Wood Talk Online – #26

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General:
– Tis the time for pre-holiday happenings!
– “The crazy woodnet article that won’t die.”
– Marc and Matt discuss Marc’s search for a long jointer plane primarily to be used to flatten panels and to flatten his workbench “the old fashioned way.”
– Matt talks a little about Chris Schwarz’s new workbench book.
– Kaleo, regular contributor to WTO, is coming home soon. Marc has been helping him to get his new blog setup.

Voicemails / Emails:
Glen – Email
Currently I have a cheapo jig for drilling pocket holes. It is preset for 3/4″ wood. I’ve noticed fine metal shavings coming out of the guide with every use, and there seems to be some play in the jig itself. Recently, I was working on some shelving made of plywood with this jig, and several times the screw blew out the end of the piece. I haven’t drilled more than 75 holes with this jig, and I’m wondering if this is just really a poor jig or if it’s operator error. I’m pretty much convinced that I need to get a Kreg jig and get out of the land of cheapos. Which Kreg would you guys recommend?

Andrew – Email
What’s the best finishing technique for a person who does not have access to a spray gun, a booth, or both? What’s the best way to finish a piece of wood furniture if it’s going to be stained first? What is the difference between stain and varnish?

Jonathan – Email
Here are a list of questions to keep you podcasting in to the New Year:
1) What is the dumbest thing you’ve ever done in the workshop?
2) If you were the great “woodini” and could see in to the future, what do you think are going to be the newest trends in woodworking? New tools? New techniques? Will the hand tool fanatics finally rise up and defeat the horsepower hordes in a final ragnarok of woodworking?
3) What are your woodworking New Year’s resolutions?
4) Who would win in a full contact cage match: Norm Abram, Scott Phillips, or Roy Underhill?
5) What is your least favorite woodworking tool that you can’t live without?
What are your answers to these questions? Let us know in the comments!

Rudy – Email
I’ve got a 3 HP cabinet saw with a Forrest Woodworker 2 blade. When I rip wood, I get a smooth cut on the piece between the blade and the fence, but the piece on the outside of the blade is always rough. I’ve checked my saw alignment and it’s all fine. My miter slots are parallel to the blade, and the fence is parallel to the miter slots. Do you think that this rough cut could be a result of the blade being dull? Any thoughts on the matter would be appreciated.

8 replies on “Wood Talk Online – #26”

Another great show — at least the part I’ve listened to so far. With Christmas coming up, I’m not sure when I’ll be able to listen to the rest of the show, but I did want to make an out of the box suggestion regarding a jointer plane.

You might want to give a wooden jointer a try. The reason that the extra mass in a #8 jointer is useful is that there’s a lot of friction between the metal and the wood. The extra weight helps the plane keep going once you overcome the friction.

With a wooden jointer, it’s wood on wood, so friction is almost nonexistent. It’s easy to make the sole of a wooden plane flat, compared to flattening the sole of a #8. (Actually, all you have to do is make sure that the very front of the plane and the area around the mouth, and the back end of the plane are coplanar.)

Since the friction issue is greatly reduced, a wooden plane can do the same job as a metal jointer plane while being a lot lighter, which you will appreciate after about a half hour of jointing.

You can find wooden jointer planes from Knight Toolworks ($165-200), ECE ($245), or Clark & Williams ($365-385). These are pricey, but in the same range as a Lie Nielsen or Lee Valley jointer plane. Or you could look for a transitional Stanley, which have the Stanley guts but a wooden sole. But I would go with a new model, unless you know what you are doing, or have someone local that can help you with the setup.

I know that what I am saying about the usefulness of a wooden jointer plane sounds very counterintuitive, especially given the conventional wisdom regarding heavier planes being able to plow through anything. I thought the same thing, until I tried a well tuned wooden plane for the first time. And if you don’t believe me, maybe Tom Iovino could weigh in on this, since he’s used Japanese planes, which are also wooden. (I use Japanese planes for most planing duties as well.)

Oh, regarding threads that won’t die, there’s a thread on Fine Woodworking’s Knots forum coincidentally titled, “Jointer plane question?” that has over 1300 replies.

That’s 13 with two zeroes.

We need more honesty from the hosts of these shows across the web. Just because you have a sponsor that is paying the bills and they make a bad product, the host needs to “call a spade a spade”. We need somone that isn’t afraid of calling a bad product a bad product. There is a lot of garbage out there and it would be refreshing if someone wrote a review that was honest despite ramifications from the sponsor. We work hard for our dollars and spending them on worthless tools is just too bad. The problem is we don’t know what is good and what is bad until someone has the courage to step up and be noticed. Lou

woo-hoo. Now I can check off another milestone on my woodworking career list — getting dissed on WTO!

I think I should have phrased my question better regarding the pocket hole jig. I guess I knew that the issues I was running into were due to the cheap jig. What I didn’t know is if I would see those same types of problems using a “good” jig as well. The only thing worse than buying the cheap jig and then the good jig is finding out that both are junk and won’t do what you want. šŸ™‚

Anyway, I’ve got the K3SP on order from amazon.

Regarding circular saws — I used to despise mine as well. It was a craftsman cheapie that was given to me from a former friend. The saw didn’t end our friendship, but I don’t think it’s coincidental. I upgraded to a worm drive saw about 6 months back and have never been happier. Put a good blade on a worm drive saw and you’ll be amazed at what it can do. It’s now my first stop for ripping large boards down to size.

Ok, I got way behind listening to my podcasts, over the holidays. I just listen to this episode the other day. My least favorite tool that I can’t live without is my router. It’s a powerful tool, but there things about it I just hate. It’s probably one the loudest tools in my shop. It’s hard to control the dust it creates. I’m always dealing with some sort of tear-out. Lastly it’s the one tool that scares me the most. This tool can do some serious damage to you, if you don’t use it right. Marc’s story is a good example.

Mike

What the heck?!?!?!?! The dog/vet/end of show was sort of abrupt. I hope the dog was okay in the end…

My least favorite tool I can’t live without is my portable dust collector. I have an Oneida cyclone system with metal duct set-up for most tools, but for my ODS-22-44, my JBOS-5, my downdraft sanding table and other dust producing (versus chip producing) equipment I have a DC-650 on which I have an after market Penn State pleated filter with paddles (which replaced the original cloth bags so I can clean the filter more easily, filter finer particles and keep it performing at the 650 CFM mark). With that run-on sentence completed…I hate it because I have to move it and plug it in and trip over the hose to use those. It does such a nice job collecting the dusty dust though that it’s a necessity. I agree that the listener that posed that question did a nice job in coming up with it!

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