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Posts posted by tombuhl

  1. Thanks, Eric. I hadn't been in the forum for a few years. Yesterday I had a query on a 2012 post so here I am.

    Joseph, their site is not the most reliable. The ONLINE STORE link is working for me today. I generally don't think of b.f. cost but Mike is right about the general pricing. There is variability due to "desirability" or issues which might warrant a downward adjustment. Not inexpensive but I enjoy working with material with a story. 

    Show & Tell time. Images of a dresser I built last year (2015). Top and drawer fronts are of that sinker H. Mahogany. The drawer pulls are sinker Sapodilla also from Greener Lumber. I ordered a board long time ago by mistake. Much harder than Mahogany but works to very nice finish. Remainder of the Mahogany from Shannon Rogers (Hardwood to Go) and local dealer, Soboba. Drawer sides & backs of Sugar Pine. Drawer bottoms and back slats of cedar. I don't generally mix so many species, but chest of drawers are different animal.

    On top of the dresser but not designed to be there as its final destination is a circular shelf unit of Walnut and black-milk-painted Poplar. A very challenging piece. Execution not great. Glue up was awful even with dry testing. Adding glue increased the challenge. Probably should have used epoxy to give time and slipperiness. Next time...

    For blog posts and pix of the dresser build, check out:

    Circular shelf:





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  2. Two weeks ago I received a shipment of old-growth, river-salvaged H. Mahogany from Greener Lumber, LLC. These boards are all from the same log. In 2012 I had received two planks from this log. [See image of computer desk made from one of them.] Now the family is reunited. Wonderful ribboned and other figuring. Rough sawn to 1-1/8 inch thick this stock is heavier and tougher than typical Mahogany. I've begun work on a cabinet as the next build with this awesome material. The cabinet will be used to safely store my prized THE BOOK OF PLATES published by Lost Art Press. A while ago Rich (of Greener Lumber) posted a short gallery bio and pix of projects I've created using his Mahogany. Check out:


    IMG_1777 small.jpg




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  3. btw re: the wine cabinet

    Those legs are ash. Wish I had held out for some hickory in suitable thickness. Which I have found on other days at the dealer. The ash is my one regret on the wine cabinet.


  4. The Roubo is a robust hunk of bench so no issues (for me) with the lowering and raising one corner at a time. With first wheel raised the bench sort of balances on the three wheels. Lowering the other wheel at that end can create a thunk. That's why we use heavy and solid materials. It is not a large drop. I believe rated raise is 3/4 inch, if one had a level driveway. So it is not falling from great heights.

    re: raising and lowering the legs. My description may have had some backwards components .

    2nd attempt: I can't get enough oomph to lower the wheels by raising the lever by hand or with foot. So I use a crowbar (which is always on the lower bench shelf). End against ground (concrete driveway), side of bar snug to level edge or end and lift by hand. Works fine. Then to lower, I push the lever with my foot using leg power while holding a bit of the weight in that corner.

  5. Eric, those casters on the flip board did not work well. Wanted to flip up at wrong times.

    I removed those and installed the Rockler flip casters. I had hesitated due to the screws holding to vertical face of legs which seemed weak. But they've held up for several years now. To lower the bench I use a crowbar. Not enough leverage for the beast to do it with foot power. To flip back up I remove a bit of weight from the corner, lift and push lever down with my foot. Works well. 

    Most times I leave wheels down as I roll it into the driveway to work. If I'm doing heavy duty planing or sawing, then I put the wheels down. But it is pretty stable even on the wheels.

    No video. I leave that to the young guys like Mark, Matt and Shannon.

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  6. While it looks like Marc and Shannon (with a maybe on Matt) won't be there this year, I am sure that the Modern Woodworking folks will be represented. They are a very outgoing and welcoming group with much overlap with the WoodTalkOline community. Most of them wear the MWA Ts at the show, so just introduce yourself and follow 'em around if you are looking for after show socializing. Since Marc and Shannon won't be there to defend themselves, all are welcome to talk about 'em until their little ears burn.


    You can check out MWA at:

    I'll also miss WIA 2014 for some budget repairs, but have high hopes for 2015.

  7. I whole heartedly endorse the Mary May online school. I did that for several months over the winter and thoroughly enjoyed it. Impressed my family and friends and had an excuse to buy a few more gouges. Her style of demonstration suits my learning style perfectly.


    I have heard good things on Chris Pye's, but have not checked that out. 

  8. I have been to three (or four) WIAs. They are high on my list of satisfying experiences. The sessions bring in outstanding and very accessible teachers/experts. The Marketplace is awesome. The opportunity to talk to the people who actually design and build the tools is incredible. Even if you are too shy to initiate conversations with our (woodworking/toolmaker) legends, being able to eavesdrop on the chatter is super satisfying.


    A highlight for me is to interact with fellow attendees. Some, I sort of knew from forums and social media while others just struck up a conversation while fondling an exquisite hand tool. That makes our mostly solo woodworking hobby much richer. After the show, it is fun to follow up with folks about our projects and impressions of various sessions and discussions.


    I like the size of the event. My eyeballs just spin and brain goes to sleep in large convention settings. This has intimate and cozy feel, but with enough attendees and vendors to keep interest level high.


    Great opportunity to make some cuts with a Bad Axe hand saw, create micro-fine shavings with a Sauer and Steiner plane, take some whacks with Blue Spruce or Shenandoah mallets or ask a Lie-Nielsen tech person how they set up a smoothing plane. Ever wonder what the attraction is to wooden hand planes? A number of creators are usually there, including Scott Meeks. 


    After hours with the WoodTalkOnline community has been a great feature. That might be missed this year, but if you just follow you nose you'll find interesting people to hang with after show hours. If you don't make it this year, at least flag your calendar for the 2015 event. 

  9. Hey Fred,

    I gotta run off for tennis match (the glory of living in Santa Barbara) but had to shoot off my plea to avoid shooting pin nails. Just a personal cringe factor, not based on knowledge. Seems you have large glue surface and the biscuits helping. So just clamp them well and pull together with tape if necessary along various points. 

    Will write later about finishing thoughts.



  10. Frede, by kerf cut do you mean cross cut?

    With a miter cut that long you'd probably experience some burning with many species. That is just a long cut with the blade rotated over 45 degrees. Are you using any reinforcement of the miters at glue up, such as splines or such? Given the size and thickness of your workpieces, plus that you have the top and bottom keeping things in place you are probably ok without them, but I would have used something. 


    Some warn about glues on tropical hardwoods with their oil (?) content. I've generally been ok with regular PVA glue, but have solid joinery to mechanically assist. 


    I've found Bubinga to be quite stable, or not as likely to cup and twist as many woods, so you probably are fine with a solid door. From your photos the bubinga appears to be quarter sawn which helps stability. Your design is fairly narrow for full frame and panel, but this might be a good time for you to give that a try. It will change the look of your piece a bit. Might also nudge the odds of things staying true over time.


    Post some pix once you have the piece finished.


    I did the sideboard early in my woodworking days and am not thrilled with the finish on the top. Too glossy and thick appearing for my taste. I tried a new (to me) technique. Did not like how it was after a few coats and hoped the further coats would help. Lesson learned. Many more to go.


    My goodness, your sideboard is amazing....WOW!  I started to work with the Bubinga last night and found everything you said as well as the others is true....Bubinga is VERY hard.  My Jet table saw (with a brand new blade) struggled a bit cutting the long miters.  You can see the miters and the saw in the dry fit photo below.  I re-read everyone's comments prior to starting last night so I cut the first miter long as test to see how my saw handled it.  Even after I dialed in the correct feed rate I still got some burn.  The remainder of the cuts I left long and cleaned up with a kerf cut to finished size....don't know if that's standard practice but it worked perfectly.


    The piece I picked up yesterday has a grain very similar to the doors on your sideboard.  I fact after looking at your doors I am debating whether I want to build a panel door.  I had originally planned on a one piece design like in my prototype build - photo attached.  However, I'm thinking the project would look so much better with a panel door....I'd also be challenging myself in doing so.

  11. I haven't used Sapele but have used quite a bit of South American Mahogany (including genuine Honduran Mahogany salvaged from rivers in Belize) and also Bubinga. Worlds of difference working with those species. Bubinga is very heavy and very hard. That being said, you can work with it. You just have to pay attention to what is happening and use good practices. I would not try to carve it for sure.


    I've posted pix of a sideboard I made using some highly figured Bubinga. Legs are Padauk. Took my time and now have a stunning piece to show for that effort. Time has mellowed the contrast somewhat, but it catches the eye of anyone coming into our home.


    Besides a few larger pieces with Bubinga, I've also used it fairly often for boxes and smaller items. Gotta make use of those offcuts. 


    As a newer woodworker, I believe it is fun and beneficial to work with a wide variety of woods so that you gain first hand experience of the material. From the workability aspect, and also just have a variety of pieces down the road to look at. 


    Good luck with your current project.



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  12. Over the years, I've used all sorts of Oak flooring, including several houses with 5" wide White Oak. The wider it is, the more it will move from season to season. 5" will leave a little crack during heating season between the boards, but will close back up the rest of the year.

    If it's over a heated basement, or lower floor, it will stay flat just fine even as seasons change. I wouldn't put anything wider than

    2-1/4 flat-sawn over a crawlspace, but would use 3-1/4 quartersawn.

    My favorite is 3-1/4 quatersawn.

    The trouble with prefinished is that each piece has a shape to each edge leaving a groove at each joint. I like sanded, and finished in place so it's all nice and flat. With modern sanders, dust is not a problem. You wouldn't want to live in the house for a few days with some of the solvent based finishes like Moisture Cure Urethane though.

    thanks, Tom

    Severe temp swings are not a big problem here in Santa Barbara. Some folks run a furnace in season, but just enough to take the edge off, not blasting out hot, dry air for months on end. But wood is wood. We love it, but best to have good info before breaking out the checkbook. I appreciate your input. Happy Thanksgiving.

  13. I have a client asking about oak flooring. Flat sawn is 25% less than quarter- and rift-sawn. I gave him my basic woodworkers take on stability as well as ray fleck aesthetics.


    But I do not have any experience with flooring. We live with 65 year old oak floors which look like combo of rift, flat and quarter sawn. Other than the termites liking it, it seems stable and well-wearing.


    With flooring secured in place perhaps propensity to cup, bow, twist is well restrained. But for long-term I am not sure adhesives and fasteners should have to fight nature.


    Any thoughts and/or experiences?


    Thanks much



  14. re: roubo bench
    keep in mind that it does not have to be as large as created in the Guild build or by others. The wagon vise does dictate at least a medium-sized bench. I am limited for space, so built mine about 21 x 60. Gives me lots of holding options and ability to have multiple tasks going on simultaneously, as long as they are not large. Mine also has some Rockler flip down wheels (flipping down takes some effort and technique, lowering the wheels is easy). I usually just keep the wheels down, but when doing significant planing, then the wheels drop down and I have a very stable workbench.


    Eric covered lots of ground efficiently. Good overview.

    I have the basic range of power tools and appreciate their availability to keep the projects' flow matching my objectives.
    As my skills and experience develop, I do enjoy using the hand tools for fitting, shaping and refining.

    Having power tools is much appreciated, but buying them not as exciting as hand tool lust with all of the fabulous offerings from dedicated toolmakers we can choose from.


    Best to you on your adventure.

  15. Gotta ask

    What is meant by treated? If it is the wet greenish stuff with the little nick patterns they punch in to help treatment get into the wood that I see at HD, I'd stay totally away from it for play sets. Not good for skin contact and not fun to work with either. They are not as toxic (or effective probably) as decade or so ago, but still...


    A play set doesn't have to hold up as long as a deck or home so I'd consider it like I do raised garden beds. Used to use the treated but soon decided that I don't like working with it. So we go with regular and know that it has limited but still reasonable life. It will still function even when pretty far gone, but at some point I can just build another. We have used trex remnants for ground contact layer when we've had extra laying about.


    With swing sets you do want that to be structurally sound enough for some child use and abuse. Those little critters can get pretty creative. Perhaps over engineer by using untreated but larger forms (4x4s or even 4x6 where a 2x4 might be sufficient). Long before my woodworking days, I ordered a kit (well done) from CedarWorks (ME). Held up nicely for 12 years of swinging and climbing and launching. When we got ready to move a friend wanted to take it. Sure. As we took it apart, it was not worth reassembling, but it served us well.

  16. I like to use contrasting (or as I call them, "complementing") woods. Used H Mahogany and hickory/pecan recently on several projects to nice effect (display stand). In exotics I've used bubinga and padauk (attached hall table). When looking at woods keep in mind how they age. Padauk is bright orange when first cut, matures quite quickly to a chocolate with purple cast rather quickly. 


    Never used purpleheart, but assume it darkens fairly quickly as well. So be careful about falling in love with the fresh color. As McQ says, be aware of the effect finish has on the color. Oil-based varnish-based finish tends to enhance most woods to my eye, but maple is a different story. 


    On small projects bubinga and zebrawood are nice together. As are bubinga and wenge. 


    I'm looking at my corner cabinet of mostly cherry but door panels, back panels, shelf and top are padauk. I like TheFatBaron's advice on contrast in general, but subtle can work at times. Re: the corner cabinet. In time the cherry darkens and the padauk does its thing this contrast is on the subtle side, but you can also have contrast in grain, texture and other characteristics. Color is not the only attribute working for (or against) you.


    Word on South American walnut. I've only used a few boards of it. Good quality was that once the finish (oil-based) hits it the wood becomes a very deep, dark brown. Great for backdrop base. However, the wood itself (that I have) is not particularly fun. Pretty crumbly and dusty feeling even though it milled fine. Not at all like N American black walnut in appearance or feel. In my limited experience.


    Have fun.



  17. Hey guys,

    Welcome. I've been a member since the inception and value it highly. 

    The Roubo Workbench is the only project that I've made from the Guild Builds as I generally prefer to do my own designs.

    Nonetheless, I find valuable techniques and insights in every Build offered.

    The interviews and live sessions add to the value and sense of connection.


    Have fun in the shop, even if it is just a corner of your living room, or as in my case the driveway (with bit of space in the garage).

  18. p.s. re: limited space
    More space would be nice, but it is not as important as having more clamps.
    I'm mostly a driveway woodworker, which creates some seasonal issues, but mostly works well in our area. Almost all my tools are on wheels or carts with wheels. Even the tools that stay in the garage such as table saw, drill press, band saw have to have other tools rolled into the driveway to gain access. 

    We learned the hard way (more than once of course) that I cannot run the dust collector (Craigslist find) and the clothes dryer at the same time. 

    One of the attractions of woodworking is figuring out a way to achieve desired results with the tools and space one has available. 
    Best wishes to all new (and new at heart) woodworkers.

  19. Lots of sound advice and encouragement here already. As this is a recurring theme, figured I'd toss out a bit of personal experience. I had some DIY basic tools such as drills, circular saw, hammers, etc. Married a woman who had a contractor type table saw. An older model but much more solid than the cheap benchtop, big box, so-called table saws. [On vacation, I once used my brothers HD type and it scared the xxxx out of me.] That was good to get me going. I too discovered the frustration that the books all seemed to assume you had jointer, planer and boat load of other tools.


    But I worked with what I had (did buy two decent hand planes for basic wood prep before I sprung for the jointer and planer). Bought a few items such as router, bench top drill press. Also began to look at Craigslist. In our area it is good for contractor type tools but not so much for quality furniture type tools. Eventually though, came across a PowerMatic 2000. Used commercially for three years, but by totally OCD type so it looked and worked like new. Price was more than I was gonna pay for a Grizzly or such, but more solid and he included router, jigs and good stuff. Cost $1400. I sold the contractor type for $150 and am sure they have gotten good DIY use out of it. 


    The newer hybrids seem to get good marks though might be a bit out of your initial budget at the moment, but not that much more than contractor type and seem to offer nice advantages. Full cabinet saw seems to make things go smoother and proceed with more confidence, but they are not required to get started, or even have a lifetime of good work/play.


    I began six years ago, and never imagined that I'd have spent as much as I have. But as many have said, one (or two) things at a time, when you need them. Or, after you made do on a project without 'em. I am mostly retired so the woodworking is a full time hobby these days and much satisfaction is accrued. Mostly I've bought new, but Craigslist has been great to supplement the shop. 


    Fun aspect is that my wife enjoys having the tools to borrow for her projects. Funny, she'll talk about some little thing for her office or garden and I'll begin formulating a design and thinking in terms of months to way. She says, "No, I want it for Monday. Just get out of my way." Doesn't look like my work, but sure gets done quicker. 

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  20. Have you gotten to your Moxon yet?

    If so, what did you use and how did it turn out?

    I used ash. I am not particularly fond of working with it, but good bang for the buck for items such as this and my workbench. Easy to find thick, straight grained material.

    I am sure Maple would be fine.

    Yes, clamp base is just glued in place. Lots of good glue surface, so joinery not required in this instance.

    Nice aspect to the Moxon is that after buying the BC hardware, you can easily make another, should your tastes in wood change. Or you could have several lengths made up and swap out the hardware in a few moments if you desired.

  21. re: flattening the back. I agree that the cutting capability only requires the a small portion near the end to get a good cutting edge. However, if you do paring and such you'd like the majority of the back surface to be flat. Mirror finish is not necessary, but you can benefit from flatness.

    I've never used the sandpaper method other than "repairing" some badly nicked edges so cannot speak to your specific problem at the 600 grit. Hope you've gotten enough feedback to more along.

    It is nice to do the major tune-up once at the beginning. But there is also some benefit to doing a good job (even if not as great as you'd like), put the chisel to work. Then narrow the gap each time you work on the sharpening. More work long term, but over time some issues tend to take care of themselves as you gain experience and sense of how things feel when done "right."

    Good luck with your new chisels.