Hand Tool Essentials Refine Your Power Tool Projects
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Hand Tool Essentials Refine Your Power Tool Projects

Hand Tool Essentials Refine Your Power Tool Projects With Hand Tool Techniques | PDF Free Download.

Authors of Hand Tool Essentials Refine Your Power Tool Projects

PAUL ANTHONY Paul Anthony is a woodworking author and teacher living in Riegelsville, Pennsylvania. He is the author of Smart Workshop Solutions and edits the Tricks of the Trade column for Popular Woodworking magazine.

LONNIE BIRD Lonnie runs the Lonnie Bird School of Fine Woodworking in Dandridge, Tennessee; he is the author of six books, including The Complete Illustrated Guide to Using Handtools; and is a contributing editor to Fine Woodworking magazine.

GRAHAM BLACKBURN Graham is a furniture maker and author of 18 books on woodworking and home building, including Traditional Woodworking Handtools and Traditional Woodworking Techniques. He also is the publisher of the Woodworking in Action DVD-based magazine.

DAVID CHARLESWORTH David teaches courses in making fine furniture from his shop in Devon, England, and is the author of the three-volume set of books titled Furniture-Making Techniques. He also has four DVDs produced by Lie-Nielsen Toolworks on sharpening, tuning, and using traditional hand tools.

ADAM CHERUBINI Adam builds reproduction furniture using the tools and techniques of the 18th century. He demonstrates his crafts at Pennsbury Manor in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, on Historic Trades Days and is a contributing editor to Popular Woodworking Magazine.

SCOTT GIBSON Scott, the author of The Workshop, is a writer and woodworker in East Waterboro, Maine. He is the former editor of Fine Woodworking magazine.

ROGER HOLMES Roger trained as a furniture maker in England and has been working wood professionally and for fun for 30 years. Formerly an editor at Fine Woodworking magazine, he now lives in Lincoln, Nebraska. 

FRANK KLAUSZ Educated in the Hungarian trade school system, Frank is a master cabinetmaker, author, teacher, and owner of Frank’s Cabinet Shop in Pluckemin, New Jersey, specializing in fine furniture reproductions and architectural fixtures.

DON MCCONNELL Don is a planemaker for Clark & Williams in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, and is an avid researcher into the history of the woodworking trade and its tools. Before becoming a toolmaker, Don was a professional woodworker, specializing in ornamental carvings.

RICK PETERS Rick is a woodworker and publishing professional and resides in Emmaus, Pennsylvania. He is the author of more than a dozen woodworking and home-improvement books, including Woodworker’s Hand Tools: An Essential Guide.

CHRISTOPHER SCHWARZ Chris is editor of Popular Woodworking magazine, a contributing editor to The Fine Tool Journal, and teaches traditional woodworking techniques. He has two DVDs produced by Lie-Nielsen Toolworks on nearly forgotten hand tools and on blending hand tools and power tools.

PAUL SELLERS Paul began his woodworking career 40 years ago as an apprentice in England. An advocate of hand tools in the modern shop, today he builds furniture and teaches in Texas at the School of Woodworking, which he started in 1995.

HARRELSON STANLEY Harrelson is a teacher and importer of fine Japanese woodworking tools. He is also the host of a number of DVDs, including one discussing his side-sharpening technique in detail and another on setting up and using Japanese planes.

JIM STUARD Jim is a former editor for Popular Woodworking magazine and is currently enjoying his two children and creating fly-fishing videos for the internet.

Hand Tool Essentials Contents

  • Sharpening
  • Chisels
  • Other Hand Tools
  • Saws
  • Planes
  • Projects For Hand Tools

Introduction to Hand Tool Essentials Refine Your Power Tool Projects 

Hand Tools For Power Woodworkers

For me, working wood without hand tools is like trying to write a story without using adjectives. Power tools and machinery are the nouns and verbs. They do the heavy lifting of reducing rough stock to useful sizes, for roughing out joints, for getting things done.

But power tools can take you only so far when it comes to the fine details. Hand tools are the difference between a flat carcass side and a shimmering, ready-to-finish carcass side.

They turn a dovetail into a London-pattern dovetail, with tails that are too close together to accomplish with any router.

They turn a mortise-and-tenon joint into a piston-fit joint. I’m not saying you can’t do woodworking without hand tools – lots of people make lots of beautiful objects using electrical tools only.

But hand tools are the secret weapon that frees you from the limitations of your machinery. Have you ever been frustrated by adjusting the fence of your table saw in small increments? Say, less than 1⁄64"? Adjusting your stock to thickness, width and length with a hand plane allows you to tweak your stock in increments as small as .001".

This is a child’s play for a hand plane, not something you have to practice at for years to master. Do you get frustrated by the endless series of test cuts when setting a miter saw or table saw for a compound miter? I do.

And I used to despair at the amount of decent wood I wasted with these test cuts. Learning to work a backsaw allows you to draw any line at any angle on any piece of wood and cut to exactly that line. It doesn’t matter if it’s 90° or 23.75°.

A handsaw will do both with the same ease. Do you dislike spending hours building single-use jigs to make a simple cut, such as notching out the corners of the base in a post-and-frame carcass? A saw and chisel will allow you to make any size or shape notch.

Even if every notch is a little different, your hand tools don’t care. If you can mark it on the wood, they can cut it to that shape.

And do you wish you could add curves to your work without having to invest the time in making lots of router templates or spending money on a spindle sander? A saw and a decent rasp can shape any curve you can think of, and you aren’t limited by the depth of a router bit.

If you can think it and draw it, a rasp can shape it. I’m sure that all of this sounds somewhat appealing. Why else would you have picked up this book? But I’m also certain that you have fears and apprehensions about handwork.

It seems difficult to master. The tools are foreign. And most woodworker’s first experiences with hand tools are frustrating I’m not going to lie to you, you need to learn to sharpen before you will have any success with chisels, planes or scrapers.

But if you will learn this small skill (there are lots of valid ways to sharpen a tool, and some of our favorites are in this book), the rewards will far exceed the time you spent learning to put a keen edge on a piece of steel.

And, as a bonus, you will find that learning to sharpen a chisel will open up wide vistas of woodworking that might have seemed closed to you before: turning, carving, marquetry. Sharpening is the gateway skill to a wider world of woodworking.

Once you start down this path, I promise you that the distinctions between power tools and hand tools will start to blur. In fact, the adjectives “hand” and “power” will have a lot less meaning for you than the word that they modify: tool.

You will find yourself cutting tenons with a dado stack and adjusting them to perfection with a shoulder plane. You will cut a cabriole leg to shape with a band saw and smooth its sinuous curves with a rasp and file.

You will raise a door panel on your router table and fit it with a block plane so it never rattles. You will work faster without meaning to.

The crispness of your work will surprise you. You won’t dread sanding because you’ll be doing much less of it.

You will hunger to get back into the shop more than you ever did before. Whether you know it or not, we live in a new golden age of woodworking that has never occurred before.

Machinery is less expensive in inflation-adjusted dollars than when the Industrial Revolution birthed the industry. Almost any household of any income can afford a table saw, planer, and jointer that can turn rough wood into furniture ready boards.

And hand tools are now of better quality than at any time since World War II. For almost 50 years, the best hand tools were old hand tools from the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

And to get those old-timers to work you had to learn about tool restoration – removing rust, flattening warped cast iron, regrinding hopelessly damaged chisels.

But no more. Modern manufacturers such as Veritas, Lie-Nielsen, Clifton, Auriou, and Ashley Iles now make tools that actually exceed the quality of the old-time tools.

These tools take minutes to set up for use, instead of days. They are properly designed and use modern manufacturing and steels to compete against the other premium tools flooding the market. They are, like our machines, a joy to use.

The book you are holding in your hands is the missing link between the world of handwork and machine work.

The skills and tools discussed herein are all you need to start incorporating hand tools into your power-tool shop. We’ve carefully selected each of these chapters to provide this crash course on how to turn your woodworking into fine woodworking. Now let’s get to work.

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