The worst part of the job for me is dealing with legal matters and paperwork. There may not be a lot, and hiring an accountant and lawyer removes much of the burden, but it still seems like I’m filling out a form or making a phone call at least once a week to deal with red-tape. Even something as simple as setting up to buy from a new supplier can require filling out and submitting a tax document. We did have to spend a half hour unloading a wood delivery in freezing rain once, which was a terrible experience, but still not as bad as the constant need to fill IRS forms.
Although not required, becoming certified can demonstrate competence and professionalism. It also may help a candidate advance in the profession. The Architectural Woodwork Institute (AWI) offers a national certificate program, which adds a level of credibility to the work of woodworkers. The Woodwork Career Alliance of North America also offers five progressive credentials.
Hand saw blades are usually sharpened to two different tooth configurations, “Rip” and “Cross Cut”. You can change any saw’s tooth shape with saw sharpening tools.  There is also a hybrid hand saw tooth configuration that is in between a Rip and Cross-cut shape, called a “Sash” tooth configuration, which is useful if you can only afford one hand saw…but it’s not as proficient at either ripping or cross-cutting). Here are some tooth shape diagrams:
Craft and fine artists use a variety of materials and techniques to create art for sale and exhibition. Craft artists create handmade objects, such as pottery, glassware, textiles, and other objects that are designed to be functional. Fine artists, including painters, sculptors, and illustrators, create original works of art for their aesthetic value, rather than for a functional one.
An excellent introduction to woodworking is to use crates as your main material. The boxes are already formed, which means less assembly work for you—yet it looks impressive once your project is altogether. With this crate coffee table, you still get to practice your skills adding the casters and the center box. Finish with a little stain, and this table is ready to roll. You can find the full tutorial at DIY Vintage Chic.  

Sometimes called “Panel Saws”, these hand saws have a handle and thin flexible metal saw plate with no rigid back or frame. Hand saws have larger teeth and are generally used for quickly rough-cutting boards to length or width. These hand saws were manufactured in very large quantities and are easy to find and usually inexpensive. The specific name of this saw type also happens to be the general name of all non-power saws: “hand saw”.


Initially I thought a wine rack would be a finicky project to create, with the necessity of holding the bottles at a certain angle, etc. However, this ended up being a quick, easy and fun build. The shape of the bottles lets them rest on the rack at the correct angle (which is really only important when you are going to let your wine age). The simplicity of the design also allows you to see the labels on the bottles. 

And finally, we ended up with an original, elegant, functional and an inexpensive bar that we were able to make ourselves. Even though this shelf project was created as a simple way of adding some useful decorative pieces. Check out our this DIY beautiful piece which is made of reclaimed pallets. It doesn’t involve any scrap, but it is still the project that will look elegant in your room.

I believe there are demos on the use of the Dozuki on a number of sites, but you would, do best watching some from Japan. Also, I think the sites of Japanese Woodworkers Tools and Lee Valley Tools might have some information or you could search "using dozuki saws" or using Japanese saws". If I can locate a good site I'll post it here--Good luck, Mainewood


I went through the handsaw epiphany a few years back. Hadn’t used a well sharpened handsaw since I was a kid, and didn’t understand why my later attempts at using hand saws seemed to end in discontent. I avoided saws without tails for years, then stumbled across an old D8 Thumbhole. Research on the internet led me to several good sites on saws and sharpening and when I gave it a shot I was amazed at how well even my shoddily sharpened saw worked. Saw sharpening is truly not difficult to do, and you get better at it real fast. I take an old Disston #112 crosscut that I rehandled with me to the wood store and you ought to see the looks when folks see me in the parking lot breaking those 12 foot long boards down by hand to a size more amenable to being carried home in the back of my truck.
Aside from modern heirloom saws (like Lie-Nielsen & other high-end custom saw makers) I would stay away from any cheap hand saws manufactured after World War II. Yes, this is the same advice that I gave with hand planes. Tool quality really declined after WWII. What brands should you look for? Historically there were a lot of hand saw makers, because saws are easier to manufacture than hand planes. Here are some of the old and new quality saw makers (in alphabetical order). The blue links lead to eBay and other searches for those hand saw brands so you can compare different models (some of the antique brands are not always available on eBay, so keep checking back):
And then there are jobs that a power tool simply couldn’t (or shouldn’t) do, like cutting pegs flush. The only power-tool option is a router, and you have to make an auxiliary base to raise the router and then dial in the bit’s cut depth so that it doesn’t ruin the surface. not to mention that pegs are often used on narrow parts, like legs, where the router can tip and ruin the part.
Begin by cutting off a 10-in. length of the board and setting it aside. Rip the remaining 38-in. board to 6 in. wide and cut five evenly spaced saw kerfs 5/8 in. deep along one face. Crosscut the slotted board into four 9-in. pieces and glue them into a block, being careful not to slop glue into the saw kerfs (you can clean them out with a knife before the glue dries). Saw a 15-degree angle on one end and screw the plywood piece under the angled end of the block.
Sound overwhelming? Then just start off focusing on Disston saws. The Disston saws were manufactured by the millions and are the easiest to find, and most are of exceptional quality, especially the below common models. Remember to buy pre 1940’s era vintage hand saws. Here are some ebay searches for wood saws. To ensure that you don’t over-pay, when you’re on ebay click “sold” to see what they’re selling before and to see which saws are desirable. It’s fun research:
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