Buying & Restoring Hand Tools with Ron Herman

Buying & Restoring Hand Tools with Ron Herman


Learn how to purchase old hand tools at a good price for restoration purposes. Rom Herman will demonstrate how to restore several types of hand...[Read More]
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A Traditional Tool Chest in Two Days with Christopher Schwarz DVD

A Traditional Tool Chest in Two Days with Christopher Schwarz DVD


Woodworkers who use traditional tool chests swear they're the most convenient way to organize tools for work in their...[Read More]
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Sharpen Your Handsaws

Sharpen Your Handsaws


Anyone can Sharpen a Saw Learn secrets to sharpening backsaws & handsaws Discover the truth about shaping and set Cut...[Read More]

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A Winchester Desk: Joinery Inside & Out

A Winchester Desk: Joinery Inside & Out


Secrets from the Past Revealed Learn the how and why of secret compartments. Understand the joinery used to build classic...[Read More]
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A Cabinetmaker's Notebook

A CabMaker's Notebook

A well known work by Krenov, this is the first in a series of four books written about the art and craft of cabinetmaking....[Read More]
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Build a Custom Backsaw DVD with Matt Cianci

Build a Custom Backsaw DVD with Matt Cianci


Create your own custom backsaw with Matt Cianci Backsaws should be very personal tools, so building your own custom...[Read More]
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What's New...


A Rare Find - the Holt Bit Brace by Jason Stamper

The Holt brace was designed by toolmaker Gardiner Holt as competition to the highly successful John S. Fray Spofford brace.

Mr. Holt patented his design for a split chuck in 1880, and examples are found marked Hartford, CT or Springfield, MA. Both types of braces are of a split chuck design, though the Holt has a few peculiarities of its own.


Building a Shoulder Plane by Darren Young

In this article I will illustrate step by step how I built a shoulder plane.

I used an off the shelf WoodRiver no 91 iron and tools common to any woodworking shop.

Beech will be the material for the core but any dense and stable hardwood can be used, maple is another common option.

  Full Story>>
  Full Story>>  
Making of a Shoot Board by James E. Price

I made a shoot board for a right-handed Veritas shooting plane for use in The Heritage Shop at Ozark National Scenic Riverways.

I based its design somewhat on my old shoot board I made 40 years ago but made this one more robust. Both are 36 inches in length. I find shorter ones not to my liking.

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Gunpowder and Saws: The History of Wheatman & Smith by Geoffrey Tweedale

In 1855, The United States Magazine of Science, etc, featured Hoe & Cos pioneering saw-making plant in New York City.

It mentioned a transatlantic connection with the Sheffield crucible steel and saw maker, Sanderson Brothers. However, only part of the story was revealed. Hoes venture was also intertwined with the career of another Sheffield saw maker. This was John Wheatman, who eventually launched Wheatman & Smith.

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Rake Tines and Chisels by James E. Price

There was a discussion concerning the merits of horsedrawn hay rake tines as raw material for making tools.

Tonight's photos show a swan-neck morticing chisel I forged out of an old rake tine. I made this tool in 1974 using a small farrier's forge set up in my backyard and forged it on my great grandfather's anvil. It is 16-1/2 inches long and made to clean out the bottom and corners of blind mortices.

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Simonds Hand Saws Announcement - Carpentry and Building, 1902

The company expresses the belief that there is a field yet unfilled for hand saws of a better quality than has been produced; that many hand saws sold today are no better than the saws made 40 or more years ago, and that in the consumption of hand saws, as well as other saws and articles, there is a great demand for goods which in every component part are constructed of the best material and which at tract not because of their low first cost, but because the careful buyer and user know that in the end they will prove the most economical investment. The company states that it is their design to fill this demand.

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My Scraper by James E. Price

Today I worked on a small shelf for a friend of a friend and got out a scraper I made about five years ago.

I use it here to scrape walnut boards after I had planed them with a Stanley 4C.  I had forgotten how well that particular scraper works. It is made of mahogany with banded inlays as well as two little brass dot inlays on top of the handles. It is 7 3/4 long, 2 1/4 tall, and 1 1/4th thick. The photo shows the slant which has to be on the bottom...

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Straightening Saws - Scientific American, 1877

In the manufacture of saws, the straightening forms a large proportion of the manipulative processes.

The cutting of the teeth, the grinding, the polishing, the tempering, and the finishing: each of these processes is accompanied by a straightening operation; for in insuring an equal amount of tension at an parts of the blade lies one of the principal elements necessary to the production of a good saw, ...

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Boring Hole With Fire by James E. Price

For eons mankind has made holes through wood with burning awls or augers.

When I was but a youngster burning augers were common here in the Missouri Ozarks and were often used by blacksmith's to make bolt holes in wooden wagon parts. But their use was not limited to smiths because I remember a man named Punk Murray sitting by a small fire in his yard burning holes in wood with a burning awl.

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R. Hoe & Co. - New York Printing Machine, Press, and Saw Works

You are most likely thinking that this time I am going too far with a guy who designed printers.

But there is another side of Robert Hoe and his enterprise. He became one of the most important sawmaker in late 1820s and 1830s. His shop produced circular saws from cast steel provided by Sanderson Brothers, Sheffield.

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A New Year's Gift from TATHS - William Marples & Sons-1928 Catalog

This is a free catalog offered by TATHS to all who are interested in English old tools and their makers.

TATHS is a one fine organization in GB that aims to advance the education of the general public in the history, development and use of hand tools and of the people and trades that used them. I am a member of TATHS for over 10 years and learned a lot from their publications.   Full Story>>

Fiddle Maker Tools by James E. Price

I sense an undercurrent that many of you feel you lack the knowledge, skills, and abilities to make your own tools. Tool making starts when you grab some materials and start making a tool.

Your first one probably won't be pretty but you make another one and another one until you get it right. My post today is yet another one of my stories about tools and their uses.

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Double-Crank Breast Drill - Carpentry & Building, Vol.7, 1885

The double-crank breast drill recently put on the market by the Millers Falls Company, 74 Chambers street, New York, has some special features in its construction which, it is said, add considerably to the efficiency of this style of tool, making it more powerful and durable. Little description is necessary beyond calling attention to the accompanying cut, which presents a general view of the drill.

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The Stop-Chamfer Plane by J. F. T. Bailey, 1883

Some few weeks past, looking through Volume I. of AMATEUR WORK, I lingered over the handsome designs given at page 453 of the "Lily" Overmantel Mirror, and determined to hazard the attempt to make one.

Without difficulty I cut all the "Fretwork;" but not being by any means a practiced hand with tools, and in the real sense of the word...

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Brass Infill Shoulder Plane a quick look by Jim Hendricks

In recent posts we discussed rabbet and shoulder planes and I was asked to discuss the geometry.

So today I took it apart, sharpened the KT Tools O1 steel iron and tested it on a scrap of hardwood. I have also tried to explain the difference between "grinding", "honing" and what I call "polishing to death!"

Full Story>>

J. Taylor & Son - Purified Cast Steel, Sheffield, London Spring - Cross-cut Saw with Decorative Plate on the Handle.

This saw has been badly wounded and it is damaged. The blade has been broken and some of the teeth are also broken off.

The bottom of the handle has been also broken off. It does however has the super fancy figural brass plate!!!

Full Story>>

A Little Less New...

Recent Articles


Latest Downloads

McCaffrey File Company, Philadelphia, PA

Taylor Brothers, German Steel, 26" rip saw by Mari Subritzky

Roubo Workbench Kits by Will Myers

At the Sign of the Three Plains by Jim Hendricks

E. C. Atkins & Co. at the Indiana Retail Hardware Association Convention-American Artisan, 1920

Patent Bracket-saw Frame by Henry L. Pratt

CORKER! You bet Mr. Sparks! by Jim Hendricks

The Early Manufacture of Saws in this Country - Iron Age, 1890


Making of a Ball Bearing Ratchet Bit Brace - Iron Age, 1899

1949 - Catalog of Tools, W. Tyzack, Sons and Turner, LTD.

1918 - Machine Shop Tools and Shop Practice by W. H. Van Dervoort

1819 - Hallamshire: The History and Topography of the Parish of Sheffield by Joseph Hunter

1916 - Steel and Its Heat Treatment by Denison K. Bullens

1925 - Millers Falls Co. Tools Catalog No. 39

1906 - Chucks and Chucking for Metal and Wood by H. J. S. Cassal

1919 - The Making, Shaping and Treating of Steel - Carnegie Steel Co.

1916 - Gauges and Gauge Making - International Library of Technology

1905 - The Home Mechanic by John Wright


Atkins Saws

Infill Planes

Greenlee Chisels



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