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A Pause for Thought

Just thought I would pause for a moment so we can observe this beautiful March sunset, looking West over the roof of the Waney Edge Workshop.


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A Family of Hand Planes

Here is The Waney Edge Family of Hand Planes, all made by me (by hand) in my workshop.

These were made from scratch; no kits were involved (I don’t even think kits can be got any more!)

They are all excellent user planes and are frequently put to work. Made from

brass and exotic hardwoods each one is designed for a specific task.IMG_5275[1]

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Radial Arm Saw; to Have or not to Have!

Tool of the Week Winner
This project won Tool of the Week at


Best Documented Build WinnerThis Project also won ‘Best Documented Build’ for March 2016 at Homemade

 To have or not to have a Radial Arm Saw? That is the question.The following is the text of an item, an abridged version of which, I posted on the forum recently. It concerns the perennial argument regarding Radial Arm Saws. Of its nature, the post was brief and therefore, certain safety issues had to be omitted. Be aware however, that every possible safety procedure is adhered to in my shop when using the RAS or any other machine or  tool (always including eye-protection and ear-protection)..
The article is my modest contribution to the argument ‘for’ Radial Arm Saws. I would appreciate feedback from other RAS users.
Please note: you are responsible for your own safety. Your shop, your tools and machines, machine settings, maintenance and methods etc. may all vary from mine. The methods and systems described here work for me. They may not work for you. It is up to you to ensure safe systems in your own work shop. Be aware that all machinery and even hand tools are dangerous; you may suffer serious and even fatal injury if proper care is not taken. You have been warned.

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Making Something Useful from Nothing!

I love making something useful from offcuts and left-overs in the shop. Consequently, I never throw anything away. I keep odd brackets, offcuts of wood and metal, spare knobs, bolts, nuts etcetera etcetera.

Last weekend I came upon a lovely little piece of Padauk in my offcut box while looking for something else. “Aha!” I thought. “What to do with this!”   I figured something to go with my newly acquired wood lathe would be useful. The result was this:


A bowl depth gauge. The piece of Padauk is 11″ long which is very close to the swing capacity of my lathe and the depth rod shown will dive 5.5″ into a bowl.

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A Small “between projects” Project

I have been lucky to acquire a wood turning lathe for very small money at an auction; almost new, very little used.             Yes, believe it or not I have never owned a wood lathe; I’ve had a metal working lathe for years but not a wood lathe. Consequently I have never turned a bowl before, not in my whole life! Hard to believe perhaps but true.  Anyway, having got the lathe home I decided to give it a run; this is the result:

IMG_5152[1]                       IMG_5151[1]

Marble wood with a segmented rosewood rim and artificial ivory band. I don’t have a scroll chuck yet so the bowl was held by screwing to a face plate. I had to make a Donut chuck to work the bottom of the bowl:

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Introducing the Sky Road Chess Set

This chess set is now complete and can be seen in detail on my sister blog, House of Brendon Chess.


A Preview of Latest Project!

Here is a preview of my latest project; a stunning new Chess Set. The set is still in the making and will take some time to finish. It will be detailed in full on my other blog, . See link.  I will post more pictures shortly.

IMG_4953[1]                                  IMG_4937[1]

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Chess Board

Finally, I have had the time to complete the board for my chess set.


As you will see, it is a little different than the usual checkerboard design.

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Solid Brass Contemporary Chess Set


IMG_4659[1]   This is my latest creation. A solid brass, contemporary style chess set

with Padauk and artificial ivory inlay. Each piece was individually turned on the lathe  (no CNC machines allowed in my shop!) and yes, it was somewhat of a painstaking undertaking. You only begin to appreciate how many pieces there are in a chess set when you go about making one. Turning the pawns seems to go on forever.

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Old Style Smoothing Plane


This is the first of the three “new design” hand planes I have been working on.

In keeping with my practice of naming my hand planes after Irish geographical features, this one is called The Mannin Bay. At under 7″ in length it is a neat, sweet plane with some interesting features. Not least among these is the Oak Leaf detail on the front.

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