WT109 – Shannon Ruins the Poll

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On today’s show, we’re talking about bandsaw tuneup, shop music, tools we would choose if starting over, sharpening, laminated countertops, and organizing tasks during a complicated project.

What’s on the bench?

Shannon didn’t enjoy the process of tuning up his DeWalt planer. He referenced an article from Marc’s site called The Many Hats of a Woodworker. He also replaced a chisel handle and had a bit of a disaster during one of his live sessions. Oops! Matt decided to re-route his dust collection tubing and had a major performance boost! Marc is still working on the Dogon Bed design and had to find an alternative to the customer’s requested African Blackwood raised panel. Looks like it’s going to be the Winter of Wenge!

Around the Web

Wagner Moisture meter smart phone app WOOD H2O.
The Wood Shop Widget

Poll of the Week

How do you learn Woodworking?


Michael wants to know what we use to listen to music in the shop, and what we like to listen to.

Steve wants to know if we have some advice and resources for Bandsaw tuneup. Marc recommended a video on his site Bandsaw Setup/Tuneup, as well as two videos from Michael Fortune: How to Resaw and How to Set Up a Bandsaw.
Shannon offers some advice from his recent bandsaw setup experience as well.


Kenny (TheWoodNinja) asks, “I have a question for all three of you guys. Because of the varying degree of your woodworking styles, I’d like to know if you had to start over today with your current knowledge, what would be the first three plane purchases be. Thanks in advance for your help and thanks for going weekly. Keep up the great job!”

Marc recommended folks check out a similar thread in the forum that focuses a bit more on power tools.

David Young asks, “I would be interested in hearing your opinions on the approaches (and merits) to constructing laminated tops for kitchen counters and island tops. For instance, is there a preferred grain for the primary surface of the counter top (flatsawn vs. quartersawn) when laminating — assuming that you will never be using knives directly against the surface. Can the top be thinner / thicker than the traditional 1.5″ thickness of a standard countertop…what advantages / disadvantages would these bring?”

Jamie asks, “Should a beginning hand tool sharpener step up and buy a good quality sharpening system right away? Or is there even a price difference or learning curve with sharpening stones? It appears Shapton has had good reviews, which one though. Ceramic on glass or traditional stones? Or is it all personal preference and I just need to find one that will work for me?”

Eric asks, “Hi Marc, Matt & Shannon. I was wondering if you guys could briefly discuss tips on how you break up work segments when you have limited amounts of time for shop sessions on more complex projects. Do you set specific objectives and strive to complete a certain process for that day so as to start a new task the next time, or do you just go as far as you can with the time you have and pick up where you left off in the next session?”

Shannon recommended Eric check out a post from his site called Project Taking Longer Than Expected?.

iTunes Reviews

Special thanks to all of the folks who left us 5-star reviews in iTunes: Imdanuts, Listened Once, and bmchan. Want to leave us a review in iTunes? You can do so here: Wood Talk in the iTunes Store.

7 replies on “WT109 – Shannon Ruins the Poll”

Irish Punk, Mumford & Sons
good choices

on pop front recently love First Aid Kit

mostly listen to KCSB’s Rocket Garden Holiday show. Some extracts and also full shows with a few selections removed to suit this woodworker. Chris of RGH does the very broad range, while mostly in alt, americana zone.

Man i really relate. so Shannon,one question what did you do to fix the problem on your dewalt 735? I know you said that you took it all apart but what actualy was the problem?


My problem was dust crammed into the gears behind the fan motor (back right side) The exhaust hood was leaking and that corner is unreachable without taking the whole thing apart and it just built up and built up over the years til it practically froze the height adjustment. I cleaned it out then applied some peel and stick weather stripping around the dust shroud and around the part that plugs in to the fan motor (gasket) and no more chips inside the unit.

On Bandsaw set up, Michael Fortune basically said 2 things I question:

1) he said that once the blade runs on the crown of the upper wheel, you can set your fence aligned with the miter slot and you’re good. I think Scott Philips also says this. But I’ve always heard you HAVE to accommodate drift. Thoughts?

2) He said that once the set up is done, you’re good for the next 40 years. Again, the very fact that he moved the guide blocks out of the way you have to reset them, I’m unsure of the validity of the statement, but I personally am not going to walk up to Michael Fortune and tell him “you’re wrong, dude!”.


Well I wouldn’t question Mr. Fortune either, but perhaps there is a little over-simplification there. If the saw runs perfectly true when the blade is perfectly centered, it stands to reason that a blade that is off-center is NOT going to run true. So getting that blade centered is the real trick. On most saws, visibility is a little tricky so it might take a few shots before you are able to get that blade centered perfectly. I recently tuned up my bandsaw and I aimed for dead center on the top wheel, or as close as I could get. I made my first test cut and adjusted my fence for the drift. It was only slightly out, but if I had set my fence to the miter slot it would have been a little off. So even if you think your blade is centered, I still recommend testing for drift and either adjusting your fence or adjusting your blade again. My fence adjusts very easily for drift so the take-home message, at least for me, is to always aim for center, but still test and adjust for drift if necessary.

Are you still using the DMT diamond plate to repair edges and flatten stones? I am looking at doing the same thing, planing on getting an extra coarse/coarse DMT plate, but not sure if I should get a DuoSharp or DiaSharp. Also, would you recommend going with a 10″ DMT plate or do you think an 8″ would work OK for flattening my Norton combination water stones?


If you guys haven’t heard of Other Lives, give them a listen. My shop playlist bounces around between…
Other Lives
Cold War Kids
The Black Keys
Kings of Leon (their first three albums)
Modest Mouse
The White Stripes
Band of Horses
The Avett Brothers
Mumford and Sons
Sufjan Stevens
Fleet Foxes
Chris Bathgate
Chin Up Chin Up
Rogue Wave
The Shins
The Decemberists
Andrew Bird
Gogol Bordello

I am indeed still using the DMT. I can really only speak for the DuoSharp and it works quite well. A comparable grit in the DiaSharp would like produce similar results. And while 8″ will do, I like the idea of the 10″ for greater surface area. Makes flattening easier.

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