Wood Talk No. 129

April 18, 2013

On today’s show, we’re talking about one plane to rule them all, leaving dovetail scribe lines, the difference between some common saws, inspecting an old table saw, using B-grade wood, fixing a warped chair seat, and using epoxy.

Wood Talk

Around the Web


GrahamRegarding “Hardwax Oil”. To my knowledge it’s nothing like Polyurethane varnish diluted with white spirit. We stock this brand www.fiddes-usa.com/CONTENT/HARD-WAX-OIL.html . Although it seems targeted at flooring we use it on so many items that require a natural finish in place of Danish, Tung or Linseed Oil. It’s really easy to use and you can have glassy finish or a more rough and ready if you want. Perhaps one of you guys could give it a try (and then say how much you hate it :-)!)

NicI just wanted to chime in the Osmo Polyx Oil finish that you mentioned in the last show. I work full time as a production woodturner and one of my regular jobs is turning handles for espresso machines. Each handle is sanded up to 400 then gets three coats of Osmo which gives a great depth and shine to the wood. The finish is durable even in the hot/wet conditions that the baristas subject it to. I can’t compare it to General Finishes as I’ve not used them, but I highly recommend Osmo.


From Med Tech WW’er, what do we think of the ShopSmith?


StevenI’m relatively new to woodworking and I’d like to start building my hand tool collection. I already own a basic stanley block plane and I’ve was doing some research on the different kinds of hand planes to start off with when I found this article from fine woodworking: http://www.finewoodworking.com/tool-guide/article/one-bench-plane-can-do-it-all.aspx

From a price perspective the Lie Nielsen 62 seems like a great idea. It would also save on storage space (i’m currently confined to an apt!). But, it also seems like a bit much since I don’t really do any milling by hand at this point. So my question to you guys is: should I go for the multi-purpose Lie Nielsen or stick with individual planes and build my collection as i need them?

Thanks for the help, love the show!

BarronLooking at photos in woodworking magazines and online, I see nicely done dovetails and very clear knife lines left over from marking out the boards. I don’t seem to see these knife lines on antique furniture.

Is this just a modern technique to prove the piece was handmade? Is it just that many antiques have been refinished and the lines erased by that process? Or is it simply too much trouble to eliminate the lines before finishing? Anyway, do you leave your marking lines, and if so, why?

DavidI know the difference between a crosscut and rip saw but what are the differences between: dovetail saw, tenon saw, carcass saw, sash saw?

TonyThere is a chance that I will be receiving a mid-60s Delta cabinet saw from my father-in-law. He has all of the parts and it runs very smoothly, but I am concerned that there are things unseen I might need to tune up or work on. I currently have a Delta Hybrid table saw and I strongly dislike the exposed motor. ((His son leaves stuff in the motor belt, so this has added to his safety check before each work day)) The cabinet saw would fix all of these problems, and adds a bit of Art Deco feel to the workshop. Should I be concerned about the saw? What should I look for to determine if it is truly working correctly? Any safety features it would be missing that make it simply unusably unsafe?

  1. Examine power cord and connection to motor
  2. Test the motor
  3. Check for loose bolts.
  4. Make sure the tilt and height mechanisms work and are free of obstruction
  5. Test the fence
  6. Look for safety devices and strategize how to make the saw safer (after-market)
  7. Enjoy your new saw!

Suggested resources – www.popularwoodworking.com/video/delta-unisaw, www.vintagemachinery.org, www.OWWM.org

MikeWhat do you guys think about “character” grades of wood? I saw the Bob Taylor video posted on shannon’s company’s site and it really struck a chord with me. Strangely enough I’ve been frustrated because I have a hard time finding “b grade” wood. For example, I wanted to build a copy of a farm-style dining table we saw at a store and really liked. It was built from white oak that was fully of tight knots and small cracks. A trip to by local hardwood dealer only revealed highly pristine white oak. Similarly, my woodworking friends have warned me against the perils of cherry sapwood, as if my project might self-combust if I used the stuff. To me, it adds beauty. If I wanted something homogenous looking it would stain or paint it. Ultimately I’ve found I need to go to a local, small scale sawmill to get wood that looks like…. wood.

Video link www.mcilvain.com/bob-taylor-says-b-grade-is-worthwhile

DavidI have been asked to make new rockers for an old Windsor style chair (aprox 80-100 years old)… my problem is that the seat on one side has warped upwards by about 2 inches and has therefore caused the leg on that side to come off the ground. Is there any sensible way to straighten the seat. (the seat appears to be made of elm) and is aprox 5 quarter thick.

I have thought of taking the chair apart steaming the seat and putting it in a clamp until it is straight..I have also considered kerfing the underside of the seat the seat to bend it back into shape.

Would either method be sensible or likely to work. Is there some other solution?

Manny B.First off let me say that several years back when I first had the desire to start woodworking I came across Marc’s videos on youtube and it gave me a fun, informative resource that was instrumental in my development as a woodworker and I wanted to thank you. Matt and Shannon, you guys are cool too.

Some time ago I finally made the investment and purchased a couple big tubs of West System epoxy that I needed for a complex glue up and have since been using it almost exclusively for my furniture glue ups. Are there any concerns beyond the increased price that you think I should look out for? How often do you guys use epoxy?

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