Behind that is the far-too-nice-to-throw-away wee box that Chris’s “Unturned Pencil” came in (the maker would no doubt appreciate your noticing the Robertson screws).
Then it’s on to the IBEX violin plane that someone told Chris he couldn’t live without. Turns out he could – but it looks cute on the shelf. Not as cute, however, as the Bern Billsberry teensy coffin smoother (for which we unfortunately seem to have lost the wedge).
Behind the small planes we have a few cutaway views of joints. The round one is inherited from Jennie Alexander, and shows the interlocking rungs that are a hallmark of her chairs (you can learn all about them in “Make a Chair from a Tree“). The rectangular ones are to show students that drawboring a mortise-and-tenon joint really does work (so many skeptics about pre-industrial woodworking technology!).
Plus a few larger tools – a Wayne Anderson sliding bevel gauge (it’s a gorgeous tool – and worth a closer look).
And finally, we have a scrub plane made by John Wilson, of Shaker box supplies fame. I seem to have inadvertently, uh, permanently borrowed it circa early December 2017. Oops.
p.s. This is the sixth post in the Covington Mechanical Library tour. To see the earlier ones, click on “Categories” on the right rail, and drop down to “Mechanical Library.” Or click here.
To my friends, the American millionaires, to whom I have given the proceeds of many years of toil on a Nebraska farm, all of whom have leisure, and some of whom have brains enough to comprehend political and social science, this work is respectfully dedicated.
The U.K.’s Classic Hand Tools (CHT) has organized an auction of David Charlesworth’s hand tools – 100 of the best tools he amassed and used in his storied and half-century woodworking and teaching career. The auction proceeds will benefit David’s wife, Pat.
The tools – each professionally photographed and properly described – are available for preview viewing now, and are arranged by tool type – planes, saws, chisels etc. CHT notes that more information about each tool, and a price guide, will be added as/if that information becomes available. Online bidding begins on November 24 and ends on December 1 at 4 p.m. GMT. These are tools that David actually used, and as such are in excellent condition and ready to put to work.
This is a “best offer” sale – the person who submits the highest bid in the closed auction will be the winner. CHT will ship the items at cost. For more on how to bid and how it works, take a look at any of the items on the CHT pages – at the bottom of each is a link for bidding information. Here again is the link for the main auction page.
We had such fun in last year’s Chairmaker’s Toolbox class that we’re doing it again! Chris will be leading a group of six in a free stick chair class in the Lost Art Press shop Sept. 18-22, 2023. The scholarship covers both tuition and materials for the chair.
The emphasis of this class is to teach those who are underepresented in our ranks, and to help create a new generation of woodworkers who teach. There are two spots available for students who have some chairmaking experience and want to teach others, and four spots for students with little-to-no chair experience but who have some sort of active teaching practice (elementary school math, academic writing, shop maintenance in educational facility, podcasting, etc).
The class is being organized by Aspen Golann, who runs The Chairmaker’s Toolbox. You can find out about all the Chairmaker’s Toolbox education opportunities via this link (where you’ll find links to “apply here” for each class, including this one).
As Aspen notes in her description on the Chairmaker’s Toolbox, I am the designated shop lurker for this class…but lurking pays off. Last year’s group is the one that finally inspired me to make a stick chair (I just had to wait until they left so I had my bench back). Then I bought my own scorp…so color me inspired.
p.s. Chris will write more about the class when he’s back in town, and answer questions about donations etc.
Last weekend, Whitney LB Miller, author of “Henry Boyd’s Freedom Bed,” was invited to read her new book at a Saturday morning children’s event. We suggested she film it but – reporting star that she is (she’s currently on the air with Cincinnati’s WCPO television station) – Whitney got a much better story.
After he was done reading, Bouna talked with Whitney about his reactions to “Henry Boyd:” “I like it ’cause he was a person that wanted to have freedom for other people to have rights as well…he wanted to make stuff for other people so they can have a good life…He wants to help people that are people that are slaves and take them out of slavery….”
Now I’m not a very emotional person, but when I saw video of kids reading and reacting to Whitney’s book, well, I teared up. (Anyone who doesn’t think representation matters is likely already well represented.) Visit her Instagram to see more; the link is to the one that tugged my heartstring the most (so far).
It’s a good story for kids of all ages – the first book dedicated entirely to the deeds of an incredible former enslaved person, who became one of Cincinnati’s most important 19th-century furniture makers. Whitney (who also illustrated the book!) wrote it to inspire a new generation of woodworkers, and show how creativity and hard work can lead to a good and important life.