Archive for the 'Tool Making' 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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Dec 16 2015

Our Shooting Boards Make A Difference

When it comes to shooting boards, Traditional designs come with limitations that have to be accepted. The downside to this is that these limitations become part of the mental lexicon that woodworkers carry in their mind when they consider the capabilities of the shooting board. I’d like to take a moment or two and address how our shooting boards help overcome many of these limitations.

A Versatile Shooting Board

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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.

Continue Reading »

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Jan 16 2015

Evenfall Studios Toolmakers News

I have been considering an occasional column on our blog, just for sharing some various thoughts and news with you, so welcome to Volume One, 2015.

For small businesses, it is often challenging getting the word out. I want to touch on the scope of our blog. It wears several hats. We are a small family business, a one man custom tool making shop. I make precision tools for woodworkers and makers. Some of the ways we use the blog is to provide methods for working that have a lot of application on any project. We also use it to help teach and inform about our tools and methods that can help woodworking become easier and more accurate for you.

Getting the word out to woodworkers all over the world about what we do and what we may be able to help you do in making is a big part of our blog. I’m remiss about not blogging more often and I do try, but it happens. Client work in the shop and the matters of life are something we all can understand in our own way. We appreciate all our subscribers and readers. Our blog is aggregated by Leif at the Norse Woodsmith Aggregator and has been for years. Recently our blog has been aggregated by Siavosh over at woodspotting.com, which is a new form of Aggregator that is growing fast and allows people to submit blogs to it. We really appreciate both of them for their their support in helping us network and get the word out. If you enjoy our blog or use it as a reference, please feel free to bookmark, subscribe directly via RSS or email as well. This helps us stay in touch and we appreciate your support.

Continue Reading »

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Nov 25 2014

Shooting Boards for Your Shop

Through the years, I have fielded quite a few questions about shooting boards, and so I thought it might be nice to share some of the considerations with you, for your own thinking process.

Make or Buy?

That is a biggie, and it’s multifaceted. If you can make a shooting board accurately enough to suit what you need it to do, you may not be considering buying, but there are hurdles to leap.

LA Jack Wide Board Shooter

Ask a few questions:

What is your time worth? You have a busy life, a full time job, a family that deserves quality time. When you get shop time, do you want to spend it making tools, or projects like furniture, jewelry boxes or cabinets? Time for most of us is in short supply. If you want your time spent making beautiful things for your family, then tools that can do what you need done, and directly are really nice to have.

Continue Reading »

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Jul 14 2014

Guilty as charged – I am a Toolmaker

Published by under Thoughts & Musings,Tool Making

And I blog… If I could, I’d like a few moments of your time. I have a few thoughts I want to share.

When I began the Evenfall Studios Woodworks Blog in early 2008, I was an avid woodworker (still am) and I was running a woodworking business part time. I spent a lot of time writing to woodworking and making topics that I wanted to flesh out and help us all become better woodworkers and makers, and I did. To be certain, I still do want to continue this work.

In 2009 I evolved the business into a full time concern as a toolmaker and Continue Reading »

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Jul 05 2012

Shooting Boards: Our Features and Specifications

A well-made shooting board, built from quality materials is a tool that is capable of providing top quality results in the hands of any woodworker. Additionally, it can help develop a woodworker’s skill as well as improve outcomes for many woodworking tasks.

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In it’s most basic form, a shooting board is a jig that fixtures a work piece and guides a plane so that the ends and edges of a board can be trimmed, but it doesn’t have to stop there. It’s one of the most important woodworking tools. The definition of trimming itself becomes a list of desirable outcomes from a shooting board, and with a sharp iron in a plane, it can allow woodworking tolerances to 0.001-inch accuracy.

Jigs are a huge part of woodworking, and many are single purpose built. Given the small shops that many woodworkers work in, it is valuable to have some tools and jigs that will help perform a wide range of tasks, and take a minimal amount of space for storage. 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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Dec 16 2011

The ‘51’ Shooter Chute Board

We now offer a new board in our Shooting Board Line. It’s called the ‘51’ Shooter.

It’s our Deluxe, Basic Plus and Basic Shooters made available in “Chute Style” for the LN 51 shooting board planes.

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While we have mentioned similar news of this recently, and have been offering chute adapter kits to be used as an upgrade to our shooting board line, it just made sense to give this series it’s own identity, and make it easier to order. Continue Reading »

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