Brian put up a new video, I don't usually watch his videos, but I
decided to see what he is up to.
I felt uncomfortable watching him with a chisel, and using a block
plane, when he should have been using a bench plane...
He was twisting the chisel back and forth in a manner that showed he
does not know how to clean out the waste.
I also thought the box should have had separators that were less thick..
it looked like a tank.
I know I am nit picking, but if you are going to put out a video of how
to, you should be good at it. There seem to be a lot of people
producing videos that are not very good. They have some good ideas
(sometimes).. but woodworking was something that in the past you learned
as an apprentice. And while that is not the case any longer, we all need
to hone our skills before showing everyone else how NOT to do it.
I realize Brian may take offense to this.. Sorry Brian, but I felt
embarrassed for you watching your cleanup with the chisel.
Are your thoughts about the chisel that he should not have tried to
"pry" with it?
Should he have made a "stop cut", and then cut to that--or something else?
I think a genuine beginner would not be able to follow everything that
what was going on in the video well enough to copy all of the operations
(and wouldn't have all of the tools anyway), so I can't claim to be
upset with it. He didn't claim to be an expert, so it seems hard to be
too picky (for me). If we must wait for someone to become expert in
every aspect before they can make any videos, then we might not get
any.. I'm sure he will value your constructive criticism. I know I would!
I watched the same video again and one more. To me, it seems like
"safety" is the thing that mostly needs to be taught. A beginner could
walk away with the idea that it's cool to be "cavalier". When I think
back to my h.s. shop classes, "safety" is the one of the things that I'm
most grateful for learning about. How does a beginner get those
lessons? Blood? Maybe it's better if ones starts with hand tools...
If you mean the twisting back and forth yes, otherwise prying is sought
of ok... we pry when mortising, but we never twist when wasting... you
just push forward, or for heavier work, you tap with a mallet. For this,
you just push , and use your body for light wasting. For very light you
use your arms. With a sharp chisel that should have been butter. Even
maple just cuts easily for that. That chisel was treated like a
screwdriver. A gouge on the other hand can be used that way.... well
sought of, you can rotate the gouge back and forth to cut
I had no problem with his using a saw to stop the cut.. I would have
just used a chisel strike. But that's a matter of preference.
Well for a beginner teaching bad habits or wrong technique just teaches
the person the wrong way.. which then becomes gospel to the beginner
because they saw someone they trusted doing it.
On Saturday, March 29, 2014 6:50:45 PM UTC-4, woodchucker wrote:
- I much prefer the feel of my block plane in my hand and it far out perfor
ms 'my' bench plane in cut quality.
- The block plane did the job that I needed done to high standards. The jo
b at hand was getting the waste left by the jointer flush with the jointed
side. This can be felt with a finger swipe to the thousands of an inch. S
ome regions along the length need to be hit harder than others because of t
he variation in the rough lumber. Some regions are not touched w/ the bloc
k plane. A block plane is perfect for this.
Not sure if you noticed or not, but I had only 1/4" of material to the righ
t of the rabbet.
I had to be extremely careful not to blow that out to the right (front of t
he piece). That is the reason why I cut the right side with a flush trim s
aw. I needed to cut as much of the fibers as I could to help prevent blow
out. I then used the chisel to 'lift and tear' the wood fibers and lift th
em into the saw cut for removal. Very effective.
This was the bottom of the piece. My ONLY concern was not blowing out the
wood to the front.
All that was needed was to remove waste for the plywood bottom.
It's difficult to tell at 600X speed but this process was done with great p
recision and caution and was very successful.
The customer (wife) wanted 1/2" and this is what was delivered.
I appreciate your opinion on this but I bet if you saw it in person
you'd like it more.
While I was a little shocked to read someone trying to rip me apart, I took
no offense, seriously. The fan mail I receive, on a weekly basis, from pe
ople all around the world describing to me how I've taught them woodworking
and how I've 'raised their game' far out weight your comments. :)
I've heard from people in the past that say, while I'm a good woodworker,
I do not always follow 'convention' (here's one : http://froggybuilder.com/
It's my opinion that the ones that feel this way are usually taught 'conven
tion' from woodworking classes in a more traditional manner.
I'd agree that I don't always follow convention, and that my philosophy on
woodworking isn't to make sure I am using the traditional hand plane for th
e job, that follows convention, but to make sure that I am using the tool t
hat will get the job done to the standards that I hold.
On 3/30/2014 11:25 AM, email@example.com wrote:
No a block plane is not perfect.. a bench plane is, it levels to a
larger area. A block plane works small areas, or chamfers. Like I said
this may have been nitpicking.. And this was not that... critical. Why
does your block plane exceed your bench plane, because it is a veritas
block plane that cost more? or because the blade on your bench plane is
not sharp. Or is it technique?
Nice twist Brian, but I had no problem with the saw. Your chisel
technique is horrendous. You can twist that to your sawing. I
specifically referenced your chiseling. It was awful. Use the cutting
edge.. Don't twist it like a screw driver.. It was ugly, and there was
not a lot of precision the way you handled it.
On Sunday, March 30, 2014 11:41:48 AM UTC-4, woodchucker wrote:
rforms 'my' bench plane in cut quality.
e job at hand was getting the waste left by the jointer flush with the join
ted side. This can be felt with a finger swipe to the thousands of an inch
. Some regions along the length need to be hit harder than others because
of the variation in the rough lumber. Some regions are not touched w/ the
block plane. A block plane is perfect for this.
right of the rabbet.
of the piece). That is the reason why I cut the right side with a flush tr
im saw. I needed to cut as much of the fibers as I could to help prevent b
low out. I then used the chisel to 'lift and tear' the wood fibers and lif
t them into the saw cut for removal. Very effective.
the wood to the front.
at precision and caution and was very successful.
took no offense, seriously. The fan mail I receive, on a weekly basis, fro
m people all around the world describing to me how I've taught them woodwor
king and how I've 'raised their game' far out weight your comments. :)
nvention' from woodworking classes in a more traditional manner.
on woodworking isn't to make sure I am using the traditional hand plane fo
r the job, that follows convention, but to make sure that I am using the to
ol that will get the job done to the standards that I hold.
Maybe I wasn't clear. Let me try again:
I cut the fibers as I could to help prevent blow out. I then used the chis
el to 'lift and tear' (TWISTING MOTION) the wood fibers and lift them into
the saw cut for removal. Very effective. Again, this was the bottom of th
e piece where plywood has to sit. My only concern was preventing blowout.
This was done with great precision and was very effective. Not sure why th
is such a sticking point for you.
My impression of you, based on what little I've read by you and your choice
of words, that your goal here is more about attacking me than providing ho
Because of this, I feel it is pointless to continue. You may continue, as I
'm sure you will, to spew your garbage, but I will save you the trouble of
looking for a response from me.
Because you responded so quickly to my last, I know you are just salivating
to respond to this one.
wrote in message
On Saturday, March 29, 2014 6:50:45 PM UTC-4, woodchucker wrote:
I would probably have done this waste removal in the same basic manner...
This as it would have been real easy to blow out the short grain after the
saw cut as the stop cut wasn't a full stop cut, i.e., it didn't reach the
full depth of the rabbet. The saw cut was at an angle, much like you'd get
sawing the pins for half blind dovetails, so you couldn't depend on a simple
splitting action to remove the waste. You also couldn't risk chopping into
the saw cut as it would have been more likely to blow out the short grain at
the end of the board than it would compress the waste wood in the rabbet.
That was a tense bit of waste removal... and it was successful. The emphasis
here on successful. ;~)
On Sunday, March 30, 2014 10:02:12 PM UTC-4, John Grossbohlin wrote:
It was a little hair raising. I probably should have explained the purpose
of the saw cut. Sometimes I make the the mistake of assuming that the log
ic behind certain tasks are obvious. When producing these videos, I run th
e risk of too much commentary and not enough action. I 'think' I balance t
his well, but maybe not; it's tough to please everyone, so they say, as mad
e evident by this thread.
I am left vexed by how someone can criticize someones process when said pro
cess is not unsafe, and produces the end result required in a reasonable am
ount of time.
This is one of those things where having some feedback helps you get it
better the next time.... ;~) I've learned a lot from my "student's"
questions when I've lectured at Woodworkers Showcase, or taught classes, or
during may days interpreting at Colonial Williamsburg. It's the old story
of being so familiar with something that you assume everyone already knows
it or gets it.... That said, I've had some really off the wall questions
over the years... I remember a teenage kid at CW who was totally dismayed at
the question his father asked and his dismay was obvious to the entire
roomful of people. ;~)
I think we all have an "Ah Ha" moment... For example, I studied the
hand-cut dovetailing techniques of a lot of "experts" over the years and
there is a lot of variance. I can cut them like Tage Frid, or Frank Klaus,
or Chris Schwarz, or Roy Underhill, or like the "mirrors and 747 land light"
crowd in the magazines. They will all give good results as long as you keep
a few basic rules in mind. Whatever you cut first dictates what you cut
second... and make sure you cut in the waste. ;~) To make that point I
taught a dovetailing seminar one time where I used a different technique for
each pair of pins and tails and it still went together the first time
without fussing with it. One year I did the Frank Klaus approach, live in
front of an audience at Showcase, with no sliding bevel or ruler or
divider... again, it went together the first time with no fuss.
The "Ah Ha" happens when you see that there are often a LOT of different
ways to accomplish the same thing. That was one area where Norm Abram did a
good job over the years.... he used different techniques across shows to
accomplish the same task.
It's all good...
My first thought, watching him holding a router in one hand and the workpiece in the other was
"What an idiot. Doesn't he know what clamps are for?".
Then I saw his left hand ... and realized, no, he doesn't.
I've been watching your videos for a long time and enjoyed the desk
organizer video too. I don't know why other posters have such an issue with
your techniques. There's more than one way to get a job done, and everyone
has their own way of doing things. I didn't see anything that looked
dangerous or foolish to me.
Many of us don't own an assortment of planes. I only own a small block
plane and rarely ever use it. I would probably have done something similar
to what you did, or would have figured out some way to accomplish the task
with a router (maybe a flush trim bit). Actually, I don't even own a
jointer, so I would probably just use my planer (with a sled if needed).
All that matters is you ended up with a flat surface.
I have a small assortment of chisels, but have never taken time to sharpen
them. So I have to work a little harder than someone with more experience
might. It's just not something I do enough that it concerns me.
In any case, keep doing what you're doing. I find your videos enjoyable
and, like most woodworking videos, I usually learn something new. Seeing
how different people handle a task is more valuable to me than watching the
established proper method.
Keep up the good work!
a dull tool is the most dangerous tool. You have to put so much more
pressure and effort into cutting. And that is what a chisel does cut...
not pry and tear the waste to precision.
So I have to work a little harder than someone with more experience
Sorry, but that just sounds like excuses. If you aren't working with
sharp tools, they are not only dangerous to you but to the workpiece.
You will have no feel of the wood, tearing instead of slicing.
I taught my kids from the time they could walk that the most dangerous
tool is a dull tool. There are good reasons for that.
³Youth ages, immaturity is outgrown, ignorance can be educated, and drunkenness
sobered, but stupid lasts forever.² -- Aristophanes
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