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Australian Woodsmith

Issue 166

Australian Woodsmith is packed with all the tips and tricks from experts with years of experience. We include templates, plans and projects that will keep you busy in the workshop for hours, or at least until the next issue hits the newsstands. Australian Woodsmith is a woodworking magazine that brings exploded illustrations, step-by-step instructions and techniques to the dedicated timber hobbyist.

Paragon Media Pty Ltd
6 Issues

in this issue

2 min

Israel Martin’s fabulous sycamore jewellery box on page 40 was inspired by the Japanese master woodworker Kenji Suda. Kenji Suda is a fifth-generation woodworker who is a master of the Japanese craft called “Sashimono”. This craft has an emphasis on showcasing the wood itself: its grain, tones and character, and not the joinery that locks the piece together. It is also a very pure form of woodwork that relies on joinery, no screws or nails are used, only concealed and expertly-cut joints (usually secret dovetails) lock the boxes, drawers, cases and cabinets together. Sashimono is built to last and is expected to be handed down the generations. Every aspect of the artform is refined, steeped in history and held in high regard by Japanese society. Kenji Suda himself was awarded the…

4 min
tips & techniques

MICRO MESH GRITS I kept losing the grit chart that came with my set of Micro Mesh sanding pads. Instead of relying on the chart to match the colour to the grit, I decided to mark the sides of the pads with a fine-tipped marker. Now, I can quickly see what grit the pad is and no longer have to worry about the colour chart. Greg Kopp STROP CUSHION I often use hold-downs to lock my work in place. However, using a hold-down with softer woods can often leave dents in the workpiece. When chopping dovetails, I use a leather strop as a cushion between the holdfast and the stock. It keeps the workpiece from getting dented, and also keeps the strop close at hand. That way, while I chisel away I can quickly…

1 min
next issue of australian woodsmith on sale 2nd december 2021 - issue 167

In our next issue we take a look at wooden penstock and find out why wooden pipes and barrels still have a role to play in our modern world. We review sandpapers and look into what makes each type different. Traditional hide glues are explored and their modern equivalents reviewed. The woodworking techniques we showcase are how to cut trenches, grooves and circles with a router and how to cut tilted tenons on a table saw. Our weekend project is a staved patio planter, while the designer project is an elegant floor lamp. The heirloom project is an Empire chest of drawers that includes split turned spindles. The turning project is a Japanese-inspired kendama sword and ball toy that is bound to put a smile on a young face. As…

5 min
boys’ toys, books & gear

TIGER 2500 WETSTONE GRINDER There are quite a few clones of the successful Swedish-designed and manufactured Tormek wetstone grinding system on the market. The original is still the best, however the price simply puts it out of range for most woodworkers. On the price spectrum, the best value for money wetstone grinder on the market today is the Scheppach TiGer 2500 package deal from Hare and Forbes. Wetstone grinding has the intrinsic advantage of a slow RPM wheel that runs through a water bath. This keeps the stone cool, clean and wet. What happens with a standard grinding wheel is that it runs hot and quickly gets impregnated with the sparks it produces. It is the metal-on-metal friction of a clogged grinding wheel that overheats the blade being ground. That is why…

6 min
morrisons’ huon pine sawmill mill

No visit to Tasmania is complete until you have spent time on the rugged west coast, cruised the Gordon River and spent time in a working belt-driven Huon pine sawmill. PINERS Huon pine is a slow growing (0.3-2mm per year) tree that is only found in the rugged rainforests of Tasmania. What makes the species so special is the presence of the essential oil, methyl eugenol. A Huon pine tree can have up to 7% of its weight made up of this oil, making the logs super buoyant and able to be floated out of rivers while still green. Huon pine is a perfect boat building timber, it is close grained, can be steam bent, easily worked and (because of the preservative powers of methyl eugenol) will never rot. These characteristics are why the…

3 min
apron planes

The modern low angle block plane is based on the Stanley 102 block plane first manufactured in 1877. This was the smallest block plane that Stanley was producing at the time and was designed to shave butchers blocks smooth at the end of the day, as well as to tidy up joints, trim edges and shoot end grain. Because of its small size, it was often referred to as an apron plane. JAPANESE PLANES There is no such thing as a Japanese apron plane, however the three planes featured below all weigh less than 100 grams and truly do feel weightless in an apron pocket. The chamfer plane standing on its end has lived in my apron pocket for twenty years. The 3mm groove down the centre lets the plane nest on…