The Unplugged Woodshop: Hand-Crafted Projects for the Home & Workshop

The Unplugged Woodshop: Hand-Crafted Projects for the Home & WorkshopThe Unplugged Woodshop: Hand-Crafted Projects for the Home & Workshop by Tom Fidgen

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I first came across Tom Fidget via his excellent website the unplugged woodshop. Working from his small workshop he produces some amazing projects. He is a devotee of hand tools and does demonstrate what can be achieved without power tools. The style of videos is very slick no commentary only Tom and his tools. He has another string to his bow which is music the soundtrack to his workshop exploits is fantastic.
I almost forgot I am writing about his second book Unplugged Woodshop: Hand-Crafted Projects for the Home & Workshop. It is a perfect complement for the website. There are details of plans, projects and tips on hand tool usage. Currently Tom is producing a series videos on the construction of a funeral chair. I have always called these folding chairs, might be a Canadian thing. The details of this project are beautifully laid in the book.
A great addition for anyone who is interested in hand tool techniques and importantly making things from wood.

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Over complicated lathe steady

I was reading a woodworking blog recently, sadly I cannot remember which one, the essence of the post was that we spend too much time planning and thinking about tasks. I am certainly guilty of this. A case in point are the attached images. I was going to make a lathe steady so that I could make some pepper grinders at home.I planned looked at YouTube videos bought some roller blade wheels. Then deciding if I should make the frame in wood or steel, in the end it all got too much. Continue reading “Over complicated lathe steady”

Upgrading the bandsaw

Being new to this whole bandsaw thing it came as surprise when I managed to melt the blade guides on my bandsaw. I bought the bandsaw as ex floor stock from Carbatec. This saved me some dollars and the machine was fully assembled or so I thought. I have been using the saw for about 2 years without really fiddling with it. The horizontal stop was missing so I have installed that.

The guides have had a major upgrade with roller bearing guides. The whole upgrade took about 3/4 hour. The blade is now much more accurate and stable.  I had to remove the cutting table as per the picture at the lower right. Cutting is more efficient and I think less requires less energy from the bandsaw which might reduce wear and tear. It is always good to work on your machines as it increases your understanding of how it all works.

Upper guides
Lower guides


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Scheppach Wet Stone Grinder

I have just had a modification for the wet stone grinder that I own a Scheppach TiGer 2000. It is cheaper than a Tormek grinder and since I am a casual user I couldn’t justify the additional expense. However a feature on the Tormek is an adjuster on the tool rest which gives fine control.

After talking to a fitter and turner a modification was made to the tool rest. This involved removing one of the supporting legs and replacing it with a threaded leg. A hex nut now rest on the machine which allows fine adjustment. The side facing the screw that clamps the rest in place was machined flat in order to protect the thread.

Wet Stone Grinder

I was so excited that I also posted on the Ubeaut Woodworking forums

A tale from a parallell universe

This sad tale of the triton users groups reminds me of another simialr experince that I had. Remeber the old computer user groups in the days when there were several compting operating sytems in the market place. Windows was only a dream. I belonged to an Atari user group , they had a GUI long before microsoft. I was a bid nerdy but 512 kilobytes of ram was something to behold. But with the arrival of the 2400 baud modem and bulleting boards things began to change. The once flourishng Atari User group drifted away as we all became seduced by Microsoft.

A tale from a parallell universe