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Woodworking with a twist
March 1, 2013 7:22 PM   Subscribe

Frank Howarth's woodworking videos are a joy to watch. Even if you know nothing about woodworking, the stop-motion animation he incorporates into them is a treat.
posted by ocherdraco (27 comments total) 37 users marked this as a favorite

 
Nice. Serious tool lust over the Powermatic table saw and the ship's saw.
posted by Mei's lost sandal at 7:32 PM on March 1, 2013


Fun! Nice playful editing, without getting in the way of the content at all.

(But sheesh, who's got time for that sort of thing, and still be able get any work done? Does he maybe have a friend or family member who is doing it for him?)
posted by woodblock100 at 7:34 PM on March 1, 2013


I know! I thought the same thing, especially having done stop-mo (not to mention woodworking!) myself before. It's very time consuming!
posted by ocherdraco at 7:41 PM on March 1, 2013


Never would I think to see pixilation & wood working! Really well done, on all accounts. And now I am lusting after that desk something awful. It's gorgeous.
posted by smirkette at 8:01 PM on March 1, 2013


Someone who knows the term pixilation! Swoon.
posted by ocherdraco at 8:09 PM on March 1, 2013


OMG, that oscillating spindle sander is the most adorable power tool I've ever seen!
posted by aubilenon at 8:09 PM on March 1, 2013


This is one of those things that is so masterfully done it leaves you thinking "I could totally build a desk, look how easy it is."

Also, considerable lust for his work space. Those windows at the ceiling, I put them in every house I design in my head for myself.
posted by looli at 8:09 PM on March 1, 2013


Are all his tools comically large or is it just me? I would kill for that shop.

Very cool videos. I will have to watch them all.
posted by bondcliff at 8:11 PM on March 1, 2013


This is really fun to watch, and the guy knows his woodworking, but that desk, like so much furniture, is horribly unergonomic. He obviously decides to put the leg in the center of the corner radius for aestetics, but the space between the drawers and the leg is too small to comfortably put your legs there, and the leg sits where you'll hit your knees on it a lot.

So yeah, pretty, maybe not so practical.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 8:20 PM on March 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


I noticed that thing about the positioning of the leg also.

I wonder how long that took him to make that desk for his son. And how long it would have taken him if he didn't make this great video! I love all the stop motion stuff but it's not quick to do.
posted by aubilenon at 8:48 PM on March 1, 2013


I had my tool lust under control until I saw the jointer...you could flatten a redwood with that thing. That is a mind-blowing shop for a hobbyist.

The ergonomics are alright. Its sized for a small boy and from the shots with both Calvin and the desk it looks like it works for him. Maybe he'll outgrow it in 10 years but I'll bet Mr. Howarth will be looking for a new project by then.
posted by N-stoff at 9:10 PM on March 1, 2013


So yeah, pretty, maybe not so practical.

Child desk so probably OK. I must say, though I appreciate the crafts-person-ship, and the workshop and the tools, and the skill, and the stop motion and animations - it's a pretty fugly desk.
posted by the noob at 9:55 PM on March 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


You could always say it's designed after a knee hole desk, which is made to be used with one knee inside the desk and one out. The idea is it's a small handy desk to sit down for a moment to write a quick note.

Is he seriously a hobbyist running a shop like that?! I'd kill for a quarter of that space, half the ceiling height, and just one of his giant stationary tools. Mmm, that bandsaw.

Except the antique radial arm saw. Ten is a very fine number of fingers.
posted by echo target at 10:27 PM on March 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


OMG, that oscillating spindle sander is the most adorable power tool I've ever seen!
posted by aubilenon at 11:09 PM on March 1 [+] [!]


My mom has a smaller version of those spindle sanders out in the garage that dad bought years ago and left mostly unused. For Christmas this year I made her an ikeahack quilting table for her sewing machine, and probably spent more time digging out the junk in front of that thing to use it than I spent on the rest of the project. They are a joy to use, can hog off material unbelievably well, and probably the safest power tool in the shop besides the radio. Seriously the only thing that could improve on the tool would be a portable version configured like a router.

echo target: By all means, if it scares you then don't use it. IMO there's nothing more dangerous than using a tool that inspires fear in the operator, for whatever reason. That RAS is probably my second most coveted item in the shop, besides monster-lathe.
posted by mcrandello at 11:08 PM on March 1, 2013


(I didn't mean that to sound like I'm questioning your judgment. I've given up on a few tools because I just don't trust them not to screw me, despite any precautions.)
posted by mcrandello at 11:14 PM on March 1, 2013


dat eq. dem skillz. dam.
posted by cmoj at 1:37 AM on March 2, 2013


They're not cheap so much anymore because lots and lots of woodworkers have realized how much value there is in them, but at one point you could pick up industrial tools like that for not a lot of money.

It's when you're NOT scared of a tool just a little bit that you get careless. Respect borne of fear is a good thing around power tools.

That aircraft carrier joiner is both a tool I covet and one of the scariest in the shop to me, especially without a guard. They originally came with a square blade holder which was definitely a stump maker, and I'm not talking about trees.

Radial arm saws are quite good tools...just don't try to (a) rip lumber with them and (b) always, always check where your thumb is.
posted by maxwelton at 1:40 AM on March 2, 2013


And I was gonna come back to add... dat safety consciousness.
posted by cmoj at 1:42 AM on March 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Now this guy knows how to make a video! There are several guys on YT who I'd like to watch but they STOP WORKING to talk. All you can see is a hand or even less and voice stumbling through an unrehearsed plan. And then "I won't make you watch this whole thing, so let's come back on the next step". Yes, that's right. I came here to listen to you ramble, I didn't want to see any actual tools in use. *facepalm*
posted by DU at 3:42 AM on March 2, 2013


Brilliant!
posted by Faintdreams at 4:00 AM on March 2, 2013


Now this guy knows how to make a video! There are several guys on YT who I'd like to watch but they STOP WORKING to talk.

I was checking out videos about hand-cut dovetails the other day and one guy had the camera positioned so all you could see was his arm move back and forth while he did whatever he was doing with his hands. If I were the sort of person to comment on YouTube I might have asked him if he'd even watched his video when he was done making it. It was literally 4 minutes of the guy's arm.
posted by bondcliff at 6:35 AM on March 2, 2013


Hahaha, this is from the comments on his cubby shelf video:
Christopher Eyer 1 month ago
How many dewalt radial arm saws do you have it looks like maybe3 or 4???


frank howarth 1 month ago
5, yes I have a problem.
Man oh man, would I enjoy working in that shop. Though someone would have to teach me how to use half the tools! I've never had the opportunity to use a planer or a jointer, as I've only ever worked in shops owned by others which didn't have those tools.
posted by ocherdraco at 7:40 AM on March 2, 2013


It seemed to me like he goes about making the segmented bowl in the most roundabout way possible, but I really dig the results. (He must be really into this segments-of-wood thing -- you can see a similar pattern in the legs of the boy's desk.)

The fact that this is posted on a quiet Saturday morning is particularly nice -- this is right about the same time of day I used to watch The Woodwright's Shop on PBS with my dad -- so this post hits a really pleasant note of nostalgia for me. Thanks.
posted by The demon that lives in the air at 9:10 AM on March 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


I appreciated the warning about the stop motion - I thought for a minute that somebody had put something in my iced tea when the planer started going nom-nom-nom.
posted by halfbuckaroo at 3:18 PM on March 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


(But sheesh, who's got time for that sort of thing, and still be able get any work done? Does he maybe have a friend or family member who is doing it for him?)

Apparently this is just him with more hours than there are in the day. I mean maybe he has a filmmaker friend, but... damn.
posted by cmoj at 1:02 AM on March 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


bondcliff: "Are all his tools comically large or is it just me? I would kill for that shop."

Those are serious cabinet making tools. In a shop like that every thing ends up being proportional to the size of your jointer (that being the most expensive tool per inch) So if you can swing a 12" jointer then you need a 24" planer and you want your sanders and band saws to be large enough to prep stock for the jointer.

The radial arm saw and table saws are pretty well the cheapest per material handling inch so you just make those as large as you can though your radial arm saw should handle at least 12" inches.

Also serious lust here.
posted by Mitheral at 3:01 PM on March 3, 2013


Turns out he's got a blog, too.
posted by ocherdraco at 7:53 PM on March 3, 2013


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