Hand Tools

Subject:
Re: we do it for ourselves
Response To:
A Riff on Derek's ideas ()

david weaver
I think we only make hand made work for ourselves. Except perhaps Brian.

When we've asked Warren about this before, he's said flatly that clients bring him work because he's cheaper using hand tools for certain things than a shop using power tools due to tooling time and overhead. I doubt most of his customers care, either.

I was in a shop over the weekend in the strip district in Pittsburgh, a guy is making a go at having a shop where he makes the stuff and his wife sells it. It's not cheap real estate to sell from the strip, so there was a fair bit of stuff like $150 cutting boards, etc.

I have made basic cases for around the house, and have a couple of dressers to make. They will be of the same style as my other case work - plain, but not mechanical looking - nothing that ensures that they look hand tool made will show on the final cases. The dovetails and half blinds are hidden by mouldings (though they are imperfect enough in proportion that you can easily tell I didn't lay them out with a dovetail marker or pre-measure to get them all equally size - I personally think they look better that way - nicely proportioned but not perfectly identical, but they are covered nonetheless):

http://www.woodcentral.com/woodworking/forum/archives_handtools.pl/bid/3001/md/read/id/474936

Back to that shop - I don't know what you call a chest of drawers where the legs go half height (half a chest of drawers with legs?), but there was one in that shop made of walnut. My wife is WELL aware that I use a lot of hand tools and work by hand, but she much prefers that power toolish stuff. So I guess I'll be using hand tools to make a chest of drawers with legs like that, and out of walnut, because the version in the store was $4200 (figure it was about 42 inches wide by about 2 feet tall for the case part with four legs and a top. The top was just 8/4-looking around the edge (can't remember, it may have been 8/4 solid) and no effort was made to keep sap wood out of the piece. The pulls were rounded over spalted maple. Not a part on it required any hand intervention except the pulls, but they were plain looking with no interesting curves. That is a style that people will buy these days. It looks like it's full of afterthoughts to me - the top is made with all chamfers so that it can be cut out on a tablesaw, and every edge on the piece was heavily eased. Nowhere for the eye to follow a curve and then stop.

So, even my wife doesn't care about the hand tools, I know my parents don't when they visit ("eww...tedious"). I do hand tools for me for the same reason I dimension by hand fairly often - it feels good and it's satisfying. Just like making planes. It would take a lot of effort for me to make similar planes and incorporate much power tool stuff. I could make planes that were more power tool based and sell them, I'm sure of that, and probably do OK. I wouldn't like the end product or the process as much.

When my wife's friends come over and ask about stuff in the house, I don't say anything about things being made by hand (as in with hand tools). I don't usually even say I made something unless they ask where they could get one.

Very long winded, but I don't want to convey the idea in any of these threads that I think anyone else - especially in person - thinks that it's virtuous that I have made some pieces entirely without electricity, plywood, fasteners, etc.

Messages In This Thread

What makes the "handtool" look?
What is the objective
Re: I don't really know
If you can't design then copy
Re: That is a line...
Re: If you can't design then copy
Re: What makes the "handtool" look?
Re: What makes the "handtool" look?
Re: What makes the "handtool" look?
Re: What makes the "handtool" look?
Edit: incomplete thought.
Chamfers on rails and styles
comment
This is a line of thought often
Where is Adam Cherubini ?
Re: Where is Adam Cherubini ?
Adam's goal, as expressed to me
Re: Where is Adam Cherubini ?
Re: comment
Re: comment *PIC*
Re: comment
Re: comment
Disagree
Re: comment
Re: comment
Re: comment
printing..
Re: comment
I'm back to what is the objective
Re: I'm back to what is the objective
Re: I'm back to what is the objective
Re: I'm back to what is the objective
Re: I'm wondering ...
Re: I'm back to what is the objective
Re: comment on comment *PIC*
Not what I see *PIC*
Re: comment on comment *PIC*
Re: comment
Re: comment
Re: comment (touchy feely alert)
ditto for turning
Re: Tempted
Re: Tempted
Re: What makes the "handtool" look?
Re: What makes the "handtool" look?
Easy question
Wrong question
Re: Wrong question
Re: Wrong question
A Riff on Derek's ideas
Re: we do it for ourselves
Re: we do it for ourselves - Nietzsche nailed it
Thanks Todd. *NM*
Re: What makes the "handtool" look?
Amish
Saw handles
Re: Saw handles
Easy... the eye of the beholder
You guys are way too negative
Perhaps...
Re: Perhaps...
Re: What makes the "handtool" look? Mistakes?
Re: What makes the "handtool" look?
Thanks gentleman
Caring WRT Handwork
Re: Caring WRT Handwork
Re: Caring WRT Handwork
Where was "why bother"?
What doesn't result in a hand tool look *PIC*
Re: What doesn't result in a hand tool look
Re: What doesn't result in a hand tool look
Re: What doesn't result in a hand tool look
Affectation Vs. Artifact
Virtue?
Re: Virtue?
Re: Virtue?
Re: Virtue?
Re: Virtue?
Re: Virtue?
Re: Affectation Vs. Artifact
You said it well *NM*
Sorry, didn't read your post very well
David Pye's thoughts
Re: David Pye's thoughts
Further thoughts
Re: Further thoughts
Re: David Pye's thoughts - Just not true though
Visual vs. measurement
ICBM gyros
Pye
Confusion
Re: Confusion
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