Shoji Screen: Episode 1

Shoji Screen Episode 1 Keyframe

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The Shoji screen is basic woodworking joinery with a twist of exactness, resulting in a unique opportunity to deploy your emerging skills with hand tools to their best. Whereas the Shoji is a traditional Japanese project, the methods Paul is deploying requires no special tools or knowledge at all. Paul shows his methods for making the parallel twinned mortise holes, which we know one day will become traditional in joinery practice on a worldwide scale. This opening episode will both stimulate your creative juices and inspire you to fine woodworking.

LAYOUT – 0:07

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  1. Claudiu on 9 July 2020 at 2:13 pm

    works for me.

  2. Andreas Zimmer on 9 July 2020 at 9:03 pm

    Why do you need gauge lines, if you are using a guide?

    • Izzy Berger on 14 July 2020 at 2:08 pm

      Hi Andreas,

      Paul says:
      You don’t technically need them, mostly it’s to give you a visual on where things are going.

      Kind Regards,

  3. Tom McCann on 9 July 2020 at 9:19 pm

    Why pencil lines for the bevel? Wouldn’t a marking gauge be simpler / more accurate?

    • woodturner on 10 July 2020 at 8:20 am

      Hi Tom,
      A marking gauge would leave a groove made by the pin or knife which would be impossible to eliminate.

    • Izzy Berger on 14 July 2020 at 2:10 pm

      Hi Tom,

      Paul says:
      A marking gauge would cause a marring on the intersecting point of the bevel and thereby be ugly.

      Kind Regards,

  4. wdelliott on 10 July 2020 at 8:44 am

    I was reading Charles Hayward, the English woodworker, who preferred started mortises in the middle and then chiseling to the ends. Does your method of starting at the end and working all the way across the mortise make any difference?

  5. wfb on 10 July 2020 at 10:10 pm

    Bravo Paul!
    I just had to say so, upon watching your last, single cut for the bevel.
    Your work far from the vise – in mid-air to me – always catches my attention: that I can and should develop such feel.
    Thank you for your teaching.

  6. Selva on 15 July 2020 at 9:16 pm

    Any suggestions on where to buy wide shoji paper like the one Paul shows in the intro video? I’ve never seen any other than the common 9 3/4″ (hanshi) and 11″ (mino) rolls with kumiko spacing made to match. Apart from some hand made sheets (still not that large).

  7. Selva on 15 July 2020 at 9:53 pm

    Talking to self: it seems there are many suppliers of wide rolls online, though hard to find what type of fiber is in use. Funny that many sites call it rice paper — I had to google to figure out many Westerners associate rice with oriental.

  8. Larry Geib on 16 July 2020 at 3:58 am

    I’m pretty sure soji paper was traditionally mulberry, not rice.

    It’s also available as a synthetic (tyvek, I think) for outdoor use.

  9. Selva on 16 July 2020 at 5:49 am

    “Rice paper” is a misnomer. I really wonder where that name came from.

  10. simon weingarten on 16 July 2020 at 8:39 am

    Hi Paul & Team,
    simple question: why are we using twin tenons on this project? Wouldn’t a single tenon be plenty strong enough?

    • Matthew Newman on 28 July 2020 at 3:03 pm

      Simon, I think the general idea behind twin tenons relates to the width of a single tenon against the width of what it’s mortised into. A wide tenon would potentially leave the mortise sides weak with a lot of potential leverage from the tenon. Twin tenons adds a bit more strength on the mortise side and gives a couple extra glue surfaces


  11. Andrew LeRoy on 10 August 2020 at 6:36 pm

    Another excellent instructional video. Thanks Paul!

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