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Hand Tool Essentials

Refine Your Power Tool Projects with Hand Tool Techniques

By Editors of Popular Woodworking Magazine

Format: Paperback

SKU# Z0978

Learning to work with hand tools takes a little guts, some basic dexterity and some background information. In today's shop, you supply the guts, anyone can learn the dexterity and the background is best gotten from a crusty German master cabinetmaker.

Now, if you don't have a crusty German master cabinetmaker hiding in the garage, we have something almost as good that should help you on your way. We've assembled 224 pages of the best writing we've done on hand tools at Popular Woodworking and Woodworking Magazine during the last 10 years and assembled it into a full-color and reasonably priced ($24.99) book that is now available directly from us and booksellers nationwide.

Hand Tool Essentials (Popular Woodworking Books) contains articles from all of our regular contributors during the last decade, including Lonnie Bird, David Charlesworth, Adam Cherubini, Don McConnell, Frank Klausz and magazine editor Christopher Schwarz.

The 43 chapters cover a wide range of topics, from how to assemble your first kit of hand tools at a flea market for less than $100 and tune them up, to advanced topics such as how to blend bench planes with power tools, how to make custom chisel handles and how to select an exotic infill handplane.

Not only is there a wide range of subject matter in the book, there's also a wide range of opinion on what are the best practices. We tried hard not to make this a dogmatic, you-must-work-this-way book. So you'll get a good dose of 18th century techniques and philosophy from Adam Cherubini, a firm understanding of the merits of wooden-bodied planes and spokeshaves from Don McConnell, and a modern hybrid of hand and power techniques from Lonnie Bird, David Charlesworth and Christopher Schwarz.

Here are some of the raw numbers on this book: We packed nine chapters in on sharpening, five on chisels, 10 on handplanes and five on sawing. In addition, we also squeezed in complete plans for a French-style workbench, an Arts & Crafts wall-hung tool cabinet, an English sawbench and a useful miter shooting board.

Armed with the complete picture of hand work in the modern shop, we think you'll be able to find the path that's best for you. And in some ways, that approach might be even better than the advice you'd get from an old German cabinetmaker.

SKU Z0978
Additional Feature 200 color illustrations
Author/Speaker/Editor Editors of Popular Woodworking Magazine
File/Trim Size 11 x 8.5
Format Paperback
ISBN 13 9781558708150
Number Of Pages 224

Retail: $25.99

Your price: $6.99

You save: $19.00 (73%)

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Customer Reviews

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Good Instruction & Good Reference Review by GG44

I've been woodworking off and on for decades, but instruction came from watching (real life, not tv or video) and then as a hands-on self learner. I never had a "teacher" as such, so thought I would see what a more academic approach had to offer. Liked this book, the writing, the skill levels of the writers, the format, the pictures and the graphics. It's always good to be re-acquainted with what has been forgotten or needs to be re-learned, as well as learning new. It's a good instruction, as well as a good reference, book.

Published in '07, and I couldn't see that it had been updated since, it was myopic then as now about building tool sets economically from flea markets, auctions, and the like. When published Antiques Roadshow was then two years old, so shortly thereafter everyone was an expert on retail pricing, and certainly in old tools. As was evident at the time, they were being bought as collector's items, driving up the prices further, and put on coffee tables, even when the buyer didn't even know what they were. Dreaming of being able to collect olds tools at a bargain in '13 ranks with trying to find another Spindletop or the long lost Dusenberg -- not impossible but a goal in itself versus learning how to use the tools. Fortunately the time spent on the pursuit in the book is short.

Not sure what the protocol is on this site re Buy, Sell, Hold, but I would rank it as a good and worthwhile buy.

(Posted on 10/23/2013)

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