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Everything posted by TheFatBaron

  1. This. If bezier curves were inherently bad, the entire design field would be in rough shape, give how many of our tools make extensive use of bezier curves. The inability of a user to use the tools well is not always a reflection on the tool.
  2. First, ok - now that we're all on the same page regarding what exactly we're talking about (wedge direction relative to the board with the mortise, and splitting the board with the mortice - seriously, I was incredibly confused)... I understand and agree - to a point. Here's my logic (read a post or two up)... the weakest part of wood is related to shearing along the grain, yes? That's how wood splitting works, whether you're starting from end grain or somewhere in the middle. That's why splitting wood with a wedge in the end grain can be more efficient than cutting, or why you brace from below (using compression). So, as I built the box, I have two choices - add additional pressure to the top/bottom of my box sides, which have quite a bit of wood to work with, or I apply additional pressure to the end grain of my boxes, which don't have that much extra "meat" behind them, potentially splitting off the outside edge of the through mortise. Like a wedge in end grain.
  3. Ok, I think there's some confusion here. The piece that is wedged (the tenon) is flatsawn. Thus the wedge is driven through the endgrain, 90 degrees to the flatsawn grain. It's the same as shown in image 8 in or the 4th image at or the 3rd image at I thought you were describing something else entirely.
  4. I've wedged a lot of tenons and not had them split, except for the one time I over-drove a wedge on another project. I'm just careful to not make the wedge too long, too thick, and always drill a relief hole at the end of the saw kerf. Rotating the wedge 90° would be worse, because I'd then be pressing with the long grain of the mortice sides, and could easily break off the wood around the mortice, and fact that then I really would be wedging along the flatsawn grain of the tenon. Anyway,I'll be honest - I've never seen what you described illustrated anywhere - including my book on Japanese joinery, where wedged tenons are frequently use. I'm not saying it's not done, but I have my doubts about it being particularly traditional to only wedge 90° to the grain.
  5. I'm not sure what you mean. How else would you wedge them?
  6. Finished another (sort of) Japanese toolbox. Much like my last one, this is a wedged tenons for the sides and a float panel in the bottom, instead of nailed in. Maple, with scraps of jatoba and black walnut for the accents. What's it going to hold? Training knives. The top one is black locust and black walnut, the middle is katalox, and the bottom is cherry (from a tree limb that fell in my yard some time ago).
  7. Actually, this is a very good point. For example, Capital One (the bank/credit card company) was one of the last large issuers to have a website and a real internet presence back when the internet first got big, and the idea of paying your bill online was revolutionary. This didn't hurt them at all. In fact, when other companies had technology issues ranging from site availability, security, actual payment processing, etc, not to mention a ton of money invested in websites people just weren't ready to use, Capital One sat happily on the sidelines. Then, when it was good and ready, it launched a website that just worked. It was the gold standard for credit card sites for a while. The iPhone wasn't the first smartphone, but it was the first 'cool' smartphone. The Cadillac Type 53 wasn't the first car - but it was the first car with modern controls, and set the template for all others. There's something to be said for being first. There's something to be said for being good. Of course, I'm super cynical about this whole thing too.
  8. I remember reading quite a bit on Chris Hall's blog about the use of metal fasteners vs all-wood joinery. He brings up points about, not just metal expanding/contracting differently than the wood (metal moves plenty), but also being a surface that will condense moisture much more readily than wood, leading to rot. Of course, he also focuses very heavily on Japanese joinery, which traditionally eschews metal fasteners. I don't know enough to evaluate it, and I suspect that TripleH is right that the circumstances of installation/location/usage play as much a role in the "right decision." I wish I knew more myself.
  9. This. I'm not in love with seeing the dovetails from every angle and the checkerboard appearance, or random through tenons, or whatever. But sometimes it's so well aligned with the purpose, and so integral to a piece, I cant see it any other way. And sometimes, particularly with the wedged tenons, it's such a great accent, I'll love it even when it's not strictly necessary.
  10. Hi everyone - Perhaps this is weird, perhaps not. I need to rent some shop space for an hour or so this weekend. I have a 7' stick of roughly 2x2" hickory I need to bring to 1.25 x 1.25" square. Eventually, I will make it into a 1.25" round dowel, but for now, just using machines to get it squared and thicknessed will save me hours of hand-working time. And if you're asking, "why not do it by hand," you've clearly never worked with hickory. I have a membership at Philadelphia Woodworks and normally do my milling there, but that's at least an hour away with traffic, plus $20/hour or $80 for the day and I was there yesterday – I don't need to do anything else and would end up driving 2 hours to do 30 minutes of work on this one piece. I say rent, because I will pay you. It's wear and tear on your machines (jointer and planer or tablesaw), and I can't offer much in the way of trade. If you're up for it, PM me and let's try to arrange something? Thanks. - Dan
  11. But not in this case. Much like the recent Home Depot hack, the root cause was malware on the point of sale system that was able to capture the credit card info in the one place that it is not encypted. Actually, I think it was the same exact malware, which makes it extra, extra stupid.
  12. In my experience, it's a little bit of both. Hickory does have some tendency to tear out, but it's magnified many many times by a dull blade. I just make it a point to regularly hit my higher-grit sharpening stones to keep the edge fresh instead of waiting for the tearout to be unbearable.
  13. Make sure your heating element is well away from the insulation. You don't want that foam insulation melting or catching fire.
  14. Hey Josh - In case you're still hanging around these parts, how is the saw treating you a year on? I still haven't been able to pull the trigger on *any* purchases (due to time/space restrictions more than anything). Still liking your Laguna?
  15. I know of one place in NJ that stocks 8/4 hickory: It's a bit far from you, but if you really want thicker stock, they often have at least some 6/4 and 8/4. They will sell small quantities to individuals - though they'll be much nicer to you when you make it a point to be super clear about what you want, and can be in and out without too much fuss. As far as the pecan/hickory divide: true hickory is slightly stronger, but pecan is still tough. They come from the same family and are virtually indistinguishable unless you look at end grain under magnification. I don't know why it's so hard to find. It's not particularly knotty in my experience. I suspect that it's a combination of not being a particularly 'trendy' wood outside of people wanting a rustic look, and being so damned hard to work that most places will just run 4/4 for cabinet and flooring shops and call it a day.
  16. If the belt is slipping as soon as the bit engages, try pulling it off and checking for glossy spots. If the belt slips repeatedly, it may have been polished/burnished/whatever, and some high grit sandpaper and a light touch may restore some grip.
  17. One other thing I can suggest - keep your thumb on the toe of the plane, and change its positioning. Whether you're using your fingers as a fence or not, you don't really need much pressure at the front of the plane. Your thumb should be plenty strong to keep the plane from skipping. Just keep your thumb on the high side, whether it's on your side, the far side, or changes as you move down the board. I forget where I saw the trick - multiple people here sent me multiple variations on it. But the light change in pressure is often enough for me.
  18. What are you using to turn the nut - just turning by hand? If so, I think you probably need a wrench of some sort to get more leverage. If you do have a wrench of some sort, consider tapping the wrench with a hammer (assuming your arbor nut is just stuck, and not rusty). I've noticed that if you don't change the blade regularly on some saws, the arbor nut can get very tight, and your hand will generate enough torque to turn the arbor, but not enough to actually break the nut loose. The hammer-on-wrench impact is the same idea - the sharp sudden torque can help pop the nut loose. What's the overall condition of the saw? If it's rusty, you may also want to get some penetrating lubricant, though I don't know what would be appropriate for this case.
  19. Actually, I wouldn't use poly in any case. Film finishes are frowned on because they will trap moisture between your hands and your weapon, and will increase chafing and blistering. It may not matter on the ends, but you should be sanding and re-oiling your bo at least every couple months with tung oil (real tung oil) or boiled linseed oil anyway, as it will help preserve the weapon (though red oak will still break pretty easily compared to some woods). Source: I make wooden weapons for martial arts.
  20. There are two sides to this story, but the fact is, there is no "John Neeman."
  21. I have hurt myself more from freshly milled wood than any tool. Pretty much every project gets a blood sacrifice.
  22. I love this band! So awesome that you're getting to work with them on this.
  23. I made this for a friend out of a couple scrap pieces of walnut and maple. The walnut wasn't wide enough, so after I cleaned it up, I split it down the middle and glued in the maple. To make things difficult, though, I took too much of the wood away around the bark inclusion in the one corner and the corner broke off on the way home from the shop. I ended up doweling it together before filling the gap with epoxy. Next time, I'll either fill the gap prior to squaring, or fill it immediately after. Learning experience #1. The bevels are mitered blind box joints. I figured it'd be a good way to practice repetitive cuts, while not worrying too much if the joints themselves were perfect. Problem was, I cut the outter bevel on a tablesaw, which had a crosscut sled which was, unfortunately, not quite square. I got it pretty close after refining it with my should/rabbet plane, but in the end, cumulate error made everything kind of loose. You can still see where I had to fill the gaps with epoxy. Learning experience #2. The angle was accomplished by cutting from front to back, by hand, then refining the end grain with planes/files/orbital sander, which worked pretty well to get it level... but when I went to show it off to my wife, I realized that it doesn't matter if it's level on my assembly surface... not all surfaces are flat. So, I chucked a couple pieces of 1/2" maple dowel into my drill press, rounded off the ends, and epoxied in some threaded rod. So now, there are adjustable feet. Next time though, I'd probably recess them a bit more to keep them a little more hidden. Learning experience #3.
  24. Please find a way to scan/photograph these at high resolution and produce prints!