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Apr 28 2016

Tightening Up Your Craftsmanship

Craftsmanship in a word is just a word. We envision the ensemble of things we understand it to mean when we hear it, or think of it. We know what it is when we see it, on it’s face, we recognize it, but it is more than just a few simple words.

Busting a 2×4 in half with a sledge hammer is not an example of craftsmanship, it is however an example of demolition. The important thing to understand, while many people are capable of performing demolition, far fewer are capable of performing craftsmanship, even though they have the ability to recognize it, or even purchase such things for themselves.

But we all have the capacity to learn and do if we apply ourselves.

While craftsmanship is described best in a finalized item that is well made, it’s the journey from raw materials to the finished product that is of interest to the potential craftsman. The how of rendering materials into fine objects is in the details. the choice of materials, design, tools and skills is partly in the etherial, and remains the somewhat hard to definitively define part that comes together in the result. Sometimes only the craftsman themselves can say when what they have been making has arrived.

For others who make, craftsmanship is lived, it’s their daily do, a way of life. It is a journey that leads to what they expect to come from their hands at all times.

The art of selecting the appropriate materials is just that, an art, but it comes from a practiced eye, and a learned mind of knowing materials and their inherent qualities of appearance and usability.

Design is a vastly deep well from which to draw. Again it’s a mix of innate and learned qualities of skill and understood knowledge within the designer that envisions a mix of materials and shapes together to create a piece of work which becomes a vessel of craftsmanship. Interpretations of nearly anything can be many. It can be hit or miss on any side of the equation, a great design can be poorly executed as sure and a poor design can be well made.

The tools we bring to bear are an ensemble which can be minimal or less so, but certainly must offer the maker the means of carrying out any making process with the required precision and efficiency. This always means tooling that will measure with the required precision, and can include the gambit from hand tools to shop machinery to perform the required work that meets design and production needs.

Understanding the tooling is a multi faceted learned skill, knowing a quality tool from a poor one, when it is appropriate for intended use, the maintenance of, regarding it’s tooling or cutting edges, moving parts, and the mechanisms which operate it.

There is the understanding of the tooling or cutting edges themselves, how to bring them to bear and to judge the sharpness required for the needed quality, and how to sharpen those tooling edges.

And finally the interpretation of the effect the tooling is having on materials as the design is executed and the craftsmanship in the ensemble is borne out of the process.

What it is, and what it’s for. Structural integrity, materials, joinery, shape, finish in ensemble all equate to final intention and usability of the loosely termed objet d’art.

The Veritas SP Shooter

Evenfall Studios focuses on a couple parts of the craftsmanship development process. We offer shooting boards, bench hooks, and saw guides to help propel tooling with accuracy in the work, so that the result is an outcome the craftsman can be proud of.

Magstrop 4

We also offer sharpening stations that allow a maker to maintain their tool’s sharpness in minimum time and with minimal disassembly of tools so that they can stay in the groove of making instead of maintenance. This is not meant to take the place of any sharpening method, just make it easier to perform, keep tools running sharp and take less time.

Its about allowing the craftsman to make, so the fit and finish can be all it can be, perhaps even surpassing what may have been possible before. We all like less drudgery in the work, and better quality in our results, yes?

Ordering for tools that can help your craftsmanship and tool kit tighten up is just a click away! Please have a look at how our tools can help you!

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© Copyright 2016 by Rob Hanson for evenfallstudios.com All Rights Reserved.

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