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  • The Way Wood Works: Reading Grain Direction

    by American Woodworker Editors     Monday, July 2, 2012
    The Way Wood Works: Reading Grain Direction By Tom Caspar “Going against the grain” is a familiar phrase. It means doing something the wrong way.When you’re talking about wood, you always want to go with the grain—cutting or planing...
  • AW Extra 2/7/13 - Flattening Wide Boards

    by American Woodworker Editors     Friday, June 3, 2011
    Flattening Wide Boards You don’t need monster machinery to flatten monster boards. By Dave Munkittrick Big, wide boards make my heart race with anticipation. Panels and tabletops are so pleasing to look at when they’re made from a single board...
  • Q & A: Silencing a Squeaky Tablesaw

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, August 27, 2013
    Q & A: Silencing a Squeaky Tablesaw Q: My tablesaw screeches like nails on a chalkboard whenever I adjust the blade.WD-40 made the noise go away for a while, but now it’s back. What do I do? A: That sound can drive you crazy! It’s a clear...
  • Shop-Made Rocker Jaw

    by American Woodworker Editors     Monday, June 3, 2013
    Shop-Made Rocker Jaw One simple board, cut into the shape of a seesaw, can make a huge improvement to your vise. It allows you to firmly hold tapered work and long, upright boards off to the side of the vise. For a tapered piece, such as the leg shown...
  • Q & A: Are Broken Screws Removable?

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, March 12, 2013
    Q & A: Are Broken Screws Removable? Q: Argh! I broke off a brass screw while installing a small hinge. Can I get it out? A: Join the club! Every woodworker has faced this problem.The best answer is to drill around the screw with a hollow bit, an unusual...
  • AW Extra 6/13/13 - 7 Tips for Better Drum Sanding

    by American Woodworker Editors     Wednesday, November 4, 2009
    7 Tips for Better Drum Sanding By Randy Johnson If you hate sanding (and who doesn’t?), a drum sander can be a godsend. Just feed in your boards, or even completed doors and other projects, and out they come, perfectly sanded, flat and smooth. And...
  • Breaking Rules

    by American Woodworker Editors     Wednesday, June 19, 2013
    Breaking Rules Don’t throw away that broken, wooden rule. Strip the hardware from a 6-in. section. Then cut a slot for it in the front edge of your workbench with a router. Place the zero mark flush with the top. You now have a permanent depth gauge...
  • Q & A: Dovetail Jig Set-Up

    by woodworkerBryan     Wednesday, February 20, 2013
    Q & A: Dovetail Jig Set-Up Q: I’ve fallen in love with my dovetail router jig, but my big frustration is setting the depth of the dovetail bit each time. I’ve tried measuring how much the bit should stick out, but that’s awkward...
  • Q & A: Why Does My Wood Have Stripes?

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, November 12, 2013
    Why Does My Wood Have Stripes? Q: I put a clear finish on a beautiful ash table I made and found faint stripes an inch or two wide going across each board. Any ideas on what caused them and how to get rid of them? A: Those stripes probably won’t...
  • AW Extra 9/6/12 - Swing-Out Plywood Storage

    by AW-Editor     Tuesday, July 8, 2008
    Swing-Out Plywood Storage I was looking for a way to keep my small inventory of plywood organized and easy to access. The garage at my town house is small, but I did have a narrow space along one of the sidewalls next to the overhead door. After some...
  • Q & A: How do you cut curves in glass?

    by American Woodworker Editors     Monday, March 18, 2013
    Q & A: How do you cut curves in glass? Q: My up-and-coming star pitcher accidentally hurled her baseball through a glass pane in our family room hutch. Usually, I’d just get out my glass cutter and make a replacement pane, but this one’s...
  • Portable Shaving Horse

    by American Woodworker Editors     Wednesday, June 19, 2013
    Portable Shaving Horse Bring your shop to the woods. In the modern workshop, the tablesaw is the central tool. A few centuries ago, for coopers (barrel makers), bodgers (chairmakers), and carpenters, the shaving horse was indispensable. Woodworkers use...
  • AW Extra 5/16/13 - Make Corner Splines

    by woodworkerBryan     Friday, February 15, 2013
    Make Corner Splines Decorative corner splines sure make an ordinary box look great. But they can be a bit dicey to cut on a tablesaw. Let your plate joiner come to the rescue. A simple jig holds the box and the joiner so you can cut slots quickly with...
  • Q & A: Why Predrill Screw Holes?

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, October 29, 2013
    Why Predrill Screw Holes? Q: I think predrilling screw holes is a real drag, so I rarely do it. Most screws seem to work fine without all that bother. Why are you always advocating predrilling? A: Call us old fashioned,but when you’re working in...
  • Q & A: Can I Sharpen My Router Bit?

    by American Woodworker Editors     Wednesday, October 2, 2013
    Can I Sharpen My Router Bit? Q: I’ve got a carbide router bit that’s caked with pitch and leaves a rough cut. Can I rescue it or should I buy a new one? A: A bit can be brought back from the dead. Take a close look at the cutting edge. If...