Several readers who have purchased the Kindle version of “The Anarchist’s Tool Chest” have asked how to add it to their iPhone or iPad and read it with the Kindle app.
This was once a difficult process, but with an update to the Kindle app in January it’s easy. So the first thing to do is make sure you are running the newest version of the Kindle app.
Now connect your iPad or iPhone to your computer and launch iTunes.
Click on your device in the left-hand sidebar of iTunes. Now click on the “Apps” tab at the top of the page.
Scroll down a bit and you will see a section called “File Sharing.” And your Kindle app will be listed. Click on the Kindle app.
Now you can add your Kindle version of the book to the app. Simply click “Add” and navigate to the file. The next time you sync your device, the book will be waiting for you in the Home section of the Kindle app.
“Ebenezer,” continued John, ” I have come to ask you a question for my mother. I want her to buy me a chest of tools, and she says she will, if you think it is a good plan. And I knew you would think it was a good plan.”
“No,” said Ebenezer, “I don’t think any such thing.”
“Why not?” asked John, much surprised.
“Because boys can’t do anything with carpenter’s tools,” said Ebenezer.
“Why, yes,” said John, “I could make a great many things with them. Think how many things you can do with your tools.”
“What you need most,” said Ebenezer, “in making things is skill, not tools.”
“Skill!” repeated John, much surprised. “We could not do anything if we had ever so much skill, unless we had tools to work with.”
“That is possible,” said Ebenezer; “but still, if you have skill, you can do a great many things with very few tools, but without the skill you cannot do anything, if you have all the tools in the world. To give a chest of tools to a boy who does not know how to use them, is like giving a pair of spectacles and a telescope to a blind man.”
Jacob Abbot’s “Boy’s Own Workshop” is a fine little book about a boy named John Gay and his driving passion to build things from wood – everything from a workbench to a pond for his little brother, Benny. Though your 21st-century eyes might find the language stilted and the lessons a bit on the Victorian side, I urge you to give it a serious look. (Dude, it’s a free book.)
If you can look past the 1866-era mores, you will find that John Gay has the heart of a true craftsman. He wants to learn how to do things right – he is willing to sign on as an apprentice with a local carpenter. And he takes great pains to do his work neatly.
And while John Gay is someone we might all identify with, the real hero of the book is Ebenezer, the 18-year-old carpenter who guides John’s education as a woodworker. Despite his young age in the book, Ebenezer dispenses the kind of wisdom that 21st-century woodworkers need.
His patience for the craft rubs off on John. His maxims for workbench design are in line with mine, for the most part. Ebenezer doesn’t think John should build a tool chest – his reasons are interesting. And his lessons on layout are worth the price of the book (dude, it’s free).
If Google Books didn’t have such an excellent scan of this book, I’d would consider republishing it. But there is no need. Go and get this book for your computer or portable reader. It’s just the thing to read as the nights get colder.
“The Anarchist’s Tool Chest” is now available in a completely DRM-free format for Kindle for $16.
This is exactly the same book – same words, photos and drawings – we have been offering since June 2011. But with the ePub version you will be able to search the entire book, write electronic notes in the margins, change the font size and (of course) carry it with you anywhere on any Kindle or Kindle app.
This Kindle version of the book is served by Lost Art Press – not Amazon – so you will be able to easily backup the file and freely move it among your electronic devices.
Unlike many electronic book files, we chose to make ours without DRM – the acronym for “digital rights management.” Many Kindle files with DRM are a pain to use. You might be restricted from copying the file for backup, or even simply copying and pasting passages from the book.
Frankly, DRM doesn’t jibe well with the philosophy of the book, the author or Lost Art Press.
Because you will download the Kindle version from us and not Amazon, you have to move it onto your Kindle manually. This is an easy process (even easier than adding a book to the iPad). Amazon offers this tutorial:
To purchase this electronic book, simply add it to your shopping cart. After you check out you will immediately be given the link to download it. If you are an international customer, the process is different. Send $16 U.S. to firstname.lastname@example.org via PayPal and we will send you the link manually.
Click here to visit our store and order the Kindle version.
“The customer is always wrong,” Felix Klipstein in the John Brown column #129, December 2002
I never got to meet John Brown, the Welsh chairmaker, artist, writer and author of “The Anarchist Woodworker” column in Good Woodworking magazine. But he is with me in the shop every day.
I saw one of his Welsh stick chairs in Good Woodworking in the 1990s, and it changed me in an instant. I knew that the chairs he’d dug up from the rustic countryside and dragged into the modern shop were exactly the type of chair I wanted to build.
Yes, I like Windsor and ladderback chairs. But Welsh stick chairs, which look more primitive and animal-like, are far more interesting to build.
I wanted to take a class with Brown, but I missed out on his short visits to the United States. And going to the United Kingdom in the 1990s to learn to build chairs was just a crazy idea with my salary and my young family.
So I sought out closer chairmakers to learn about Welsh chairs, which took me to Cobden, Ontario, and Paint Lick, Ky. Yet it has always been Brown’s chairs that I have been studying and striving for.
This fall I finished two chairs that are influenced by chairmaker Don Weber (I love the rake and splay of his legs), by Brown (the four-spindle back is classic Brown), and a little Schwarz. I lightened the arm bow, altered the seat plan and designed the crest rail from scratch.
When I sat down these chairs for the first time, I wanted to smoke a cigarette – and I don’t smoke. But Brown did (check out his book “Welsh Stick Chairs” for some great photos of this). So I might be getting close.