Archive for the 'Sharpening' 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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We enjoy your questions, comments, ideas and suggestions! Please Contact Us.

Thanks for visiting Evenfall Studios!

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

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Dec 23 2017

New ways to Complete Purchases at Evenfall Studios.

In addition to the shopping cart processing we offer on our website which includes PayPal, We have recently added a non-PayPal credit/debit card processor to help our clients complete their purchases at Evenfall Studios. This is good news for both our clients and for us, because it offers new purchasing options that we haven’t been able to offer you before. We are excited to share this news with you. But first, here’s a little backstory.

For the most part, a very large player in purchase processing on the Internet is PayPal. PayPal not only has its own function of placing your money that you load into an account at PayPal, for the purposes of funding your purchase, but they also are an online credit card processor. However, sometimes the rules that PayPal uses are not a good fit for the way everyone would prefer to transact business.

Over the years, we have had a number of clients bring to our attention, that PayPal is not their favorite purchase processor. In fact, a number of our clients have expressed their reservations about PayPal, for a number of different reasons and experiences, based on rules and practices that PayPal has had down through the years, which has had the effect of causing some people to close their PayPal accounts and choose not to make payments that are processed through PayPal.

This does not necessarily make PayPal a bad payment processing partner, but we understand why some of our clients have reservations based on their perceptions and experiences, and completely respect that. While we are going to continue to offer PayPal processing as an option for purchases here on the Evenfall Studios website, we kept our eye on the horizon for additional ways to help our clients complete their purchases with us.

We listened to what our clients wished we could do. We went shopping for the right partner to help us with this. Finally, we have found a card processor who can provide us the ability to not only process card purchases via telephone, but also in person with card chip and swipe capabilities, and the merchant costs and fees are commensurate with our perceived value of the service.

So here is what we can offer clients who wish to make purchases at Evenfall Studios:

  1. Our website still works as it always has – as a complete catalog of our tools and accessories, which can be purchased with our shopping cart buttons on each product page. Using our online shopping cart will allow you the choice of purchasing with PayPal. Alternatively, Credit Card Processing online is accomplished via PayPal for Visa, MasterCard, AMEX, Discover and Debit Cards with those logos.

  2. If you would prefer to place your order with us using NON-PayPal card processing, or would like to discuss your woodworking tool needs with us prior to purchasing – Via Telephone, we are happy to help. Please Contact Us via email with your best phone contact information, outlining what you’d like to discuss and that you would like us to call you back. We will try and call you back at a best time for you during our business hours which are 8 AM – 4:30 PM Pacific time, US. Monday through Friday. If you need a callback outside of business hours, we can usually arrange that too if needed.

  3. We realize that some woodworkers would like to discuss tools and applications, or customizations they may wish to have made to their tool(s) before they buy and would like to call the order in. We get that, and now we can place your orders with us via telephone. We hope this will help you in your efforts to buy the tooling for your shop that will meet your needs! If this is your want, please email us and let us know. We will set up a callback time to help you!

  4. Our new processor enables us to run Cards via Chip, Swipe or Phone. We can process Credit or Debit Cards with the VISA, MasterCard, AMEX, Discover and JCB Logos. We can also process Gift Cards with those logos, and are open to helping you make your purchases with more than one card if that helps. We can also take your Card Payments if you reside or are outside of the United States. To avoid paying international calling rates, we can be contacted via WhatsApp or perhaps Skype for secure conversations with no calling charges.

We hope that you find this new information helpful. We want to make purchasing as easy as possible and look forward to hearing from you soon here at Evenfall Studios!

Follow our Blog! We offer both RSS and email feeds at the top of every blog page!

Recieve our Newsletter! Get tool news and updates first. Subscribe from any page!

For much more frequent woodworking thought from us, please follow our Twitter Feed:


Did you know we are also on Instagram? Please follow us!

We enjoy your questions, comments, ideas and suggestions! Please Contact Us.

Thanks for visiting Evenfall Studios!

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

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Jun 04 2017

Helpful Resources at Evenfall Studios

There are many resources for woodworking, metalworking and making in general available at Evenfall Studios, so we thought we would give you a quick tour of how to navigate and use them.

First off our blog. We use our blog a little differently than most websites. It is a resource of information about our products, articles on how to and tips as well as other information we hope you’ll enjoy. If you look up at the top index of our blog there are a number of different places you can navigate to on our website.

If you scroll to the top of the page you’ll see a row of index buttons. Most of these are available from every webpage on our site. Let’s start with the Blog Index.

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May 13 2016

Save Time Sharpening With A Strop

The Old School of thought is to use your tools until way past dull when they start damaging the work, then break down and haul out your sharpening gear for a long messy sharpening session.

Now I know we all love the old school tools and ways of building things, but lock up your brakes here, stop the insanity.

What insanity? If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got. In this case it’s a long dirty sharpening session. Are you ready to rethink this process? Good!

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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.

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Oct 28 2015

Maintenance Sharpening is Faster Sharpening.

Published by under Sharpening

Sharpening. To many, it’s do or dread and do anyway. Listen, it doesn’t have to be the chore that it can be, you just have to change the approach. We did and we offer the tools we developed to help make it easier for everyone.

Many of us have used the approach of working a tool until it is good and dull. The reason why is that it can be a lot of work to sharpen, so we hold out till we have to. There are two downsides to this. It is a lot of work to resharpen once you let tools get this dull, you sometimes have to rebuild the edges over again, and the other is that the indicators that we are this dull are that the tool is pushing hard, doing a poor job, or even starting to damage our work.

Why do we wait so long to sharpen?

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May 28 2015

If Sharpening Were Easier

If sharpening were easier, we all would likely do it more often.

We are working to help us all do exactly that.

Long story short; the work performed by a cutting edge will cause wear and dulling. A proportion of work must be performed to restore this cutting edge and the time spent is based on the amount of wear, the hardness of the steel and the sharpening abrasives you select.

There are two major ways you can approach sharpening.

Old School, where you run the edges into severe dullness and do a major reworking of them to restore them. (a common practice because people dislike sharpening, and it takes a while.)

New School, which is to sharpen rather continually as you work with fine abrasives so the edges rarely fail and keep cutting nicely.

It might surprise you, that even though the new school method is performed more frequently, it takes less time and effort. It can be done dry and quickly, getting you back to work and in the flow of things.

We make a couple styles of sharpening stations that target quality sharpening using either school, but they are a gateway to using the new school method. There are a few good reasons that our sharpening stations are designed the way they are. These are designs that evolved over time.

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Apr 30 2015

Tools for Creativity, Productivity, Art, and Fun

Some of the fun of being a toolmaker, is getting to be a woodworking evangelist. Talking with woodworkers and listening to what they hope to do in woodworking. Stories of wishing it were easier to make something, but oh for the lack of this tool or that. I understand. I always enjoy hearing from clients who have had their tooling we custom made for them awhile and to hear how it has made the different things they wanted to make possible, and easier.

Some of the things that have been shared with me are interesting. Epiphany level stuff a lot of the time. On the shooting board equation I recall things like; “I have thousands invested in hand planes, but I am also expecting high accuracy from a quickly made jig from scraps. I’m finding that doesn’t work a lot of the time.” “I’m on my fourth shooting board now, and I am just tired of trying to get or keep accuracy.” “I want to make intricate things with small parts, but my machines seem too risky to use for that.” “I have so many ideas, but my tools don’t seem to be able to get me close enough to accomplish it.” Making a high accuracy shooting board is harder than it seems.”

On the topic of Sharpening, I’ve listened. I hear things like: “I know I should sharpen more often, but it’s a bother, and so messy.” I spend so much time having to maintain my water stones that I hate to use them”.”I just wait to sharpen until I can’t get my tools to work anymore, because working is way more fun.” “I have such a small shop, there’s just no room to sharpen and have it be easy.”

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Apr 23 2015

Imagine Woodworking – Easier

Woodworking is a field of endeavor filled with imagination. Wood has not stopped capturing our imagination for centuries.

Wood has been used to build bridges that carry trains and large wooden ships. We have shaped it into airplanes. It has been used for housing, barns, aircraft hangars, and other large buildings. We cut and shave it into veneers and small delicate pieces that form beautiful images, and screens. We dye it, stain it, paint it, weatherize it. We ask everything of wood from engineering to art, and it rarely disappoints.

Wood asks a few things of us in exchange for forming and shaping it as it yields to us and our requirements.

For best results, wood has taught us it’s best methods for working it through practice and observation. If we learn these ways, and pay attention to the details while we work things come together pretty nicely, most of the time.

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Sep 13 2014

On Sharpening Better – Part 3

Using materials in the sharpening process that cut fast, while retaining a flat sharpening surface is good criteria. This is why powered sharpening gear uses a platen beneath the abrasives, otherwise we would have no reference for our work, and desired results would be difficult to achieve with repeatability. While messy aspects of sharpening can not be completely eliminated, what if we could minimize them?

The mess and clutter of the ensemble that is sharpening gear, along with the associated set up and clean up of the process, so it works well is also in the equation. There is only so much space to begin with, and the mess becomes part of the inertia that causes us to wait longer than we should to sharpen in the first place.

Or we have precious little space to begin with, so we would have to stop and set a process aside in order to make space for sharpening, then do that, clean up and stow before resuming the woodworking process.

It isn’t any wonder why we avoid sharpening until the last minute, even as that makes the task as difficult to accomplish as any can be.

I don’t think it really has to be that way. I’ve developed some different ways of thinking about the sharpening process and some tools that help fit them. They reduce sharpening effort with no cost to edge quality.

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