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The Anarchist's Tool Chest

By Christopher Schwarz

Format: Hardcover

SKU# V6835

When I am too exhausted, ill or busy to work in my shop, I will shuffle down the stairs to my 15' x 25' workshop and simply stand there for a few minutes with my hands on my tools.

To be sure, I thought I was a touch nuts because of this personality quirk. But after reading the oral histories and diaries of craftsmen from the last 300 years, I found it's actually a common trait among artisans. I am drawn, married or perhaps addicted to the things that allow me to coax wood into new shapes. At the same time, my relationship with my tools is like a tumultuous combination of an Italian family drama, a bigamist's decision about who to sleep with and a careful gardener.

This book, "The Anarchist's Tool Chest", paints a world where woodworking tools are at the center of an ethical life filled with creating furniture that will last for generations. It makes the case that you can build almost anything with a kit of less than 50 high-quality tools, and it shows you how to select real working tools, regardless of their vintage or brand name.

"The Anarchist's Tool Chest" will guide you in building a proper chest for your toolkit that follows the ancient rules that have been forgotten or ignored.

And it will make the argument that building a chest and filling it with the right tools just might be the best thing you can do to save our craft.

Like all books from Lost Art Press, "The Anarchist's Tool Chest" is printed and bound in the United States on acid-free 60# paper. The 6" x 9" hardcover is Smythe sewn and covered in linen.

SKU V6835
Author/Speaker/Editor Christopher Schwarz
Format Hardcover
ISBN 13 9780578084138
Number Of Pages 476

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Customer Reviews

5 Item(s)

per page
Chris Schwarz is the Tiger Woods of woodworking! Review by Jamie R. (from Tampa)

I don't know what that metaphor means either but both are damn good. I apologize for using profanity but it is difficult, perhaps impossible, to talk about Chris and his work without resorting to colorful language. As a ardent admirer and disciple of Saint Roy (a.k.a. Mr Underhill), I figured Chris to be a good risk, as Roy gave him the spotlight on such Woodwright Shop episodes as, "Gossamer Shavings" and that one where you learned there were three ways to saw something, called "classes." Like many others, I thought there were only two ways, "grandpa's way" which was fast and true, and my way which doglegs left before breaking off a piece. Notice how I managed to not mention the book until now. I learned that from storytellers like Roy and Chris. So buy the damn book already, and figure out for yourself why I gave it 5 stars. And finish that project of yours already, so you'll have time to read, "The Anarchist's Tool Chest" whne it arrives.

(Posted on 10/20/2013)

Just started reading, can't put it down Review by Steven

This is a truly eye opening book, as a new wood worker - I hope that his tips will save me from myself and many mistakes.

A must have for me and I think anyone else just starting this fine hobby or past time.

(Posted on 9/7/2012)

excellent narrative Review by Michael Langford (not a nickname)

Schwartz is clever, competent and engaging. This is the best "WHY TO" book I've read since Krenov. Start at the first page, sit back and enjoy the ride, or skip to Chapter 20. Copy p. 459, tack it up on your wall as a manifesto; then go out to the shop, sharpen your tools, forget about Chris Schwartz, and just BUILD something.

(Posted on 8/26/2012)

Reasons why Review by Carlos Dominguez

This book is a excellent read with valuable information regarding tools and their selections. Most importantly it validated my reasons for becoming a woodworker and encouraged me to pass it forward.

(Posted on 1/19/2012)

Buy this book! Review by John Passacantando

OK, I am trying to write a GIANT screaming hot review in a small space that I could cover with two first class stamps. I'd better get right to it, Christopher Schwarz's, The Anarchist's Tool Chest is fantastic. Seriously, it's honest to the bone. He writes with a powerful voice as though he is in the room. He's humble, funny and completely over the top. Sure, it's about the couple score tools he thinks you need to play your part in protecting the hand tool craft and then how to build the chest to hold those tools. That book alone would be worth the price. But he then nests this book into another, subtler story. This story is about self-reliance, resilience and freedom, something he calls aesthetic anarchism. Let me just put it this way. Sometimes it feels like all is lost. Like America is made up of cowards who ignore impropriety while hanging on for their little piece of baksheesh. And then we mistake a novel detailing little crummy lives, Jonathan Franzen's Freedom, for a great novel. Screw that, I was raised on Hemingway. I want bold lives, bold people, people worth reading about. People with guts. Schwarz is worth reading because he lives a live worth learning from. He acts from his heart and when he writes it sounds like a bell being rung that we can hear far across the land. Bravo! Mr. Schwarz, keep publishing. I intent to be a serial buyer.

(Posted on 11/14/2011)

5 Item(s)

per page