to work on.


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

Great post Tom,
I've had a radial arm saw (my wife used to call it a radio alarm saw) in my shop for nearly thirty years and it has performed the vast majority of my precision crosscutting including dado crosscuts and tenon cheeks, as well as turning scrap into firebox length chunks.
I don't have the room in my shop to crosscut an 8/4 thick, ten-inch wide, ten-foot long plank on my tablesaw, much less endure the hassle of dealing with such a heavy, awkward chunk of wood.
My RAS is permanently set up along the back wall of my shop with 16 feet of stock support to the left of the saw. The support area doubles as my off-cut storage bins, right below my wood racks.
Equipped with a proper negative rake angle blade and an effective fence the tool is no more dangerous than any other PROPERLY OPERATED circular-blade cutting tool. I worked in a lumberyard when I was in high school and we had a huge DeWalt RAS in the shop, in the four years I worked there no one was ever injured with the saw, and it saw a ton of use. The tablesaw had a much worse safety record.
One caveat: a cheaply made RAS can be a devil to keep well tuned and can increase the likelihood of sawing problems just like any other poorly made power tool.
I'll keep my 1957 DeWalt 10-inch saw and encourage anyone to add one to their shop.

Roland Johnson

Re: Handplanes in Springfield

I will be in Collinsville (St.Louis show), Feb. 12-14, so stop by and say hi and register for a chance to win a Stanley Bailey No.4, restored and signed by yours truly.


Re: Brad Smith: Story of a Stool

Nice slide presentation Jonanthan. Brad has a most impressive shop setup. I like all the jigs but the final use of the seat blank cutout is classic. Really cool stool too. Thanks.

Re: Sam Maloof: 1916-2009

Sam Maloof was one of my woodworking heroes. When I was starting my woodworking career it was often a struggle staying motivated when business was slim or projects wandered off course. Sam was always an inspiration to keep going. Although I hadn't met Sam in those early years I had read about his humble start and how through his love of craft, his love for Alfreda, and his genuine respect for humanity, he kept moving toward the goal of being an artist and provider at the same time. He succeeded beyond his wildest imaginings but never lost sight of what really counts in life. He never lost his humility, his love for those around him and his respect for everyone he met. Sam, you were a truly wonderful human being and you will be missed. Godspeed my friend.

Roland Johnson

Re: Sam Maloof: Still Making News at 93

Spending a day with Sam Maloof has been one of the highlights of my writing career. Sam has been so tremendously influential; just consider how many knock-off Maloof rockers have been and are currently being built. His personal story has inspired many novice woodworkers to give professional furniture making a try (myself included) and also many hobbyists have benefited from his willingness to share all he knows about woodworking. Long live Sam.


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