Fair Woodworking

February 6, 2012

The other use for a chisel

Now don’t get excited, I’m not going to say a chisels other use is for opening paint cans. Last week, Rob Campbell of The Joiner’s Apprentice mentioned that he was having trouble getting his tails to seat properly on the base of the pins. I am no stranger to this problem, so I can’t say that I have any answers, but it did get me to thinking about one of the techniques I’ve picked up from somewhere. Most people seem to like to check the base of the pins with a square, but I’m far too contrary for that.

I like to lay the back of the chisel against the base and see how flat it sits. The chisel tells me a number of things. If the base is not flat across from front to back, it the chisel will rock back and forth. Then I slide it side to side. If it catches or clicks I know that it is not flat. It also makes it easier to see if my base line is consistent.

It’s not an earth shaking technique, but I like it. And besides after all the effort it took to get this picture, I had to post about it.

Ha, ha.


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