1. Find a model shop or model supplies on line and you will find different thicknesses, usually sold as thin, medium and thick. You can also buy thicknessing granules that dissolve to thicken even more so it’s good for filling voids too. The maker is Zap products and the use the name zap a gap. It’s just CA glue though; superglue. The accelerator they call Zip kicker. Sets up the glue in split seconds but when the two hit together the reaction is boiling hot so watch your fingers, eyes and breathing too.

      1. Paul,
        First off, thank you and your staff for the great video’s.
        Concerning the CA glue I have used baking soda as a filler material on occasion, it’s a nice fine powder, I then drip the CA glue onto it and it dries rock hard. Iv’e never used the accelerator so thanks for the tip.
        Ted in Texas

  1. the one thing that is missing from every video.
    descriptive procedure.
    where should one start first and why.
    whats the best way to tackle a project.
    there was a glimpse of it in this one but its so quick as to not notice.
    also theres no advice on how to design a projects in either your blog or videos.
    also a very detailed video or blog on the whys and whens to use a joint should have alll been done before moving onto projects.
    but i get it if you had have done all this then there would be no reason for people to subscribe to your wwmc after those videos/blogs.
    i love all you have done dont get me wrong and the respect i have for your knowledge and skill is immense but to me and im sure alot of others theres some critical steps being missed,
    hey i get that filming costs but building all these projects and preaching that you need to pass on all this and bring it back but you are doing just what you criticize magazines do.dropping snip bits and leaving the MOST CRITICAL information out so the punters will come back.
    you showed how to build a bench great.then all this other stuff.
    what about showing use how to make a proper saw vice for large saws,what about tool cupboards to go with the bench.

    1. Paul has written in his blog about building a handsaw vise and about the construction details of the tool cupboards that he uses in the shop. This line as much as any other tells me you just dropped in for a whinge. If you’re really interested in some help in figuring out design, see my other response.

      1. paul gave dimensions of cupboards but omly vague mention on joints. i emailed and was told it to complicated yet hed done the tool chest,seems backwards to me.by the way ive been a wood machinist by profession for 16yrs and have been searching for the info i was on about in my reply.if you can find it then let me fanboy.

    2. I face many awkward and even difficult decisions all the time when we start a new video series. My immediate thought goes to the viewer/learner every time and I try to present something that will meet the need regardless of skill level and knowledge. I never assume every member has watched videos from a previous series that show mortise cutting or fitting tenons or any other repetitive issues surrounding my craft because each series is best seen as a stand alone series. I do always try to introduce new things to each series as we did in the last series on building the shaker pieces ie, sliding dovetails, spindles without lathes and so on. No one does these things as far as I know and all of this is truly fresh stuff and never copied. Not many of you will realise also that I have worked out that I have cut around 120,000 hand cut joints in my lifetime woodworking to make all of this happen.
      In this project there are many M&T’s it’s true, but it’s the first time anyone anywhere on YouTube or Masterclasses or anywhere else where compound shouldered M&T’s have ever been addressed. We do this on the bottom left and right hand front-to-back side rails. That makes it complex and compounded. Cutting out the back legs and layout cover design elements others don’t and won’t dare to touch too. So, I hope that this helps bring some understanding to the complexities a furniture maker comes up against to pass on his skills and knowledge for a new generation of woodworkers to take over his quest.
      I realise some of these elements have yet to surface in this series but the issue has come up now and not in episodes yet to be aired. So again, it’s not so much to defend anything but to explain that progressing things means lots of reinforcement. Had I not made the 120,000 hand cut joints I would feel less confident standing in front of a camera teaching my friends around the globe.
      Hang in there and new concepts of making a design come to life will happen.

      1. paul i have the upmost respect for your experience and knowledge of woodworking.i didnt want to post that comment because i new there be come back from your fans.i just wanted to convey that ive learnt so much from you but now feel lost without direction. i find myself skipping thru your vids to find explanations as to how you come to the conclusion of using a joint over another. you have done so much for the woodworking community thru your teachings and you woke a beast inside me that wants to learn and work wood every waking second.ive been a woodmachinist for 16years.but thats with man made products only.no skill involved.
        all i want to do is learn, life is boring otherwise.
        how about doing a book or separate series on the basics of joint and design application.id be willing to pay good money for such info.its so hard to come by.
        the thing is ive watched and read so much bumpf from other so called gurus but they dont come close to your no bs straight to the point attitude and execution of woodworking.
        im sorry if my 1st comment came across harsh im not good with communication skills but i know your thick skinned.lol.
        i just wanted to try and get the point across hoping you would consider teaching us design and joint applications,im also worried there are so many more like me who feel the same.
        might seem wrong to you but i said what i said because i dont want your wwmc or teachings to stop because of members leaving or people not joining fro the same reasons..
        you have woken the beast in me please feed him with the knowledge he craves

  2. before anyone jumps to paul and crews defense i dont mean this in anway an attack.
    i loved all his youtube and wwmc when i first found it and am grateful for him having the passion and time to do it.
    but and its a BIG BUT,there is only so many times im willing to watch paul cut a mortice cut a tenon cut doevtails.its all becomes old real quick,repetitive with nothing new added but just a different final outcome when all assembled.
    the most critical knowledge is not being shown/discussed.
    why and where joints are best used.
    how to go about designing projects.
    how to start a project/best way to proceed thru the making of said project
    yes it might seem like its the boring stuff but this is so critical and so hard to learn because no one and i mean no one will pass this knowledge on because it would mean there wouldnt be a need anymore for people to watch,subscribe to there work.
    sad but true

    1. Hi Russell,

      I sympathise with where you’re coming from but Paul’s got to tread a line between moving things forwards and ensuring that a newcomer will be able to view these more recent projects and not feel put off because he’s skipping over some of the more basic information.

      Paul has never made a secret of the fact that we only need three joints to make the bulk of our projects. If you go back and re-listen to the videos, he is encouraging us to our own decisions on projects: “This is what I’m doing but your project may be different”. He has often shown us that the part he’s making can be looked at in various ways. For example, the panels on the first tool chest could also be used as doors to a cupboard or to make a picture frame.

      I tend to look at what Paul’s building as a series of modules that I can mix and match to make my own projects. My Computer Desk is a prime example (just posted in the forum today). I’ve taken various parts of other projects and come up with something of my own. It’s really a bit of the sofa table combined with the drawers from the tool chest and a bit the the craftsman lamp for the internal joinery. I haven’t put many of my own projects on the forum but I’ve managed to design and build several projects using this approach:

      * A bathroom cabinet based on the Clock
      * A coffee table with storage based on the tool chest
      * A radiator cover based on the frame and panel method

      These have taught me a lot about what not to do as much as what I should.

      Sometimes we only learn by doing (at least I do) so why not draw up a design of your own for a tool cupboard or saw vice and post it on the forum here? I’m sure you’ll get lots of help and advise.

      I hope you don’t see this post as jumping to Paul’s defence ( and please don’t think this is some sort of attack on you) – he’s more than able to speak for himself. Your post just set me thinking.

      All the best

    2. I don’t suppose Paul really needs my apologia in his behalf, but I choose not to restrain myself. This is so trite, so typically modern; first you attack him, then you cry out that you’re not attacking him, then you finish strong by attacking him. For all I know, you actually do like his presentations, but all the same, you’re attacking him: first by claiming that he’s not providing those lessons that you–and by implication, everyone else–have a right to see and would find most valuable, and second, you impugn his motives by suggesting that he’s withholding this crucial information deliberately to keep on subscribers and keep the cash flowing.

      Seriously, Russell, do you have no personal responsibility to search and find for yourself? I find awesome nuggets of design gold in every single project Paul presents. As mentioned by Jon, I think he talks about the broader application of joinery techniques and structures more than most online woodworking presenters. That’s why I watch nearly every video, even if I’m not going to immediately do a given project. Is it possible, do you think, that Paul is presenting design fundamentals and joinery applications in the same manner that he picked them up himself, as an apprentice?

      Anyway, so that I am not just attacking you back, here’s a few suggestions to help you get started. I am by no means an incredible designer, nevertheless:
      – Go to a local antique store and/or museum with furniture and study the construction details, sizes, proportions, etc. of old furniture, or modern furniture. {Actually, do this everywhere you go when you see something that looks good, interesting, different.} If you have the funds, buy some and take it apart.
      – Read blogs and articles about woodworking design. 20 seconds with Google turned up these two and dozens more like them. Michael Fortune at Fine Woodworking for example, or this from CanadianWoodworker magazine. Rob Porcaro on The Heartwood Blog often writes about design choices.
      – Read books about it: search “furniture design” on Google Books, or get “By Hand and Eye/By Hound and Eye”, published by LostArtPress.
      – Take a class from a local art school or community college on visual design principles, or find a local artisan in your area to talk with about his design principles/rationale (and pay him for his time somehow).
      – Presuming you’re already a subscriber, watch Paul’s videos specifically for insight into design decisions and/or broader application of the techniques shown. Sometimes I fast forward through sections of “routine” work, but that can also cause you to miss something salient, so beware.
      – Learn to draw well if you don’t already know how. Sketch lots of personal design ideas.
      – Make lots of furniture and specifically ask other builders/designers/clients/users/artists to critique your designs. Follow-up on those critiques in your next pieces.

      I have heard that good design can be hard. YMMV.

      1. wake up buddy.i simply stated ive learnt nothing more by watching wwmc than his you tube.i felt bad because i have respect for him as his knowledge knows no bounds,i wish i didnt feel bad but i do its my opinion.
        why should i have to do what you say if i were a paying member id want to learn it from him before any tool touched wood.if your happy to have to watch his everymmove carry on thats you thing.
        can anyone whos watched all these tell me they have learnt from wwmc vids why he uses such joints.not from other sources.no you cant,
        whats the point you will to wonder blindly or to keep having to watch.id be willing to pay to watch a seperate seiries from him on such things.

  3. I have made a number of small chairs for children, as I have mentioned before, they have been square type seating. We have not reached the angled seat video yet but I must say that I have learnt a few more ideas all ready from theses first three videos. Thank you Paul.

  4. Paul’s teaching methods work really well for me. For example, I benefit by watching him show in each project how to mortise and fit a tenon. I also benefit by watching Paul demonstrate a knife wall in a new project even though he has demonstrated knife walls many times in other projects.

    One of the benefits for me in Paul having deliberately chosen to use repetition as a teaching method is that as I attempt a knife wall, for example, at each step of the process Paul’s words come back to me and guide me all along the way in great detail. I think it is from repetition that I am able to benefit when working by having it seem like Paul is standing right there in my shop with me offering advice at just the right time as I work on something challenging. For me that is the best kind of confidence building around so I speak up for repetition.

  5. Could not disagree more with you Russell, and ejpotter has enumerated my own thoughts on the matter almost perfectly. Paul in no way needs our help defending his methods or ethics, but I will anyway, and I will add one point; The idea that Paul might run this site as a *business* designed to earn an income while also doing good is IN NO WAY A BAD THING. I have no desire to inject politics into any discussion here, but I think that characterising such an enterprise as somehow dishonest or underhanded is itself deserving of both those terms and perhaps worse. I for one find the monthly fees to be very reasonable and last time I looked, no one is under any obligation to pay anything. In fact, any one of the other craftsmen/teachers offering similar content in a similar way charge just as much if not more, and with less access to free content as well. I am grateful to Paul beyond my ability to express it with words not just for the actual skills he has shown me but the change in thinking their acquisition and practice has wrought. I have and will continue to recommend Paul and all his content to anyone who asks and some who don’t.

    This last addressed to Paul directly:

    Thank you sir, with immense gratitude and sincerity for all that you do.

    1. ok i respect your view.not that you did mine.
      whats the point in being able to cut these joints if you dont know why your using them over others.i bet you and a lot of others have made his projects by watching the vids sec by sec.
      me personally i dont want to have to copy anyone your not a craftsmen if your copying.
      i tell you what design a piece furniture yourself.something paul hasnt made yet without help from anyone else or any other source and lets see how the finished item looks.

  6. I have watched almost all the videos and i have learned a lot about design and joint choice even if it isn’t explicitly stated. Go build some projects. The techniques we’re learning will guide us in making all of those many design/construction choices.

    If all else fails take a tape measure and measure your butt, now make you chair that big.

  7. I don’t know why forks are designed the way they are. I don’t care either. If I ever made a fork, I would replicate the ones in my utensil drawer because I assume the design works. My point? I use certain joints for certain projects because those joints are used in Paul’s videos. For example, now that I have successfully cut and chopped dovetails for boxes, why would I use any other joint for the corners of a box? I don’t need to know WHY this is the joint to use (actually I do), but rather how to make them when I want to make a box. How many dovetails for each corner? I strongly feel that’s up to the artisan. Someone who likes a lot of dovetails per corner may feel that fewer dovetails on each corner is ugly and vice versa. When I eventually make a dining room table, I will use mortise and tenon joinery as shown in Paul’s videos. The dining room table doesn’t have corners like a box except for the trim, which by the way is very similar to the trim in the jointer’s toolbox series; therefore automatically telling me that dovetails are not the PRIMARY joint to use to make a table. I have a cupboard made from a country where most things are being made. I live in the US so most of you can figure out what country that is. Anyway, it’s garbage because it literally almost comes apart when you try to move it. I will probably replace this cupboard with one I make. I will use dovetails and dodoes because I know these joints will make the cupboard rock solid. Why? I’ve used them in projects and the result was rock solid.

  8. I have not (yet) made any of Paul’s projects but I have learnt to use some of his techniques and intend to view his videos time and time again as I learn to do better; some of this stuff is very subtle and I need the loop of learn – do – learn.

    More than anything else Paul has convinced me that, strictly as an amateur, I can design better, become more accurate and find more satisfaction in using my unskilled hands. With retirement coming every closer I am looking forward to the day and my wife dreads it less as she is convinced I shall be busy, potentially useful and not in the kitchen! Indeed my introduction to Paul was a set of CDs for Christmas!

    Paul: many thanks

  9. I like to see friendly debate in these comments but a few of them are feeling distinctly unfriendly. Please everyone, remember to be kind and thoughtful in your comments.

    Russell, we may well do some video seminars on design in the future. That said, there is nothing wrong with people following the instructions laid out here to make the exact pieces as Paul outlines them. I think often people don’t want to go away and make entirely different pieces. If you look in the galleries there are great examples of slight variations that people have made in the projects. This is fantastic and makes each piece stand out from the crowd.

    I don’t mind discussion but I have already deleted one of the comments from above because it was unnecessarily harsh.

    If there are any more comments on here that I consider to be unkind I will delete all comments from this page that are not directly related to the episode.

    1. re: “Russell, we may well do some video seminars on design in the future. That said, there is nothing wrong with people following the instructions laid out here to make the exact pieces as Paul outlines them.”

      Joseph, I for one would really like to see some coverage of design also. At my age I’m pretty set in my future path, but I would expect it would be an especially useful topic for those wanting to follow a path to becoming a lifestyle woodworker.

  10. I think there may be a difference focus here.

    Before one can become an artist or artisan, one must first master the craft. For example, I am an amateur photographer. Before I can achieve the artistic effect I am looking for I must learn the nuts and bolts of how to do it.

    I see these classes as giving me a solid background in the technical aspects of hand tool woodworking. This will allow me to express my own vision as to how my own projects will expressed.

    As one masters the technical aspects of a craft, the possibilities of creative expression expand.

  11. Sorry Craig, just read this thread and for some reason feel the need to ad my 2 pence worth.

    I know a fella who used to teach architecture in a university. He showed me a lovely book on traditional wooden wheel making. He would make his first year students study this book, not because they were training as wheelwrights but purely to make the point that if you intend to redesign the wheel you first need to understand the accumulated knowledge of hundreds of years of wheel making. His point was that before you understand how things are done using the accumulated knowledge of hundreds of years you are not able to make real design decisions.
    It’s not Paul who dictates that quality boxes are made with dovetails or frame and panels are made with mortise and tenons and raised panels, it is the way that things have developed over many years. New and better designs may come into play but not “before a tool has touched wood”, but from people who genuinely understand and respect what has gone before.

  12. question, when you mark the lines for the shoulder do you use the end of the mortise as a phisycal reference, i mean do you rest your pencil on it to mark the tenons, or do you just mark them outside of the mortise eyeballing it

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