Full Chisel Blog

February 12, 2009

Tenon Saw – Compleat

Well, bowing to pressure I finished the Tenon Saw with the exception of the finish.  I used a regular twist auger for the knob hole but used a larger center bit to drill the two holes for the handle, almost a perfect match for the shape of the ends of the handle.

Tenon Saw holes

I put it all together and it worked great.  After the photo shoot, I glued the knob and handle into the body of the saw.  The blade fits tightly into the kerf and I will use very small wooden wedges to keep it in position.  However the blade is quite tight in the kerf, so slipping may not be a problem.

Tenon Saw Compleat

Now all I need to do is put a coat of linseed oil on everything.


February 11, 2009

Tenon Saw

I started on the tenon saw today, it wasn’t easy as I thought and I am rethinking the design.  I will finish this one, as it will work, but I think I might have a traditional solution to a problem that may only exist in my head.

I selected a scrap of maple, made a mark at 3/8″ from the bottom and proceeded to cut the long rip on the side rest (bench hook) and continued until at the proper depth.  I had to work from both ends as my saw was too short to make one long cut.  I would use a longer saw next time.

Long Rip

After I got the saw ‘together’, I gave it a test run.  I had to roughen up the jaw faces to keep the stuff from slipping and I lubricated the threads and surface of the clamp with beeswax.

proto tenon saw

Here is one of the unique things you can do with this tool.  It is an angled tenon, handy for chair construction.  I can see that this tool will probably get a fair amount of use.

Angled tenon

I will work on the saw as I get an opportunity as well as refine a design on one that is easier to build using traditional methods.


February 10, 2009

Tenon Clamp

Well I got this together today, and I now need to make the saw.  Salaman called this a curious tool.  So of course I had to make one.

tenon clamp

It is constructed of poplar with a maple screw and birch dowels.  I sawed and chopped the internal mortises and ripped and cross cut the external tenons.  I used a plow plane to make the groove and sawed the tenon on the end of the movable jaw.

I used a fine crosscut saw to fine fit the joints, I wished this would have been done as it would have been handy when making it.  I guess the next one will be easier.

I have a nice blade for the saw but I am not sure exactly how to secure the blade in the handle.  The illustrations don’t give enough information, so I am unsure as to how it is secured.

Then it is on to the Bilboquet.


February 8, 2009

Got Glue?

Filed under: Hide Glue,Historical Material,Of Interest,Techniques,Uncategorized — Stephen Shepherd @ 5:20 am

Well, these were sitting inside the shop when I arrived there on Saturday Morning.  I am sure I have never seen this much lovely liquid hide glue all at once, what a rush.

15 Gallons of hide glue

Fifteen Gallons of Fresh Hide Glue.  Will I be able to use this in a year?  Hell no, I will use maybe two gallons.  This belongs to a friend of mine that uses it to lay veneer.  He has a commercial cabinet shop and makes fine veneered and hardwood furniture.  Mostly large conference tables, doors and panels for commercial application.

He realizes the qualities of hide glue and is using it more and more in his modern cabinetmaking business.  This is when you want to make sure of the expiration date.  It is interesting he can only order this in the spring and fall when they make the stuff.


February 7, 2009

Traveling Ironing Board

Or it can be used for ironing sleeves on clothing.  I got an opportunity to use my new ax.  An old style American pattern belt ax, it worked well to rough shape the board.  It is a reproduction of the Ft. Meigs artifact from the Second War with England.

Traveling ironing board1

I used the Moxon smoother and a spokeshave to finish off the shape.  I sanded with 80 grit sandpaper, then got the piece wet to raise the grain.  I sanded with 180 grit then 220 and I will burnish the surface.  It will have a cloth cover of some sort and probably tacked to the board.

Traveling ironing board2

I picked up a dozen of those little cast iron clamps a couple of years ago, they were cheap, I used one to make a sewing bird but this is a much better application.

I also got an opportunity to start the tenon vise and chopped one of the open mortises.  I had noticed that Roy Underhill chopped mortises without reversing his chisel, so I gave it a try.  When I first saw it, I was a bit confused.  I saw the episode again and realized that the bevel could be used to an advantage.


As it were, the mortise happened to perfectly match the width of the bench chisel I had was just fine and in poplar it was a bit of work but produced an excellent cut.  By not reversing the chisel, I saved a fair amount of time.  I will continue to do this practice as it is much quicker.


Learn something new every day.


February 5, 2009

Bad Timing

Filed under: Historical Material,Of Interest,Restoration,Spinning Wheel,Uncategorized — Stephen Shepherd @ 7:29 pm

I have made a couple of new parts for the Swiss Spinning Wheel and need to mix up some nitric acid to do the stain.

Spinning Wheel Parts

I also discovered that the other broken part had a previous repair and the restoration piece on the end was beech.

Broken Part

So, I made a new part with a longer tenon, out of cherry.


I even matched the grain slope on the piece.  I gave it a couple more coats of seed-lac and the color is close.  It is a little light, but will darken with exposure to light.

I also worried a hole in the broken leg of the wheel.  I used a long thin gouge to make the holes for the repair dowel.

Gouge bit?

I did the same thing on the loose leg and the match was good.  I used a hardwood (birch) dowel and roughened it up with a rasp to give it a key.  Clamping this presented a problem and I tried a few clamps before I just let gravity and a rope do its job.

Clamp and a prayer

I also served some hemp thread around the fracture and used the rope to contain or compress the leg and the weight of the wheel provided the pressure to snug up the joint.  This is one of the interesting things about doing restoration work as everything is new.  Repairs may be similar, but each piece provides a new learning experience.

And why is this entitled ‘Bad Timing’?  Well I glued this together this morning and it was in the middle of my workbench.  I was proud and happy it was together, when I realized I couldn’t work on my bench.  I wasn’t about to try and move this after fussing with the rope, knot, stick and proper tension, so I let it sit.

I will think about this next time before I loose the use of my bench.


February 2, 2009

History in the making…

Filed under: Historical Material,Of Interest,Uncategorized — Stephen Shepherd @ 1:59 pm

Name the 8th President of the United States of America?

Martin Van Buren

If you had a One Dollar American ‘Gold’ coin in your pocket you would know.  The President Dollars started two years ago and they issue four (4) a year.  And this year is going to be a good one, although the previous haven’t been too bad (no comment on Jefferson or Jackson) but the others did a good job.

Washington, Adams, Jefferson and Madison were issued in 2007.  Monroe, John Quincey Adams (the first president inaugurated in trousers, before they wore knee breeches), Jackson and ?  Do you have the answer yet?  Of course it was Martin Van Buren, I am surprised he got elected as it was a dirty campaign, he was accused of being a Catholic, wearing silk shirts and riding in carriages, a lot of early mud slinging.  Yet he got a nasty job from Jackson who had decimated the Native Americans and the economy of the country.  But I won’t get into politics.

I like these coins, nothing like ‘hard coin’, especially if you don’t take that paper or card money from the States.  And they are ‘Gold’ coins!  Well, alright (after 1837 you can use the word OK as that was Van Buren’s nickname ‘Old Kinderhook’), it is gold plated.  But they look and feel good.

Some (like my sister) don’t like the fact that ‘In God We Trust’ is not on the face of the coin and she doesn’t accept them.  But that slogan appeared in 1866, prior to the American Civil War that Motto did not appear.

So go to the bank and get some hard coin and a history lesson at the same time.  The coins have the names, which Number they were and what years they served.  Now while we have our 44th President, only 43 people have been President.  Do you know why?


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