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Winter 2013-2014

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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...
  • The Jigs of Serge Duclos

    by American Woodworker Editors     Friday, October 18, 2013
    Saddle-Style Push Stick Any push stick adds a measure of safety, but I prefer using one that straddles the saw’s fence. It lifts right off when I’m done. A saddle-style push stick has two clear advantages. First, there’s no chance of...
  • Q & A: Why are new chisels so dull?

    by woodworkerBryan     Wednesday, February 27, 2013
    Q & A: Why are new chisels so dull? Q: Whenever I buy a blade, like a tablesaw blade or a router bit, it’s always sharp.How come when I buy chisels they’re duller than a math lecture on the last day of school? A: Although it seems reasonable...
  • Q & A: Folding Bandsaw Blades

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, October 16, 2012
    Q & A: Folding Bandsaw Blades Q: I once saw someone fold a bandsaw blade for easier storage— how was that done? A: Folding a bandsaw blade can be a bit intimidating when you first attempt it. Armed with sharp teeth and a spring-like tension...
  • Q & A: Final Rubout

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, January 15, 2013
    Q & A: Final Rubout Q: I always have problems getting a smooth finish. I sand the wood with 220 paper,wipe it with a tack cloth, apply three coats of high-quality varnish, and still get a rough surface! What can I do to get that “professional”...
  • 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...
  • Pivoting Outfeed Support

    by American Woodworker Editors     Monday, November 4, 2013
    Pivoting Outfeed Support I recently saw an outfeed stand that had a pivoting top.The pivoting action prevents a workpiece from catching the front edge of the outfeed top. Instead, the top just pivots up level as the workpiece passes over it. I figured...
  • 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...
  • 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...
  • 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...
  • 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...
  • Q & A: Cock-Beading on Drawer Fronts

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, November 13, 2012
    Q & A: Cock-Beading on Drawer Fronts Q: I have plans for a Queen Anne highboy in which the drawer beads are applied as separate strips to the edges of the drawer front. How is this done without creating a problem with cross grain movement? A: Some...
  • Q & A: Sawdust in the Garden?

    by American Woodworker Editors     Thursday, September 12, 2013
    Q & A: Sawdust in the Garden? Q: I spend as much time tending plants in the garden as making sawdust in my shop.Are there any problems with using the sawdust and chips in my dust-collector bag as mulch in the garden? A: Go for it! A one- to 2-in....
  • 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...
  • 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...