Friday, 19 September 2014

Best of the Woodworking Web - Walking in a Wooden Wonderland

Henrique Oliveira is a São Paulo-based artist who uses recycled materials and returns them to their true natural form. This latest piece, titled Transarquitetonica, is a giant network of root-like tunnels which can be explored from the inside. Oliveira's largest piece to date, he sees it as not just an installation but an experience for the senses.



We love this creative use of discarded construction site materials and the way Oliveira's work returns the wood back to the beginning of its journey.

You can see more of Oliveira's work on his website: www.henriqueoliveira.com

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

International Woodworking Fair - Atlanta


Every two years the city of Atlanta plays host to the International Woodworking Fair, and the range of products and services on display this year was astonishing. From specialist manufacturers of the smallest carving tools, to demonstrations of factory-scale high speed processing of sheet materials, there was something for all to see. 
A particular crowd-pleaser was the growing number of displays with high specification CNC routers, which were able to reproduce designs with intricate detailing at simply the touch of a button.
Triton Tools exhibited with an impressive booth displaying the full range of equipment available, as well as a couple of special show previews. Whilst the award-winning Triton routers and a limited range of Triton Precision Power Tools have been available in the US for some years, the complete expanded range already distributed in other parts of the world will arrive in the USA for the first time from November 2014.

Due for release in 2015, the new Triton Workcentre WX7 attracted a lot of attention at its first showing in the US. Hands-on enthusiasts and experienced journalists alike were keen to learn more. Here is an interview with Woodworkers Journal that offers a bit more information.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Best of the Woodworking Web - A Day in the Life

Day in the Life: Furniture Designer/Maker from ConnectEd Studios on Vimeo.

A day in the life of Jared Rusten, a woodworker who creates modern furniture in San Francisco. We love the California coffee table and his modern take on the rocking chair!

Monday, 18 August 2014

Woodworking Book Review: Making Furniture Projects & Plans by Mark Ripley

This is a book that achieves a rare double; it has great appeal for the novice woodworker and the experienced cabinet maker alike. For the beginner it offers a glimpse into the world of the possible, aspirational plans and exotic joints with explanations that make it all seem very reachable given time and practice.  For those with well-developed skills it’s an exploration of form, function and design with some great insights into harnessing the natural properties of timber to make beautiful and functional furniture.

The book is set out in two parts; the first section has an overview of the principles of furniture design balancing the four essential elements of structure, function, aesthetics and economy.  It also looks at the process of batch production with a case study of a set of chairs the author created.

The second part of the book is where it can become your coffee time browse to muse over the 24 projects. They are really well written, rather than a list of simple instructions there is an easy to read narrative that talks you through the process in a conversational style. There are some excellent photographs of the details of each project and a full set of dimensions for you to work from.  What it is not, is a strict set of rules to reproduce what you see on the page.  You are invited to understand the process and to put your own interpretation on each of the pieces.

There is no doubt the quality and design of the furniture in this book will appeal to many, and those with real ambition, a quality workshop and plenty of time should be able to reproduce Mark’s plans to great effect. For everyone else this is a grand book that will give us all plenty to aspire to and an excuse to buy a few more tools in preparation for that “One Day” moment.

Making Furniture Projects and Plans is available from GMCbooks.com and other retailers on line.

ISBN-978-1-86108-560-3

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Custom Woodworking at its best

This post highlights the work of Erik Gustafson, a custom woodworker from Chicago. His work combines the best of craft skills with the latest technology and design.


Erik Gustafson Custom Woodworking from Chris Vanderwall on Vimeo.

If you have another great example you would like to share, let us know in the comments below!

Friday, 1 August 2014

Poltava ship building project now available in English

We had a lot of interest in the blog post on the Poltava ship building project in St Petersburg. Our friends at Jet have now produced an English language version of the video for you to enjoy.



Leave a comment below if there is a project in your city you think we should share with the world.

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Book Review: One Plank Woodworking Projects by Andy Standing

What can you make with a single plank of wood and some imagination? This is the simple challenge that the cover of this book suggests, though there is quite a lot more to this intriguing book from the ever popular GMC publications stable.

The basic premise is a series of projects that are made from a limited set of materials, in general a single plank with the occasional fixings. The projects have a good range of skill levels and combined, produce several really good practical and decorative pieces such as a toolbox and a lamp base.

Early chapters give an overview of both hand and power tools that you can use, as well as some handy tips on measuring and cutting techniques.  So is it a beginner’s guide? Not really, in our opinion, though if you are thinking of getting into woodworking but have yet to take the plunge (no pun intended), it’s a reasonable starting point in terms of tools you might need and projects you could have a go at.
The project section of the book has well set out pages with clear instructions and excellent photography, and if you have a well-stocked workshop quite a few of your tools will get an outing as you work your way through. The level of skill and experience required does vary quite a lot, though not necessarily increasing in the order the projects appear in the book, so it’s definitely worth a thumb through to find a project that you are comfortable with as your starting point. Also, as the book makes clear, the end point of each project is a bare wood item that will need some finish applied to be both practical and pleasing.

We did like this book from the standpoint of some straight forward practice projects using the one plank limitation as the thread to join them together. Where it could go in a second volume is to really push this theme and explore the real design challenge implied in the title. For established woodworkers it is real food for thought and from Triton it’s an open challenge; just what could you make from a single plank? Contact us via the website or leave a comment on the blog with your ideas.

One Plank Woodworking Projects by Andy Standing is available from GMCbooks.com and other retailers on line.

ISBN-978-1-86108-898-7