Other Peoples Videos

Hold tight, this one is purely out of left field... Luthiers fascinate me.  Many folks in the woodworking world know Mr. Jameel Abraham of Khalaf Oud Luthiery and even more famously Benchcrafted.  His skill has caught the attention of Popular Woodworking where he is a contributor and one subject of their special 200th issue.  His oud work is beautiful, and you can watch some videos about his scroll-work and oud construction at his Khalaf Oud Luthiery Blog.  His attention to detail is evident in all his work, to include his Benchcrafted vises for sale.  I will be covering an installation of the Glide Leg Vise and his Tail Vise soon (hopefully very soon now that I am able to clear out some of the workshop).

I would love to make a musical instrument some day, specifically a violin (even though I don't play).  Something about these instruments just speaks to me, they are so simple, yet amazingly complex.  Plus, there is a whole new world of handplanes involved...miniatures!  Another on my list is a piano, although the number of parts, its sheer size and the cast iron plate makes it a bit intimidating.   Professional luthiers, however, are a breed all their own.  I stumbled across this video while searching for something totally unrelated, but I found "The Violin Maker" to be enthralling.  Mr. Zygmuntowicz, the violin maker in the film, has the right attitude toward being a toolmaker.  He is, after all, a toolmaker.  He makes tools which professional musicians use to create their artwork.  I appreciate his dedication to his customers, and his attitude toward being available to his musicians in order to provide adjustments and customization at their requests.  Well crafted handtools, in my opinion, are very much like his violins in that they allow people to create and make things unrelated to the tool itself.  Tools are in fact dynamic, they become like a living thing in the hands of craftsmen and unless they are used and cared for they will rust, crumble and deteriorate.

Enjoy the video from Mr. Dustin Cohen.


Thorough Thoreau, Part 1

An Old Family Property, Very Old
 When projects that have been long dreamed of begin to materialize into reality, I become the cliched "kid on Christmas morning."  Last weekend I was privileged to have been invited to accompany one of my oldest and best friends up to set pier foundations for his timber framed cabin.  This was the first of what will hopefully become many working weekends constructing this potentially amazing retreat.  This weekend was devoted to providing a strong foundation upon which the cabin will rest.