Leeds Design Workshops

Leeds Design Workshops, One Cottage Street, Easthampton Mass.

Learn woodworking and furniture design.

An intensive full-time learning situation emphasizing traditional technique as well as modern methods of woodworking.

Individual level instruction. amplework areas and an industrially furnished machine room provide a stimulating and efficient learning situation for the serious woodworking student ol limited experience. Bench spaces are available tor Fall 1985. Ask us about our summer workshops in traditional hand tool joinery.

Write or call:

Primrose Center

401 West Railroad St. (406) 728-5911 Missoula, MT 59801

i WOODWORKER'S DREAM STORE i

Fine Hand & Power Tools Books * Classes * Hardwoods

Inca • Hegner • Vega • Onsrud Biesemeyer • Freud • Bosch • Makita Lamella • Cutting Edge Workbench Kit

LOS ANGELES 90066 3871 G rand View Blvd. (213) 390-9723

SAN DIEGO 92126 7626 Miramar Rd., #3500 (619) 695-3990

Japanese

^festers

Tanaka Hisao, 77,masterplane maker, teaching the perfection ofplanes with Mayumi our translator, under the tall pines of Bear Brook State Park

MAHOGANY MASTERPIECES has been greatly honored by the best ofourJapanesemastercrafts-j -— ~ ■'.. men, the makers of our MASTER-

Japanese master craftsmen have ^Ljt agreed to visit us this year, to teach

^^HBk Tanaka Hisao, 77,masterplane theircenturies-old skills to American maker, teaching the perfection and Canadian woodworkers.

You can have the rare privilege to learn from centuries of mastercrafts-manship, from five of the best of Japan's masters. Master plane maker perfect yours, sharpen to the ultimate edge, master saw maker perfect yours, sharpening and repair, master temple carpenter cut Japanese joinery, master shojii maker bring one home, master craftsman private coach.

Our Second Annual JAPANESE MASTERS SEMINAR will occur this summer in scenic Bear Brook State Park, New Hampshire. Now is the time to register for the seminar. The number of participants is strictly limited to provide each student the opportunity of individual contact and assistance with the masters on a very personal level of comraderie. This year our JAPANESE MASTERS SEMINAR will have three levels of participation: 3 days, 5 days, and 10 days with two days oH to tour historic New England.

Our JAPANESE MASTERS SEMINAR is the Tanglewood, the Woodstock of woodworkers, a very special time and rare opportunity in the most pleasant natural surroundings.

For further free information on our JAPANESE MASTERS SEMINAR, please call or write about "the woodworking event of the year".

Volume 1 of our Newsletter is available for $2.00, our prize-winning New Photo Catalogue of MASTERPIECE TOOLS is available for $5.00.

SUNCOOK, N.H. 03275 USA (603) 736-8227

SUNCOOK, N.H. 03275 USA (603) 736-8227

Peler Dean MFA Graduate 1984

Gaming Table, 1983 Ebony holly and pearwood 30" x34" x34"

For Information:

Patricia Doran

Program in Artisanry fW 5

Boston University

620 Commonwealth Avenue

Boston, MA 02215

617353-2022

Boston University is an equal opportunity institution.

"One of the finest programs in the country..."

New York Times

Boston University Program in Artisanry

A professional school for the design, construction, management, and study of fine and production crafts. M.F.A., B,F.A., A,F.A. degrees and a offered in and ceramics. Come enjoy the cultural and historic riches of Boston in a supportive and challenging environment.

  • Accelerated degree programs for transfer students.
  • Intensive summer programs at foundation and advanced levels for educators, professionals, and transfer students.
  • Part-time and noncredit courses for beginning and advanced students.
  • Close contacts with prominent museum curators, gallery directors, and collectors.
  • Nationally known faculty and administrators who care about you and your career
  • Financial aid available (inquire early).

Q &A (continued)

ly only Vi2 in. to % in. long. Their holes are tiny and concentrated in one area, so the wood appears to have been hit with a shotgun blast.

In general, the adult beetle lays eggs either in the bark or in the wood pores. The eggs hatch into grubs that eat the wood. The grubs emerge into beetles and the cycle repeats. Depending on conditions, a few months to several years may be required to complete one generation.

There are several steps you can take to limit damage by these insects. First, freshly cut trees should be sawn and dried as soon as possible. Old infested wood harbors the borers and should be destroyed.

Heating infested wood to 130°-140°F for several hours will kill the grubs, eggs and beetles, but it won't prevent reinfestation. Even the center of the piece must be thoroughly heated. Unfortunately, it's difficult to avoid damaging green or thick stock at these temperatures.

Pesticides such as lindane (0.5% concentration) are another alternative. Follow the directions provided on the product label. For long-horned bores, when only limited damage is present, you can inject the pesticide directly into the holes. For powderpost beetles you can spray or brush it on. It kills the beetles when they emerge and prevents reinfestation. The availability of pesticides varies from state to state, and changes constantly. Therefore, be sure to check any such restrictions by contacting the state chemists' office.

[Daniel Cassens is associate professor of wood products at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind.]

Fastening tabletops l plan to make a writing table with a %-in. thick solid-walnut top. How should l fasten the 26-in. by 42-in. top to the 1-in. by 5-in. apron to allow for cross-grain movement of the top?

—Gary Van Rheenen, Hawarden, lowa Tage Frid replies: The best way to fasten a solid top to the apron is to use wooden blocks that can slide in a groove cut in the apron. These are often called buttons. When you screw on

the blocks, they should pull the top down firmly. You'll need a block at each corner and three blocks evenly along each long side. Don't put the corner blocks right up against the legs. Fasten the top permanently in the center of each end by putting a screw at an angle through the apron into the top. The top will move the same amount on each side of the screw. [Tage Frid is a retired cabinetmaker and professor emeritus at the Rhode Island School of Design.]

Filler on burl veneer l veneered a bed headboard with birch veneer that has a swirly grain accented by flash figures and iridescent blisters. Because of the different hardnesses of the blisters, figures and the rest of the wood, l can't sand this surface perfectly smooth. Is there a neutral-colored filler that will level the surface and also take the stain and finish l want to use for the rest of the birch-plywood bedroom set?

—Fred W. Breheim, Arlington Heights, III. Don Newell replies: A filler would level the surface, but it will look terrible when you apply stain. You'll end up with stain-blotched patches of filler in the low spots that will hide the fancy figure you paid for in the first place. You might as well try to level the veneer with plaster of paris.

Sand the veneer by hand, backing up your sandpaper with a hardwood block. Smooth out the rough spots as much as possible. For the smoothest finish, apply several coats of a filmbuilding material such as lacquer or varnish; with lacquer, the more coats the better. Sand by hand (with the block) between coats. Eventually, you'll build up a film that will smooth out any remaining surface irregularities.

[Don Newell is a finishes chemist and consultant in Farmington, Mich.]

Converting 110V to 220V

lve been told that a single-phase electric motor designed to be run on either 110 volts or 220 volts has a distinct power advantage when set up to run on 220 volts. From another source l've heard that the advantage is small and hardly noticeable. Who's correct and is it worthwhile to rewire a 1-hp tablesaw motor to 220 volts?

—Keven Rabenaldt, Midland, Tex. Michael RekoffJr. replies: There is no advantage in making the conversion. A dual-voltage motor has two identical windings with, say, N turns each. The connections for 110 volts and 220 volts are shown in the

Centrifugal switch drawing at right. The torque that's produced by both connections is identical. Motor speed will also be identical, therefore power will be the same no matter which voltage you use. Motor power is the torque in foot pounds times the speed in rpm. The only way you can get more power from an induction motor without shortening its expected life is to immerse the motor in a low-temperature environment or force-cool the motor with an auxiliary blower. [Michael Rekoff Jr. is professor of electrical engineering at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.]

Readers can'tfind:

  • an owners' manual for a Sears Craftsman 6-in. planer model No. 103 1801. - Robert G. Swanson, Manchester, Mo.
  • information about an Egan 24-in. thickness planer.
  • Gary J. Moore, Marianna, Pa. . . a wholesale ource for bone and horn.
  • Abe Weinberg, Brooklyn, N. Y.

Sources of supply:

  • Adapters for using router bits with Y,Y,-in. dia. shanks in Delta or Powermatic shapers are available from Rudolf Bass, Inc., 45 Halladay St., Jersey City, N.J. 07304.
  • Lumber-grading rules and drying-kiln instruments are available from Conway-Cleveland Corp., 2320 Oak Industrial Dr. E, Grand Rapids, Mich. 49505.
  • Beveled glass is available from Lustro Mirror and Glass, Box 26, Commerce & Jackson Sts., Port Carbon, Pa. 17965.

110-volt source Main

110-volt source Main

Send queries, comments and sources of supply to Q&A, Fine Woodworking, Box 355, Newtown, Conn. 06470.

For unsurpassed accuracy, pick up the heavy duty saw that isn't heavy.

The Skilsaw 551 circular saw.

Circular Saw Labelld Machine

Less to lug.

It weighsjust 6' i pounds. So It's easier to handle and harder to put down.

Built to last.

The industrial grade ball bearing construction will last and last and last.

Precision balanced.

The 551 is precision balanced (or greater comfort, control, and accuracy.

Ac curate depth scale, it has a steel depth-of-c ut scale that s easy to adjust and accurate to use. No other saw in its class does.„

Biggest little blade.

The 551 is the only heavy duty circular saw with a 5"/» inch blade. That means, you can cut 2x boards in a snap.

See where you're going.

The 551 has a left-sided blade. So you can see your line-of-cut more clearly, ." 1

Keeps you in line.

The adjustable line-of-cut guide, a 551 exclusive, keeps your saw blade cutting on the line, everytime.

No heavy duty price

The 551 is the lowest priced heavy duty saw in its class.

OC' « ST Of H "SON «»I Nut <-WC»GO U .OMfl

Handbook of Building Crafts in Conservation by Jack Bowyer. Van Nostrand Reinhold Co., 135 W. 50th St, New York, N.Y. 10020, 1981. $46.00, hardcover; 375 pp.

In 1823 honored English architect/engineer Peter Nicholson published The New Practical Builder and Workman's Companion, which presented an enormous amount of somewhat superficial information about the various trades involved with the construction of Georgian and Regency buildings in the 18th and 19th centuries. This new volume reprints most of Nicholson's book, but in an effort to make it pertinent to today's restoration and conservation work, architect Jack Bowyer assembled a group of outstanding craftsmen to comment on Nicholson'S treatise, chapter by chapter, trade by trade.

The quality of Nicholson'S original remarks naturally varies with his familiarity with the trade under discussion. For instance, his presentation of the house painter's trade is described by painting essayist Ian Bristow as being not only deficient, but in large measure plagiarized. On the other hand, pages and pages of accurate geometrical analysis of all manner of architectural shapes by masons and carpenters attest to the young icholson's early interest in mathematics, and his later training as an engineer. The quality of modern commentary also varies. A specialist in historic-building repair, Bristow clearly enjoys and is suited to his discussion of painting. On the other hand, Peter Winter's training as a brickmaker seems to leave him with less scholarly enthusiasm and writing ability, resulting in a very weak essay. With few exceptions, the commentaries drift along, loosely describing what each trade is like today, and leaving the job of comparing the two worlds up to the reader. Unchanged techniques and designs are often painfully redescribed in the modern text. I did not find much "heart" in the work.

The format of this new folio-size presentation of the Handbook also leaves much to be desired. Nicholson's words appear as reproductions of what seem to be the original pages, bordered in gray to further set them off from the commentaries, which are printed in modern block lettering on plain white. Each essay is randomly shuffled into the pages of original text, making a sort of side-by-side "annotated" reading very difficult. I ended up first reading Nicholson's chapter, then going back to hunt for the pages of the usually shorter commentary. True annotation would have been much more valuable and instructive.

The information is nonetheless interesting to the layman familiar with only one or two of the crafts. I found myself particularly absorbed by the chapters on stone cutting, slating, and plain or decorative plastering. The woodworker has two hefty chapters to enjoy: Carpentry and Joinery (" . . .a carpenter fixes [in place] what a joiner constructs"), the former discussed by master joiner and builder/conservator Giles Munby, and the latter by Harry Munn and David Wallis, both of the firm G.E. Wallis & Sons, who have twice won national awards for the treatment of historic sites in Britain. These two chapters are fairly solid how-to descriptions of various aspects of the crafts, but do not really speak to the point of conservation, merely restoration, a distinction I shall discuss in the review that follows. Care to frame out an elliptical domed roof? See page 190. How about laying out the flutings of a column or pilaster? Turn to page 222.

Though interesting almost as novelty, Bowyer's "overview" of Nicholson's text does not have a clear focus, and because of the diversity of topics, it lacks the substance available only in source books concentrating on a single subject.

So cheerfully accept this rather expensive book as a birthday present, but save your own money for a few Audel™ books on the subject of your choice. —Michael Sandor Podmaniczky

Furniture Care and Conservation by Robert F. McGif-fin, Jr. The American Association for State and Local History, 708 Berry Rd, Nashville, Tenn. 37204, 1983. $16.00 for AASLH members, 117.95 for nonmembers, hardcover; 233 pp.

While Bowyer's Handbook, contrary to its title, really is not about conservation, Furniture Care and Conservation is one of the few books available that treats the subject directly. It would be nearly impossible, however, to write a textbook on the profession of furniture conservation, since the conservator is required to be proficient in fields as diverse as organic chemistry, metallurgy and wood joinery. So what McGiffin does is not so much give us a how-to, but rather tell what conservation is: a science, distinct from restoration. Before proceeding, I want to make it clear that I'll use and define the terms "conservation" and "restoration" very carefully in order to make an important point, and that I intend no offense to the many skilled craftsmen who repair and restore damaged furniture of no historical significance.

In .simplest terms, restoration addresses the status of an object only in the present, with little or no regard for how the restorative treatment will react over time, or how this treatment will affect the historical significance of the object. In restoration, if it looks right, it is right. In conservation, however, the conservator approaches every object as an artifact that exists in a cultural continuum and is merely passing through the present on its way to the future. Conservation is the science of making this journey comfortable without compromising the historical integrity of the piece. Appreciation of this idea gives meaning to the tenets of conservation as expressed by McGiffin and by the code of ethics of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (AlC): restraint and reverSibility. This means that a conservator is primarily concerned with doing what is necessary to stabilize the degeneration of an object in such a way that his work can be undone in the future when further work may be needed or when technology makes better treatment possible. Though a conservator will often tone down blemishes, or enhance a worn or faded finish, the appearance of age is considered an historical record of the artifact's journey. Total regeneration is not sought because it could cause irreparable harm to this record; rather, preservation is the goal.

McGiffin has written this book for non-conservators who deal with old furniture: collectors, curators and craftsmen. His major accomplishment is in making the reader appreciate the weighty responsibility of stabilization, preservation and maintenance of artifacts. Yet he also describes procedures that can be carried out by the amateur to assist the conservator with his task.

Though it is a trite expression, tour de force keeps coming to mind as I continue to reread this book. McGiffin covers, albeit briefly, every phase of the conservator's job, from preliminary inspection, through cleaning and repairing, to post-treatment care or storage. Whatever the subject, he makes it clear that there is a line between what can or should be attempted by the talented amateur and what properly requires the skills of a conservator.

I see this book as a backfire set to control the uninformed and, in many cases, destructive treatment of period furniture by well-intentioned but untrained hands. It therefore becomes a guide for the partially trained, not so much for what to do when conserving a piece, but where to stop-a gentle but firm lecture on where to draw the line. Every conservator will find something to disagree With, but the profession owes McGiffin a tip of the hat for the larger service he provides. As for useful information, the appendix is loaded: sources of supply, read-

Wood Working 101

Wood Working 101

Have you ever wanted to begin woodworking at home? Woodworking can be a fun, yet dangerous experience if not performed properly. In The Art of Woodworking Beginners Guide, we will show you how to choose everything from saws to hand tools and how to use them properly to avoid ending up in the ER.

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Responses

  • Maria
    Does a circular saw machine have a natural degeneration?
    8 years ago

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