Let the Shape of the Shaving Be Your Guide
The Renaissance Woodworker Blog
by Shannon
5M ago
Click to play Keep the Plane Mouth Clear Certainly keeping the mouth of the plane clear will prevent it from clogging.  But it also allows you to observe the shape of the shaving.  The location of the shaving in the mouth as well as it's shape tells you a lot about the pass you just took.  It tell you about the topography of the board and how to adjust your plane strokes when flattening.  It tells you where the plane just cut which can be super useful when squaring the edge of a board.  Mostly it is just observing the feedback the plane gives you so that you ge ..read more
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Sawing Outside Your Knife Line
The Renaissance Woodworker Blog
by Shannon
5M ago
Click to play Frame & Panel and Bridle Joints Benefit from Leaving the Line I'm back with another tease from The Hand Tool School vault of lessons.  This is an excerpt from a series I call "Apprentice Sessions" where we take a focused look at a particular shop solution or problem.  This is a highly specific one that comes up with frame and panel joinery where you plow a groove first then saw the tenons.  But also it is essential making bridles joints.  Since you saw both sides of the joint, you have to leave the line in order to prevent a loose fitting joint. &n ..read more
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The Physics of Woodworking
The Renaissance Woodworker Blog
by Shannon
5M ago
Click to play Understand the Why and the Woodworking is the Easy Part I'm back with another tease from The Hand Tool School vault of lessons.  This is an excerpt from an "Office Hours" live broadcast where I take a deep dive into how a blade cuts wood.  How you can tweak certain aspects of the cut to get different results.  This understanding can really open up a lot of possibilities for problem solving.  Not just in obvious things like controlling tearout but actually how to make a cut or what tool to use for the cut.   Get the entire 90 minute lesson as a st ..read more
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Read the End Grain to Determine Planing Direction
The Renaissance Woodworker Blog
by Shannon
6M ago
Click to play Edge Grain Isn't Always Correct I have had many boards where reading the edge grain told me to plane one way and the tear out told me I should plane the other way.  I've also run into many figured or even quarter sawn boards where the edge grain didn't give me any clues how to plane it.  But taking a look at the end grain and discovering which way the fibers lean allows me to skew the plane and resolve the planing direction.  In fact I have even been able to plane in both directions and allow the skew angle to give me a clean surface.   Mast ..read more
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Making a Marquetry Photo Box
The Renaissance Woodworker Blog
by Shannon
1y ago
Click to play Marquetry Accents Make the Box Seen one hand made box and you've seen them all right?  What better way to personalize it than with a bit of marquetry.  The marquetry photo box was built to commemorate a few great road trips.  The map of the US highlights our visits and the state flags designate which photos go with which trip.  It seemed like a good way to go and would be a lot of fun to make those flags.  I definitely took a bit of artistic license with the Michigan flag so I hope those residents won't be offended by a few missing details.   ..read more
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5 Exercises to Improve Hand Sawing
The Renaissance Woodworker Blog
by Shannon
1y ago
Click to play Improve Hand Sawing by Just Sawing More OK maybe that is oversimplifying a bit too much.  A bit of focused work is a more effective way to improve hand sawing.  Really though the average project doesn't have us sawing continuously for very long.  So many things interrupt the sawing bits that it is hard to build any kind of lasting muscle memory.  Certainly the idea of 10,000 hours to mastery has merit but think about how you have to stop and restart so much in the average project.  Think about how different sawing dovetails is from sawing  a ..read more
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Lessons Learned from a Viseless Workbench
The Renaissance Woodworker Blog
by Shannon
1y ago
Click to play Workbench Vises Get In the Way I built this Nicholson style workbench a few years back as part of a beginning woodworker semester at The Hand Tool School I call Orientation.  This viseless workbench is very simple to make the barrier to entry and time to build very low.  Over the years of working on it having a viseless set up has actually improved my hand planing technique and taught me to pay attention always to the direction of force.  Whether I am planing, sawing, or using a chisel it all comes down to understanding the force and using a passive stop is ..read more
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11 Uses for Useless Scrap Wood
The Renaissance Woodworker Blog
by Shannon
1y ago
Click to play Tiny Wood Scraps, Big Impact We all have scrap wood piling up in a corner of the workshop somewhere.  Over the years I have found ways to repurpose those into useful items in my own shop.  From marking and measuring tools, to saws and bench hooks.  Certainly these items are a bit more obvious.  But what about drawbore pegs, wedges, drawer pulls, joiner's saddles, and lumber stickers?  Now we are getting into some things that can put even the tiniest wood scrap into use to make a big impact.   Sponsor this Show Questions and Topic ideas ..read more
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Gift Box Made from Scrap Wood
The Renaissance Woodworker Blog
by Shannon
2y ago
Click to play Empty the Scrap Wood Box and Make a Gift Box Happy holidays!  Its the woodworker's time to shine and make hand made gifts to wow the whole family.  Usually this means applying quick drying finishes around 11 PM on Christmas Eve.  Well to aid you in your last minute shop madness here is a simple box made from the stuff I found in my scrap wood pile.   A few miters, some veneer splines, and a slab top sitting in rabbets.  What could be simpler than that?  Being woodworkers, I'm sure all of you can find ways to overcomplicate it and add you ..read more
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Live Edge Floating Shelves
The Renaissance Woodworker Blog
by Shannon
2y ago
Click to play Have Firewood?  Make a Live Edge Shelf Live edge shelves.  Floating shelves.  Live edge floating shelves!  Jeez you would think I'm just hunting for SEO keywords with this video!  Actually I'm just trying to be a good uncle and make some shelves for my niece's kitchen.  Can I help it that she is very on trend with her decorative style and she requested live edge floating shelves?  (there's that keyword again) This is a simple project in that I split some blanks out of a log, planed 3 faces and I was done.  But the live edge required ..read more
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