Become a Tool Nut Groton CT
New London, CT
M-SA 6 am - 10 pm
SU 8 am - 8 pm
Become a Tool Nut
Become A Tool Nut
|Ireally don't need five cordless drills, seven routers or 24 antiquehand planes, but I can't help it. I'm a tool nut. Are you?|
Have you ever bought an old woodworking machine just because it lookedcool? Tried a new tool and said, "Wow! This just changed my life!" Useda big, industrial machine and wondered how in the world you could sneakit into your shop?
We'd like to hear your stories. So e-mail or send us a letter about atool or machine that really gets you excited. We'll pay you $100 if wepublish your story. Please include a photograph, too. We'd prefer adigital image, but a slide or print is OK.
E-mail your entry to email@example.com or write to us at The Tool Nut, American Woodworker, 1285 Corporate Center Drive Dr., Suite 180, Eagan, MN 55121.
I'm a big fan of old cast-iron machines. When a local boatbuilding shopwent out of business, I jumped at the chance to buy a 1920's vintage14-in. tablesaw, made by American Machinery. That's right: it takes14-in. blades. What a saw! It's so heavy, I had to rent a forklift toget it into my shop. It's got two arbors, one for a rip blade and onefor a crosscut blade. They're mounted on a turntable. You can quicklychange from one blade to the other simply by turning a crank. I loveshowing this off to my pals.
When I bought this saw, it looked like a derelict. I spent hourscleaning and polishing, and when I was done, I realized I couldn't eventurn it on. It had a three-phase motor, and of course my home shopisn't set up for that. I replaced the motor with a 220 volt, 3 HPBaldor, which set me back about $400. After spending all that time andmoney, I'm very happy: I've got a real piece of history, and an awesomesaw.
The Best Jig Ever
My life as a woodworker changed overnight when I bought a Leigh mortiseand tenon jig. I'd promised my spouse to build an entire set of diningchairs by Thanksgiving without realizing how many complicated jointsI'd have to make. A friend told me about the Leigh jig and how muchtime it would save, so I swallowed hard (it cost over $600!) and poniedup.
Right out of the box, I made ultra-precise joints, and greaterprecision means greater strength. I could literally dial in the fit towithin a few thousandths of an inch, but more importantly, it handledevery joint in my complicated chairs with ease, and some had very oddangles. That's what changed my woodworking world: after these chairs,I've gone on to design more challenging projects with curves andcompound angles. With the Leigh jig, I know I can put all the piecestogether!