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The story goes, "A carpenter marks a line with chalk, and cuts near the line. A jointer (British term for a finish carpenter) marks a line with a pencil, and cuts on the waste side of the line. A furniture maker marks a line with a knife, and splits the line with the edge of the cut." The tools and techniques here are associated with furniture making. I am not a good carpenter - most of my work has been making and installing cabinets, and more recently building furniture, so my ideas and suggestions are based on that kind of work, not on carpentry.
I have built a separate web site to give advice to others, like me, who are working professionally as a solo woodworker see www.solowoodworker.com. Much of the general advice I gave on this woodworking web site has been expanded, and is kept up to date, on my other web site.
I didn't think I was an expert on finishing, but I do it to the furniture I build, and have been asked to give talks, and have given demos. So those talks and demos were the start of the web pages on furniture finishing. For the homeowner who wants to refinish a piece of furniture with locally available materials and minimum investment see the separate page on refinishing.
The web page for each type of furniture on this site starts with examples of our work, but at the end of each page, includes information that we have collected about that type of furniture - for example, the page on coffee tables includes typical coffee table dimensions, not just the size of those we have made.
See my editorial comments on the selection of wood for furniture, including pictures I have collected of many types of wood.
I get a surprising number of e-mails asking me where I buy my wood, or sometimes asking to quote a price for wood. I don't buy a lot, and don't sell any, but this is where I get the wood I use.
I am also asked how to sell a tree, particularly a special tree in a yard. This opens a whole range of issues of cutting and milling residential trees, drying wood, and saving a tree from the dump or fireplace. I am not an expert, but share what I have read. And no, I don't want your tree.
One of the premium brands of power tools is Festool. Everyone who gets one seems to love them unconditionally. Except me. I do like my Festool tools, but have some suggestions about the Festool Sander that will undoubtedly get some people irritated at me!
In response to numerous questions, I prepared a page on use of the Mortiser on a MiniMax combination machine, that is part of a whole section on MiniMax on my other web site.
The most used jig for my previous table saw saw is a homemade Tenon Jig, with pictures and description on how to make it.
Using a mortise kit on a drill press, and other ways to cut a mortise.
Sometimes I want to mark or measure an angle, and the protractor has disappeared (as it always does when needed). Using this table, I can quickly cut a sheet of paper to produce the desired angle - a disposable protractor.
Some people want to see my shop. It is a very full two car garage that, when I built this page, occasionally holds one car. See the story of how I get a car into my shop... er .. garage. I have since added more tools, and the cars no longer fit. See a more recent shop tour.
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This entire site (layout and contents) ©2003-2015 by Charles A. Plesums, Austin, Texas USA. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
We primarily serve Austin and the Central Texas area, but travel to the DFW area periodically and are glad to serve the Garland, Plano, Dallas, and other North Texas areas, and are willing to ship anywhere.