WT128 – British TV

Special thanks to our show sponsors: Festool and Hardwood To Go!

On today’s show, we’re talking about responsible wood usage, green mineral spirits, wood floor coating options, designing for strength, fixing a hand-cut mortise, Arm-R-Seal alternatives in the UK, riving knife usage, carving tools, radial arm saws, cross-cut sled usage, steel hardness, butcher block finishes, using good old elmers glue, and sprung joints.

What’s on the Bench?

Shannon is getting ready for a shop makeover. Matt’s playing with some laminated ring designs. Marc is finishing up his review of the Grizzly track saw and discusses a visit with Andy Chidwick.

Around the Web

Graham posted a picture of his grandfather’s apprenticeship papers
Robin Wood on the BBC

Poll of the Week

What’s Your Preferred Sharpening Method?


– Bill suggests the Sand Flee as an alternative to a drum sander in response to our discussion in Episode 127.
– Bo gives us some advice concerning liability in response to Episode 127.
– Michael recommends a book called Shop Class as Soulcraft in response to our discussion about masters and apprentices in Episode 126.


Michael wants our thoughts on designing pieces to use wood responsibly.


– Matt is not happy with the new “green” mineral spirits.
– Dell wants advice on a coating for his wooden shop floor.
– Peter wants to know how we decide on things like leg thickness when designing furniture.
– Jonathan wants to know how to fix a mangled mortise.
– Dave is looking for a Arm-R-Seal alternative in the UK.
– Marc wants some advice on riving knife usage.
– Mike is looking for a recommendation on carving tools.
– Marc wants to know why we don’t use radial arm saws.
– Kenji is looking for information on cross-cut sled usage.
– Andreas wants to know if there is an easy way to test steel hardness.
– Al wants a recommendation on butcher block finishes.
– Steelers510 wants to know if he can use standard white Elmer’s glue and if sprung joints are necessary.

Reviews and Thanks!

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11 replies on “WT128 – British TV”

British TV programming not entirely crap. Although there are the usual range of very poor reality TV programmes (who watches them??) , endless crime dramas (both homegrown and US imports), cooking programmes, hospital dramas, soap operas, 24 hour news, sports, music, reruns of Friends 🙁 and other US imports, those silly shows from Simon Cowell and “lifestyle” shows. In fact the whole range of programmes that are shown all over the world every minute of the day.

There are occasional good shows and 3 very recent woodworking shows 🙂 – yay!!
There is a bonus though on the 7 BBC channels there are absolutely NO commercials. On all the other channels there are commercials but they come at natural breaks in the shows maybe one break of 3 minutes in a half hour. Unlike US or Canadian channels when they come randomly.
One time I was in the US watching Star Trek Voyager and the start of it came on, then there was an immediate commercial break (no warning), then the beginning titles came on with the music, then another commercial break. Then 5 minutes of the show and another commercial break. It went on like this for about an hour.
Aliens firing disrupters suddenly become humans eating cornflakes then back to the aliens again.
I don’t know how you put up with it 🙂

Having said all that I prefer heading out to the shop and doing some woodworking or watching you guys on podcasts.
Thanks for the show guys.

If Peter (or anyone else)needs some dimensions for the Tripp Trapp, I can measure the one we have at home and make up a sketch.

Radial Arm Saws.
A far too often maligned tool. With a little instruction, patience, and reading of the manual they are safe, very accurate and they can easily make cuts that are difficult to impossible with a chop saw, table saw and jigs. One thing that is good about them is that the table and the fence are both sacrificial. Additionally a RAS can do more than cut. They can sand, rout, plane, and rip. They are a cool tool. And not only that but [surprisingly to some] Craftsman makes the best, cheapest and safest one.

Re: A finish for a wood shop floor.

I originally put an oil based poly on my floor. The off-gassing seemed that it would NEVER end. I have 1/4″ luan flooring, bought from my local BORG, screwed down to the substrate. Over time, I have gotten over-spray on it, glue, stain, etc. I scrape it off, vacuum and roll on some fresh Zinsser Bulls-Eye Shellac, which to my understanding is approximately a 3lb cut. If I were to do it again, I’d have rolled down 2 to 3 coats. It would have taken me half the time as the poly and it’s easily repairable, which is turned out to be an important thing to me.

Now, if I were going with a hardwood floor like Oak, I would do what a friend of mine did and put down a polymerized tung oil. He has a very rambunctious Golden Retriever that would put scrapes in any type of hard finish. The Oak has proven to stand up to the fast moving nails and the finish only needs refurbishing from time to time.

Always great show guys!

RE: Wood floor finishes

I’m almost done building my new shop and it has a wood (spruce) floor. I put a couple coats of solvent based preservative on it (the shop is in the garden and sits on pressure treated bearers), followed by six coats of water based poly applied with a brush. I lightly sanded each coat (quick pass with 220grit) after it had dried (only a couple hours to get to be dry enough to sand) and built it up over a couple of days. It turned out fantastic with a really nice matt finish. Time will tell if the protection proves itself though.

It’s not cheap (around £50 for 5l) but doesn’t have the offensive smell of oil based poly and dries quickly.


great show as always guys. one thing i wanted to add my 2 cents for would be the radial arm saw. The only reason why i could see the radial arm being used over compound miter and/or table saw is if you are creating dados or large half laps in long pieces. i’m making a folding wall mounted workbench soon and would rather used a radial arm with a dado blade to cut the half laps to receive the 2 x 4 since the leg will be 36″. the table saw can certainly do it, but i think the redial arm would be the easiest . Again think it’s really only when you have to do this on a longer piece. (assuming you have a miter station setup)

Great show as always coving a plethora of topics. Loved the Better Off Dead reference in toward the beginning of the show!

Thanks for the answer.
And to Brian R. – I have a Friend who also has one – so I think I’ll borrow that one and studie it closer.

Thanks for the help

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