Archive for the 'Joinery' Category

Dec 29 2017

Woodworking Tool Talk

It’s always fun to talk tools, Right? So I thought it would be a good time to talk about a few of the tools we offer here at Evenfall Studios.

We are best known for our shooting boards, and for nine years now we have been making them for woodworkers all over the world. Every single shooting board is made by one guy in his shop, hands, eyes, careful measurements, and stubborn meticulousness.

We started with the shooting board that is now known as the Deluxe Shooter, and we have expanded on that to include shooting boards that shoot with a single or double chute, from the left hand or right, with a single or double chute.

We have built in the capability to accurately shoot from two to eight angles on our single chute shooting boards, and from three to five different angles on our double chute boards.

We have also included shooting boards that allow you to do everything from the usual lengths and widths in our standard size shooting boards, and have included the ability to easily shoot wide boards at most of the commonly used angles, and long grain as well as super wide boards, so that you can perfect your projects in veneering, lutherie and large casework.

The coolest thing about our shooting boards, we think, is that you can calibrate them to complete and total accuracy every day of the year, no matter where you are. A tool that can overcome wood movement, and provide you with the angles you exactly need. And with flexibility, you are not locked into any specific angle at all, there is even room to calibrate off angle if that’s what you need. In other words, our shooting boards will give you, accurately, any angle you need. All you have to do is calibrate.

Our accessories allow you to shoot both thick and thin boards. We have a fence that you can set with a clamp, which will allow you to shoot any angle between zero and roughly 90° with all of the accuracy possible. We even offer a planing stop for our shooting boards that will allow you to easily plane down to the 1/4 inch thickness, and by laying a piece of 1/8th masonite under your work, in front of the planing stop, you can easily play into the 1/8 inch thickness range.

We offer adapters for every board that we make that will allow you to use any of our shooting boards as a “chute” board, that allows you to enclose a hand plane in a track, for greater ease of use, and perhaps even higher accuracy. Most any shooting board plane, as well as the low angle bench planes can take advantage of this.

Without chute adapters installed, our shooting boards will accommodate any bench plane, any make or model from a number one through a number eight, most block planes, most any wooden plane that was built with parallel sides that are square to the sole. We even offer shooting boards for use with Kanna. So if your desire is to work with Japanese tools, you can have a shooting board for that.

Why do we make so many different kinds of shooting board? Because people work wood so many different ways. We’ve figured out that we could give you the options and all of the accuracy that you’ll need, and so we did. You would be surprised, woodworkers choose to buy every model that we offer, because of the way they work wood. The only way to figure out which one is the best, is to think about which options for you. Beyond that, all our shooting boards will give you all of the accuracy you will need, at every angle they will shoot.

It wasn’t lost on us, that you might need to have a fixture to help you saw. The common miter box isn’t quite as ergonomic as we would like, particularly when we are cutting all of these uncommon angles. We offer a fixture that will help you solve these angles, and do it without having to become a contortionist. If you’re hesitant that you cannot keep your saw square or straight to the work, we also build magnetic side guides that are fully adjustable to any angle that will help keep your aim true.

We realize that shooting end grain and such can help dull a blade. Rather than force you back to your sharpening gear every few minutes to retune the edge, we offer a number of different stropping systems that do have the ability to reach into the dullness and sharpen it back up, without having to do a major grind on your blades. This saves you a ton of time and keeps you woodworking when what you really want to do is build your project instead of sharpening your tools.

The key to keeping your tools sharp is to sharpen them frequently and sharpen them often. This does not mean that you go grab your coarsest stone and go to work rebuilding the edge every time. This means stropping with honing compounds while you are woodworking. We have tools in our shop that haven’t seen an abrasive in more than a couple of years. There has been no damage, we just keep them stropped and working.

Of course you can spend hundreds of dollars on the finest water stones if that’s what you prefer to have, but are sharpening stations can accommodate sandpaper sharpening, you know, the good old scary sharp system. Only the thing is, the advisement that’s out there on the Internet that claim you’ll spend a lot of money on sandpaper isn’t exactly correct when you spend more of your time stropping. The whole trick is to try not to let your tools get so dull that you need to use course abrasives to repair the damage.

Yet, you use a lot less sandpaper that way. But when it comes to needing any abrasives that you could possibly need, Sand paper actually does cover all of the bases and then some. Every knife in the world is made on a belt sander. Every abrasive you could ever want to have is available in sandpaper, and if you’re a diligent stropper, it will be rare that you need to touch up very often. Sharper tools just work better, and your own experience with sharp tools will tell you when it’s time to strop.

Another advantage of course, is not having to completely disassemble your irons from the chip breakers, because stropping is a dry system, and so no moisture is present. It simply means that you pop the blade Assembly out of the plane, strop it, put it back and take a test shaving and you’re back in business. It keeps you sharp in just a couple of minutes. With a chisel there’s nothing to disassemble, you simply take it out of the cut, strop it, wipe it off, and return it to work.

We also wanted to remind you that we have lots of other goodies here on the website. We have the woodwork’s library, filled with over 200 books about woodworking and other trade crafts that are related. We have a full reference section, and we have a great deal of woodworking information right here in all of our indexed blog articles that will help keep you going, if there’s any kind of how to that you need to figure out in woodworking.

We feel that we offer tools that can help take your woodworking from good to great. We hope that you perceive them as being of great value and versatility to your work. They are all about where the rubber meets the road, and making your woodworking projects with all the precision possible.

If you would like to browse at all of the different tools in our store, just scroll to the top of this page and click on the button called store. If you’d like to place an order, our online store is open 24 seven, and if you would rather discuss your order with us via the phone, we can arrange to help you make that call, and we have recently added the ability to allow you to place your order over the phone with us if that is what you would prefer. Yes! you can phone it in if you wanna! Just contact us via email and let us know you’d like to do that and we will set it up! We look forward to hearing from you! Oh, and just in case you were wondering, we are happy to ship internationally via the postal services.

We wanted to say thank you for your business. We are going into our 10th year here, and as a small business that focuses on building tools for woodworkers, we couldn’t have done it without you. We hope that those of you have who have not had the chance to become our clients will consider it. It is our goal to help woodworkers everywhere, building things better. We realize that Shooting boards aren’t the easiest thing in the world to make accurately, but we’ve got that down and we can make you a nice one that we feel is the most accurate and versatile shooting board available. We can also help keep your saws sawing straight, and your edge tools sharp.

If your layout is accurate, and you’re cutting on the waste side of the line, we can help get you the rest of the way to the line with all of the accuracy you need. A shooting board Will make you look good!

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© Copyright 2017 by Rob Hanson for evenfallstudios.com All Rights Reserved.

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Aug 12 2017

Introducing the Combi Shooter Shooting Board

We’d like introduce a new shooting board to our lineup, called the Combi Shooter.

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The Combi Shooter, “Multi”.

The Combi Shooter gets its name because it combines two models of shooting board we currently offer into one. Starting with the Long Grain Shooter shooting board, we build it completely as a Long Grain Shooter including the Accessory Caul, then we add the Wide Board Shooter shooting board onto the very same platform, with all of its pivot fence capabilities.

The Combi Shooter in all cases is a complete Long Grain Shooter. The variables between each model are that the Wide Board Shooter aspect of the tool is available in three optional fence setting configurations; Basic which includes 45 and 90°, Basic Plus, which includes 45, 22.5, and 90°, and the Multi, which includes 45, 30, 22.5, 15 and 90° angles.

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Jun 12 2015

The Ethos of Woodworking Precision and Accuracy

There are a lot of different opinions floated out about accuracy and precision in woodworking, and further, about how it applies in handtool woodworking. I’d like to take a few moments and help add some additional perspective from a toolmaker, and from someone who has also had a long career as a journeyman tradesman. This read is a little long, but I feel the perspectives will be helpful to us as we develop our craftsman skills.

I don’t want to overstate what others I’ve read are saying, but cumulatively I read a lot of woodworkers who write say things like: “wood has too much movement for a need to work accurately”. “Measuring is unnecessary, just match things up so that they are good enough”. I could go on, but I am sure we are all aware of what I am referring to.

On it’s face, sometimes these statements may be true, maybe only true for those who state them, but they can be precarious things to say in a context where the reason why is not well prefaced. Let me explain.

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Dec 28 2014

Helping You Saw Better

Helping You Saw Better

Like anything, there are many approches to any woodworking situation. Sometimes there are solutions in search of a problem, and we can fill our benches and storage with gizmo’s like that, or we can seek out tools that bring a lot of utility for the space they take.

Guided Sawing

I have heard from many woodworkers over the years, and many tell me that they like the tools that allow them to go to work as directly as possible on the task they want to accomplish, without a lot of fooling around. Most all of the tools we offer are focused on helping woodworkers get as much accuracy and productivity as possible from the tools they already have, and can help you perform several tasks really well.

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Aug 18 2014

Shooting Boards and Woodworking Safely.

Over the past several years I have received many inquiries regarding woodworking methods that are difficult to make safe. Believe me, being very fond of my fingers and their daily health is always in the forefront of my mind as a full time toolmaker.

Finger Hazard Warning

Some of the most common questions have been regarding working with short lengths of stock, and thin stock. Both of these sizes of wood not only commonly put our fingers in the near vicinity of rotating cutters on many different power tools and shop machines, but are also such that the power tool or shop machine can grab them and remove control from the operator.

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Jul 05 2014

Woodworking Squarely

Recently we have had some emails from woodworkers who have been having challenges with building their projects and having them come out square.

The biggest thing we need to realize about squareness is that we take it for granted, but when we really have to make something square, it is something that begins with wood selection, and evolves from meticulous prep work.

Our layout lines have to be drawn on stock that is already “right” in terms of squareness and dimension.

The joinery we cut and form into those boards must be as accurate as the stock itself.

Fitment will tell the tale. Errors when we make any become cumulative, and sometimes the only trick that works is to be right.

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May 21 2013

Dovetailed Boxes and Casework

Recently, a woodworker emailed us looking for a solution to a problem he was having with the alignment and fitment of boxes, drawers and carcass work such as blanket chests, bookcases and chests of drawers, using dovetails for the case and drawer joinery. He also mentioned his interests in small box making and again, enjoys dovetail joinery for those as well.

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The Long Grain Shooter, shown in left hand.

The alignment and fitment issue was, that once the casework was assembled, his carcass or boxes were not square from top to bottom, and the joinery would either bind, go together under extreme stress, sometimes fracturing pins or would not sit square on a flat surface when the box or casework was placed on the edges, even though the dimensional widths of the boards were perfectly the same. All this was due to mis-alignment from un-square ends on the dovetailed boards. Continue Reading »

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Dec 01 2012

Shooting Boards. Why Shoot?

It’s one of those questions I get asked quite often, and interestingly, the answer is pretty succinct. Precision, safety and accuracy. But the reasons behind why we may want to shoot come from a lot of different woodworking situations, and these situations can usually be improved by using an accurate shooting board.

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Having a shooting board can be a solution to many woodworking’s problems. What a shooting board does in it’s most basic form is create a chute for a hand plane to slide squarely (side to side, and front to back) to the work, and position a fence to hold the work at a specifically given angle, such as 90 or 45 degrees, so that the end grain of the work can be planed square and smooth. The finish result desired is the smooth finish and squareness front to back, top to bottom. Continue Reading »

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Oct 12 2012

Woodworking Tools for the Left Handed Woodworker. (Righties Too!)

We have heard from many left handed clients, thanking us for our attention to left handed tooling. We have offered nearly every right handed tool we make in a left handed version since day one, as well as with the introduction of each new tool we offer, and for the same price, either hand.

Call it a mission statement if you like, but I personally like helping woodworkers create, while achieving their personal best levels of craftsmanship no matter which hand they favor. Our tools are designed to help create fine craftsmanship with either hand, no matter which side you favor. We make a number of woodworking tools and jigs that are purpose-made to help unlock the creative process, making the tools you may already have, work even better and more accurately, by giving both you and your tools as much capability as we can in the process. Continue Reading »

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May 31 2012

Help For Accurate Hand Saw Cuts

Accurate cuts right off the saw are always nice, but that isn’t always reality. Sometimes we don’t need accuracy, other times getting it will make a woodworker break out in a cold sweat. Never the less, when you really need that magic to happen, you need it. Sometimes the boards are special, rare boards, with amazing figure. Other times they are just barely large enough for the project, and every saw cut has to be right on the numbers or the last board could be too short. It’s times like that when every cut counts.

Imagine for a moment what some of those crucial cuts are about. Sawing drawer fronts in a matched flitch? Figured boards book-matched where waste isn’t an option? Need to saw dados on target? Accurate angles in face or edge grain? Thick bench legs that match? (That’s a big cut!) Tenons, Finger Joints, Dovetails?

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For a long time, I have wanted to develop a sawing fixture that offered great ergonomics, and high miter box like accuracy. I also wanted it to be widely capable of handling many sawing situations and allow the use of any saw, so that the right saw for the job could be utilized. First we developed the East / West Bench Hook, which allows the sawyer to do their best work, and then we developed a magnetic saw guide that helps maintain high sawing accuracy over a wide range of sawing situations, and as an added bonus, it also helps develop good sawing posture and muscle memory. Continue Reading »

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