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All Wood Chat: Woodturning with Theo Haralampou

PODCAST

Theo Haralampou or 'Theo the Woodturner', tells us about his passion for woodturning, his journey with it and where beginners should look to start. Theo is based in Brisbane and regularly hosts free demonstrations at Carbatec's Brisbane store.

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The Basics of Dust Extraction

You have just unpacked your latest purchase... a beautiful Carbatec 15" thicknesser. You've cast aside the unread manual and have dived headfirst into assembly. All bolts tightened, blades aligned, and we head straight for the pile of waiting timber...

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Tuning Your Bandsaw

Bandsaws are a must in any workshop, they are wonderful for cutting curves or preparing blanks for woodcarving or woodturning. If set up correctly, they can be used for ripping veneers or cutting mortises or even dovetails.

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Workshop Tip - Splinter Free Dovetailing

Carol Russell gives us a great tip for splinter free dovetailing.

I can’t remember where this tip came from, I think it was an old Fine Woodworking Magazine originally, but it’s one of the simplest and most effective tips I have ever been given. 

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How to Make a Longworth Chuck

Written by Allan Short.

The Longworth chuck features a self-centring mechanism that easily and quickly adjusts to the size of your turning by using a pair of disks which rotate against each other...

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All About Japanese Saws

Written by Jan Schilling.

It is unusual to visit a fine woodworker’s workshop and not find some Japanese saws (nokogiri) hanging on the tool rack. For people who haven’t encountered them, Jan Schilling offers some advice...

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Open Segment Jig

Allan Short works in our Customer Call Centre at Carbatec Brisbane and is an esteemed woodworker. 

This open segment jig is not complicated to use but has required thought and planning to construct so here is a summary of how I made my jig.

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Rendel's Top Product Picks

Rendel makes up part of our Marketing team here at Carbatec and has been here for 5 years. Rendel is a qualified cabinet maker and loves his DIY woodworking. He is currently working on designer bespoke bedside tables for his home.

We asked Rendell what his favourite tools in his workshop are and these were his top picks.

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Setting Up Shop

Written by Bruce Sharp.

Making stuff is fun and for five days a week, through most of my career as a teacher, I have made wooden stuff with teenagers. Imagine working with uninhibited creative minds and having the unfettered use of a well-equipped (semi-industrial) workshop. 

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Why I Love My Kreg Jig

My love affair with the Kreg® Jig started at the Brisbane Timber and Working With Wood Show over ten years ago. The applications seemed endless and over the years the jig paid for itself by miles in both time and effort.
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Finishing with Shellac by Carol Russell

More and more woodworkers are choosing traditional methods of finishing rather than quick fix solutions that don’t age well. Shellac is an ancient finish that gives a lustrous depth to timber and works well on both contemporary and traditional furniture. The U-Beaut range of finishes are based on traditional French polishing products.

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Protecting Your Assets

For most woodworkers there is nothing more saddening than returning to your workshop after some time away to find surface rust has taken hold of your prized table saw, or your favourite handplane has small rusty smudges all over it. In this article, we cover some of the simple steps you can take to keep the rust at bay and several products designed to help.

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The Act Of Making by Bruce Sharp

The following articles are an extraction from Bruce Sharp’s Blog ‘Built by Bruce’. Bruce is a long standing Carbatec Melbourne Retail Staff Member and a retired Woodworking Teacher who continues to share his passion for woodworking to the community including volunteering to teach a local disability group on a weekly basis.

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Making a Coopered Barrel

There are many traditional tools and techniques specific to the trade of Coopering. It was a pleasure to be shown some of these by Master Cooper Andrew Young, who along with inventing many innovative methods still uses traditional tools in his daily work.

Andrew has access to a seemingly endless supply of well-seasoned American and French Oak that has been recycled from Seppeltsfield’s collection of old casks. Andrew wastes nothing, he salvages every last thing, down to the tiniest oak off-cuts that fuel the fire pot. He only uses straight grain timber that contains about 14% moisture to make his casks. The casks made in Andrew’s cooperage are designed for fortified wine from Seppeltsfield or whisky from Lark Distilleries in Tasmania. 

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Oil Finishing

Pure tung oil is food safe and can be used on chopping boards and utensils that are used for food preparation. Although it’s worth noting that as it’s pressed from a nut, people with severe allergies are advised to avoid its use.

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A Drawing Template For Spindle Turning

Robert McKee has been teaching woodturning and joinery to adults for over 25 years. Originally he trained as a wood machinist, but relatively early in his career he discovered that teaching was the thing that really motivated him.

After many years as a teacher within the TAFE system in Queensland and also in the private sector, he still gets great satisfaction from passing on knowledge and seeing how people grow in confidence and ability with a little guidance in the right direction.

Here he takes Carol Russell through the process of making a drawing template and explains how to use it as a reference to turn four identical table legs.

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From Observation to Expression - About Gary Field

Gary Field has been a stalwart of the woodworking community in Brisbane for three decades. His work has featured in galleries and exhibitions Australia-wide. His enthusiasm to develop and see his work evolve has been boosted by the experience of handing on knowledge to fellow woodworkers through demonstrating and teaching. Carol Russell was lucky enough to have a chat with Gary.

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Getting Crafty

If you are looking for a way of utilising the small pieces of special timber that you have collected over the years, consider the many and varied craft kits available in our catalogue. These precious pieces of wood are waiting to be converted into valued souvenirs, gifts or everyday utensils. The delight that a friend or family member gets from receiving a gift that you have made is immeasurable.

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Why Use Handplanes In A Modern World?

It's very interesting to look at the place the handplane occupies in the history of woodworking. One of the most important changes that occurred in this history was the progression from the carpenter - whose main tools were the axe, adze and saw - to the joiner, cabinet maker and other craftsmen, all of whom needed components produced to precise dimensions and a smooth finish. It was the handplane alone that made this development possible.

Peter Geddes is a Brisbane-based woodworker.

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Handsaws

Even if you use machinery for cutting most of your joinery, there are some things that are still best done with a handsaw. Being able to saw accurately to a line is one of the fundamental woodworking skills, it can take a lot of practice to get it right, but it’s well worth the effort. Once you gain confidence, you may even find yourself cutting your dovetails or tenons by hand.

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Japanese Chisels - (nomi) by Carol Russell

Woodworking chisels (Nomi) from Japan are a fine example of the rich heritage of toolmaking and design that has existed in Japan for centuries. They are beautiful chisels to use. Nothing compares with their razor sharp edge for fine paring work, especially on endgrain. With a little understanding and care they will serve you well and make your woodworking even more gratifying. Carol Russell takes a closer look.

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Kreg Deck Jig

Whether you are restoring an old deck or building a new one, the Kreg Deck Jig will make the job faster and easier and the finished product will be free of cracks, warped boards, splinters and nails that work their way to the surface to catch unsuspecting feet. This kit makes the job seem so straightforward that you think you must be missing something.

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Customer Profile - Linda Fredheim, Fine Furniture Maker

Despite its remoteness or perhaps because of it, Hobart is alive with great art and design. There is an introspective beauty in the landscape that inspires an almost defiant originality in the artists and craftspeople who live and work there. The work of Linda Fredheim, a dedicated designer and furniture maker, features many of the key elements of her surroundings. She uses not only the local timbers, but also incorporates stories, maps and historical figures into her designs. Carol Russell had the opportunity to visit with Linda.

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Woodworking Magazines Overview

Australia has a fine collection of woodworking magazines. They can be one of the best sources of information and a great place to find new projects. The information is current and relevant to woodworkers in our region. These publications run some great competitions and support local woodworking clubs. The classified sections advertise everything from timber to second hand machinery as well as woodworking classes and usually have a woodworking diary to keep you in touch with upcoming events.

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Wooden Boat Centre - Franklin Tasmania

Founded in the early 1990's, the Wooden Boat Centre has established a reputation for excellence. Through the construction of 9 carvel hulls, it has educated some 80 students to industry standard. Situated beside the picturesque Huon River in Franklin, south of Hobart, the Centre instructs boat builders, restores old wooden boats, builds new boats and guides visitors from all over Australia and the world through the intriguing process of how these magnificent craft are built using traditional methods. The centre is heavily focused on keeping these skills alive and passing them on to others.

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Customer Profile - Warwick Franks

Our staff member Donovan Knowles met Warwick Franks at the 2011 Working With Wood Show in Brisbane. He was touched by the incredible story of how Warwick had found woodworking and what he had to overcome to be able to produce his unique range of furniture and sculptures made largely from found or recycled objects. Donovan spent the day with Warwick and his Lifestyle Development Workers Jolly Karumathy and Martin O’Hare, looking for materials and seeing first hand how he creates his distinctive pieces.

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Customer Profile - Duncan Villet

When you’re being served at your local Carbatec store, chances are the person serving you is also a woodworker. Many of our staff have a trade background or are craftspeople working in a diverse range of woodwork-related areas such as; instrument or furniture making, boat building, carpentry, woodturning or woodcarving. We are very proud to have people who possess a high level of expertise on staff.

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Customer Profile - Andrew Young

Master Cooper, Andrew Young has added a new lease of life to his business by combining the CNC Router Shark with his ancient tools of trade. He showed Carol Russell around the majestic Seppeltsfield Winery where he operates his cooperage business, YN OAK Pty Ltd.

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Veritas PM-V11-Chisels

The new Veritas® chisels are now available instore and online at Carbatec. They are among the first edge tools milled from PM-V11 steel (Rc61-63), an innovative proprietary alloy. This metal's micro-structure makes it extremely durable, so it can withstand the impact of heavy chopping cuts without chipping or deforming as readily as other tool steels, even at bevel angles as low as 20°. It is also highly wear-resistant, with an edge typically lasting at least twice as long in use as an A2 blade before it needs sharpening. Despite its toughness, it is as easy to sharpen as A2 steel using common abrasive media such as water stones.

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Customer Profile - Peter Geddes

A woodworking student in later life, Peter Geddes is an old dog who has learnt as lot of new tricks. As he shows Carol Russell, with enough conviction and the right guidance, you can re-invent yourself. Peter is a semi-retired veterinary surgeon from Brisbane, having grown up in Sydney. His father was an accomplished woodworker and at a very early age Peter developed a love and appreciation of fine craftsmanship

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Kreg Jigs

There are many different techniques for joining two pieces of timber, both traditional and modern. One that is proving quite resilient is pocket hole joinery. It is a modern development of the more traditional ‘glue and screw’ method. Using a fundamentally simple concept, it produces a surprisingly strong joint, even when glue is not used. Although I call it a modern joint (with Kreg developing the modern pockethole jig in 1986), the ancient Egyptians pioneered the joint by inserting a dowel through an angled hole, then cutting it flush with the surface.

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A Work of Passion by John Price

John Price is a Carbatec customer who combines tradition and innovation to handcraft guitars in his workshop in Hahndorf, South Australia. John's guitars are played on stages all over the world by such virtuosos as the world famous Argentinian composer/performer Jorge Morel and well known Jazz artist George Benson. His story is an inspiration to anyone who has ever dreamed of making a living from their craft.

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Bow Saw Project

Bruce Sharp is a part-time Carbatec staff member in our Melbourne store and a Manual Arts teacher. He has devised this delightful project on making your own small bow saw.

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Whittling Away The Time

Woodworking comes in many forms, from creating imposing pieces of furniture that require a workshop laden with benches, tools and machinery to small whimsical figures that can be created at the kitchen table, hand-held and using only a basic kit of tools. Such are the creations of South Australian artist Doug Collins of ‘Waitpinga Whittling’.
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Triton TRI-RTA300 Router Table Review

To existing Triton users, this article will not be telling you anything you don't already know, but for those of us that have been a bit slower to pick up on it, take a closer look at this Australian tradition because it's well worth it.

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Customer Profile: Roy Schack - Woodworker and Teacher

Roy Schack is a fine woodworker who lives and works in Samford Valley near Brisbane. He runs The Brisbane School of Fine Woodwork where he guides his students through all aspects of woodworking from the correct use of hand tools and machinery to understanding timber, construction and design.

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Robert Sorby Turnmaster - Versatility and Value

Robert Sorby, from the English steel city of Sheffield, is a company with a long tradition of making quality cutting tools. It has demonstrated a commitment to producing fine tools for woodworking and woodturning in particular. The Robert Sorby TurnMaster is a great example of the innovative direction the Sorby product range is taking.

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Customer Profile - Ric Fallu

Woodworking takes all different forms. For Ric Fallu, a Carbatec customer from Victoria, it is the ability to combine his love of the underwater world and fishing with a passion for woodworking that inspires him. In retirement, Ric has set himself a challenge to build in wood a series of classic speargun designs normally crafted in plastic and metal. This has proven to be a real test of ingenuity and skill. Along the way he has found companionship with fellow woodworkers and rediscovered a love of woodwork that has been with him for most of his life.

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CMT Reverse Glue Joint Bit

This router bit is designed for edge-jointing narrower boards to create wider panels for benches and table tops, door panels or shelving. It's a very serviceable item to have in the tool cupboard as it vastly increases the glue service area of the edges of your boards and gives the joint enormous strength.

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A Celebration of Wooden Boats

Carol Russell and photographer, Donovan Knowles, visited the MyState Wooden Boat Festival in Hobart and discovered a vibrant community committed to keeping a long tradition of wooden boatbuilding and sailing alive. Carol and Donovan received some exceptional hospitality on land and at sea and over the following few months we will post a series of stories on our website about boatbuilding, restoration and the characters they met.

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