Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A New Workbench and Picks from a Chest of Wonders

Today I bought a new workbench, an 8' Roubo. Here it is in the shop:

As you can see, there is "some assembly required".  It is currently a pile of Douglas Fir 2x10 boards, needing to be dried, crosscut, ripped, planed, glued, mortised, and drawbored before it will resemble a workbench.  The wood needs to acclimate in the shop for a few months, and I want the bench yesterday, so it is good to at least be making some motion towards it.  On top of the pile are a couple alder boards milled by a neighbor using a giant gas-powered bandsaw.  Really looking forward to using wood from my road!

Hopefully, it will look a bit like this someday:

I still need to finish the lid for packing box #3, but on my way home from the lumberyard, I stopped at the home of another local woodworker for a visit and to check out a toolchest he had recently scored.  He wasn't sure what many of the items inside were, and I was delighted to share with him what I knew.  It was full of great stuff, I was quite envious.  I was able to borrow for a while:

A Stanley #92 Cabinetmaker's Rabbet Plane (a hint ugly, but in good working condition)

A plow plane which seems quite servicable, it was even sharp enough to cut some test grooves:

And a jointer plane:

I don't want to derail my studies with the metal jointer plane I have, but have been curious to compare a wooden bodied plane with mine.  This one seems in very good shape despite the paint splatters.  The iron is very sharp, though I will give it a honing anyway.  Whoever had these tools took very good care of them - almost all the edges were sharp enough to use, or nearly so.  The chest itself was interesting as well.  Hopefully some day I will go back and photograph it and some of its more interesting contents.  I dream of finding my own chest like this someday, as I guess all woodworkers do.  Amazing how these things are just given away by those who inherit them and don't know what to do with them or what they are.  This one was received for free by someone who didn't want it.

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