Complete Illustrated Guide To Woodworking

By Lonnie Bird, Jeff Jewitt, Thomas Lie-Nielsen, Andy Rae and Gary Rogowski, 320 pages
SKU #402-3029
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Woodworking is a craft that has evolved over millennia. And there are many methods to accomplish all the tasks woodworkers perform, from the low tech approach of handtools to the speed and efficiency of sophisticated machines.

This book will help woodworkers of all levels choose the right method and tools to bring great results, pleasure and satisfaction to working wood.

Table of Contents

  • The Workshop
    • Shop Space and Fixtures
    • Mobilize Your Workshop
  • Outfitting the Shop
    • Holding the Work
    • Edge Tools
    • Measuring and Marking Tools
    • Hammers and Striking Tools
    • Sharpening Equipment
    • Portable Power Tools
    • Miter Saw
    • Stationary Machines
    • Blades, Bits, and Cutters
    • Dust Collection
  • Working Wood
    • Buying and Preparing Solid Wood
    • Flattening a Board by Hand
    • Working with the Grain
    • Smoothing with Edge Tools
    • Good Sanding Techniques
    • Keeping Parts Flat
    • Plywood and Other Manmade Boards
    • Mixing Materials
    • Laying Out and Cutting Plywood
    • Using Cutting Lists
    • Making Your Mark
    • Choosing and Using Glue
  • Dimensioning Wood
    • Jointing and Planing
    • Ripping
    • Crosscutting
    • Cutting Sheet Goods
  • Case Joinery
    • Butt joints
    • Biscuit Joints
    • Dowel Joints
    • Rabbets
    • Grooves
    • Dadoes
    • Drawer Lock Joints
    • Tongue and Groove
    • Miter Joints
    • Finger Joints
    • Dovetails
  • Frame Joinery
    • Butt Joints
    • Dowel Joints
    • Biscuit Joints
    • Miter Joints
    • Lap Joints
    • Bridle Joints
    • Scarf Joints
    • Splice Joints
    • Mortises
    • Tenons
    • Through Mortises
  • Shaping Wood
    • Tapers and Octagons
    • Arcs, Circles, and Ellipses
    • Curves
    • Shaped Edges
    • Coves
    • Turning Shapes
    • Bending
  • Construction
    • Case Construction
    • Shelves
    • Drawers
    • Doors
    • Locks and Catches
    • Bases
    • Backs
    • Tops
  • Sharpening
    • Planes
    • Chisels
    • Scrapers
    • Spokeshaves
    • Handsaws
  • Finishing
    • Surface Preparation
    • Fixing Defects
    • Coloring Wood
    • Applying Finish
    • Rubbing out Finishes
  • Index


Part of the appeal of woodworking is the wide range of tasks that go into making even a simple piece of furniture. We begin by milling wood square and then dimension it to make parts. To make a piece that will endure the stresses of seasonal wood movement, we cut joints to hold the parts together. Along the way we set up, use, and sharpen tools. Finally, we apply a finish to protect the wood and bring out its beauty. And thats just the beginning. To add interest to a piece, we shape wood by adding curves, moldings, and edge treatments. And moving beyond the basic project, requires a knowledge of the architecture of furniture and cabinets. Woodworking is a craft that has evolved over millenia. It has many methods to accomplish all these tasks, from the low tech approach of handtools to the speed and efficiency of sophisticated machines. Choosing the right method depends on many factors including your skill level, the tools in your shop, and whether you need to work quickly or can take the time to savor the process. The process is the purpose, isnt it? Its the pleasure and satisfaction of working wood, whatever technique you choose.

This book collects in one volume the essential information that every woodworker needs to know. Its taken from the subject-specific books in The Complete Illustrated Guides series: Joinery, Furniture and Cabinet Construction, Shaping Wood, Finishing, Sharpening, Using Woodworking Tools, and Working Wood. The selections included here are my own, based on teaching woodworking classes and editing woodworking books for the last dozen years. If you dont find your pet technique, please accept my apologies. A single concise shop reference must have, by definition, limits. If you own the volumes that comprise The Complete Illustrated Guides, this book is a manual you can leave in the shop as a basic reference. If youre just starting out in woodworking, it can be your guide to the skills and techniques youll need to master to become a woodworker. Wherever you are in your woodworking path, I hope The Complete Guide to Woodworking gives you a taste of the rich variety of ways to work wood and keeps you coming back to the shop to learn more.

Helen Albert, Executive Editor Taunton Books

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