Using dimensional lumber (2x4 and the like) from the home center or lumber yard is a great way to save money on a project. Provided, of course, that you get the right stuff. Anyone who has walked down the aisles of the home improvement store and pick through the piles can attest: some of this stuff is downright funky. And we often pick the best of the bunch, only to find it twisted, warped, or curved once we get the wood home and it's had time to acclimate to our workspaces.
Makers Simon Blazer and David Bakker shows you how to turn a simple block of wood into a super quick and easy tablet dock. The process? A single drilled hole and a quick saw cut. That's it.
There's something incredible about watching a process from start to finish. The transformation from log to finished set of bowls is something already fun to see, but watching a Chinese craftsman do it on a foot powered lathe is something else completely.
We recently procured a salt shaker for our dining table. It looks like an owl. My wife likes it. However, it seems that the sea salt we put in it never actually comes out of the little holes. Taking from the kitchen salt cellars you scoop and pinch from as you cook, I thought I'd create a communal cellar to place on your table that's perfect for a party of one or a party of many. No more clogged shakers!
Most articles on the value of clamps will begin with the old adage, "You can never have too many clamps." This one, apparently, does too. (See what I did there?) Because the truth is: you really can't.
This process video was one of Vimeo's Staff Picks and it's easy to see why. The five minute short is full of gorgeous cinematography as UK native and traditional shipwright Ben Harris discusses his lifelong love of woodworking and shipbuilding, and the kinship one feels with their craft when one starts at the very beginning with the rawest of materials.
I'm a big fan of quiet, contemplative, maker-oriented short films, and if that sounds up your alley, this is one you won't want to miss.
Hopefully, the new calendar has you motivated to take on some new projects. And we all know the key to working quickly, efficiently, and creatively is: organization. Keeping things where they need to be allows your work surface to stay clean and makes your tools easy to find. Plus, when well organized, you'll find you can actually fit a lot more gear and materials into a small space.
Here at ManMade, "value" is all about getting a product which has a quality you're comfortable with at a price that you're comfortable paying. For us, that means we're rarely recommending
Are you still feeling the lingering of the Christmas spirit? Keep it going by crafting some carpentry tools dating back beyond the first century. This DIY guide takes your old plywood remains and an old circular saw blade to combine them into a custom and sturdy hand plane.
Tired of the boring lights hanging from your shop ceiling? Why not take the time to make something that reflects your personality a bit more. Here are three inspirational designs that will give you a new outlook on shop lighting.
With the holidays right around the corner, we set off to buy a relatively cheap, but meaningful gift for a friend. What we found was classic flask designed by the same guys who made your grandfather's thermos, and filled it with a little holiday spirit.
Here's a simple and awesome looking idea for a family calendar that will actually look good on the wall in our house. Made from reclaimed shop wood and painted with a clear chalkboard paint, this simple weekend project will have plenty of use for years to come.
ManMade Essential Toolbox: Yep, We're Calling 'Em Essential. Why You Definitely Need an Air Compressor and Nailer Kit
Each week in 2015, ManMade is sharing our picks for the essential tools we think every creative guy and DIYer needs. We've selected useful, long-lasting tools to help you accomplish a variety of projects, solve problems, and live a hands-on lifestyle that allows you to interact with and make the things you use every day.
Okay, friends. Here's the thing with air nailers and compressors, at least for creative woodworking, every day DIY, and casual weekend use: they're amazing. Optional, sure? But the amount of time and frustration they can save is immense, and in most shops, worth every penny.
And here's why: "nail guns," unless you're framing a house, are not a replacement for hammer and nails. Instead, they're most useful as an extra pair of hands, or four, for aligning and registering parts and keeping things in place while adhesives dry. They're incredibly useful for trim work, installing cabinets, stairs, carpentry, and woodworking. They don't only hold things together; they hold things in place while something stronger holds the parts together. And that's even more useful.
Free Download: The First Ever English Language Book on Woodworking - Joseph Moxon's 'Mechanick Exercises'
One of my favorite truths about woodworking is: it really hasn't changed much in the last few centuries. Sure, there are table saws that won't cut hotdogs now, but if you look at the hand tool design, they're nearly identical. (In fact, most modern high end tool makers are doing their best to emulate historic tools from the 19th century, albeit with newer materials). All of this is to say - this is a good thing, people who make stuff! It's good for your wallet, cause you can easily find these old tools and bring them back to life. And it's also good for your wallet (see what I did there?), because it means you can find loads of old books, magazines, and other instructional materials, all of which will be valid.
Jimmy Diresta is type of talented, creative maker we all want to be someday. His designs and methods are real, raw, and always come out impressive. Take a look at three projects from his new series here.
Cut galvanized pipe. Vibrate a concrete mold to get the air bubbles out. Re-set PVC plumbing. Shave down an LVL header. Strip nails from hundred-year-old lumber. Flush cut wood and metal. Plunge cut into walls and cabinets. Demolish a kitchen. Rip out a toilet. Cut a clawfoot tub in half so you can lower it out a second story window. Trim your trees. Cut down a Christmas tree. Free a horrible laminate countertop from its cabinet base.
I have used my reciprocating saw (also known by it's brand name, Sawzall) for almost all of those things, and some more I can't even remember. Are there other tools for each of those things? Sure. Are there