37 comments on “Making a Straightedge: Episode 1

  1. Team,
    Does the grain orientation make a difference with a straight edge like this? Would it be best to use quarter sawn wood or does it really make much of a difference?

    Thanks for the great tool videos.

    kaetwo

    • Quarter sawn is best but rift sawn is ok as well, the only issue that could arise with rift sawn it may twist, but as long as it’s dried properly the chances are minimal. Don’t use flat sawn for obvious reasons.

    • I also was curious about the orientation. Also Paul says he has used his straight edge for 50 years. I wonder how often adjustments need to made to it? I assume that it changes shape over time. Maybe this will be talked about in the second video.

    • In this instance, milling orientation doesn’t really affect the long term stability. Different woods have different tensions after drying, so you may have to plane the flat edge straight after making it.

      In reference to movement over time, Paul said that you may have to straighten the edge a few times, but after a while, wood loses it elasticity, and is less prone to atmospheric influences.
      Best, Phil

    • That is easy in fact I guess. You start with a small Straight Edge using a 30 cm steel ruler. So You get something like a 70 cm SE. From there You may go to the next size(s). Or You use a 50 cm steel ruler – but thats not the way of a sportsman – sorry – craftsman – does not it? 🙂
      But thanks for this episode – it makes our garage look very classy.

    • No straight-edge? I guess you could make three straight-edges at the same time. When #1 fits to #2 and #3, and #2 fits to #3, they are all dead straight. I understand that is how engineers used to make surface-plates.

    • If you don’t have a straight edge a chalk line would do as well since absolute precision isn’t needed for that part of the straightedge.

      Actually, I used a piece of aluminum angle as a straight edge for a long time. Not beautiful, but it works until you get around to making your own.

  2. I thought this video would start out with some descriptions of Lumber choices and how to be sure you picked up piece of straight wood, or could straighten one that needed a tweak …maybe that’s coming later

  3. Very nice video as usual. In my case I didn’t have any hardwood stock and didn’t want to drive 30 miles to get some. I ended up using some 3/4 cherry, laying it out per Paul’s instructions then used a scrub to rough in the ramps then smoothed with a No.4. Finally, I glued a block in the center for the handle. I may use a gouge to inlet the sides for easy grip.
    Can’t wait to see how Paul verifies straightness. For now I just penciled a line on my bench and stretched a string along it. Looks pretty good.

    • Makes sense to glue the handle onto 3/4 stock. It seems to me to be a lot of unneessary work and waste of wood to cut this out of one solid piece. Actually, if you laminated the entire bottom piece out of 1/8 inch thick stock, it would be more dimensionally stable over time.

  4. While Master working in peace and brightening next generation’s minds with pure craftsmanship a router screaming from behind like a bugbear. We were used to hear the train whistle for years now we are hearing router screaming.
    If you are fallowing Master for years like I do I think you can see how it is ironic and how Master was right.
    God bless you Paul. You will born again with every new generation.

  5. What great gifts you give us – very grateful that share your knowledge and experience. One of my teachers (a Turk) told me that “…you must share or give away your knowledge to own it…”. Therefore you are a very wealthy and fortunate man, in many ways.

Privacy Notice
You must enter certain information to comment on this page. We take the handling of personal information seriously and appreciate your trust in us. Our Privacy Policy sets out important information about us and how we use and protect your personal data and it also explains your legal rights in respect of it. Please click here to read it before you comment.

If you are having problems with viewing or downloading the video, or you have any other technical problem, please don’t use the comments, instead contact us here

Leave a Reply