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Tormek Sharpening System

When it comes to sharpening tools, one name always comes to mind - Tormek. The reason is, this sharpening system has been around since 1972 when it was concieved and developed. Originally Sweden for sharpening various tools, like axes and other farm  and garden tools, it was well known that when sharpening steel, a much finer, sharper edge could be created if the steel was kept cool during the sharpening process. The only real way of doing this was to use water in some way, hence the Tormek system was developed.

Today the Tormek system is the most sought after sharpening system for any serious woodturner. Sure the Tormek can sharpen many other tools as well, but for woodturners who are ALWAYS sharpening their chisels, the Tormek system is tops. What makes the Tormek so desireable is that it can quickly sharpen a woodturner's chisel without taking much of the steel away. This means a chisel can have it's keen edge "touched up" frequently without fear of the tool losing it's temper, or being ground away to nothing in no time. That - is the benefit of Tormek.

Over the years, this system has been refined and added to so that now there are a number of accessories available to suite any woodturners needs. The tool its'elf can be kept in top order by having the stone re-dressed so that it will always give excellent sharpening results.

How many tools do you own that have a 7 year warranty? ... That's right, the Tormek has a 7 year warranty, and that applies to commercial users as well. That's the kind of confidece and qualtiy that is built into this system. If you are a woodturner, this tool is a must for your shop

Compact Precision 3" Circular Saw

Woodworking tools come in many different versions and sometimes they verge on being more home reno tools than actuall woodworking tools, but it really depends on the kind of woodworking projects you make ... doesn't it. Not everyone I know makes furniture or musical instruments out of dimensional boards, plywood or MDF. I do have some acquaintences that actually make furniture out of ... well ... sticks. At least larger limbs of trees and such and even some who things like wicker type products. For these people a tablesaw is a useless tool, a bandsaw is far more useful and a hand portable saws even more useful ...

ENTER the Master Mind 3" Compact Circular Saw. Not only is this a highly versatile tool because of the types of blades it can use, it has the ability to hold the tool at different angles to get maximum control of the tool as you use it. Included with the saw is a precsion Laser Light so that you can see exactly where the blade will be cutting and therefore the most accurate cuts available are possible. If you are cutting things like tile, which can be very dusty, there is  a dust chute available to help control the dust and keep your working environment healthier. The little 2.8 amp motor kicks out at 2800 RPM so cutting through most things is a breeze.

Panel Saw for Small Shops

panel sawOne of the reasons I don't use as much plywood as I could is because it is too hard to handle. I love plywood for many reasons. It's strong, usually very stable (at least depending on the quality of plywood you purchase), you can use it for MANY different projects, it takes veneering easily so even inexpensive wood can look like a million bucks.

The biggest drawback with plywood is handling it safely. Many of us do not have a workshop large enough to manage ripping a 4' x 8' sheet of plywood in, and certainly not safely when we are alone ... which is much of the time. On the occasions that I do need to purchase and use plywood, I bring it home, put it on sawhorses and cut it with my circular saw. That is the only easy and safe way to handle it. Unfortunately I have to make sure it is not a rainy day ... which also cuts my options down. For years I have dreamed of having a panel saw. I have even seen plans where I can make my own, but just am not sure how good it would be.

Wouldn't you know it ... someone had finally come out with a panel saw that is affordable and sizable for small woodworking shops. If you are a production shop, a panel saw is a must, and you need a good one, but if you are a home hobbyist, making a few item ... maybe a few for sale, a panel saw would be a real benefit, well now you can own your own affordable panel saw.

Rockwell RK9000 Jawhorse Review

Rockwell RK9000 Jawhorse When you're working in your workshop and getting frustrated with the constant switches between sawhorses, clamps and supports and feeling the need of help around the shop, look no further than the Rockwell RK9000. This beauty is designed to replace multiple tools in your workshop so even when it's just you it feels like you suddenly have an extra set of hands.

We found the Rockwell 9000 easy enough to assemble straight out of the box and though you can make use of the instructions manual shipped with it, we didn't feel the need to. A bevy of accessories were included in the box along with the jawhorse itself:

Rockwell Bladerunner Review

Rockwell Bladerunner ReviewThe Rockwell Bladerunner is an economical tool designed for constructing small projects and is, from that perspective, a great tool for home-based woodworkers. Its main function is serving as a bench top machine and with its dimensions (15 ¾" wide by 17" deep), we think it's the perfect size. The table surface measuring 9 ¼" above the surface of the machine is all brushed steel panels and inset T-miter slots, which in turn accept the included miter gauge. One miter slot runs side-to-side meeting the second running front-to-back all across the table. The case comes with rubber soled corners which helps in reducing sound transmissions. With the table edges being square (despite the corners clipped at 45 degree angles), aftermarket shop built jigs, clamp-on fences and other specialty operations can be used with relative ease.

While the Bladerunner's blade guard (with built in dust port) is included and provides rudimentary functionality, it can be adjusted at any height to accommodation different material thicknesses. The lever operated pressure foot keeps the woodpiece down and over all, the port is pretty straightforward. It includes a twist-in connector measuring 1 ½" in diameter which will fit major shop vacuum hoses. Over all, though, the dust collection system does a decent job as long as the guard is down during operation.

DeWalt DW788 Scroll Saw Review

DeWalt DW788 Scroll SawWhen we received the DeWalt DW 788 Scroll Saw it came in a sturdy package measuring 12 x 22 x 30 inches with plenty of insulation for the additional parts: the saw body, cast iron table and a ziplock bag with several blades, mounting screws and a hex wrench. The assembly of the machine is pretty simple and relatively straightforward involving sliding the table's rear onto the cylindrical pin located on the saw's lower arm, attaching it with two hex bolts to the bevel scale. Slide in the saw blade and it's ready to go.

In terms of how the machine is set up, the scroll's base has a 25x10.5" footprint although combined with the table brings the saw's footprint to about 33x16". The saw comes with an optional stand but during operation, we noticed the low center of gravity coupled with its intrinsic weight and a lace of vibration, making bolting down the unit largely unnecessary. Another optional accessory is the work light which can be attached through two screws to the rear left arm.

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