My Japanese hand saw cuts are easier now, in part, because of the practice, and also because I think the saw has been used enough that it is ‘broken in’. The saw cuts for the tails were the closest I had tried to the lines. I have been giving myself a wide berth and then using the chisel to pare down the excess. This of course adds time to the process, but means I won’t go over the line accidentally, so it let me have some success.
If I want to become good at these hand cut dovetails, then I need to get brave and make the cut as it is supposed to be made. And you know what? It worked. When the waste was removed and I slid the the tail into the pins, a strange thing happened. From above me, the ceiling seemed to open, and a bright light shone down upon my joint, angels were singing, and the joints went together. I held the snugly fitting joint up to the light, to look for gaps. The joint wasn’t perfect, so the light disappeared, the angels stopped singing, and I head a voice, “Eh, you almost nailed it. Better luck next time, Bub.”
It was true, they weren’t perfect. But they were pretty close, and the gaps can be fixed. A little paring here and there, and they will be just fine. I spent a lot of time just standing and looking at the fit. Turning it over in my hand. I haven’t cut too many sets yet, but the ones I am now making are serviceable. They aren’t like the ones that are in the woodworking magazines, but they are good enough that I like them.
Last night on Twitter, a bunch of woodworkers were hanging out and chatting. Twitter allows one to use a ‘hashtag’, which is a pound sign. The tag for last nights discussion was #woodchat. It was started by someone last week, so yesterday’s chat was the 2nd one. At 8:00, someone asked, in under 140 characters, a question for discussion. The general topic last night was ‘going pro’ and a number of woodworkers who make their living in their shops, answered questions from those of us who don’t.
I am not sure how many people exactly were participating, as the tweets fly by fairly quickly, but I would guess there were 15. I believe there were three ‘Pros’. I am miles away from making furniture, let alone making it for a living, but it was still very interesting. I was curious about the education that they had. One pro, Adam King, of (@AdamKingStudio), who I have followed for a while on twitter, said he was an avid woodworker for 8 years before he went to school for a couple of years. He went pro after 10 years of woodworking. http://www.adamkingstudio.com, is the link to his website. I encourage you to check it out, for a couple of reasons. His work is first rate. His site design is also wonderful. And if you have a twitter account, you should follow him too, as he is incredibly friendly.
If you are on Twitter, please stop by at 8:00 Central time, on Wednesday, for the next #Woodchat. It is fun. Also, if you are on Twitter, you can find me @ExtremelyAvg. Look me up, I would love to talk with anyone who reads my daily missives. You can even mock me if you like. I do love a good mocking. Until tomorrow, take care.