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Workbench 48 Adjustable Bookcase 54 Sliding-Door 63 CubeInA Cube
Glass doors keep the dust out. Use a drill press to make a pluzzle with no solution. Raise or lower its top to suit the job.

Tipsfor Using Shellac 66 \-z \-/ 10 ways to take advantage of a

versatile finish.

70 Kit-BuiltGuitars 74 TablesawExtension 77 MagazineRack

A wall-mounted design, Mission style.

You'll be strumming in no time.

Double the rip capacity of your saw.


2 American Woodworker SEpTEMBER2oo7

B Mailbox
Readers unload about mortising bits, baby powder and more.

& Answer 10Ouestion

Sharpen a Forstner bit, identifr tools from Stanley's golden era, skip dowels for edge joints and draw an oval with a paper strip.


Support a board in a face vise, mark dadoes with tape, finish projects on triangular strips, make a gigantic folding assembly table, remove scratches from a tablesaw guard, set a router bit with a dial indicator, improve a zero<learance insert plate, store clamps under an assembly table and use aluminum angle to flatten a glue-up.

22llcol Nut

A reconstructed lathe and a transformed block plane.

Shop 24Well-Equipped

New Leigh dovetailjigs, 12-in. Gizzly jointer, Steel City mini dust collector, 3D Squares for cabinet assembly,Earlex 3000 FIVLP sprayer, Skil miter saw with twin lasers, MLCS laser for locating a router bit, Plan Station hanging desk and Craftsman's CompuCarve. computerconrolled

32 New Department!
An Arizona high school teacher creates abuzz about his woodworking class.

3BMy Shop

Visit a light-filled space tucked between a house and a garage.


Turning Wood 40 Turning Wood Bowl a Green

A log, lengthy curls and lots of fun.


Your Skills B6Build

Master 11Tips to HelpYou Dadoes and Rabbets

Tighter corner joints ahead!

92 ModernCabinetmaker
Frameless Joinery Cabinet
Put on the edging before you assemble.



that cheesecake!

American Woodworker

Tomorro\,v's Woodworkers
We've all heard about the decline of high school shop programs and students' apparent loss of interest in working with their hands. While it's true that many school shops have closed due to funding cuts and curriculum changes, I've had the pleasure of talking with several woodworking teachers whose programs are flourishing. Not only are these teachers providing students with the opportunity to learn practical woodworking skills and techniques, but they also report that the problem-solving abilities stuto dents develop through hands-on shop activities are contributing increased interest and achievement in math and science classes. To highlight these stories of success,we're adding a new department called "School News." Our first installment features a high school in
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Prescott, Arizona. Tom Bockman has taught woodshop at Prescott High for 26 years, so he's experienced the challenges of declining enrollment and shrinking budgets first hand. But rather then allowing his program to fail, Tom developed proactive recruiting strategies and teaching methods that have brought phenomenal success.For the complete story see page 32.In future issueswe'll bring you more good news about woodworking programs that are making positive contributions to the lives of their students and communities. College and adult woodworking programs are also doing great things to promote the craft and pass on the joys of woodworking. There are as many class offierings as there are styles of furniture. No matter what area

Natural Spectrumo Deluxe ShoplightrM with 3-way mounting clamp Just orle of nwny great LtghtingPro&tcts.

of woodworking you want to learn about, there's a school that will help you develop the skills, whether it's mastering hand tools, building a bookcase or designing art furniture. For an extensive listing of woodworking schools visit /wwschools. We may be practicing a traditional, even ancient craft, but there's still a lot to be gained in the classroom while learning how to square a box, fit a joint, and calculate a board foot. Passit on! Until next time.

Randy Tohnson -Editor { oh nsdn@americanwoodworker. com
6 American Woodworker

EDITORIAL Editor Senior Editor RandyJohnson Tom Caspar

Associate Erlitots
()ontributing Editors

Brad Holden Seth Keller Bruce Kieffer Alan Lacer

Office Administrator


ABT & DESIGN Creative Director Photographer VernJohnson Jason Zentner

CategoryPresident/Publisher AssociatePublisher/ National Sales Manager Vice President/Production Production Manager Ad Prodtrction (loordinator Systenrs Engineer (lirctrlation

Roger Case James Ford Derek W. Corson Dominic M. Taormina Kristin N. Beaudoin Kevin A. Mooney Steve Pippen Susan Sidler

ADVERTISING SALES 1285 C,oqxrmte Center Drive, Suite 180, Eagan, MN 55121 CHICA(X)James Ford (219) 462-7211 Classified Advertising, The McNeill Group, Inc. Cl:usified M:rnager, Don Serfass (215) 321-9662, ext. 30 NEW TRACK MEDIA LLC Chief Executive Officer Executive Vice Presiclent/CFO Vice President/ Publishing Dircctor StephenJ. IGnt Mark F. Arnett Joel P. Toner

Issue#130. Arrrcricarr!\ixrdnrrrkcr@. ISSN 107+9152. USPS73&710 Prrblishedbimonthlr,,except nr()nthh' October and November by AW Meclia [,1.(],90 Shcrman St., Oambridge, MA 02140. Periodicalspostagepaid at Boston, MA and additional nailing oflices. Postnraster: Send change of address notice to American \4bodrvorker@, P.O. Box 420235,Palm (loast, FL 321424235.Subscription ratt's: U.S. ()ne-year. ,rrre $24.98.Singleropy, $5.99. (jarracla (U.S. Funds); (iST # Rl229lJ86l l. Foreign survear,$29.913 face olre-year, distribu$29.9t't(U.S. Funds). U.S. newsstand tion by Ourtis (lirculation (irnrpanv, LL(), New Milford, N-l 07(i46. In (lirn:rd:r: Postage paid lt (;ateway, Mississ:ruga, Ontario: (lPM# 14471366. Send retrrrnsarnd:rddresschanges t(, .\lericarr \4bodworker@.PO. Box 42(1235. Palnr Coaii, FL 321424235. Printed in USA. O 2007 Ncw Track Media l-t-(1. All righls reserued. Amairan Wuxhouhrmay share infomatirxr irb()uty()u widr re1> utable c<mparies in order for them to off-eryotr proclrrctsand seruices of interest to you. If you worrld mther wc ltot share infonnation, please mite to rn at: American W<xrdworker, Cutomer Sewice Department, P.O. Box 420235, Palnr Coast, FL 321424235. Pleaseinclude :r copy ofvorrr addres label. Subscribers: If the Post OIficc alert.s us that vour magazinc is uncleliverable, we have no frrrtlrcr obligalion unlesswe receivea corrected adclress witlrin one ye:lr.

American Woodworker Subscriber Service Dept.,PO.Box420235, PalmCoast, FL (800)66G3111, 321424235, e-mail A\Mfiservice ArticleIndex A fiveyearindexis available onlineat Copies of PastArticles Photocopies are available for $3 each. Write or call: American Woodworker Reprint Center, PO.Box83695, Stillwater, MN 55083-0695, (7151246-4521, 8 5 p.m.CSI Mon. throughFri. Visa,MasterCard, Discover and American Express accepted. Backlssues Someare available for $6 each. Orderfrom the Reprint Center at the address above. Comments & Suggestions Writeto us at American Woodworker, 1285 Corporate Center Drive, Suite180, Eagan, MN (952) 55121, 94-5890,fax (952) 9zt8-5895, AmericanWoodworker SEPTEMBER 2oo7 7

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On sharpening mortising chisels ("Master Your Mortiser," AW#128, May 2007), I have a relatively fine, cone-shaped stone that exactly fits my chisels' shape and curve. I chuck

In "Tune Up Your Trim Router (AW#127, March 2007) the text under a photo says,"sprinkle some talcum powder on the motor housing lto reduce stickingl." However, you're using cornstarch in thq photo. Wouldn't cornstarch tend to attract moisture from the air and make the situation worse? Robert M. Fox Sharpeye! You'reright,we inadvertently swapped products.l've used cornstarch without any problems,but humid I don't work in a particularly environment.lf your shop is damp, stick with talcum powder. In any case, most of the powder is removed when you take off the base to change bits. -Iom Caspar


noticed in "Master your Mortiser" (AW#128, May 2007) that the mortise chisel's opening is I facing front, toward the woodworker. I turn my mortise chisel opening to the left, so that the chips fall into the previous plunge, when cutting left to right. This prevents any clogs and keeps the chisel running cool. Knin Greene

its metal shaft into my drill press and touch rp my chisels' faces with it by hand. I inherited this stone from my father, but I have no idea where he got it. He was notorious for scrounging stuff like this from all over the place. Do you know who might make one? Wayne Shellock Any ideas,readers?


I purchased a Bosch Colt trim router after reading your article "Trim Tool Test" Routers (AW#127, March 2007). However, I haven't been able to find the "Dust Collection" accessory on page 57. Where can I get one? Ricardo Redich It should be available at The Bosch part referenceis "PR007 Side-Handle Subbasewith Dust Hood." Extraction

Good idea,but I alwaysface the chisel's openingtowards the front so the chips don't fill the mortise.Works for me. -Tim Johnson

"Lithium-Ion for In the Woodworker" (AW#l 29,July 2007) your description of the 10.8 V Bosch Pocket Driver stated "Its single speed is too low for drilling most holes." Please check your specs.This drill is a aariablzspeed drill/driver. I find this to be a very versatile tool, and it is certainly a worthwhile addition to most anyone'sshop. BilI Wikon right, Driver is a You're the Pocket vadable speed drill, but itsfastest is well belowa typical drill/drispeed ver's.Most drill/drivers havetwo ranges: fastfor drilling holes speed Youcan andslow for driving screws. with the Pocket certainly drillholes Driver, it'sjusta bittedious. -DaveMunkittrick


In "Tips For Repairing Finishes" (AW#128, May 2007) you suggest several techniques for removing sticky stickers, but you didn't rIeD; tion one of the safer "sticky dissolvers" out there: WD40. As a light oil, WD-40 will dissolve most sticky glues and then can easily be washed with soap and water - safe for anywood product. Any absorp tion of the oil into the wood is limited because WD40 is so light. If it

American Woodworker

does soak into the wood, it wilt evaporate over a short time. Gary Coyne author of The Laboratorl Companion

Nice article on TMoldings (AW#l28, Muy 2007). Muyb. the problem of shrinkage has been solved, but when products with T:molding first became popular back in the early'60s, they usuallyarrived with a 1/4 in. or so gap at the butt joint. The gap came about due to shrinkage in the vinyl material. Apparently workers stretched the molding slightlywhile pounding it into the slot. They soon learned to trim the butt end a little long and force-fit (hammer) the joint together. John Fischbach

Epoxy Oven Srarru?

I want to use epoxy as a sealer on some outdoor furniture as you suggest in "Outdoor Finishes" (AW#128, May 2007). Can it be put on top of a stain? Ed McKenna

Epoxyis best applied to barewood but it wil l w o rk o v e rs o mes ta i n s . West Systemconducted an adhes iont es t a n dfo u n dth a t th e i r epoxyadhered to several typesof g o to : s t ains Fo . rth e i rre s u l ts alsoremember the shrinkage issues years hesion.html. ago.I usedT-molding /21 | epoxy on some _ad TheypreferWD Lockwood's tables a few years agoandthe joints (www.wd lockwood. com)waterhavestayedprettytight,but I did bas ed an i l i n e d y e s ta i n s fo r u s e makethe butt endsa bit long.Good underepoxy. -Randy Johnson tipl -Randy Johnson

AmericanWoodworkerwelcomesyour lettersand e'mailsabout our articles, website,and allthingswood working. Publishedletters may by editedfor styleand lengthand becomethe property of AmericanWoodworker. Send e-mailsto Sendpostalmailto AW Mailbox,AmericanWoodworker Magazine, 1285Corporate Drive,Suite 180, E a g a nM , N 55121.

AmericanWoodworker SEPTEMBER 2oo7 9

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925 Oak Street,Scranton, PA 18515.0700

Name Street City/State Phone ( Email Age-

n 70 SmallBusines Owner
n 89 Small Engine Repair i ______.,1

Tossor Sharpen

Flat diamond hones come in a variety of sizes. I prefer a narrow, tapered style, because it's the easiestone to balance on the bit's chipper (Photo 1). If your bit is particularly dull, use a coarse flat hone. During each honing step, secure the bit in a woodenjawed vise, so you don't mar the shaft. Hone the chip per's short bevel first, then move to the long bevel (Photo 2). If the long bevel's surface is quite rough with machining marks, create a smooth micro'bevel by leaning the hone one or tr,vodegrees above the flat surface. Sharpen the rim with a round hone (Photo 3). Some round hones have a small diameter, but a large diameter works better on big bits. The best all-purpose round hone is conical, tapering from large to small diameters.


bit seems My largeForstner it? a w f u l l yd u l l .C a nI s h a r p e n

You certainly can. You'll be amazed at how much faster and cleaner a Forstner bit cuts when it's really sharp. In fact, some new bits aren't sharp enough. They'll perform much better if you sharpen them right out of the package. You'll need two tools for sharpening: a flat diamond hone for the chippers and a convex diamond hone for the rim (see Source, below). Oilstone or ceramic hones will work OK but you'll probably get better results with diamond hones because they work faster. It's important to retain the bit's original geometry. The more honing strokes you take, the greater the chance that you'll round over a bevel and create an extrasteep angle. The type of hone that cuts the fastest is thus the best choice, and you can't beat diamond for speed.



b y h o n i n gt h e A e g i ns h a r p e n i n g bevels. Continue I chippers'short until you feel a wire edge or burr developon the bevel'stip.


Q Next, hone the chipper'slong l b e v e l . L a yt h e h o n ef l a t o n t h e bevel or raise it slightlyto createa microbevel.Stop honing when the wire edgeis gone.

Q Hone the rim's bevel with a conr.-f vex hone. Follow the original angle, rubbing backand forth around the circle.Don't hone the rim's wall.

Source: $27.50.#FFF(fine,25 micron), honingfile, #FFC(coarse,45micron), Diafold diamondflat-folding DMT,(800)421-1223, , 29.50. 2,5 m i c r o n )$ honing c o n e ,# D C M F( m e d i u m / f i n e S 2 7 . 5 0D . iamond


American Woodworker


WuRr's Iw A Nnvr?
Some old planes on E-bay are r d e s c r i b e da s " s w e e t h e a r t s .W " hat ' . d o e st h a t m e a n ? 'r:'

Anr Dowrls
'iu l ' m gl ui ng some ' boards together . to make a tabl e" ...,,:i top. S houl d I rei nforce the j oi nts w i th dow el s or biscuits to make them stronger? n No, dowels or biscuits aren't neces-


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Planes with

the "Sweetheart" trademark on their irons date

,;,r,.from the golden era of Stanley tools, roughly 1920 to 1934. They were beautifully made and well engineered. Planes made before period were still being improved with new patents; this planes made after this era slowly declined in quality. The trademark celebrates the

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in aligning boards, so you have less evening-up to do later, but they have only a marginal benefit in making the joins stronger. If your edges are machined straight, square and flat, the joints will be just fine without additional help.

merger of two companies, the Stanley Rule and Level Company (the notched rectangular logo) and the Stanley llbrks (the


heart-shaped logo). The heart honors William H. Hart, who joined the Stanley Works at age 19 in 1854 and rose to be chairman of the board. He died in 1919. The new trademark was adopted the following year.

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' ; , , W ay b a c k i n j u n i o r ''' high school,my shop ""'*'tr,L*d:i teacher showed us a


simple method for laying out a n o v a l .A l l h e u s e d w a s a r u l e r and a s t r ip o f p a p e r. I c a n ' t rememberhow it worked.Can you help? Sure,here goes:Draw hor', .ii; izontal and vertical lines lt, that intersectat point 0. .j Mark half the oval'slength (A) on the horizontal axis. Mark half the
oval'swidth (B) on the vertical axis. On a strip of paper, mark a 0 on one end and distances0 to A and 0 to B. Place the strip of paper so that mark A falls anpvhere on the vertical line and mark B falls on the horizontal line. Mark a dot on the board next to the strip's 0 point. Reposition the strip and make another mark where the 0 point lands. Continue making these tick marks all the way around. Drawing the oval is just a matter of connecting the dots.
If you have a question you'd like ansrvered, send it to us at Question & Answer, American \4bodworker, 1285 Corporate Center Drive, Suite 180, Eagan, MN 55121 or e.mail to qanda@americanwoodwor* Sorry,, but the volume of mail prevents us from answering each question individually.


American \4bodrvorker


editedby TimJohnson

Aq ushble Board,S,rpport
In the good old days, when a woodworker wanted to plane a board's edge, he'd clamp one end in the bench's face vise and support the cantilevered end with a free-standing device called a "deadmar". My modernized version mounts in the

tail vise.After drilling holes in a 2-in.-thick post, I glued and screwedon a 3/Fin.-thick top. By simply moving the dowel, I can support virtually any board or panel at a comfortable work height. And instead of taking up
valuable floor space, my deadman stores compactly until the next use. Daue Brown




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14 American Woodworker sEpTEMBER 2oo7



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Zeno ClrenANcE Dusr Ponr

HerunvClavtp Sronacr
I store my clamps under my assembly table so they're always right where I need them. I made a frame to hold the clamps and attached it to the table's base. The frame is made of 2x10 lumber with a3/4-in.-thick back, so it's sturdy enough to handle all my heaviest clamps. I made some of the clamp hangers and bought the rest at a home center. Wad.eEgan

Zero clearance inserts are wonderful for eliminating tearout, but unfortunately, they also impede dust collection. To give my collection system an opening to pull sawdust through, I cut a l/Z-in.-dia. hole at the front end of the blade slot. In this location, the hole doesn't adversely affect the benefits of my zero clearance insert.

Mark Thiel

Snoor Fnov
I use a piece of painter's tape to mark dadoes when I assemble cabinets. Then I know exactly where to shoot nails or install screws. There aren't any pencil lines to sand off when I'm finished-I just remove the tape. Stanlcv Krasoaic

Svrnu Penrs DnvtrucRacrc

I made this rack so the finish on my small projects would dry without leaving marks. I cut strips off of a 3/4-in. board with my tablesaw's blade tilted 30 degrees.For each new strip, I just flipped the board and moved the fence over 7/2-in. Then I glued the strips on a piece of plywood, varying the spacing to support different sizeditems. Jay McClcllan


American Woodworker



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PnecrsroN DeprH Gnucr

My dovetailjig doesn't have a depth gauge, and with my engineering background, I like things to be precise. This depth gauge allows me to set my router bits to within .001 of an inch. I also use it to set saw blade heighs and check the depth of rabbets and dadoes. Start with a 4in.-square piece of l-in. thick hardwood. Drill a2-7/4-in -dia. hole in the center, then cut ttre piece in half to create the arched legs. Next, drill a hole through tlre top, the same diameter as the stem of your dial indicator. A brass threaded insert with a setscrew locks the indicator in place. Paul Duaendack

CHnrucrNG o F T H EG u a n o
After years of use, I could hardly see through my tablesaw's guard. While at a car show, I heard that polish for renewing aluminum wheels also worked to clear up old headlight lenses-so I tried it on my saw's guard. After two applications, it was as good as new! Since then, I've cleaned all my guards and my face shield as well. source Mother's MagandAluminum Polish. available at NAPA autostores. about can, $5 for a S-ounce RossBisrma

Source, G1479, $12.95


Efficient storage is important in my garage shop, so after use, my assembly tables tip, fold, clamp and roll. Each table has one apron-mounted caster ($7 at a home center) and

a stabilizer. I used two sheets of 3/4ein. plywood to make the tabletops and aprons and mail-ordered the folding legs. My tables are very stable and only 10-in. wide when. clamped together. RoySmith
Source (800],2794441, Rockler,,$32 per pair. STABILIZER

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American Woodworker

We'llgive $100 lror.r and a greatlookitlgshirt for your Wot'kslrcpTip!

Sendyour original tip to us with a sketch or photo. If we print ig you'll be woodworking in style. E-mail your tip to worlsshopti@arrericm' or send it to Workshop Tips, AmericmWoodruorker, 1285 Corporate Center I)rive, Suite 180, Eagan, MN 55121.

A w o T H E RA w G L E o N F n G l u E - u p s
To keep panels from bowing under clamp pressure while gluing, I install lengths of angle aluminum on each end. I clamp the angle pieces just firmly enough to hold things in place. Then I tighten the pipe clamps. Unlike iron or steel, aluminum won't leave black marks where it contacts squeezed-out glue. Unlike a wooden cleat, it won't become glued to the panel. Brandon Williams

Submissionscan't be returned and become our property upon acceptance and payment. We mayedit submissions and use them in all print and electronic media.
One shin per conuibuto[ offer good only while zupplies lasc


American Woodworker


It's no wonderShopBotowners,operators
and employeesare proud to call themselves

Formoreinformation call 800344-$/A or e-mail:bill

passion, Wnun woodworking isyour andowning your goal, Own business isyour Wo0dcraft canhelp you your take skill and expertise totheretail level.
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"Ws're building a business thattranscends generations. Having a Woodcraft franchise has helped usgrowasa preparing family while generation ournext forsuccess."

Manufactures high-performance automation solutions - like the new PRialpha CNC system-and makesthem prices. available at affordable Offersfree technicalsupport- including nightsand - in threelanguages. weekends - where Providesan onlineforum - our customers can sharetips, tricksand projectideas. Encourages our customers to push the limitsof their machinesand provideus with feedbackon their toolingneeds. Hostsa rangeof trainingsessionsat our facilityand sponsorsuser-oriented "Camp ShopBots" at locations aroundthe world.

Shouldn't you be a ShopBottef

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Lovr Tools Oun RTnDERS

Lneon oF Love
After 50 years of woodworking, I've got a confessionto make. I enjoyfixingup an old machineor rearrangingmy shop more than woodworkingitself. A few years ago a friend gave me an old Rockwelllathewhich clearlyneeded a lot of help.The motor, pulley,belt cover,tool rest and tailstockbase had all pieces gone missing. The few remaining just oozed with was love at first sight! I spent a fun six months makingall the base missingparts.I made the tailstock the belt cover from maple and hardboard, and the tool rest and banjo from fiberglass, from some old angleironand pipe fittings. The banjodidn'twork out so well, though, becauseit reouireda wrench to move. I - instead. boughta replacement lumber I builtthe basefrom construction and plywood. I welded a frame for a used 3/4 a step pulleyon the HP motor and installed motor's shaft. My pride and joy ls a wooden lever that raisesthe motor when I want to changespeeds. This sturdymachinewill outlastmy days in the shop. Someday,one of my sons will have it, too. Ed Grant


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Blocr< Plnrue MEcHANtc

Last year I made my wife a window bench that required92 mortise and tenon joints.After fine-tuning two or three I needtenonswith a chisel,I realized ed a rabbetplaneto speed up the process. Of course,I didn't haveone. Rabbetplanescan be expensive,so I thought I'd make one. I know that but l'm a mechanic soundsdaunting, block and I had a $15 flea-market planethat was beggingto be transformed into a better tool. To make a rabbetplane,I had to .,:i) -/ ;'t'*t' create an openingand move the SIDE OPENING outsideedge. bladeto the blockplane's Fortunately, cast iron is very easy to work. I side,drilledout markedan openingon the plane's most of the waste and filed the edges smooth. Next, I modiof course,so I used my grinderto crefied the's hardened, I also lengthened the bladeover'1/8-in. ate a reliefthat allowedsliding side. slots.Now the bladesits flush with the plane's adiustor the blade's Convertingmy block planeto a rabbetplanewas easy, but I still have 89 tenons to fit! ADJ Jon Brinkerhoff

Are you a Tool Nut, too? You'll get the new Leatherman Charge AL aerospace aluminum multi-tool if we publish your story. Send your tale to, or mail it to American Woodworker, 1285 Corporate Center Drive, Suite 180, Eagan,MN 55121.Pleaseinclude digital photos of your tool if possible. For more on the Charge AL, visit

eD mnrHtRMAN@

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American Woodworker


S,rper NewDovetaiuigt

eigh Industries has a wellT I-.ldeserved reputation for making top-of-the-line dovetail jigs.'They've just introduced three new ones: the Super Jigs. They're available in 12, 18 and 24in. models and are priced at $199, $259, and $329 respectively. Super Jigs provide the same top notch accrrracyas other Leigh jigs. SuperJigs have two qualities that I really like. You can cut both boards of a half-blind dovetarl at the same time. And you can cut dovetails on lipped drawer fronts. SuperJigs also have quick-action cam clamps,which make tightening and releasing your workpiece a snap. But the most intriguing aspect of thesejigs is a new type of guide bushing: the Elliptical Guide. A simple twist of this guide enables you to

make the joint

tighter or looser. As Lockyour workpieces with quick action cam clamps.

the name implies, the Elliptical Guide is oval-shaped. You turn itwith a spanner wrench (provided) to give it a wider or narrower profile, and this affects how it fits benveen the jig's fingers. There's a catch, though. You have to hold your router in the same position for every cut. I thought this would be difficult, but when I realized that I usually orient my router the same way when dovetailing, I didn't find this restriction to be a big deal. kigh has also introduced a nice accessory for supporting your router and collecting dust. TheVRS (Vacuum Router Support) helps you to make consistently tightjoints by reducing the risk that you'll tip your router. -RandyJohruon

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CE tu a UJ T F

Twist the Elliptical guide to adjust the joint's fit. Source: Leigh IndustriesLtd, (800)663-8932, LeighSuper'l2, $ 1 9 9 .L e i g hS u p e r1 8 ,$ 2 5 9 .L e i g h Super24, $329. LeighVRS (vacuum routersupport). depending S65-$76 on size.

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American Woodworker


Brc JoTNTER FoR Blc Wonrc

If you're a woodworker who needs a machine large enough to facejoint 12-in. material, the new Gizzly C,0609jointer, $1,695, could be just whar

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you're looking for. With a 12 x 84in. bed, this giant looks more like an aircraft carrier than ajointer. The G0609 has a four-knife cutterhead driven by a &hp (1& amp) 220-volt motor. Knife elevation is controlled byjackscrews. You can get a helical carbide-insert cutterhead instead of the four-knife head for an additional $795. The parallelogram tables are controlled by handwheels, which typically offer finer control than levers. The fence, Ul/2in. tall and 4G3/4in. long, tilts 45 degrees in both directions, with positive stops at 45,90, and 135 degrees. The machine comes with a 5-in. dust port. Plan on having some friends over when this machine arrives, since it weighs a beefr 875 lbs. Source (800l' jointer, Grizzly lndustrial, 523-4777, G0609 12-in. $1,695.



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SvtRtt, Bur ErrecrtvE, Dusr CoLLECToR

Steel City's cool new Mini DC, $100 can be used two ways. You can run it as a stand-alone dust collector or place it inline with a central dust collection system to "supercharge" the air flow and get better collection. The Mini DC offers 340 CFM of air flow. At I micron, the bag's filter captures even fine dust. Used alone, it provided good collection on my benchtop planer. I liked the Mini DC even better as an airflow supercharger. My planer is at the end of the line on my dust collection system, so collection isn't always great. when I put the Mini DC benveen the planer and the dust collection line, my main collector barely missed a chip. Source (8771724-8665, Steel CityTool Works, MiniDC.$100.

Grr lr Drap Sounne

Assembling projects perfectly square can be a challenge. The more parts you have, the more complicated it gets. Having a set of 3D Squares, $50 for four, is like having your woodworking buddy in the shop to help you. Just clamp the squares to each part as you're assembling, and your project will be dead square. The 3D Squares are milled from aluminum with a guarantee of being less than .002-in. out of square across the Gin. length of the l.g. Each l.g contains drilled and countersunk screw holes in case you want to fasten the squares to ajig or fixture.

Source (913)384-0023, JevonsToolCompany, 3D Squares, $b0 for four.


American Woodworker


H I o E - A W A YS H o p D r s r
I used to have a desk in my shop for reviewing cutlists and drawing plans. I really liked having that permanent spot for my calculator, pens, pencils and paper, but its big horizontal surface was a magnet for piling up junk. That's why I was thrilled to find Duluth Trading Company's new Plan Station, $69.50. Although designed with ajob-site contractor in mind, I've found it's a perfect solution for my shop. Since it folds up, it removes the temptation to "pile stuff here" and takes up no floor space. The Plan Station, made of heavyduty nylon fabric, hangs on the wall by two steel loops 48-in. apart. The Plan Station's rigidity comes from two 24 x 48 in. plywood panels that you'll need to provide. Just slip them into the vertical and horizontal panels. \Alhen the desk is open, you have a 24x 4*in work surface. The vertical panel has large and small pockes to keep oflice supplies organized. There's even an accesshole for a laptop cord and a drink holder to secure my ever-present coffee thermos. When you're done, fold up the horizontal surface and secure it with the hook and loop closures. It seals very well, and staysfairly dust-free inside. Source (800) 505-8888, Trading Duluth Company, Plan #22668, Station, $69.50.

Morow-AcrvATED Dual Lasrn

A laser is an excellent addition to a miter improving both accuracy and safety by showing precisely where the blade is about to cut. The model 3800 10-in. compound miter saw from saw, you new Skil, The saw comes with handy extension tables, a holddown clamp, and crown-molding stops. Source
skil, (877)754-5999, M o d e l3 8 0 0 1 O - i n . compoundmiter saw, $ 18 0 .

$180, contains a motion-activated dual laser that turns on as you approach the saw. It shuts off when you're done. On some saws, the laser is on all the time, requiring a separate switch to turn it off. On others, the laser isn't activated until you turn on the saw. This requires you to adjust the position of your material under a spinning blade. More good news about the Skil 3800: the lasers' position can be fine-tuned left and right. However, you can't shift the dual lasers independently. Depending on your saw blade's kerf, you will be able to get the laser in perfect alignment on one side or the other. but not both. This doesn't bother me too much, since I almost always position my "keeper piece to the left side of the blade.

The Skil 3800 miters left and right to 47 degrees with 9 positive stops. It bevels left to 47 degrees. Cutting capacityis 2-5l8-in. high x 5-7/IGin. wide at 90 degrees,and 2-5/8-in. x 3-1/2-in. at 45 degrees.

American Woodworker



N r c E L YP - nrcED


You can spend plenty of dough on an H\,'LP (high volume low pressure) spray system, so I was surprised to see the price on the Earlex HVLP 3000. At $120, it looked like it might be too good to be true. Now that I've run lots of finish through the unit, I'm impressed. I covered the gamut with this unit, spraying solvent-based shellac, lacqr-rer, and polyr-rrethane, as well as water-based polyurethane. Low viscosity products, like shellac and some water-based polys, will spray better if you get a needle kit specifically designed for them. This adds $25 to the price. The Earlex 3000 does have some compromises compared to higher-end units. Airflow is either on or off, not adjustable. This means you can't finesse the droplet size as the finish comes out of the gun, which can affect the look of the finished product. And at 9-ft. 6-in., the hose is quite short. I nearly pulled the turbine off my bench when I stretched the hose too far. Overall I was able to get a reasonably good finish from

the Earlex 3000. It wasn't perfect, but spraying a finish is much quicker than brushing. If you're interested in trying out H\rLP finishes, this unit is a good starting point. Source Earlex,(888) 783-2612 Earlex H V L P3 0 0 0 ,$ 1 2 0 n e e d l ek i t , H V A C C l 0 RS , 24.99. T h i nF i n i s h

LnsER-GurDED RourER Basr

Lasers seem to be everywhere in the shop these days. Thanks to the folks at MLCS, rolrters are no exception. The new OnPoint Laser Router Plate, $59.95, contains laser cross hairs that helps you perfectly position your router for plunge cuts. I have to admit I was skeptical when I first saw this But now that I've used it to cut some dadoes and mortises, I'm a believer. The cross hairs do a great job of simpli$ing a joint's layout. You just have to remember that with the OnPoint plate your layout must be based on the center of the plunge cut, not the joint's edge. product. To mount the OnPoint plate to your router, you install a V-bit in the machine. Then, to align the lasers with the tip of the bit, you mark out and drill the screw hole locations for your router's base. This is a fussy set up, and needs to be done correctly to make good use of the cross hairs. Take your time and make certain it's right. From then on your rolrter will be perfectly sighted in. Source (800) N/LCS, 533-9298,
www. m O n P o i n t U n i v e r s a lL a s e r R o u t e r P l a t e . $ 5 9 . 9 5 .


American \Abodrvorker





a new machine


three-dimensional machine.


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Craftsman that, according to the folks at Sears, is selling faster than they can make it. It's no wonder. This sounds like an amazing machine. The CompuCarve, $1900, is a computer-controlled

Working on your PC, you can use a library of clip art, or create your own. You save the artwork on a flash card, which is then inserted into the

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Like CompuCarve. planer, the material

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automatically fed through the machine while the router bit does the carv-

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FlushStapling, SofeInstollotionof LowVoltogeWiring ondBrad Noiling

Adding text to the carving, according to the irg. manufacturer, is as easy as tFping in a word processor. If you want to duplicate an existing shape, add the 3D Scanning Probe, $400. The manufacturer says the probe is gentle enough to be used even on soft materials. So. in addition to scanning a wooden carving or molding, you can also copy a shape made from wax or clay. The CompuCarve will handle material up to 5 wide. PC in. thick and l4-l/2-in. Length is virtually It requires a unlimited. running Windows 2000 or XP with 128 MB RAM (256 MB or greater recommended), 75 MB of hard'drive space and an accelerated graphics



, fulve&rugr AflwnnoltDlal t Mented lon-ltoil ncdtilrlstt ,ttlCgcrtd*f'lrd , NStedftondatld ttwJtlorD,nbW , atrrlqtcMtlog Attadment tuiatehl/;ilatfurot 3/r6',t t/1'tiln

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card with OpenGL support. You can watch a video of it in action on the Sears web site. Source (800) Sears, 349-4358, www. sears.comCraftsman CompuCarve, #21754, 899.99. $1 Probe, 3D Scanning $399.99.

Arrow Fastener Co., Inc., 271 Mayhill Street, Saddle Broo[ New 07663 lersey Distributors, lnc., Metropolitan Blvd. East Montreal, H1P 1X9 6505 Canada: Quebec fardel (U.K) Kingdom: Arrow Fastener ttd., Unit 23Commerce Way, Croydon CRO 4ZS, Surrey United 5 ZKPark,


American Woodworker


rrescrctt, Anzona :H:n:,ilJ ffiX..T:l::ff l,:Hfi ":T:"

is loaded with young men and women excited about woodworking, thanks to woodshop instructor Tom Bockman. While high school woodworking programs have been under siege nationwide in recent years, enrollment in Prescott High School'swoodshop program has quadrupled, requiring the addition of new classes and a second teacher. There's more. Tom's students are respected at school and throughout the city. Woodshop students develop conceptual and business skills. They learn the value of teamwork and experience the satisfaction of community service involverhent. When we talked, Tom eagerly shared his teaching strategies.

filled, I in town.To keepmy classes quicklyappeared competefor students. had to learn how to successfully

your How do you explain program's amazing success? Good pubticityhasbeen one of the mostvaluable our program.Parentand stutoolsfor strengthening
dent interest spikes whenever woodshop activities are spotlighted, so when my students do great things, I make sure they get noticed. Over the years, our program has benefited ffom dozens of local newspaper articles. We've even been featured in magazines and on television.

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You've been teaching for 28 years. ' What was it like when you started? I was blissfully unaware of what I was getting into. Woodworking was popular, so it wasn't hard to attract

How do otherfacultymembers view yourwoodshopprogram? Positively. I make every effort to connect woodworking with academics, because I'm convinced that

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American Woodworker

sEpTEMBER 2oo7


woodworking think.

helps my students learn how to Studies show that hands-on experience makes it easier for many students to understand abstract concepts. For example, using a try square to draw a 3-45 triangle helps to illustrate the $thagorean theorem. Earlier this year, mathematics students studying probability visited the woodshop to make spinners, like the one used in a Bingo game.

Woodshop parts for

students used lasers to produce the

math students to assemble. During the activity many math students told me "this is cool!"

Why do you promotestudentinvolvement in projects? community service

Projectsby PrescottHigh School'swoodshop students are frequentlyfeaturedin the local newspaper. Involving students in service projects is a top priority, because it helps them develop the habit of good citizenship. These large projects also emphasize the value of teamwork. Part of each team's job is to analyze and solve problems that arise during the project, and these challenges help students learn to think creatively. Developing individual projects is no different. I encourage students to create their own designs instead of relying on printed plans or patterns. Designing a project helps a student develop thinking and problem-solving skills. Because of our reputation, community members freely suggest challenging service projects. They know the terrific capabilities of woodshop student teams. Recently, student teams worked with the fire department to install smoke alarms in the homes of residents who depend on "Meals Jonathan Novak and Dustin Olague begin work on a trophy case projectfor the middle school. on Wheels." Teams have completed educational

D e v i nD e n n i sa n d Z a c hM c C l i n t o c k b u i l d m i n i a t u r ec h a i r s to donateto the ElksTheater restoration fundraiser.

E l l i o tL o g a nt r i m s t h e e d g i n go n a n e w t a b l e for the school board'smeeting room.


American Woodworker

sEpTEMBER 2oo7

environmental niture They've

displays and constructed new furfor the school board's meeting room.

built trophy cases for both middle schools and even a wishing well-a community "thank you" gesture to the founder of the international "Make-A-Wish" Foundation. who lives in Prescott.

Do students everprofitfrom theirwork?

Of course. The chance to make money can be a great motivator. Woodshop students sell projects to libraries, furniture stores, city government and private citizens. Connecting with local businesses gives woodshop students a chance to learn business skills and profit from creativity and hard work. Some students set up their own businesses, making pens for example, or laserengraved name plaques. We also help our students develop employable skills. I encourage local industries to provide opportunities for on-the;job training, internships and apprenticeships. Many of my students have gone on to work in cabinet shops and other woodworking-related industries; others have become business owners.

Jodi Claytonsets up the laserengraver.

play? What roledoesnew technology

Students embrace technology, so a woodshop full of cool new equipment attracts them like moths to a flame. Using state-of-the-art equipment helps students understand the changing nature of woodworking. New acquisitions also keep our program in compliance with state of Education requirements and standards. Recently, our program received a state grant to obtain a computer-operated laser engraver-my students love using this machine; it never sits idle. Donations from the Prescott Area Woodturners Club allowed purchasing a CompuCarve machine. Department

JonathanNovak masteredthe Craftsman CompuCarve machine.

How do you attractnew students? Well, that's the $64,000question.I acrively

recruit new students, and I use the best salespeople I've got: woodshop veterans. Before 8th grade students register for high school, they attend an open house to learn about our Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs. I have woodshop students make the case for choosing woodshop. The 8th-graders also receive an interactive CD with information about each CTE program. Both parents and students tell me the woodshop presentation is very effective. It includes digital photography, video, documents and sound to deliver

TJ Shermannfinishesa custom-orderproject.

American Woodworker



the message that woodshop is cool. (Copies of the Prescott woodshop recruiting CD are available by contactin g Tom at tom. bockman@prescottschools. com. ) Historically, attracting young women into woodworking hasn't been easy. And now governmental standards require achieving 30% non-traditional enrollment to stay funded (in woodshop, females students). We're committed to being the first woodworking program in Arizona to reach this goal, so a portion of our woodshop CD focuses on young women working on fabulous projects and talking about their unique experiences in woodshop. At the most recent CTE open house, our female demonstrators drew such large crowds that one mother asked me if there were any woodshop classes open for boys! As a result of attending the open house or viewing our CD, more than 50 girls have 'signed up for woodshop. It's also very important to coordinate recruiting efforts with the counseling staff. Last fall, during the days of standardized testing, our counseling staff sent groups of students through the woodshop. Many of them expressed interest in enrolling. quali$' as non-traditional

Woodshop veterans LindseyDill and DeniseHarrison recruit new students b y t a l k i n gs h o p a n d h a n d i n go u t promotionalCDs. Erick Ornedo gets ready to turn his first pen.

What doesit taketo sustain this program?

It's a huge balancing act, really, between maintaining enrollment, refining the curriculum, providing cool hands-on experiences and developing new recruiting strategies. Full enrollment brings its own set of challenges, like space for projects, machine wear and tear, and overcrowded classes. On the flip side, increased popularity strengthens the woodshop program and makes its future more secure. I believe most instructors would welcome the challenges rather than face extinction.

A l i s h aA p o l i n a r helped recruiting efforts by appearing on the promotional CD and naming woodshop as her favorite class.

Tom Bockman is the 2003 "Yavapai County HighSchoolTeacher of the Year." Prescott High School is locatedin Prescott Arizona, a ruralmountainousregionnorth of Phoenix. Copiesof the Prescott woodshoprecruiting CD are available by contacting Tom at

I ii 1 ,:

Tell us about a dynamic woodworking school or vibrant teaching program.What makesit work?Pointout notable teaching strate. j giesandstudent accomplishments. Explain how the program excites students aboutwoodworking andtell us how it helps themdevelop i woodworking skills. Whether the program in a public operates school, community center or a private workshop, we wantto hearaboutits i success, E-mailyour storyto f


American Woodworker


\ Iedg* \ Iorkshop
I built my wedge-shaped workshop twelve years ago. It's 470 square feet, which is too small, as every woodworker knows, but my options were limited, because the shop had to fit between my house and garage. I love how the windows flood the space with light. My biggest challenge has been to make my stationary tools fit the space. For example, my tablesaw and


face ^ pair of French doors, which I have to open to process long boards. I store lumber in the garage. I built all the shop cabinets

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and augmented them with other pieces, such as the antique type chest (from an old print shop) that stores all my nuts and bolts. The cabinets are filled with old tools that I've collected. I keep them all in working order and use them regularly. I enjoy the quiet nature of working with hand tools, and one of my


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American Woodworker


F encfi Doors

favorite occupations is using them to restore old furniture pieces. I've become an expert at repairing worn-out drawer parts! I also like to build replicas of period pieces: Nightstands, bookcases, chests of drawers, etc. I recently completed two Chippendale-style bureaus made from I 0O-year-old, 2 l-inch-wide cherry boards, although I can't take all the credit. I always receive lots of help from my able shop assistant, Gussie the cat. Erik Lessing Monument: CO

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Tell us ab"rt

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To Garage

Send us photos of your shop, a layout drawing and a us descriptionof what makesyour shop interesting.Tell whatyou make in it and what makesyour shop important to you. tf "My Shop" features your shop, you'll receiveS100. E-mail your entry to myshop@americanwoodwod< with digital photos attadred. Or mail your description with prints or digital photos on a disc to My Shop, American Woodwofter, 1285 Corporate Genter Ddve, Suite 18O Eagan,MN 55121. Please include your phone number. Submissions cannot be returned and become our property on acceptance and payment.We may edit submissions media. and use them in all print and electronic

American Woodworker

sEpTEMBER 2oo7


fig Poelret-Holc fhewotld's best

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REBATE DETAILS: Rebate form can be downloaded from www.kregtool.comlk3rebate. Proof of purchase must be dated between July 1st, 2OO7and September 3]th, 2OO7and rebate form must be postmarked by October 15th,2OO7 to qualifv. Limit one rebate per customer.

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(f) F | 800.447.8638

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Turnins a

Greenkod Bowl
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aking a functional object directly from raw material in its natural state is incredibly satis$ing. Just ask For any potter. woodworkers, green woodturning captures that feeling. You literally start with a log and end up with a beautiful bowl. If you've never turned green wood before, you're in for a treat. Green wood is easier to turn than kilndried wood. It cuts cleaner and produces very little dust. To top it off, the wood itself often costs nothing.


American Woodworker

I C u t g r e e n b o w l b l a n k si n I l e n g t h st h a t a r e e q u a lt o plusone t h e l o g ' sd i a m e t e r , inch. Start by lopping off a short sectionto eliminateany e n d c h e c k sM . arka line t h r o u g ht h e p i t h w h e r e t h e l o g will be split into two bowl blanks.


. 1/2' bowl gouge (from a 5/8" rod) c 1-1/4to 1 -112-in. heavy scraper (usually3/8" thick) . Jacobs style chuck o A 5/8" to 1" drill bit . Doubleended calipers o Vernier style caliper . Sandingdiscs and soft pads {5" and 2" dia.l Flexibleshaft tool or flexible shaft for a drill 1/8" rubber router mat

material . CAglue

The process works best if the wood is wet and freshly cut. Stormdowned trees, areas being cleared for development and tree sewice dumping sites (often called "bone yards") are all good sourcesofgreen wood. For ease of handling and cutting, choose logs or limbs that are smaller in diameter your lathe's than swing. Almost any speciesis worth trying, but here are some of my favorites: maple, walnut, butternut, ash, birch, locust, white oak, cherry beech, Osage orange, and pear. My rule for green bowls is to trywhatever is locally availableyou may be pleasantly surprised by the abundance of material in vour own backvard.

Q C u t t h e l o g a l o n gt h e m a r k e d l i n e .A 1 1 2 "w i d e , 3 t o 4 t p i 1 s k i p t o o t h b l a d ei s a g o o d c h o i c e for a 14" bandsawwith riser blocks.lf the log is too big to cut u s ey o u r on your bandsaw, chainsaw o r s p l i tt h e l o g w i t h a wedge.

Q R o u n du p t h e b l a n k plyJusing a 114-in. wood template as a guide. I keep a set of t h e s ed i s c si n 1 1 2 - i n . i n c r e m e n t sS . implynail t h e t e m p l a t eo n t h e b a r ke d g e a n d f o l l o w the shape.

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Locate the faceplate on the blank's flat surface.This


o cc


will eventually b e t h e i n s i d eo f t h e b o w l . C e n t e rt h e r o u n d t e m p l a t eo n t h e b l a n ka n d u s e t h e n a i l h o l et o m a r kt h e c e n t e r . T h e n d r a w a c i r c l et h a t ' ss l i g h t l yl a r g e r than the faceplate's diameter.






f,Screw the faceplateinto what r-rwill be the opening of the bowl. The screwsshould penetrate the wood at least 1" for initial rough turning.

ftRough the bowl with a bowl gouge. \,f Pointthe flute in the directionof t h e c u t a n d k e e pt h e b e v e lr u b b i n go n the wood.The tailstockadds support.

and flatten 7Re.ou" the tailstock I tn" bowl's bottom with a scraper. The bottom must be at least 1-in. largerthan the faceplate. Qoraw a seriesof Llcircles with a pencil t o a i d i n m o u n t i n gt h e faceplatefor the next step. One of the circles w i l l b e c l o s ee n o u g h to the sizeof your faceplateto center it. Removethe bowl and remount the faceplate on the base. Qffre bowl is now r./ mounted with the base towards the headstock.Cut the bowl's heightso the pith is removed. Use the gouge in a scraping fashion with the bevel facing away from the wood and the bottom edge scraping.

Wet logs weigh a lot! You don't want one flying off the lathe. Use a faceplate that's made from one piece of steel and is at least 3/8" thick at the screw hole flange. For bowls less than l0 inches in diameter,I use a &hole, 3-in.diameter faceplate. The type of screw is also critical: Use #12 sheet metal screws.Avoid dry wall, deck and wood screws. Be sure the faceplate sits flat on the log's surface-if it doesn't, use a small hand plane acrossthe grain to create the desired fit. Last but not least, . be sure to wear a full-face shield-goggles are not sufficient for bowl turning.

1 n B e g i n t h e f i n a ls h a p i n s . I rJ Establish a base with enough waste for the screws.Then, concentrate on perfectingthe upper twothirds of the bowl. Work from small to large diametersto reducetearout.
42 American Woodworker sEpTEMBER 2oo7

Placethe I I finish with a shear-cut. I I gouge high on the pieceand keep the bevel rubbing.You can tell a good shearcut by the thin, wispy curls of wood. Work up to within an inch of the rim, then from air into the rim (seeTlP).

I QStart the hollowing processby drilling out the centerof L Qthe bowl.Thehole gives a placefor the tool to end each cut and eliminates the needto constantly check the depth. Use a 5/8-1-in.-dia.bit mounted in a Jacobs-style chuck. Drill to a depth that is 112-in.less than the finisheddepth will be.

1 2 Hollow the bowl's interior.Start an inch or so back I vlfrom the drilledhole. Rollthe tool on its side to about a 4S-degree angle and cut with the bevel rubbing. Work from largeto small diameters.Continuethis backingup processuntil the walls are 3/8 to 1/2-in. thick.


1 -flowing. A Shapethe rim with a scraperbeforeyou finish holI Greenbowls changeshaperapidlyoncethey are hollowed,makingthe rim nearlyimpossible to shape later.Here,l'm rolling the rim to round it like a bead. I J{Remove the I \Jextra material around the faceplate and base of the bowl.Then, remove the bowl from the lathe-but don't unscrewthe faceplatejust yet.

1 f,estaUtish the bowl's final depth with a heavy scraper. I r..,,f Use the scraperfor the bottom and a little up the sides.Scraperscut poorly acrossend grain, so rely on the gouge for cutting most of the bowl's sides. 1 Tneverse chuckL I ingisawayto mount the bowl backwards in order to finish off the undersideof the base. Start by mounting a dead centerin the headstock.Then screw the bowl back on the lathe so the pin marksthe center of the base.Removethe bowl from the lathe and unscrewthe faceplate. f\
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I t{Mount a 2I Uin. thick block of wood to your faceplate.True the sides and flatten the face. Slightly round the cornerswhere the sides meet the face.

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1 OoJr" a piece. t- tl ot router antrslip pad to the chuck. I use CA glue on the wood and an accelerator on the rubber for an instant bond. The inside of the bowl will be held againstthe rubber with pressurefrom the tailstock.

American Woodworker

t o m a r kt h e d e p t h o f t h e h o l l o w o n I n Usecalipers the outside of the bowl. lt's good to know where 1\l the bottom of the bowl is as you cut the base.Set the bowl over the chuckand bring the tailstockforward to e n g a g et h e c e n t e rm a r k y o u m a d e e a r l i e ro n t h e b a s e .

C) 1 Cut away the waste blockwhere the screwswere . efine t h e f i n a l s h a p eo f t h e b a s ea n d 1 L f a s t e n e dR t h e b o t t o mt h i r d o f t h e b o w l w i t h l i g h t ,f i n i s h i n gc u t s .

Is your bowl functional (made for food)


or decorative?

If it's

decorative, choose any finish that gives the look and feel you prefer. My favorite finishes for functional bowls are mineral oil. walnut oil and pure tung oil.

C) g Undercutthe bowl's base to create 1 1a rim for the bowl to sit on.This looks betterthan a flat bottom.Watchthe b o t t o m m a r k ( m a d e b y h o l d i n ga p e n c i l on the markmadeearlier) so you don't cut too deep.

C ) z B r e a k o f f t h e r e m a i n i n gn i b w i t h a 1 J rap from a tool takes little effort to breakthe nib.This leavesa small a r e at o b e c l e a n e du p b y h a n d .

Mineral oil looks great on light colored wood, as it adds no color of its own. However, it never dries so it needs to be reapplied regularly, especially after washing. Walnut oil adds a little color and will dry in time. It's ar,ailable at health food stores. I also like pure tung oil. It adds a deeper color that looks great on dark woods and it will drv.

A Sand the bowl after it has dried 4-5 days. Use a soft foamlT.for backeddisc mounted on the lathe with a drillchuck. K e e pt h e b o w l m o v i n g t o avoid creatingflat spots. Start with 100-grit and work through 220 - grit.

C) XSand the insidewith a L r J s m a l l e rf o a m d i s c . A flexible shaft that attaches to y o u r d r i l l o r a f l e x i b l es h a f tt o o l such as a Foredomworks well f o r g e t t i n g i n s i d et h e b o w l .


Arnerican \A/oodworker

sEpTEMBER 2oo7


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Arnerican \4b<ldworker


''.' 1-''

( )ol \(/()T"
/ \
v urrrkbench jobs :urcl too hish lbr others. ci:rllr,-nrirclc adjustable frlr adclecl stor2lge sp:rce.



Dt'Toni Oaspirr h:rs alu'avs beetr thc heart of

nn, snrall slrop. \{'hen I utacle it ve:rrs :rgo, I otrtfitted it rvith :r qoclcl {:tcc rise, iut itrtrovative slicling tail-r'ise atrcl :r ltlain trcstlc b:ue. Btrt the btrgeccl me. It \\':ls to() lttu'for sollte bench's lteight :rln,:tys I finurd :r soltrtionl I retrofittecl nx' top with conrt-ucrleus (aborrt $4[]0, sce Acljust-ABench Lces, paee ir3). I also btrilt il l'le\\Ictrltittet.stl'lc ltase Acljustabilitl has saveclzrlot of'sfl'arinotr tn1'back. \{'hcn r o t r t i n g , I r a i s e t h e b e t r c l t ; n h e t r s a t r c l i t r g ,I l o l v e t - i t . T h e

I **-*:-a,$

bench has l2 cli{I'elent heights, fionr 2[J to 44 ir-r.


r |

lg ifi t* ii


.;* r{

'i$ :

R a i s et h e top all the way for detail work. A tall bench is a wonderful luxury. It's perfect for drawing sketches, routing inlay, sawing dovetails and many more jobs.


Adjustable m e t a ll e g s a l l o wy o u t o r a i s eo r l o w e rt h e benchto a variety of working heights. Set low, it's an excellent assembly table.

bench ever: It chanses

sue Delore

your eyes!
\rrrt'r'icarr\\irotlu'ot'kct' SEPTEMBER2ooT 49

Fre. A Expr-ooro Vrew





#5 x 5/8" FH1


114"x318" RABBET

t\_ I I I I I

---\r\ #8 x 1-1t4"J FH



I I I I r I
I \ J

Frc. B Doon
114"X 114" GROOVE

Fre. C Dnnwen
I (J co E I E. v


F cc F a l



American Woodworker


BUY THE HnnownnE

Every experienced woodworker knows this rule, but it bears repeating: Buy the hardware before you build. With this bench, those critical parts are the adjustable legs, the face vise and the tail vise. Check their dimensionsand the placement of their mounting holes, then fine-tune the plans if necessary.

Fre , D

Cnoss Srcrron oFToP





The top is fairly straightforward, but there are a few things to consider as you're building. The main top (A1) may be composed of as many boards as you want. Cut them I in. extra-long and rout slots for splines (A8). You could alternatively use biscuits to help with alignment. Glue the boards together, then trirn them all the same length (seeCutting List, page 53). Cut the dog board (A2) an extra inch long, too, and drill the dog holes (Fig. H) before gluing the dog board to the top, again using a spline or biscuits for alignment. Trim the top and dog board to final length using a router, straightedge and flush trim bit. A solid wood top with a frame must be able to shrink and swell with changes in humidiry or it will crack. Rout spline slots in both ends of the top to align it with the ends (A3). Don't glue thesesplinesor the ends when you assemblethe top. Use two lag bolts to hold each end ir-rplace. Make an elongated hole for the rear bolt (Fig. E), so the bolt can move with the top. Drill extra-large diameter holes for the screws that hold the tool tray (4.6) to the top (Fig. D). They allow the tray to remain fixed to the back (A4) and the top free to move. Don't glue the spacing cleat (A7) under the top where it connects to the tray. The tail vise is simplicity itself (Fig. F). Slide the dog block (Bl and 82) along the guides (B3) before attaching the right end (A3) to the top. The screw mechanism for the vise comes with a loose plate that fastens to the dog block and a threaded guide that fastens to the bench's end (see photo, at right). After drilling the hole for the threaded guide, rout the inside of the hole with a 7/2 in. roundover bit to accommodate the threaded guide's curved shape (Fig. E). Buy or make round bench dogs for the dog holes (see Source, page 53). Finish the top with oil to keep glue blobs from sticking.

3/8'DlA.-2r+ (5 REQ'D.) i 5 REQ'D.) i #1ox1-1t2" earu4 | HEADANDWASHER $



Fte. E Eruo VrrwoFToP

3/4" DlA. COUNTERBORE AND 1 / 4 ' D I A .H O L E 1/4" DlA. SLOT. 1/2" W|DE



Frc, F Cnoss Srcrroru oFEND VtsE




84 # 8 x 1-114"FH


Thesliding t a i lv i s e allows you to c l a m pa w o r k piece between two bench dogs.


- Ii lz-114" l_r
__l_sl+" {ifi"

'vl ,


Fts. G FacrVrsrMoururrruc HoLES

Burlo rHE CeerNrr

This cabinet is designed to be very .igd. Three shelf dividers (C4) dadoed into the sides (Fig.J) p..-

1'l 8-114" ,6-114"


American \Voodworker



Frc. J CnerNrer Rnearr aruo DaooLnvour




vent the cabinet from twisting.A double-thick top and a stout base keep the cabinet box from bending. The catr inet's back (C6) prevents racking. Here's a few tips on making the base: Be sure to cut two grooves in the top for the threaded rod before gluing the top pieces (Cl) together. Make the two top pieces oversize before gluing. Place weights such as bricks or sandbags on top of them to apply clamping pressure.Glue on all the edging parts before you cut the cabinet pieces to size (see Frameless Cabinet Joinery


page 92), or cut and apply the parts one at a time after you assemblethe cabinet box. Using the latter method, make the edging l/16in. extrawide and trim itflush to the cabinet with a router.

The drawers are simple boxes with applied faces (Fig. C). Loaded with tools, these drawers can get quite hear,y. Use half-blind or through dovetails for a strong joint between the front and sides. Make the back of the drawer boxes l/LGlin. narrower than the front, as specified in the cutting list. A tapered drawer box is easier to slide. If you use drawer slides, build the drawer boxes with parallel sides. To grve each drawer maximum depth, glue the bottom directly to the underside of the drawer box. Glue plastic-laminate strips to the underside of the drawer bottom and to the shelf dividers to additionally help the drawers slide.

Frr rHe BasE


Frc. K Pr-ywooo Drncnnv Cunrruc


The base and cabinet should be exactly the same length because the adjustable legs fasten to both parts. It's best to build the cabinet first, then build the base and adjust is length to fit the cabinet. To start, make the base about l/8 in.longer than the cabinet. After dry-fitting the base,remove one of the short stretchers (D1, Fig. L) andjoint it a few times to fine-tune the base'slength.

il ii ct



ii ii


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ii ii

AssrvrBLE THE BrrucH

gri You'll need a helper to put the bench together. First, attach the base to the cabinet. Next. slide the threaded rods through the holes in the base.Put on the adjustable legs. One person must hold the nut on one end of each threaded rod while the other tightens the nut on the ic6 other end. Raise the adjustable legs about halfi,vayup to give you clearance when attaching the top. Clamp together the two telescoping parts of each end so the upper portions are plumb. Place the top on the legs so the rear brackets butt against the tool tray cleat (A7). Shift the top side to side so the bracket on the left
i - - - - , , , - - - " -- - - . i


c2 c2

ii c2 ., ii ii--,-,"----



Frc. L BasrSrnrrclrn
,1-314", 5-3/16"-----ff


end sits midway between the face vise's left rod and the vise's screw. Mark all the holes, turn the top over; drill the pilot holes and attach the top.

l--Z-3l16" 1/4" RAD.

52 American Woodworker

Ao;usr-ABrNcH Lrcs
Cabinetmaker Geoffrey Noden first designed theselegsfor hisown shop. Theiroperation is verysimple.Each end is composed of two heavygauge metalpanels. The panel adjustable hasa series of notches thatengage a rod in the fixedpanel. Depressing a pedal rotates the rod out of a notch, youto lowerthe bench. allowing To raise youjust lift its top. the bench, Thewholesystemis so robust that it cantakean enormous amountof weight.lts simplicity ensures thatit willworkfor many years, evenin a dustyshop.You'll find muchmoreinformation, alternative benchplans andcastor sets at or by (609) callins 882-3300.

Source: (609)882-3300, Adjust-A-Bench, www.adjustabench. com Adjust-A-Bench leg set, $430plus$50 S&H. (800)871-81 Lee Valley, 58, Benchdog,#05G04.01, $12 ea.Shoulder-vise s c r e w( f o rt h e t a i lv i s e )# , 7 0 G 0 1 . S$ 13 . 1 . 5 0F . ront vise,#70G08.01, for eachvise, $55. Handle #05G12.03 $, 5. (800]' HortonBrasses, 754-9j27, Cherry cabinet knob- Shaker style, #WK-7,$2 ea.

Notes (A)Make from5 boards 1-ll2' x 4-1l8" x 58" (B)Trim board glue to 4il" rough length. to top. (C) Make tops 24" wideand 46" long;trim gluing. to final size after (D)Make 1-5l8" wideand gluing. trimafter (E)Make 7/8" gluing. wideandtrimafter (F)After gluing, trimdoor 1/8" less thanheight andwidth of opening. (G) Total height of drawer boxis l/8"less thanopening's height. Length of frontis 1/32,' less thanopening,s width. (H)Length of back is 1/8" less thanlength offront. Allbacks are114" lower thansides. (J)sides are9/l6" shorterthan opening's depth. Drawerface is 1/16'proud of cabinet.
American \,lbodworker SEpTEMBER2oo7 53


Amelican \Abodrr'orker


Dust-Free Display and No Hinges to Mount!

Dl Seth Keller I I I lass doors make a bookcase, but doors that swing on hinges are a Saw grooves for I t h e s l i d i n gd o o r tracksin the top a n d m i d d l ec a b i n e t panels. Caution: The blade guard must be removed for this operation. -l



pain to install. Ditto for doors that \--t lift open and slide back<n a Barrister's bookcase, for example. Regular sliding doors are much easier to install. In addition, they're ideal for a bookcase designed to fit in a space where swinging doors might get in the way. This bookcase features super-smooth sliding door hardware that installs in minutes (see "Euro-Style Sliding Door Hardware", page 58). The shelves are generously deep and widely spaced. Following the lead of

T (J co E

Arts and Crafts era builders, my design incorporates elements inspired by traditional Asian furniture. Building this project requires two shees of walnut plywood (one 3/Lin. thick and one I/ thick) and about 40 bd. ft. of 5/4walnut. The total cost, including glassand hardware (see Sources,page 60) is about $600.



2 o

E F a

9 ^,0 both cabinet ^4qsides from a sing l e w i d e p a n e li n which all the dadoes have alreadybeen routed.Thismethod guarantees that the dadoes in both sides will align.

a I

1. Start by cutting the plywood panels and shelves to final size (Fig. A, page 56, Al-A4 and Cutting List, page 61). 2. Cut grooves for the sliding door tracks in the top and middle panels (Photo 1 and Fig. G, page 60. Cut the first groove in each
American Woodworker SEPTEMBER2oo7 55


= o

Frc. A

Vtew Explooro




114"Dx 3/8"W RABBET FYP.) 114" x2-11'!2" DOWEL

ffi ":f



Daoors DtvtoEn Fre. B Dnnwrn

98"D x 3/4"W DADOFYP.)






American Woodworker


panel, then reposition the fence and cut the second grooves). 3. Instead of cutting both cabinet sides (A5) to final size, cut one blank twice as wide as the sides, plus l/&in. Rip this blank in half after you've routed the dadoes, to create the sides (Photo 2). This method savestime and assures perfectly aligned dadoes. Plywood thickness is often undersize, so you may need a special bit to rout the dadoes (Fig. C and Sources,both on page 60). 4. Rout dadoes for the drawer dividers (A6) in the middle and bottom panels (Fig. B, page 56). 5. Rabbet the cabinetsides and the top and plywood back. bottom panels for the l/!in. 6. Glue the cabinet sides and panels together (Photo 3). The top and bottom panels run the full depth of the cabinet. The middle panel aligns with the rabbet at the back. Use cauls to evenly distribute the clamping pressure. 7. Glue in the shelves. They slide in from the back. Make sure their back edges are flush with the rabbets for the cabinet's back. 8. Glue on the shelf edging (A7).The edging hides the stopped dadoes in the cabinet's sides. 9. Glue in the drawer dividers. 10. Fit and install the sliding door track. 11. Cut and fit the plywood back (A8), but don't install it. 12. Glue spacers (A9) on the top panel. They allow fastening the top. 13. Glue up the top (Al0) and cut it to final length and width. Then rout a 45degree bevel around the front and sides. QCtue the cabinettogether in stages,startingwith the sides and the top, r.,lmiddle and bottom panels.Measurediagonallyto be sure the cabinetis two-stagemethod square.Glue in the shelvesand drawer dividers later.This doesn't requireas many long clamps.

A Outfityour miter 'tgauge with a fence and a stop to cut the doors' halflap joints.Thestop guarantees that all the tenons will be the same length.

14. Cut the face frame stiles and rails (Bl and 82) to final length and width. 15. Assemble the stiles and rails with dowels. Make sure the assembly is square and the in. bottom and middle rails are spaced Ll/ 16. Glue the face frame to the cabinet. Make sure the top of the frame's bottom rail is flush with the top of the cabinet's bottom panel. Center the frame on the cabinet-it should slightly overhang on both sides. After the glue dries, trim the face frame stiles flush with the cabinet. 17. Glue on the dividers (B3).

lrusrnll THE Facr FnavtE

(Rssemule the r--ldoors in two steps.Firstglue and c l a m pt h e t w o m i d d l e rails to the stiles and checkfor squareness. Then add the top and bottom rails and recheckto make sure the assemblyis square.

18. Install the drawer guide blocks (A11). They fill the cavities behind the face frame, so the outside drawers track smoothly.

American Woodworker



A Rout rabbets \Jfor the glass in the back of each door. Make several shallow passes, ratherthan trying to rout full-depth in a single pass.

19. Cut the door stiles and rails (Cl{4) to final width and length. 20. Cut the half-lap joints using a fence with a stop (Photo 4 and Fig. H, page 60). Make test cuts in scrap stock to dial in the blade's height and the stop's location. 21. Remove the stop to cut the stiles' inner half lap notches. 22. Dry fit each door to make sure all the joints fit. Glue and clamp the doors (Photo 5). Make sure the assemblyis square. 23. Rout rabbets for glass in the backs of the doors (Photo 6). Square the corners with a chisel. 24. Drill holes for the sliding door hardware with a 35mmdia. (or L-3/&in.dia.) Forstner bit (Photo 7 and Fig. D, page 60). These holes must be precisely centered 13 mm from the doors' edges. The depth of the holes varies: The top holes are 12-mm deep; the bottom holes are 1&mm deep. 25. Press in the sliding door hardware, install the doors and test their operation. The center stiles won't align when the doors are closed until you add the door stop (Al2). Fine-tune the alignmenr by adjusting the thickness of the stop or by jointing a

sToP/ r -

17eor" hotes I tnto the doors for the sliding hardware. Use a fence and a stop for accuratepositioning. Add a hold-downto keep the door flat on the table.



lock bit (right)to build the drawers. It creates both sides of the joint u s i n gt h e s a m e setting. Rout the drawer fronts and backsflat on the table. Rout the sidesvertically againstthe fence.


Euno-Srvlr SlrDtNG Doon HnnDwARE

This system takes its cue from Euro-style cup hinges.The componentspress into 35mm holes,installin seconds and adjustto fit. Eachdoorrequires two upperguidesandtwo lower runners. Rollers integrated intothe runners ride on the track's flange. The roller assembly adjustsin and out to raiseor lower the door. Retractable tongues in the upper guides clickup intothe trackafterthe dooris tippedinto position.

Qfne protrudrrf ing drawer bottoms act as stops by bumping the back of the cabinet.Install each drawer and measurehow far it protrudes beyond the face frame.Trimthat much from the drawer bottom's back edge to make the drawer flush.
58 American Woodworker SEPTEMBER2oo7


smidge off one or more of the doors' outside edges.

Burlo rHE DnawERs

26. Cut the drawer fronts, backs and sides (D1-D3) to final size. I made the grain flow across the front of the bookcase by cutting the drawer fronts sequentially from the same piece of walnut. 27. I use a router table and a special bit to cut the drawerjoints (Photo 8 and Sources). 28. Rout 1/4in.deep grooves in the drawer fronts and sides for the drawer bottoms (D4). 29. Glue the drawers togethen Make sure the bottom edges of the drawer backs align with the tops of the grooves in the sides, so the bottoms will slide in. 30. Cut the drawer bottoms to size, using walnut plywood left over from making the cabinet back. 31. Insert the drawer bottoms-they'll extend well beyond the back. Install each drawer to determine how much to trim offto make the drawer front flush with the face frame (Photo 9). Remove the bottom for trimming. Then reinstall and fasten it with nails or screws.

I \,f horsehoof feet by building up the two inside faces of each leg. Miter the corner joint between the two added pieces.

I flcreate the

transition between the glued-on blocksand the leg.


32. Glue together three l-in.-thick pieces of walnut to create a blank for the legs (El). Joint and plane this blank to2-3/Lin {quare, then cut it into the four legs. 33. Cut mortises in the legs (Fig. F) 34. To create the Chinese-style horsehoof feet (Fig. E), rip and plane a pair of blocks (E2) to add to each leg. 35. Miter the blocks and glue them on (Photo 10). 36. When the glue is dry rough-saw the top cove on your bandsaw. Then smooth the curves, using a sanding drum chucked in your drill press,or a spindle sander (Photo 11). 37. Tiansfer the outside curves to each foot, bandsaw them and sand them smooth (Photo 12). 38. Cut tenons on the aprons (ElE5). 39. Saw the arc on the front apron and sand it smooth. 40. Dry-fit the base and check its dimensions. The depth and width should match the cabinet. Glue the base together. Make sure it's square. 41. Rout a rabbet around the top of the base (Photo l3). l. JUet on the top of the base. The rabbet creates a shadow line that h i d e ss l i g h td i m e n sional differences between the cabinet and the base. C l a m po n a s u p port block to make the router ride smoothly and a 1/8-in.spacerto for the compensate apron's setback.
American Woodworker

L Lthe outside curves on one face.Thenturn the leg onto the adjacent face and cut a second set of curves.

I Qeandsaw

1 qRout a rab-


1 / Attach the I'tbase to the cabinetwith cleats. G l u ea n d screw the cleats to the bottom of the cabinet,after positioning them flushagainst he a p r o n sT . hen screw the cleats to the aprons.

Fre. G CnerNer SrorDnoors

26-1t8" 1-3/9"

;, i

2-114" (wP.)

I uf the i n s i d ed o o r first, then the outside door. lnstallingboth doors takes l e s st h a n a minute.





Fre . D
, 2-314"

Doon HRRownnr MourulNG HoLE Locnrroru

t-r )+
\ 1 112"




Fre. G Doon Tnncr Gnoovrs



Fre , E Lrc Pnonle

Fre, F BnsrMonrrsrs & Te norus

, 1-7116" I

Sources (800\2794441 Rockler, , 35-mmForstner bit,#46532, $17. EuropeanStyleSliding DoorHardware Set,#88155, Stickley Dark $18.29each(2 sets required). CopperPendant Pull,1-114" x 1-314" , #10877, each.Stickley DarkCopper $22.00 Pendant Pull,718" x2-3116", #26815, $17 each. Freud,(800)3344107,www.f -dia. 23132" Mortising Bit,#16-103, $16. Rabbeting Bit,#32-102, $35. DrawerLockBit, #99-240, $37.

1 INCHSQUARES 60 American Woodworker SEPTEMBER 2oo7

42. Apply a finish before assembling the rest of the parts. I used a wipe-on urethane. 43. After the finish is dry flip the cat> inet upside down and align the base on the bottom of the cabinet. 44. Glue and screw cleats (E6 and E7) to the bottom of the cabinet (Photo 14). Then attach the base by screwing

through the cleatsinto the aprons. Stand the cabinet right-side up. 45. From inside the cabinet, drill shank holes for screwsthrough the top and the three spacers. 46. Clamp the top in position and then attach it with screws. 47. Screw on the plywood back (A8). 48. Install glassin the doors. Cut and fit the retaining strips (C5) and tack

them in place. 49. Install hardware on the doors and drawers (see Sources). 50. Install the doors. Engage the bothardware, then tip the door upright to engage the top (Photo 15). tom You'll have to remove the inner door's pull to install the outer door. 51. Load up the cabinet, then sit down and relax with a good book.

F r c . H Doon Jorrurny
OvsRArDTMENSToNS :143/4"D x 4Ul/4'Wx 5&5/8"H

13/32" THx 1-314"L TONGUE


Gabinet {w/outtop)
lop l'anel


otv. Dimensions
13-3/4"x 3&1/4" x 48'E14"
1 1 1 3/4"xxx13"x37-112 314"**x 12-314" x37-112" 3l4xx x13"x 37-112" 314'**x10"x37-112" 3l4xxx13"x48-314"

A3 A4 A5 A6 A7 A8 A9 A10


&i7 ^

|:-aircb ./,&ca

412 B1


B2 B3

Wa nut Plywood M i d d l eP a n e l Wa nut Plywood Bottom Panel Wa nut Plywood Shelf Wa nut Plvwood Sidex Wa nut Plvwood D r a w e rD i v i d e r Wa nut Plvwood Shelf Edqinq Wa n u t Back Wa nut Plvwood Spacer Pine Top Walnut D r a w e rG u i d e B l o c k White Oak Door Stoo Wa n u t Face Frame Stile Walnut Rail Walnut Divider Walnut

2 2
2 2 1 3 1


3/4" x1" x36-3/4" 1/4"xxx37-112" x 46-5/8" 5/8"x1-114"x13" 718"x14-314 x40-114" x 3 1 4 "x 1 2 - 1 1 2 " 314" 114" x314" x39-718

3l{'x 38-3/8"*+*x 48-3/C' 2




c1 c2 c3 c4 c5
D1 D2 D3 D4


-ro-p Beit

M i d d l eR a i l Bottom Rail G l a s sR e t a i n e r

Walnut Walnut Walnut Walnut Walnut

WA n u t


Front Back Side Bottom White Oak White Oak Walnut Plvwood Wa n u t Wa n u t Wa n u t Wa n u t Wa n u t P ne P ne

2 24 3
3 3 6 3 4 8 1 1

3/4" x1-1/2 x48-314" 3/4"x1-112"x35-3/8" 314"x314" x5-114 13/16" x 19-1/8" x 3!l-3/#' 13116" x1-314"x39-314 13/16"x1-112"x19-1/8 13/16'x1-114"x19-1/8 13/16x2"x19-1/8" 3/16"x 3/8" x cut to lenoth

5-t/8' x 11-3116" x 13-1 14'

314"x5-118"x 11-3l16" 112"x4-112"x11-3/16" 112x " 5-1/8" x12-314" 114"**x 10-5/8"x 13-112"


9" x13/4" x38-1/4"

2-3/4 x2-314"x9" 114"x3"x3" 718"x3-112"x 34-3/4"**** 718" x3-112 x34-314"* 718" x 3 _ 1 1 2x " 10-1/4"***x 1 " x 2 - 1 1 2x "2 4 " 1"x 2" x7-314"

13132"D DADO (TYP.)

E2 E3 E4 E5 E6

Block FrontApron Side Aoron Long Cleats Short Cleats

BaplS A"p_t-o_t''

2 2

j , t /


*Rip both sidesfrom one 26-1l8"-wide blank * * N o m i n a l p l y w o o dt h i c k n e s s **xTrim flush after mounting * * x x l n c l u d e s1 " - l o n gt e n o n so n b o t h e n d s




13132"D RABBET (TYP.)

Sgth Kgllgf designsand buildscustomfurniturein the Twin Cities, where he liveswith his wife Michelle and cat Luis. He studiedliterature and art at UW-Madison and UNC-Asheville and Interior Designat Parson's Schoolof Designin New YorkCity.Seth is a memberof the FourthStreetGuild,a cooperativewoodworking shop. He's a regular contributor to American Woodworker.

Arnerican Woodworker




ejd :-- r-! -1,=l


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"Krls plat,rvithit like zrto\; hut it drir,esirdults nuts. Thc-vt h i n k i t ' s Lrprr7,z,le . Thc)"re slt1e ther"e"s stlltle wtry
t() gel the littlc crrbe otrt of'the big cuhe. \?xr carl'1.."
11'"fritk lIoltttt'rt

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crosscut a I 3x3xt4-in. b l a n ki n t o f o u r c u b e s .S o l i d wood is best, so it d o e s n ' tl o o k l i k e you put the little cubein the big cubeby gluing partstogether. T h r e e - i nt.a b l e - l e g stockworks well, but you can make the cubes from 2112 in. or smaller stock if you want.

INNER CUBE -.3::: X *

Set the bit's depth of cut. D r a w a l i n ef r o m t h e p o i n tw h e r ea d i a g onal intersects the h o l ey o u m a d e . Adjust the drill press so the bit stops a b o u t 1 / 1 6i n . a b o v e this line. This method works for any sizecube and any sizehole. (l've d r a w nt h e i n n e r cube so you can see how this works.)

Mark centerl i n e so n o n e f a c e .M a r k o n e corner of every face with a small X . Y o u ' l lb e d r i l l i n ge a c hh o l e morethan one t i m e . T h eX ' s w i l l helpregister the cubein the same orientation on the drill press.

A D r i l lh o l e si n end-grain Ythe s i d e sf i r s t . T h e n drill the other four faces. Always placethe X's i n t h e s a m ec o r n e r relativeto the fence and stop block.

oritl press tl to run at its slowest speed. Arrangethe belts so the smallest diameterdrive pulleyturns the i d l e rp u l l e y . Connectthe idler to the largest diameter spindle pulley.

Q, r", rou.

J Drilling all six t faces produces a c u b ei n a c u b e . T h e inner cube is attached to the outer cube by a thin section of wood.The reasonfor drilling the end-grain faces first is to avoid breaking theseweak attachmentpoints. End-grain drilling requires more downward pressurethan face-grain drilling.

Set up your /I -Tdrill press with a 2 in. Forstnerbit. (Use a s m a l l e rb i t w i t h a s m a l l e rb l o c k . ) Positiona fence and stop blockso the bit drills exactly in the cube's center. D r i l lo n e holeabout 1/16-in. deep.

S e tt h e d r i l l b i t 1132-in d.e e p e r a n d r e p e a td r i l l i n g a l l t h e h o l e s .A g a i n , drillthe end-grain facesfirst. Use light pressureto avoid breakingthe attachment points.




I *-"f**

^-. lfJA. youdrill,

.J checkthe thickness of the attachment points.Your goalisto make t h e m a s s m a l la s possible, to the point where the i n n e rc u b e a l m o s t releases itself. This may require drilling some holesa tiny bit deeper.Draw check marksto show how many times you've drilledeach hole.


-a Smooth I f V i n st h e

faces of the inner cubeis tough, becausethey're hard to get to, I u s u a l l yj u s t l e a v e t h e m a l o n e ,b u t if you must do someclean-up work, use a file to staft, then switch to sandpaper.

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by cutting the attachment points with a t h i n k n i f e ,g o i n g w i t h the grain.After cutt i n g a l l e i g h tc o r n e r s , t h e i n n e rc u b ew i l l drop free. But it won't come out!

o i l t o f i n i s hi t . R u bt h o r o u g h l y with a rag to removethe excess oil,and you're readyto play!



I I S a n dt h e I t cornersof t h e i n n e r c u b e .R a i s e t h e i n n e rc u b e a b o v e the hole by pos*L-- "" i t i o n i n gi t a t a d i a g o n a l . P r o pu p t h e c u b e with a wedge or your fingers.

'm o'f

a carver. I've alwaysadmired

rvhittleclcuriositieslike balls trapped

inside a cage, but never wa.nted to spend the tirne to make thern. I fielrred rnust be some \vay to nrake a sirnil:rr o$ect with :r ch-illprcss."

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JanO Durn

a .-marks or r o u g h g r a i nw i t h a f i n e - g r i td r u m - s a n d ing attachment. Rub the drum with a crepe-rubber belt c l e a n e rn o w a n d then to keep the drum working efficiently.

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D1Mitch Kohanek ecentlyI was askedto judgea woodworking show. Oneof the bestpieces was a wonderfully constructed grandfather quick clock. Unfortunately, a brushing of polyurethane ruined the clock's appearance. Theclock's creatorsaidhe chosepolyurethane for protection. But how durable doesa coating on a grandfather clockhaveto be?Why put a finish originally designed for floors on a beautiful clock? Whata difference shellac wouldhavemaoe. _A Don'tget me wrong,polyurethane is a great choice for highwear surfaces likea deskor kitchen tabletop.However, lfind people use poly by defaultsimply because it's readily available as well as durab le. But is . d u r a b i l i t ya l l that matters ? There ar e m any otherconsiderations that makeshellac a greatchoice for adding beauty and protectionto your prolects. ManV woodworkers have walked (stormed) away in frustration after tryi ng shel l ac. l t' s a uni quefinishand there are some fundamental ground rulesone must follow.The tips in this storycoverthe basics that will get you goingon the righttrack.

Mitch Kohanek isa member of

the AmericanInstituteof Conservation and has internedat the Smithsonian Museum Conservation Institute in WashingtonD.C. He founded the National Institute of Wood Finishing at Dakota CountyTechnical Centerwhere he has been the primaryinstructor for 29 years. lt is the only certifiedwood finishing schoolin the country. Visithis website at .




finish. versatile withthisbeautiful, friends Make

o Non-toxic- Shellac you can use. lt is a naturally occuris one of the safestfinishes candyand pharmaceuticals. by the FDAto coatapples, that'sapproved ringmaterial is free of toxicchemicals. alcohol, shellac When mixedwith puregrain - A damaged . Repairable finishis easyto restoreor repair. or worn shellac . Rubs out well - Shellac givesit excellent The hardness is harder than most finishes. qualities. rubbing o Excellent moisture barrier - lf you want to keepwood movementto a minimum. shellac can'tbe beat. o Fast drying - Thatmeansfewer troubles with dust settlingintoa wet film. recoat in underan hourfor a fast build. Youcan usually o Universalsealant- Dewaxed shellac can be usedas a sealcoat under almostanyfinish. o LessSanding - Shellac sanding betweencoats does not require to another. in orderfor one coatto adhere



lf you buy waxedor dewaxedshellac? in shellac. Wax occursnaturally Should with wax worksfine.Thewax then shellac is goingto be the onlyfinish, shellac or lf shellac is usedas a sealer shellac. or brushing dragwhen padding decreases probversion to avoidadhesion for otherfinishes, choosethe dewaxed undercoat and is alsohasgreater clarity with polyurethane. Dewaxed shellac lems,especially by lettingthe wax Youcan dewaxyour own shellac more heatand water resistant. off the cleardewaxedportion. settleout and pouring A good ruleof thumb is to use buyermakesis color. The next decision a shellac the darker colorson darkwoods and lightcoorson lightwoods. productmadefrom lac beetle(Lacifer Shellac lacca) excretions. is a natural Shellac range from darkreddish brownto a goldenambercolordepending comes in colorsthat grades of Thereare five commonlyavailable and degreeof processing. on the time of harvest garnet, orangeand superblonde. seedlac, buttonlac, from leastto most refined: shellac leaves, sticksand from the trees,washedand dried. lt stillcontain is simplycollected Seedlac Garnetis a littlelighter hasbeenfiltered a bit. lt hasa rich,darkbrowncolor. bug parts. Buttonlac colored and has more red than but-


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American Woodworker



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Usingshellac that is mixedtoo thickis the #1 mistakepeoplemake.Untilyou gainexperience usingshellac, it'sbestto thinyourshellac to a 1lb.cut (1-lb. of flakes dissolved in 1gal.of alcohol). Old-time cabinet: makers usedpureethanol, or "spiritsitomix theirshellac. Pureethanol is stillsoldat liquor storesin (920a quart). some statesas "Everclear" Makesure it'sthe 1gO-proof stuff. When mixedwith dry shellac flakesEverclear produces an all-natural, non-toxic finish(safer than anywater-based finish). When the liquorstorecashier wonderswhere the heckyou'regoingwith a caseof 1gO-proof just say, Everclear, "l'm goingto get shellacked" ! Denatured alcohol is the most commonsolvent for shellac. lt costsa lot less than Everclear. lt's essentially ethanol contaminated with another chemical to poisonor "denature" you from paying the ethanol. Thissaves a liquortax. Specialty alcohols that containno water (200proof)are alsoavailable. These alcohols are blended to dissolve shellac a littlequicker and dry a littleslower, so it has moretime to levelout.


Shellac flakestakequite a while to dissolve. When my shop is cool,l've had to wait morethan2days. Toooften I failedto plan aheadand have been forcedto wait for my shellac to dissolve beforework couldprogress. Youcangreatly reducethe time it takesto mix shellac by grinding up the flakes. A simpleblade-type coffeegrinder doesthe trick. warm temperatures alsospeedup the process. lf your shop is on the cool side,find a warm placeto mix your shellac. l've been knownto put a jar in my car on a sunnyday.In an houror lessthe groundfrakes are totallydissolved.


Brushed-on shellaccan "window pane','leaving fat thickedges. lt canalso"orange peel"when sprayed. This happens most often with heavy mix, so keeping yourshellac thin (1-21b. cut) is your best defense. lf you are stillhaving problems, try some "Shellac-Wet'i Just a few dropsin a quartof shellac will greatly improve flow-out and leveling.Do not use this additive if you planto topcoatthe shellac with a different finish,as it may causeadhesion problems.

'Amber" Zinsser's shellac is a ready to useorange shellac andtheir "Clear"shellac is a blondeshellac. Bothof these products contain wax and come as a 3-pound cut that shouldbe thinnedto a 1-2poundcut beforeuse. "SealCoat" is a 2-pound cut of dewaxed blonde shellac. SealCoat is a universalsealer that addsjust the right amountof warmthand colorunder . a water-based finish. Mixedshellac hasa 6-month shelflife. Zinnser hasfounda way to stretchthe shelf life of pre-mixed shellac to 3 years. Alwayslookfor the dateof manufacture on the can beforeyou buy.All three products are alsoavailable in handyspray cans.
68 American Woodworker sEpTEMBER 2oo7


Forquickrepair work, or for those times when you didn'tmix quite enough shellac there's"Gold Dust'ilt's basically pulverized shelii lacthats lightyel'n" low to amber in color. The powder is designedfor r fast, no'wait mixing of smallbatches.


Most woodworkers are finishes with usedto buying sheen(gloss, the desired semi-gloss, satinor flat) With shelrightoff the shelf. lacyou haveone choice gloss. Traditionally high shellac'ssheenwas adjusted by rubbing it out. Shellac is easyto rubto a glass smoothfinishwith the desired sheen.However, carvedor heavily molded surfaces can be trickyto rub you canadd out.Thankfully, a flattening agentlike Shellac Flatto adjust the sheen. Shellac Flatis made with amorphous silica andalcohol.
il?; rf:


I makeshel l ac in smallbatches so it won't go bad beforeI can use it uo. Mixedshellac's shelflife is about6 months. Afterthat it may not dry properly. I usea smallfoodscale (available at grocerystores) to weighout the flakes. To mix one pintof 1-lb.-cut shellac, dissolve 2 oz.of shellac in 16 oz.of alcohol. flakes Fora 2-lb. cut,double the flakes. Afterthe shellac is fullydissolved, it strain fine meshcheesecloth through or filterto remove imourities.

sg irJG


is easyto color. Shellac Whetheryou'relooking for deep,soft brownor garyellow, ish cadmium s hellac c anha n d l e it. Justaddalcohol-based dye. Forpurecolors, super-blonde shellac works best. Using the rightbrushis if you want your essential relationshio with shellac to startoff on the right foot.An inexpensive ovalsashbrush, likethe Biestt-Lieb co #12 shown


The natura \Jr / moldededges. '/ wrap china bristles easily NATURAL BRISTLE aroundcontours without BRUSH leaving bigdrips. Golden Taklon is an amazing synthetic material usedon brushes likethe Athena 7100Series. The bristles fine arewonderfully and soft and giveyou a precise edgeand control. A highquality natural bristle brush with a chisel is greatfor applying edge,likethe DunnetFitch, flatsurface likea tabletop. shellac on a large,

Nf !:W' D- -';w/

here, is perfect forapplying I on trimworkand II shellac


Homestead F i n i s h e s(,2 1 6 ) 631-5309 w , w w . h o m e s t e a d f i n i s h i n g . cS oh m e l l a c - W e# t ,7 0 9 9 , $10,2oz. Shellac F l a t ,# 7 0 8 0 , . unnnet-Fitch B r u s h , 2 - 1 1 2 - i$ n3 . ,4 . B e s i t t - L i e b c Bo irch O v a lS a s h , #12, $ 1 3 .1 6 - o zD 7 1 0 0G o l d e n Series T a l k o n1 , - 1 1 2$ ': $ 1 2 .A t h e n a 32. "Gold Dust" GroundShellac, Wood FinishersDepot, (866)883-3768, 1/2 pound,#SH1-8, Proof,1-quart, #1T200-O, $6. ShellacThinner-200 $9. Woodworker'sSupply, (800)645-9292, #848-817,1-1b., J.E.Moser's Seedlac, $17 J . E . M o s e r 'B s u t t o n l aP c u r eF l a k e# , 8 4 8 - 8 2 4 , 1 - 1$ b1 . ,8 .J . E . M o s e r 'G s arnetlac #,8 4 8 - 8 3 1 , 1 - 1 ,. $b 2.1 ( d e w a x e d# ) ,8 4 8 - 8 4 51 J . E . M o s e r 'O s range # , - 1 b$ . ,2 0 .J . E . M o s e r 'S Shellac , 8 4 8 - 8 3 81 s u p e rB l o n d e , - 1 b$ . ,2 6 . (Platinum t hellac t, S Colour S a m p l e5 r P a c kf ,i v e 4 - o z .p k g s .o f P L A T I N A Blonde Dewaxed, Ruddy Amber (Dewaxed), Kusmi(Caramel Amber)Button,Garnet, KusmiSeed;$25. DEWAXED Shellac Sampler 5 pack,five- 4-oz.pkgs.Of Dewaxed SuperBlonde, Dewaxed Beige(AlmostBlonde), Dewaxed Orange, DewaxedLemon, Dewaxed Garnet, $25.
American \A/oodrvorker

High quality guitars from kits designed to fit your skill level.
DyGeorge Vonclriska uitar making was never on my to-do list, but then I stumbled upon a guitar kit on the internet. I ordered it. built it. and have been hooked ever since. Just seeing the anatomy of a guitar and how the parts work together to make a beautiful sound, was really cool! Now that I have an instrument I made myself, I should really learn how ro play it. This story gives an overview of what it takes to make a guitar from a kit. I picked gtritar kits from Grrzzly, Musicmakers, U.S. Guitar and StewartMacDonald, priced from $80 to $400. The four kits cover a range of prices, skill levels and styles.In general, the more expensive kits will give you a better sounding guitar becausethey are built more from solid rvood and with higher quality materials. Before you buy, r'isit their websites - these companies offer more kits than just these four.

If you're reasonably good at problem and improvising in the shop, )/ou can build even the most sophisticated kit without buying special tools. The Grizzly ancl Musicmaker's kits don't require any specialized tooling. The U.S. Guitar and Stervart-MacDonald kits call for some specialized tooling like a tiny rabbeting bit and a rapered reamer. But, as with most woodworking projects, there are always work-arounds.
70 Arncrican \{irod$'orker sEPTEMBER 2oo7

Hide glue is the luthier's traditional adhesive. That's because hide glue is reversible so repairs and adjustments are easier to perform. That said, all four kits give you the green light to use the more familiar yellow glue.


Guitar bodies (the sides, top and back) are made out of laminated material (think very thin plywood), wood throughout solid wood, or some mix of the two. Using solid the guitar provides the best sound, but adds significantly to the kit's cost. Most of the sound quality comes from the guitar's top. A solid-wood top combined with laminated sides and back is a good compromise between sound and price. Other factors like the shape and placement of bracing also affect the guitar's sound.

I advancedkits, like the Stewart(shown) MacDonald and the Musicmakers, requireyou to build the guitar body. Assembly startswith the preformedsides. Q oetaiteoptans thelp you attach bracingto the top and backon the Musicmaker's and Stewart Macdonald kits. Pro'luthiers developunique bracing schemesfor a signaturesound to their instruments. the Q Reshaping r-lbracing is an option on kits that require body assembly. Removingmaterial from the braces altersthe sound of the guitar.Experience is the best guide for customizing a brace profile.

I t'e more

The Stewart-MacDonald and Musicmakers kits require the builder to assemble the sides then glue the bracing to the top and back (Photos I - 3). The shape and placement of each brace affects the guitar's voice. By removing some material from the bracing you're making the top respond differently to the sound from the strings. Of course there's a limit. If you remove too much bracing material the top will become too flexible and distort under string tension. There's a real art to the science of bracing. It's best to do some research if you want to experiment. Otherwise, play it safe and follow the manufacturer's brace pattern and don't worry about reshaping the stock braces, they work well as is. The top and back are attached oversized (Photo 4) then flush-trimmed to the sides. Next, a rabbet is cut for a decorative inlay (called binding) where the sides meet the top and bottom. The rabbet is much smaller than a standard rabbeting bit can create. A special bit is available ($85) to do the job. $lue in the binding ,,'(Photo6). (Photo 5) then trim flush

Lmay use every clamp in your shop to glue on the top and back.Only the Grizzlykit allows you to skip this step. This joint must be made uniformly tight with light, even pressure. ( ainoing adds a r-l clean detail where the top and bottom join the sides.Some kits requireyou to rout the rabbetand apply the binding. Maskingtape acts like a thousandlittle clamps. f,R cara scraper \,f works well to flush the binding with the guitar body. Be extra carefulwith laminated materials, you don't want to go throughthe veneeron the body.
American Woodworker sEpTEMBER 2oo7 71

You Ttcotclamps?


One of the great things about making your own guitar is you can customize it to suit your taste and needs. For example, you can shape the neck to better fit your hand (Photo 7). My wife's commercially made guitar has a neck that's too wide for her . She loves the thinner neck I made on my guitar. You can also add your own personal touch to the guitar (Photo 8). Most kit companies offer cool hardware upgrades you can build into your kit or add on later.


Joining the neck to the body is crucial to a well made guitar. There are three common ways to make this joint: dowels, bolts, or a dovetail.

v E.





J fin"-tune the shape of the neckto fit can use a spokeI your hand.You file or a sander. shave,

Q Custo-ize the look of your guitar. L,tl carveda horse on the peghead of my guitarand replaced the original veneer with a herringbonepattern of cherry.

neckjoint makesassembly QR Uott-on r.rf can be taken apart if future repairsare necessary. The traditional dovetailjoint is trickierto fit, but's availableas a no-cost option on the Stewart-MacDonald kit.

. Solid sides, laminated top and back . Bodyconstruction required but, uniqueneck-tosidejointsimplifies assembly . Binding is optional The Renaissance Guitar from Musicmakers is a teardrop guitar shaped basedon earlyguitars of the Renaissance. Although this kit requires gluingthe bracing, is very the process straightforward with theirexcellent plans. lf you canfollowdirections, you canbuild thisguitar. Renaissance Guitar, (800]'432-5487, $300.

. Solidtop, laminated sidesand back . Sides and backpreassembled . Bolton neck . Includes hardshell case . Binding is installed builder Thisis a great kit for an intermediate woodworker. It comeswith the backand sidesglued together, but a loosetop. The bracing is pre-glued to the backandthe top. Thiswas the only kit that included a hardshellcase. SycamoreKit, $300.

. Laminated sides,top, and back o No machining required . Dowelled neck The Grizzly kit gets prettycloseto gratification. instant The time from opening the box to gluing together the neckand bodyis very short. The kit's low priceand easeof assembly makeit a greatfirst guitarfor you or to work on sideby sidewith a youngperson. Classical Guitar Kit, (800)523-4777, H31 22, $80.


American Woodworker



1 nPositioning the bridgeis critical. I \,tThe bridgemust be placedan exact distancefrom the 12thfret on the fingerboardfor proper intonation.Every kit requiresthis step, but the procedure in the manuals. is well described

1 I ffre nut is glued in placeat the I I top of the fret board.Youmay haveto file or shim the nut to fine-tune the actionor heightof the stringsoff the fingerboard.

1 C)Pin the stringsto the bridgeusing the guitarand L ltapered pegs.Tune you're readyto play or, in my case,staft learninghow to play.

Bolting the neck to the body (Photo 9) is easy,strong and allows the neck to be removed for repairs. Dowels are easy too, but difficult to remove for repairs. In addition, dowels aren't as strong as bolts over time. Luthiers prefer a dovetail for attaching the neck to the body. It's stronger than bolts or dowels, but it's also the hardestjoint to fit. Expect some fussy handwork when using this joint.

The Grizzly kit comes with the frets already installed on the fingerboard. The other kits require you to tap the frets in place. On the Stewart MacDonald kit, you also shape the fingerboard to fit the neck.

. All solidwood construction o Dovetailed neck o Fingerboard requires shaping . Binding req. and bodyconstruction The Stewart-MacDonald kit involves the most work and highest skilllevel. The instructions and DVDareexcellent. Nothing is pre-assembled but you do get preformed sidesand some parts. machined The quality of the parts and opporlunity to customize the guitar'ssoundmakethis an appealing kit for the advanced woodworker. lt's interestingto notethat some professional point. luthiers use this kit as a starting Theytweakthe details according to theirown soecsand sellthe finished product as a customized instrument. Dreadnought Guitarwith Indian (800l, Rosewood, W-227 3, \AA/ M25.

Before gluing the fingerboard, you set a truss rod into the neck. The truss rod can be adjusted to counteract wood movement and adjust the height of the strings off the fingerboard. Adjusting the height of the strings is known as adjusting the action of the guitar. Installing the bridge is a critical operation (Photo 10). On some kits, you'll also need to create the tapered holes for the pegs that hold the strings to the bridge. A tapered reamer is worth every penny for this job. The nut at the top of the fingerboard is now glued in place at the end of the fingerboard (Photo 11). On some kits the nut is cut to length and shaped for you. On others you'll need to do all the work. You may need to file or shim the nut, depending on how it affects the guitar's action or position of the strings above the frets.

Nitro-cellulose lacquer is the rypical finish for guitars. Shellac is an excellent alternative . Both finishes are easy to repair and restore. The bridge and fingerboard should not be coated with a film finish, but can be lightly coated with linseed or tung oil.


With the finish complete you can fasten the tuners and string your guitar (Photo 12). Once the strings are under tension, fine-tune the guitar's action wth the truss rod. The action is primarily controlled by the height you set for the nut and bridge. Even though its primary purpose is to keep the neck straight, you can adjust the truss rod to raise or lower the strings a bit. The higher the strings, the less prone they are to buzzing when banging out those Ozzy Osbourne chords. The lower the strings, the easier it is to finger those super fast Metallica licks. Have fun!

American Wbodworker





here's not enough room in rnv garage shop for a tablesarv rvith a 52-in.-capacitv rip fence. But no 1v61fis5-l don't nccd onel To nrake rvide cuts. I

simply ir-rstall a shop-rnadeextension that bridges lny saw to the rvall-ar-rd doubles its 30-in. rip capacin'l I rnade m,v exteltsion bv fi-anring a piece of 3/4in. rndf rvith rails on three sides. I cor,ered tl-re top of the extension-and the face of its fence-rvith plastic laminate. I attached U-shapeclrnour-rtingbrackets to the u'all and the sarv. The extension simply clrops ir-rplace (see Fig. A and top photo, page 75).I had to drill holes thr-ough rhe sarv n'ing to mount the sau'bracket. A cleat on the bottom of the
74 Arncric:rn \\'ooclrr'orkcr SEpTEMBER 2oo7

extension rving hooks into the saw bracket. The rvall brackets's rvide "U" mAkes it a bit easier to jockey the tablesarv into position, becauseit allows a little wiggle room. I routed groo\res in the extension to recess the T:track and the adhesive-backedrules. To calibrate the rules, I set the extension's fence parallel to the blade and made a test cut. The rvidth of the test piece now ir-rdicatedthe fence's distance frorn the blade, so I used its measurement to install the rules (middle photo, page 75). An L-shaped storage cleat mounted on the extension's bottom allows storing the extension rving vertically (bottom photo, page 75).

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The extension installs easily. lts front and backrails to minimizemovement. capture the saw bracket
Use both rules to set the fence. The rulesare calibrated so the fence is p a r a l l e lt o the blade when both measurements match.

The extension table stores on the wall. This flexibility frees shop space that would have been occupied by my saw if it had a superwide-capacity rip fence.

Source R o c k l e( r8 , 00) 2 7 94 4 4 l , w w w r o c k l ec ro n r ,3 6 0 3 3 Aluminun T rT r a c k3 , / 8 " x 3 1 4 "x 3 6 : ' $ 1 1 t olt, e a .3 3 9 6 51 " T - S l oB $ 79 ea. , 12 9 e a 6 9 1 1 6 /151a 2 ' i - ( n o b$ l e t t o - R i g rS Aohesrve t elf R u l e6 , ' ,$ 8 e a

Frc, A







3/4 X 3/4" (TYP.)

rack magazine
'Ali the\i:r's Thal.s FirroPr.inr





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A simple design that will testyour skills.

Amclic:rn \\krocluorker SEPTEMBER 2oo7 77


of mine recently asked me to make a mission tyle magazine rack as a spefriend cial gift for her husband. So off to my computer piece. I went and designed this

At first glance the project looks simple, but the wedged through tenons present a challenge. Getting them to fit perfectly requires patience, careful machine setups, and a bit of fine-tuning with a chisel. Keep in mind that a small project like this really benefits from meticulous attention to detail. I like to say it's a weekend project that will take two weekends to build. Here's how it's made: I Cut the angled mortisesat the ends I of each rail using a taperedsupport block (see Fig. B) to hold the rail at the correctangle. jig Q Cut the rail tenons.A tenoning ^ makesthe job a lot easier.Use a sample mortiseas a guide for sizing the tenons.

VIEW Frc. A Expr-oDED


l. Cut the slats (C) and rails (B). Lay out the slat mortises and the through mortises for the wedges on the rails (Fig.B). 2. Chop the angled mortises for the tenon wedges in the rails (Photo l). 3. Switch to a l/2-in. chisel. Cut a sample mortise the same size as the ones that will be cut in the sides (Fig. B). Use the sample mortise to size the rail tenons. 4. Cut the through tenons on the rails (Photo 2). 5. Use the mortising machine to chop the slat mortises in the rails. 6. Cut the slat tenons. Note that the backs of the slaa align flush with the backs of the rails. This ensures that magazines won't catch on the lower rail. 7. Sand the slats and rails, then dry fit them together.




8. Cut the sides (A) but leave them oversize in thickness. This allows you to clean up any blow-out from chopping the through mortises. 9. Cut the angled top on a miter saw. Cut the long taper on the front edge. on the bandsaw. 10. Use the assembled front grill to locate the through sides (Photo 3). ll. mortises on the Ouartersawn White Oak QuartersawnWhite Oak White Oak Ouartersawn OuartersawnWhite Oak Walnut l/l6lin.


Chop the side mortises. To

insure a tight fit on the tenon, keep


*314" x3" x 12" x'14" 314" x1-114" 112" x3/4" x8" U4"x 1-11116" x 11" 1/4" x3/8" x1-314"

* Make 1/1Gin. extrathickand planeto finishthickness aftermortisingis complete.


American Woodworker

Q Use the assembledfront grill to r-f precisely locate the through mortises in the sides.Youwant these tenon locationsto be dead-on,so put a sharp chiselpoint on your pencil.

7l C"tthe mortisesfor the keyhole -f hangersusing a 5/8-in.straight bit. Set a start and a stop blocks on the fence to gauge the mortise length.

YK To mark preciselocationson your r.-f wall for screw anchors,tape the screws in the hanger slots. Locatethe rackon your wall, make sure it's level and then give it a push.

Frc- B Pmru LRvours

the mortise a bit short. It's easyto pare down the tenon to fit. If the mortise is cut even a hair too long, you're sunk. 12. Plane the sides to their finished thickness removing any blowout from cutting the mortises. 13. Rout the keyhole hanger grooves on the back edge of the sides (Photo 4).



H 114"


3/8' H

14. Glue and clamp the slats into the rails.

15. Cut the bottom ( D) and glue it in place. 16. Make the wedges (E). Leave them a bit wide and pare them with a chisel to fit. Each wedge will be slightly different, so mark which goes where to keep track.



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17. Disassemble,sand and apply the finish. I used Watco Medium Walnut Danish Oil Finish because I frnd it resembles fumed oak. 18. Reassemble the rack and screw



on the keyhole hangers.


19. Thpe short screws into the keyhole fastener slots (Photo 6). Align the rack to the wall and press to mark the wall anchor locations. 20. Insert the wall anchors, and then hang the rack using #8 x l-l/2-in. head screws. Source (8OOl Rockler, 2794M1,, 2 -Keyhole pair Fittings, 518" x 1-21132'iPart #28837. $2 a oair flat-


is a freelance woodworking autho[ tedrnicalillustrato[ and huilder.\bu can see a collection of his work from the past website, umrw

American Woodworker

sEpTEMBER 2oo7





adoes and rabbets are two of the most widely used joints in cabinetmaking. Cabinets, drawers and jewelry boxes all lend themselves to this simple but strong joinery. I've been woodworking, demonstrating and teaching woodworking for a long time. Over the years, I have accumulated some great tips for making and using dadoes and rabbets.

Some people get pretty worked up about using the right word for the right joint. Perhaps they have a point since imprecise use of terms can lead to confusion. So, to be precise, here are the proper definitions: A dado is a U-shaped, square-bottomed channel cut across the grain (see photo, top right). A groove looksjust like a dado, but runs with the grain. A lot of people call a groove a dado I think that's OK - but imprecise. Arabbet is an L-shaped channel cut across or with the grain. A rabbet is always cut on the stock's edge.


Settingup a stackable dado headto fit your plywood can reduce be fussy and time consuming but, you'llsignificantly the guessworkby makinga dado gauge block. To make the block, cuta 23132-in. wide dado in a board big enoughto allow for six more dadoswith space between.Add a single .005in. shim to the 23132-inset up and plow a seconddado next to the 23132-in. one. Continue addingshims and makingdadosin .005-in. increments until you get to a 3/4-in.dado. Mark the dadoesas you go. To use, slip your plywood into the test dadoesuntilyou find the perfectfit. Then,readthe numberof shims needed.

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American Woodworker


BHST DADO DEPTH LOCK THE HEIGHT For years,I made all my dadoes3/8-in.
plywood. lf I made dadoes deep in 314-in. on opposite sides of a divider,however, I had to changetheir depth and recalculate for that joint. shelf lengths.iust I've since learnedit's a lot easierand just as strong to set the depth of cut for every shelf This makescalculating dadoto 114in. and I never have lengthsa whole lot easier, for a double to make specialcalculations dado. Always lock the blade-height handwheelbefore cutting.Vibration turn, changing can make the handle the depth of cut. This changeis often hard to observe until assembly time. A big oops, if you just cut dadoesfor a kitchenfull of cabinotc


yourstock fenceprotects A sacrificial I makemy fence fromdamage. fence I cut its slippery. because frommelamine to accept a comx3l4-in.groove a 3/8-in. cut in the A scallop mercialfeatherboard. me to fenceallows faceof the sacrificial burypaftof the blade.


go together with hand fittedjointshould A properly pressure. to be tightenough At the sametime it should falling without apart. assembly lifta modestly sized


providesconsistentdownward pressure A featherboard on the materialright over the blade.This will compensate for a slightwarp in plywood and insurea consistentdepth all alongyour rabbet.I always use a push blockto keep someblade. thing between my handsand the unguarded

Cut perfbct dddoes without the guess\Mork.


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sEpTEMBER 2oo7



This jig automatically cuts perfectly-sized dados. lt was first featuredin lssue#120,March,2006.We include it herefor thosewho might have p.9'1, missedit and alsoin ModernCabinetmaker, Photo1. Locatethe jig so the fixed fence lines up with the bottom of the marked dado. Squeezea couple plywoodoffcutsfrom the shelf stock between the fixedand adjustable fencesand tighten. Thissets the spacebetweenthem to perfectlymatch the materialthickness. Usinga 1|2-in.patlern cuttingbit in your router,make one passwith the bearing against the fixedfenceand anotherwith the bearing against the fence.The result is a dado that perfectlymatchesyour material. adjustable

f\ Atr'I'STABLE/.,/FEI{CE ,,', ./

#6 x 1" F.H. scREw (TYP.)

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1/4-20x1-112" CARRIAGEBOLT

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Sources (800)645-9292, Woodworkers Supply, 3/8-in. Gluebrush,#875-247,9G112. Benchdog Featherboard,#103-322, $29. Pushbrocx, #95410,$20lpair. (800) AmanaTool, 445-0077 (pattern) 5/8-in. diameter x 112-nflushtrim plunge-routing bit, #45462,$24. 318-in. diameterx f -in cut length f l u s ht r i m b i t# 4 7 1 0 1$ 1 8 .
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Frameless Cabinet
Ioinery / J
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always liked the clean, T'u. look of cabinets Imodern built without face frames. My attempts involved building plywood boxes first and applying hardwood edging




later. But cutting, fitting, gluing and clamping each edging piece was frustratingly slow and that was nothing compared to leveling the edging flush with the plywood. A task thatwas especially aggravating on the inside corners. I had almost given up making this sryle of cabinet when I learned a new technique that streamlines construction. It allows you to put the edging on before assembly. Flushing up the edging on aflat panel is no problem. I can even pre-finish the cabinet parts before gluing them together. I get perfect looking butt joints and an almost invisible line where the edgingjoins the plywood (see photo below, left).

HrnE's How rr woRKS:

l. Cut all your cabinet parts to size. Leave one shelf about l/2-

in. long to use later for test cuts. 2. Cut all the rabbets and dadoes (Photo l). Becausethis technique requires consistentdado depth I prefer to use a router and a jig rather than a tablesaw.For more on the jig we used, see "Dado Tips", p. 9f . 3. Glue the hardwood edges to the side panels and shelvesby sandwiching a single piece of hardwood benveen two panels (Photo 2). The hardwood piece is nvice as thick as the finish thickness of the edging plus an extra l/8-in. for the sawkerf. For example, for a 3/lGlin. thick hardwood edge use a l/2-in. thick piece of hardwood. I like the looks of a thin edge and it still offers plenty of protection for the plywood edge.
4.Rip the glued-together panels (Photo 3). The hardwood edge creates stopped dados and rabbets on the cabinet sides. 5. Flush up the edging with the panels. I start with a block plane (Photo 4) and finish with a light sanding. Using a power sander is asking on the veneer. 6. Trim the edging to length with a handsaw. 7. Use the extra long shelf to set yourjointer for notching the plywood (Photo 5). It'll take some trial and error to get the depth of cutjust right. The extra length on the shelf allows you to trim and retest the joints' fit. for a sand-through

I Cut all dadoesand rabbetswith a router,a patternbit I a n d a s i m p l e d a d o j i g . A c o u p l eo f o f f c u t sa r e a l l y o u need to perfectlysizeyour dadoeswithout fussy trial and error set-ups.

Q C t u e a s i n g l es t r i p o f h a r d w o o de d g i n gt o t w o p a n e l s * a t o n c e . T h e s i n g l ep i e c eo f e d g i n g i s t w i c e t h e d e s i r e d thicknessof the finished edge plus a saw kerf thickness more. Scrapwood protectsthe plywood edges.

? n i p t h e p a n e l sd o w n t h e m i d d l eo f t h e e d g i n g . r-,1

f etanethe edging flush with the panelsides.A block *Tplane gives bettercontrol than a power sander.Set the bladefor a light cut and ride the plane'sheel on the panel.
American Woodworker sEpTEMBER 2oo7 93

Gallirrgall Tool Nuts!

I really don'tneedfive cordless drills, sevenrouters planes, 24 or antique hand but I can'thelpit. l'm a toolnut.Are you?
just because Haveyou everboughtan old woodworking machine it looked Tried cool? a new tool and said,"Wow! Thisjust changed my life!" Useda big,industrial machine andwondered how in the world you couldsneakit intoyourshop? We'd liketo hearyourstories. So email or sendus a letterabouta gets you excited. tool or machine that really We'll sendyou a new your story.Please Leatherman Charge AL multi-tool if we publish include a photograph, too. We'd prefera digital image, but a slideor printis OK.VisitourWeb site,www.americanwoodworker.comltoolnut for someexamples of what we've got in mind. your entry to tool E-rnail m ' or write to us at The ToolNut, AmericanWoodworker 1285Corporate Magazine, CenterDrive,Suite180, MN 55121. ,, Eagan,

8. Test the shelf's fit by sliding it forward in the rabbet (Photo 6). If the notched edge butts into the back of the side's edging, the cut needs to be made deeper. If the notch slides over the side's edging and leaves a gap, thejointer needs to be set for a shallower cut. 9. Once you get the right fit, go ahead and notch all the shelves. 10. Dry fit the cabinet to check for any problem areas. An openjoint is almost always the result of a high spot in a dado. 11. Do any finish sanding on the edges while the cabinet is clamped together. It's too easy to ruin the fit if you sand the edging when the cabinet is apart. 12. Disassemble the cabinet and finish sand the flat panels taking care not to round the corners on the hardwood edges at the joints. 13. At this point, you can reassemble the cabinet with glue or prefinish the panels and then assemble. Be sure to tape off glue areas and be careful not to build the finish on the shelves so much they no longer fit the dado. I often stain and seal before assembly, then add the last coat or two when the cabinet is glued together. the shelf forward in the joint to test the depth of the ft StiOe L.,lnotch.Thenotch is cut long enough to leave no trace of the cutterheadradius on the hardwood edge. I Testcut a notch on the leadingedge of a shelf that's been r-f cut extra long.Thejointer'sdepth of cut must exactly equal the dado'sdepth. lt takes a little trial and error to get the right settingon the jointer.


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Woodworker's Showcase
Hereis your chanceto shareyour best across work with fellowwoodworkens the countryand aroundthe world.
we loveto buildthings,but we also love As woodworkers, to shareour work and the ideasbehindthem.American is debutinga new department WoodworkerMagazine called"Woodworker'sShowcase." We'relookingfor piecesto projectsthat rangefrom practical, everyday one-of-a-kind artisticmasterpieces.
Here's how to submit your wod<! We ask that the pieceyou submit be made prifor marilyof wood by your own two hands.Onlyhighqualityphotoswill be selected publication Check so makesureyou prJtsometime and effortinto your photograph. for tips on taking out our web page ( photographs good photographs. Digital are prefenedbut slidesand color negatives lf you want your slidesor negatives back,you must includea stamped,selfare alsoacceptable. with your submission. addressed envelope joineryand the wood(s), alongwith a description of the piecethat includes Send your pictures finishthat you seemslikeeverypiecehas a story behindit - pleasefeelfreeto share yours.We look foru,tard from you. to hearing or mailto: American Send entries to: Magazine, 1285 Corporate CenterDrive,Suite180, Eagan,MN 55121. Woodoworker

Gherry Cabinet tVlunkittrick byDave River Falls, Vtll


I turned on my shop vac to clean up the pile of sawdust that had accumulated while I ripped some pine boards for a cabinet. I live in Colorado, where the air is always dry and my shop vac isn't high tech, so occasionally I get zapped by a static-discharge shock. This time while I was vacuuming, my wife came out, offering a bite of her famous cheerfully cheesecake. I opened wide, but once the spoon got close to my tongue, POW! I didn't know what hit me. When I had recovered enough to explain what happened, my wife

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apologized...and then insisted I try another bite of cheesecake. I agreed. After that terrific shock, I thought



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reward. I deserved a Then-BAM! \Mho says lightning never strikes the same place twice? Rcg Milk

FeanuERED FrrursH

Make yourwoodworking mistakespay! Send us your most memorable "What was I thinking?" blunders. You'll receive $25 for each one we print. Bmail to o ops@americanwo odworker. com or send to AW Oops!, American Woodworker, 1285 Colporate Center Drive, Suite180, Eagan, MN 55121. Submissions can't be returned and become our property upon acceptance and payment. We may edit submissionsand use them in all print and electronic media.
V E.

I was building a shadow box for a big charity event, with a picture and a baseball autographed by Stan Musial, the legendary St. Louis Cardinal. It was a nice afternoon, so I had the garage door open, and the windows up to let a breeze come through the screens. I applied a coat of dark cherry stain, and laid everything out to dry. Suddenly, a flash of red zoomed by, followed by a loud "thunk!" A cardinal had flown in through the open door and tried to exit through a window, only to smack into the screen. It bounced off and landed right on my freshly stained shadow box. I gently picked the cardinal up and carried it outside. Fortunately, it recovered and went its way. I went back to survey the damage: The box now carried the unmistakable impression of a cardinaM grabbed a rag to make repairs, but put it down when I realized that this was probably the most perfect custom finish I could ever achieve. Lannt Ribes

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American Woodworker SEpTEMBER 2oo7