Ian Taylor

Ian Taylor  |  Nov 21, 2008  |  0 comments
Nowadays we take drawers very much for granted. They appear everywhere in the house – in the kitchen, the bedroom, the study and the workshop. They come in different sizes and designs. Some have mechanical slides and others run on wooden supports (called runners). But they all have one common feature: they are basically open-topped boxes that can be accessed separately and conveniently. Drawers in history It wasn’t always this…

Ian Taylor  |  Sep 20, 2008  |  0 comments
We all make mistakes from time to time, some of us more than others. There's nothing more frustrating than the job going wrong when you have invested many hours of work and committed expensive materials. Well, don't despair, there's often a well-tried escape route which lets you recover the situation. And if you're careful, only you need know that it nearly went wrong. This article sets out a few fixes that have worked for me -…

Ian Taylor  |  Sep 20, 2008  |  0 comments
Dovetail joints can be pretty unforgiving. They are major showpieces - visible when drawers are open and sometimes permanently on display when they are used for carcase construction. A badly fitting dovetail is something that is difficult to live with. As for loose tenons, there's often a simple fix that can recover the situation, especially if you do it carefully.

Whether the problem comes from the tails being too narrow or the recesses…

Ian Taylor  |  Aug 22, 2008  |  0 comments
The last demo shows the dangers of mixing iron filings with some timbers. Oak and chestnut and some other timbers have a high tannin content. If you add iron filings and water a dark stain is the result.

Why would you add iron filings in the first place? Well, if you used fine steel wool to burnish the surface after sanding, fine iron residues are trapped in the grain. Add water, a chemical reaction takes place and you end up with a black…

Ian Taylor  |  Aug 22, 2008  |  0 comments
If your workshop is tight for space, like mine, you might find that your projects can take a bit of a battering before they are complete. Knocks from banging into tools and machinery can take their toll. However, if the wood fibres aren't broken, dings and dents are easy to fix. What happens when you dent a piece of timber is that he wood cells get compressed. You can ‘plump them up’ again by infusing them with hot…

Ian Taylor  |  Aug 21, 2008  |  0 comments
Sometimes, even when your tenons are tight, the joint doesn't come together properly - there's a gap between the two mating timbers. The problem could come from the tenon being too long for the mortise, but that is easily fixed - simply trim the tenon. But more likely it comes from the shoulders on the tenon stock not being cut properly. If one side is cut at a shorter length than the other, the longer side will close up tightly, but…

Ian Taylor  |  Jan 08, 2008  |  0 comments
Refurbished bench top with a new lease of life I couldn't avoid it any longer: my workbench needed help. It had been looking the worse for wear for a while and something needed to be done. I have to admit that I hadn't been taking as much care of it as I should have, so its decline had accelerated in recent months. It was time to take remedial action. Before refurbishment: needing a little TLC Quick refurb This type of…

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