Saturday, January 16, 2010

DoveTill Upgrade

I count our upholsterer Doug Carman as a friend. He gave me half a garbage bag full of leather scrap several years ago. Today I finally put it to use.

Using an iron set on low heat, I ironed the leather under a sheet of paper. I then used transfer tape to adhere the till to it. My Veritas striking knife did an excellent job flush trimming around the sides.

I think this will be a nice way to protect my drawer bottoms. The chisels don't slide around as readily, and the leather deadens the sound they make when I put the chisels away.

And it's super posh.

(Like) New Gets

I bought a Veritas honing guide at my first visit to a Lee Valley store, eleven years ago.

I haven't used it in ten and a half years. I hollow grind my chisels, so they're easy to get shaving sharp by freehand honing, and I wasn't using handplanes then. I put the guide away, as it wasn't worth the hassle. I used the guide today for the first time on my plane irons. The improvement in edge quality is remarkable.

My 7C cuts a nice heavy chip, full width.

The 5C was my worst plane, I rarely used it. Now it cuts to a mirror finish on this soft Maple.

The 3C is cutting a wispy shaving. The iron is the original Sweetheart, and suffers from light pitting. I need to replace it.

I found locking down the knob when both corners of the iron and both edges of the roller were flat on the stone was easier than using the angle jig. I'll still hone my chisels freehand, but I think plane irons benefit from the precision the guide provides.

For the first time in a decade, I can say that I'm glad that I have this guide.

Duh Moment

I figured out today that the Stanley hand drill has a couple of oiler holes. A drop of light oil has loosened up the mechanism completely.

I used a 3/8" Lee Valley brad point bit. These bits are excellent. A coat of bees wax and I was impressed with it's speed. For short runs of holes this is an excellent alternative to my cordless drill.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

New Gets

There's nothing I like better than New Old Stock. In one of my favourite junk stores I came across a small pile of new in box Stanley 626 Hand Drills.

Based on the store's specialty, I'm guessing it's Canadian military surplus.

I cut through the brittle 47 year old masking tape, unwrapped it from its paper, wiped off the cosmoline, and screwed on the two side handles.

It's in great shape, aside from the missing orange paint. I'm not sure what happened to it, there was a few flakes inside the box but nowhere near as many as there should have been. It's almost as though it dissolved away. Sitting in grease did nothing for the handles, either, they're pretty rough and would benefit from a clean up.

One of my favourite brand marks, the Stanley Sweetheart.

I paid $20 for it, which I think is a decent price, especially compared to Lee Valley's $60 version. Either way, I don't know how much I'll use it, it takes far more time and effort to drill a hole compared to my Bosch cordless. I'm not going to return it though, it was far too much fun opening up this time capsule.

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I'm a woodworker on the Canadian prairie.