Woodworking Projects

STL253: Woodworking is just tricks and fixing mistakes

Furniture maker and machinery guru Ellen Kaspern joins Anissa and Ben to answer listener questions about jointers and walnut slabs, and to proclaim her never-ending love of the Delta Unisaw.

Nov 05, 2021

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This episode is sponsored by Titebond, The Northwest woodworking Studio, and Pony/Jorgensen

Be sure to follow Ellen on Instagram and check out her super-cool inlays we talked about in this episode.

Question 1:

From Bill:

It is with a heavy heart that I have had to come to terms that I am going to have to place my workshop into an extended storage.  My wife and I are returning to Massachusetts from Pennsylvania in the coming month.  When all is done we will have our dream house and I will have my dream shop.  Unfortunately we are building a home and it will be 15 months until we get to move in.  As such I am having to place all of my workshop – hand tools and large woodworking machines in storage. I would like your guidance on how to properly prep and store my tools.  Additionally I will be storing approximately 1000 ft do lumber and would like your guidance there also.  Over the quiet period I plan on reading about, listening to and dreaming of the better woodworking days ahead.  But it’s going to be difficult!

Question 2:

From Spenser:

I have a question regarding jointers.  I see that most jointer planes are 22 inches long, and are the foremost at flattening boards by hand.  However, when it comes to power tool jointers, everything I have ever read, seen, or heard states the longer the beds of the jointer, the better it is for flattening operations.  What is the reasoning behind this? Is it merely that the power tool jointer needs the extra length to support the workpiece, whereas with a handplane the workpiece is clamped in place?  If this is the case, then could I still get good results from placing a roller stand at the outfeed side of my rather short 6 inch Craftsman jointer (vintage, belt driven with cast iron beds and fence)?  If not, what is the approximate length of stock one can safely and accurately flatten on a jointer of a given size (i.e., twice the length of the outfeed, etc.)?

Machine Setup – The Jointer

In this episode, Matt Wajda sets the jointer tables using only a straight-edge and some scraps of paper

Tool Test: 8-in. Jointers

We test the Grizzly G0495X, Jet JWJ-8HH, Laguna MJOIN8012-0130, Laguna MJOIN8020-0130, Oliver 4230, Powermatic PJ-882HH, and Rikon 20-108H.


Ellen: All time favorite tool – The Unisaw

Anissa: All-time favorite technique – Bob Van Dyke’s use of wedges to disassemble a dovetailed box (video at 47:45)

Ben: using a pair of dividers and a level to perfectly place screws for mounting things with keyhole slots

Question 3:

From John:

Not too long ago, I milled up a walnut tree on my parents’ property. All of the lumber will be used for dimensional boards except this live edge piece I had left over. I am still not sure what I want to do with, I am between a hall table, coffee table or small bench utilizing the live edge look of the piece. The problem I am running into is what species of wood should I use for the legs and other features of the piece that would go well with the combination of sap and heart wood present. I live in the Midwest and would prefer to use a native species if possible. What would you suggest or does this look like a good piece of firewood?

Anissa mentions Tim Coleman’s “Three Stories” cabinet.

Every two weeks, a team of Fine Woodworking staffers answers questions from readers on Shop Talk Live, Fine Woodworking‘s biweekly podcast. Send your woodworking questions to  shoptalk@taunton.com  for consideration in the regular broadcast! Our continued existence relies upon listener support. So if you enjoy the show, be sure to leave us a five-star rating and maybe even a nice comment on our  iTunes page .

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