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About a year ago, Google sold SketchUp to Trimble, and an updated version of our favorite woodworking design and planning software has just been released. As far as basic modeling for woodworking is concerned, there isn’t a significant difference between the two. The biggest change is the creation of the Extension Warehouse, an online home for plug-ins and add-ons that make SketchUp more versatile for certain tasks and specialties.
I’ll be digging deeper into the new release, and sharing it here in the coming weeks. I thought about mentioning it, as I am in the same boat here at work, screenshots are from my Windows machine at home.
The work involved in rewriting for earlier system is considerable and on Macs, people upgrade system software much faster than in the Windows world and backwards compatibility for very old systems is not very important. That’s especially true for a program with a business model with a substantial free install base. Christopher Schwarz has helped many of us solve some pretty frustrating problems over the years. With his wit and woodworking skills, Roy Underhill has delighted viewers for more than 30 years. These PBS woodworking classic episodes are being brought back one season at a time to both our online streaming site, ShopClass on Demand, and on DVD.
When I made the quick video about the Lee Valley plane, I had no shooting board in the shop. You can make a shooting board any size you want, but it doesn’t have to be monstrous unless you have a specific need.
The two pieces of plywood need to be sandwiched together to create a fence and chute for the plane to ride along. The only things left are the fence and the hook (which holds the shooting board to the edge of your bench). With the fence and hook pilot holes drilled, it’s time to attach them to the plywood sandwich. Chuck is a former senior editor of Popular Woodworking, and has 30+ years of experience as a high-end period furniture maker and woodworking teacher. Just wanted to say that I was on the woodnet site one day and offered a completely benign response to someone in a conversation and Chuck Bender interrupted to roll his eyes at me in some childish attempt to make himself seem like a woodworking god or something. If you ever had a chance to meet Chuck in person you would have different feelings about him. Several readers have asked how to go about squaring up the two legs of the English Layout Square from the December 2010 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine. Chris is a contributing editor to Popular Woodworking Magazine and the publisher at Lost Art Press. Wait, but I can’t view the the video for some reason, could someone tell my how it’s done please?
For the November 2012 issue only, we depart from our regular format and feature in-depth profiles of some of our woodworking heroes. Contributing editor Christopher Schwarz talked with carver Mary May to learn about her training in classical carving from master carvers around the world, her work in stone and wood, and her plans for teaching carving online. Jameel Abraham is known to many of our readers as the brains behind Benchcrafted vise hardware, but that is just the tip of the iceberg of his many talents with tools and wood. Last but not least, managing editor Megan Fitzpatrick visits Peter Ross, who makes period hardware and tools at his forge. If you’re a subscriber to Popular Woodworking Magazine, look for the November 2012 issue to appear in your mailbox in early October. Best Foot Forward: The front feet are different than the back feet and are cut to allow the grain to run diagonally from the corner of the base area.
I was flipping through a copy of the magazine Antiques one afternoon when I noticed an attractive blanket chest in an advertisement for an antiques dealer in New York. The chest is built exactly as Shakers did in the 19th century-with the notable exceptions of biscuits to attach the feet, aliphatic resin glue and a few power tools that would have shocked and excited the brethren. Lower Back Adjustment: With the case glued up and the upper back in place, the loose lower back pieces are ready to be nailed in place.
The case is now ready to assemble, but I’d recommend first taking a couple of minutes to finish sand the interior of the blanket chest area.
Glen Huey is a former managing editor of Popular Woodworking Magazine, a period furniture maker and author of numerous woodworking books, videos and magazine articles.
Early in December (the 4th and 5th, to be exact), Popular Woodworking Magazine opens its shop in Cincinnati for another class workshop and DVD session.


Dovetailing is a hard art to perfect but looks absolutely proffesional when its pulled off correctly.
The holdfasts were made by Alaskan blacksmith Phil Koontz and had been given to Megan as a gift (some women like diamonds, and then there is Megan…). Ignoring Megan completely, I began messing around with the holdfasts in her bench, which has a top that is 5” thick or so. The advantage is that I have found the shepherd’s crook-style holdfasts to be springier and to (in general) hold a bit better. After a recent flurry of orders after Woodworking in America, Koontz decided to make some changes to the details of his holdfasts. Chris, I just built your original Roubo workbench from your Workbenches book and I drilled three holes in the top for the Phil Koontz holdfasts. I just ordered a set of holdfasts from Gramercy Tools for the more traditional workbench that I’ll be making soon. I didn’t get a chance to ask at WIA – Why no mention of holdfasts in The Anarchist’s Tool Chest.
The changes aren’t major, as far as the function (and learning how to model in 3D) is concerned, but there are several things worth noting. SketchUp Pro does contain solid modeling tools, a feature that was introduced a few years ago with the release of SketchUp 8. Like the 3D Warehouse, this is accessible within the program, and installation of any add-on becomes as easy as clicking a button and waiting a few seconds.
I’ll see what I can find out, but there is probably a good reason for it, so an upgrade may be the only workaround. Most people running the paid version will be professionals with higher end computer systems running the latest OS while conversely most people running on older systems are using the free version. Since it produces no resource stream to support itself, it has to piggyback on some other economic activity e.g.
Now, through an exclusive arrangement with the public TV, Popular Woodworking is bringing back the classic episodes of Roy’s show so you can enjoy them again. I was still in the midst of moving from Pennsylvania and mine were either packed away somewhere or still to be packed. You just need to make sure you work accurately or the thing will be useless when you’re done. I was told by Lee Valley customer service that that fence would not work with the Low Angle Jack.
Our deadlines are two months ahead of the issue dates, so even though we’re just past Labor Day, we just finished the November issue and are working on December. Former publisher, now senior editor, Steve Shanesy reviews the history of the magazine from our humble beginnings as Pacific Woodworker to the magazine we produce today.
We’ll get a close look at some of the furniture and intricate musical instruments he has made. In addition to that, he teaches small classes and builds just about anything, including the shop we tour and his house. Arts & Mysteries, Design Matters, Tricks of the Trade and Flexner on Finishing will all return with our December issue.
This special issue will also be available on newsstands shortly thereafter, and the digital edition will mail to digital subscribers around October 3. In-depth information about woodworking icons, their philosophies and practices can provide insight valuable to many, many woodworkers. You’ll probably need to glue up a few boards to create panels wide enough for the sides, front and top, unless you have access to some lumber in legendary 19th-century widths. Determine the best face and mark it for the outside, then mark the location of the three dadoes for the bottom and the two drawer divider webs as shown in the diagram. The half-lap design provides a closed back, but allows the wood to expand and contract with the wood movement. The Shakers might have used only glue at this joint, but because we have the technology, cut biscuit slots for all the feet. When the glue is dry, cut the radius on the front feet to match the curve on the sides and sand your handiwork. And yet, when I was dropping something off at Managing Editor Megan Fitzpatrick’s house this week, I was struck by two holdfasts in her bench that were familiar and yet different – like an old friend who had lost weight or gotten implants. The holdfasts stuck like crazy in her bench, and so I asked to borrow them for a couple days so I could compare them to my old ones.
It’s nice to see someone’s work continue to evolve and improve over the years, even if it does make me feel a bit old.


It’s crazy, a throw-back to dying crafts, passion before production, and not making a fortune (at least in monetary value).
I am using a set from Gramercy and should be getting a pair from Don Weber (oh boy) in a week or two – if Kentucky is not snowed in. They look a bit more CAD-like and the pick box on the eraser tool is now a circle and large enough for people over 50 to see.
This should make learning SketchUp much easier, and help everyone remember what the seldom-used icons are for. Wonderful, can’t wait to see the first episodes all over again for the first time in 30 years. Drill some pilot holes through the wider piece and countersink them on the side slated to be the bottom of the shooting board. For a bit of additional hold, you can use some double-sided tape between the fence and the plywood. It’s been this way as far back as any of us can remember, and this November issue happens to be the 200th issue of our magazine. They had so much of a curve that they looked more like a “shepherd’s crook” holdfast than the flatter ones he made before.
And by “well made” I mean those made by blacksmiths or Gramercy tools in Brooklyn, New York. The biggest difference is that SketchUp Pro includes an add-on program called Layout that makes printing (especially for presentations and large format prints) much easier and better looking than the print functions in the free version.
If you’re just starting out, sticking with the free version while you learn lets you see if SketchUp will work for you without any expense.
The good news for Windows users is that the toolbars can now be customized and the placement of tools on the bars rearranged.
Because my shooting board is made out of Baltic birch plywood, the preponderance of tools used in its creation will be electrified. If you want to make yours a couple of inches larger or smaller (and Bill, this one’s for you), knock yourself out.
I like to clamp the two pieces together to get the alignment perfect before I drive the screws. It adds grip and is reversible in case you need to replace the fence or make a major adjustment.
A dot of glue at the center of the bottom dado and a dot at the ends of the web frame dadoes is sufficient.
As has been the case, this fully functional modeling software is absolutely free for personal use. SketchUp Pro pays all the bills for the team, so you can’t blame them for offering this up at the start.
If they’re not, I use my edge trimming router jig from the November 2013 issue (#207) to make them perfectly square.
Drill and countersink the pilot holes and attach the fences with some screws, double-check the fence for square and you’ve got a simple, accurate, inexpensive shooting board.
This rabbet should stop 5″ up from the bottom of each side to leave a solid gluing surface for the rear feet. Nail the web frames in place with a single nail through the sides and into the end of the dividers.
The only real disadvantage is that they can occasionally be in the way of your long planes during some operations. There has been a change to the license agreement, basically it states that if you’re using the software to make money, you need to purchase a license for SketchUp Pro.
The only reason to make them square is that it makes easier to set the fence later in the construction process. Nail the front and back pieces in place without glue because the joints are long-grain to short-grain joints. When you pick the material to build your shooting board, just keep in mind the more stable the material the less fussing and adjusting in the future. I’m sorry to hear that your experience with Chuck was less than what you expected but you need to realize that Chuck is human just like you and me. He really is a great guy with a vast knowledge of woodworking and is very willing to share that knowledge with you if you ask.



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