11 Comments

I worked a summer for a rough carpenter. He was very talented and speedy. He would always remind me when I took too much care needlessly - "It ain't a piano!"

Expand full comment

My son, you are doing the lord’s work.

Expand full comment

I seem recall a certain sharpening video by a certain woodworker where they cut through newspaper in order to demonstrate how sharp their newly sharpened blade is... ;)

Expand full comment

Thanks Chris.

Expand full comment

The idea to leave the marks from the scrub plane on unseen surfaces saved me hours on a slab table that I made for a coworker

Expand full comment

I used to confuse perfectionism with mastery. I don't any more. In fact I'm not sure there is any relationship at all.

Expand full comment

More woodworkers should read, digest, and absorb Hands Employed Aright. Rev. Fisher’s work should free us all. I aspire to his level of craftsmanship after retiring from overworked studio furniture making. I love leaving scrub plane tracks on bottoms and backs.

Expand full comment

Do you have any more details on the carpenter's loogie? I'm just not sure mine are correct, so it would be great to have something to compare to. 😉

Expand full comment

I appreciate your words of wisdom, Chris. Some woodwookers can be dictatorial jerks. Go ahead! Plane the underside of a drawer untill it's as smooth as glass, if that's what makes you smile, but don't demand of everyone else that they need to do the same in order to be fine woodworkers. Show surfaces are appropriately named, in my opinion.

Expand full comment

One detail you failed to mention about the thicknesss of a shaving, is to limit the thickness to your ability to push. Smaller or older people can wear themselves out by making thick shavings. Should be able to work without exhausting yourself.

Expand full comment

Your point about not finishing what you don’t have to reminds me of a visit to a friends house. In the front hall in front of a stair was a beautiful 6 foot tall grandfather clock a true antique from colonial era. it had a very fancy beautifully carved and polished set of curls at the top. A rich deep coloration from its cherry wood being exposed and waxed for a couple hundred years.

Admiring the piece I walked up a few steps on the stair behind and was stunned to see the back of the block of wood comprising the intricate carving was completely untouched bark still attached in places. It was a like a Michelangelo sculpture emerging from a block of rough marble. From the rawest of stock to the most beautiful work imaginable all in the same view.

Expand full comment