Shaping is a fairly hroad category when it comes to workshop skills. In one sense or another, just about anything you do to a workpiece with a tool alters its shape. But this chapter concerns .shaping exercises that don't necessarily change the size of the workpiece, but rather alter its appearance or, in some cases, prepare it to be joined with another work-piece. Routing, planing, filing and shaving or paring are the activities normally done for this purpose.

Shaping is the area of woodworking where hand tools are still used most prevalently. I [and planes, tiles, drawknives, spokeshaves and other hand-powered tools offer a level of precision and control that's hard to find with power tools. But tor t heir part, power tools (particularly the router) are much faster and, for some types of shaping tasks, more accurate. Making grooves, rabbets, dovetails and other joinery cuts is a perfect chore for the router, provided you use the correct router bit. Shaping complex edge profiles, like ogees and coves, is much easier to do with a router bit than with any hand tool.

Whether you're using hand or power tools, the key to good results when shaping wood is not to try to remove too much material at one time. Make a habit of making several precise, controlled passes with the tool whenever possible. Tins will yield cleaner, more accurate results, and you're less likely to ruin your workpiece: it's tough to put wood back on once you cut it off

Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

THIS book is one of the series of Handbooks on industrial subjects being published by the Popular Mechanics Company. Like Popular Mechanics Magazine, and like the other books in this series, it is written so you can understand it. The purpose of Popular Mechanics Handbooks is to supply a growing demand for high-class, up-to-date and accurate text-books, suitable for home study as well as for class use, on all mechanical subjects. The textand illustrations, in each instance, have been prepared expressly for this series by well known experts, and revised by the editor of Popular Mechanics.

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