Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Getting Ready for the Hand Tool Class

      As of today there are 7 students enrolled in the Hand Tool Woodworking class that starts this Thursday at Wooditis here in Las Vegas.  I've spent much of the morning preparing the stock for the two projects.  Jamie bought the materials we need and brought it over to my shop so I could prepare it for the class.  Our first project will be the bench hook that I refer to as Project Overkill.  Bench hooks are really a pretty simple shop made appliance but very useful.  I designed this one to incorporate dovetail and tongue and groove joinery -- all hand cut!

Bench Hook Material
     We're using Alder for the base and Poplar for the two hooks.   You can see the deconstructed one in the back ground.  Alder is a good material to make your first dovetails in and they're fairly large so students have to deal with small pins or tails.  I'm a tails first guy so the Alder is the first material they'll work on.  The Poplar is a bit harder which is a mixed blessing; yes it takes more effort to saw but tends to pare and chisel smoother.  Of course, just when you think you know how a wood will react it throws you a curve ball.  I'm planning on being able to complete this project during the first two class sessions.
     The other project is a tool tote inspired by the one in Jim Tolpins book, The New Traditional Woodworker. This will take the remaining 4 weeks of the class.  I've modified it some as you can see in this photo.

Tool Tote Material
     I made the prototype out of Alder but Jamie and I decided that the Poplar, being harder, would chisel and cut more cleanly for them.  Sometimes the Alder seems to just fold or dent when paring, even with an extremely sharp chisel.  It's hard to see in the picture but I've also designed it with dovetails on one end and pegged lap joints on the other.  This way they'll get the chance to experiment with both types of joints.
     All that remains is to run off my hand out for cutting dovetails and make a detail drawing showing the layout for the tails.  Looking forward to this class, teaching is always rewarding.

No comments:

Post a Comment