Saturday, May 30, 2015

Dining Set Tutorial #1 - Design Process and Back Chair Legs.

A dining set is quite an undertaking for any woodworker, but I seem to enjoy the challenge. There's a few folks who requested that I blog my process so this my attempt to oblige. Now, this won't be completely comprehensive, but it will show each step and point out things I think important. That said, I try new methods and learn new things with everything I build, you'll get to see some of that too.


Here we go. After getting a good idea from my aunt and uncle (whom I call "clients" for the rest of the blog, to keep it all professional-like) of what they'd like as far as wood species and design, I set out to designing the rear chair legs. My clients fancied the chair legs in this picture:

Photo from

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Brass City Records and Toolworks- The Leader of the Band Has Died

I was on the road to the Handworks show in Amana, Iowa when I received word that Walt Quadrato had lost his battle with cancer. Walt was the owner of Brass City Records and Brass City Toolworks in Waterbury, Connecticut. I can't say I knew that man well, but I considered him a friend. It's interesting the grief, the sting of loss you can feel for someone you've never met in person.

Walt was one of those people who left a lasting impact on nearly everyone he came in contact with. His love for music and vintage tools was contagious. His kindness and integrity was second to none. For local musicians, vinyl record and vintage tool lovers alike, Walt wasn't just a man, he was an institution. Walt must have had the digs on every flea market within a couple hundred miles. He would dig up the bargains, all the hard to find items, and pass them onto us. Of course, he made money doing this, but his markup was always reasonable. He priced tools so that the average guy could afford them and we woodworkers were especially grateful.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Handworks 2015 and Mr. Studley

I had a great weekend attending the Handworks event at the Amana Colonies. Being a furniture maker in Iowa, a show like this is simply too good to pass up. 

This picture prior to opening speaks to the success of the event before it even started. Obviously there are a lot of woodworkers in the midwest, and we were all excited about this event.

To begin each day it was pretty crowded in the big barn. My wife said it was filled with "man stink." (snicker) I found it wise to come back later in the day if you really wanted to visit with some of the toolmakers.