Q&A LogoQ&A first ran in The Old Saw newsletter in late 2004 and has continued in The Journal. Questions from members are sent to a panel of experienced woodworkers. The "experts" do not always agree but you will find this collection to be a wonderful resource.

Use the archive lists below to help find what you are looking for or to just explore.

Displaying 236 Records
Steve Costain, Jon Siegel
May, 2018

What is the best way to add dust collection for a lathe? The chips seem to go everywhere but land mostly in front of the lathe.—Joyce Hanna

  • Dust Collection
  • Turning
Garrett Hack
May, 2018

How can a plane blade be re-ground to develop a York Pitch (50°)—Mike DiMaggio?

  • Tools
Donna Banfield
May, 2018

When using Easy Wood or similar lathe tools on the inside of bowls, horrible and severe catches can occur when the tool handle is rotated from flat to any angle. Why does this happen when the actual cutting surface will be at the identical angle of cut?—Annamarie Pennucci

  • Turning
Jeff Lind, Burt Ouellette, Garrett Hack
May, 2018

What are the ways to use Super Glue in the shop? I’m interested in different viscosities and results with accelerators, etc. for various applications.—William Taylor

  • Glue
Garrett Hack, Jon Siegel, Jeff Roberts
May, 2018

Why do the manufacturing companies always recommend using a chuck in compression rather than expansion? What is the difference and why is expansion considered more dangerous?—Annamarie Pennucci

  • Turning
Garrett Hack, Bruce Wedlock
November, 2017

What is the difference between O1 and A2 steel?—Mike DiMaggio

  • Tools
Donna Banfield, Claude Dupuis
November, 2017

I turn mostly bowls at a relatively high speed and I keep my tools sharp. Even so, I get too much end grain tear out. What can I do about this?—Tom Donnelly

  • Turning
Donna Banfield, Dave Emerson
November, 2017

Please outline the process to season green wood for turning or furniture making.—David Witham

  • Green Wood
Steve Costain, Bruce Hamilton
November, 2017

What is the best way to finish turning projects while still on the lathe?—Ed Bartlett

  • Finishing
  • Turning
Garrett Hack
November, 2017

Can you provide some suggestions for homemade finishes utilizing oil and wax?—Mike DiMaggio

  • Finishing
Joe Barry
January, 2017

What is the most stable species of wood to be used in a humid environment?—Mike DiMaggio

  • Wood
Bruce Wedlock, Claude Dupuis, Donna Banfield
January, 2017

In making large diameter lidded boxes, I try to keep the kerf as narrow as possible. However I frequently get burning on the sides of the narrow blade cutoff tool. How can this be avoided?—Jim Forbes

  • Turning
Donna Banfield, Claude Dupuis
January, 2017

What is the best way to add dust collection for a lathe? The chips seem to go everywhere, but land mostly in front of the lathe.—Joyce Hanna

  • Dust Collection
Bruce Wedlock, Donna Banfield
January, 2017

When I color a piece with aniline dye and finish with lacquer, the Beall buffing system attacks the color and removes it. How can I prevent this?—Gary Bashian

  • Finishing
Donna Banfield, Claude Dupuis, Peter Breu
January, 2017

What is a good (reliable) method to prepare green wood for turning? I’ve had limited success with just painting the end grain of logs.—Tony Immorlica

  • Turning
  • Green Wood
Bruce Wedlock, Jon Siegel, Donna Banfield, Claude Dupuis
January, 2017

Should a burr be left on when sharpening a bowl gouge?—Norman Miner

  • Turning
  • Sharpening
Bob Couch, Bruce Wedlock, Peter Breu, Joe Barry, Tom McLaughlin
January, 2017

What is the recommended method to apply a finish on a cherry table?—Jorge Torres

  • Finishing
Claude Dupuis
January, 2017

What is the best way to finish turning projects while still on the lathe?—Ed Bartlett

  • Finishing
  • Turning
Jon Siegel, Peter Breu
January, 2017

How do you square up and maintain the accuracy of a power jointer?—Kit Gurwell

  • Tools
Jon Siegel, Peter James, Garrett Hack
January, 2017

I don’t have any wall space left in my shop to hang my bandsaw blades, which are 150" long (for 18" wheels). The manufacturers do not advise any more than three loops, and anything other than a nice round shape for storing. They would prefer you open the blade fully up and hang it on the wall. I am looking for some innovative ways of storing… read more

  • Tools
Garrett Hack
January, 2017

How long can I store shellac flakes in an air tight container before they go bad?—Sal Morgani

  • Finishing
Bruce Hamilton, Richard Oedel
June, 2016

I hear that the color in lilac will not last long. What type of finish do you use to protect highly colored wood?—Syd Lorandeau

  • Finishing
Garrett Hack
June, 2016

Christopher Schwartz says that the iron of the Stanley (fore plane I think) should take a thick shaving when hogging off waste with an 8" radius iron. I think that both the Stanley and the Bedrock 605, which I have should adjust the same. The mouth should be adjusted for a large opening. Even with the frog all the way back in my plane I can’t… read more

  • Tools
Bob LaCivita
June, 2016

I do not have a garage, so I would like to build a spray booth in my basement large enough to accommodate pieces of furniture that I build. Does anyone have experience building a basement spray booth and do you know of construction plans? Also, can you recommend a source for the explosion proof fan I will need?—Gregg Pollack

  • Finishing
Terry Moore
June, 2016

Can you sharpen a bandsaw blade by hand and if so, how?—Anon

  • Sharpening
Richard Oedel, Bruce Wedlock, Bob Oswald, Bob LaCivita, Bruce Hamilton
June, 2016

When I apply a polyurethane top coat to a project, I always get brush streaks even when I use a foam brush and when I thin the material. It helps when I rag the wet finish but I’m just wiping off material I just put on. The only solution I have found is to wet sand after dry. What am I doing wrong?—Jim Seroskie

  • Finishing
Claude Dupuis, Peter James
June, 2016

Bowls can be turned from a round log cut to length or from a log split down the middle. What are the advantages or issues with each approach.—Anon

  • Turning
Bruce Hamilton, Bob Oswald, Donna Banfield
June, 2016

Turners on the Seacoast are turning cane shafts for disabled veterans in coordination with local carvers. What would you recommend for finishes? The canes, and cane shafts in particular, need to be weather resistant and likely exposed to a full range of precipitation?—Annamarie Pennucci

  • Finishing
Jon Siegel, Dave Emerson, Peter James, Claude Dupuis
June, 2016

What features should I look for in purchasing a quality mid-sized lathe? The lathe is to be used for both spindle and bowl turning.—Anon

  • Turning
Dave Emerson, Owain Harris
June, 2016

What woods are best for bending?—Anon

  • Wood
Donna Banfield
June, 2016

What benefit if any is there in using hook or ring tools on the lathe?—Joe Barry

  • Turning
Jim Seroskie, Steve Costain
June, 2016

I am finishing a small chest of drawers made with black walnut. The top piece for the chest has an open knot hole (elliptical 1/2" x 1"). There are other closed knot holes in the piece and I want to keep the look but want to fill the gap. What are the best ways to fill that which will preserve the dark look of the surrounding wood and take a… read more

  • Finishing
Donna Banfield
September, 2015

What is the most effective way to eliminate or avoid streaks in finish, particularly in the interior of hollow forms or bowls?—Jim Forbes

  • Finishing
  • Turning
Richard Oedel
September, 2015

What are some good ways to put a writing surface on the inside of the lid of a desk using baize or leather?—Herb Kettler

  • Other
Tony Immorlica
September, 2015

Can you sharpen a bandsaw blade by hand and if so how?—Claude Dupuis

  • Sharpening
Richard Oedel
September, 2015

Woodworking stores have a huge range of expensive color pigments. What pigments would constitute a basic color set that would give one the ability to mix most common wood tones and colors? Also, what is the best type of pigment? I have both TransFast powder and TransTint liquid pigments. What is each type best suited for?—Tony Immorlica

  • Finishing
Peter Breu, Bob Couch, Bob Oswald
September, 2015

What is the best applied finish for exterior wood surfaces such as doors, windows or boats (clear finish)?—Harvey Best

  • Finishing
Richard Oedel, Dave Emerson
September, 2015

I have put a tung oil/turpentine/urethane mix on my finished work and it is not drying (it must be a stale mixture). What do I do now? How do I clean it off or what can I add to harden the finish?—Jim Forbes

  • Finishing
Peter James, Tony Immorlica, Mike Korsak, Bob Couch, Dave Emerson, Joe Barry
September, 2015

What is the best way to keep machine metal surfaces rust free, bright & non-contaminating when you slide raw wood over that surface?—Harvey Best

  • Rust
Bob Couch
April, 2015

I have a 14" Jet bandsaw with a slowly dying motor (I need to give it a spin to get it to turn on). Can I replace it with a higher horsepower motor? What’s the limit on h.p. for an existing tool? How do I “spec” the motor if I buy it from a catalog?—Anon

  • Electrical
Bruce Wedlock
April, 2015

How do you prevent discoloration from glue and metal clamps or how do I get the stains out.—Joe Barry

  • Finishing
George Saridakis
April, 2015

Can you recommend a powered respirator that is both comfortable and effective for extended periods of shop use?— Caleb Dietrich

  • Finishing
  • Other
Peter James, George Saridakis
April, 2015

Has anyone made their own vacuum chuck? What are needed for parts and are there any suggested sources?—Anon

  • Turning
Donna Banfield
April, 2015

My turned oak bowls cracked the week after I finished them. I kept them in my cellar where the humidity is about 40%-45%. I need some advice/tips on how to dry these projects.—Vic Sokul

  • Turning
Jon Siegel, Peter Breu
April, 2015

What is the best source for saw files and other specialty files and rasps?—Al Breed

  • Tools
Bob Oswald, Bruce Wedlock, Steve Costain
April, 2015

What is the formula to determine the RPM for cutting vs the diameter of the cutter (especially for shaper cutters)?—Joe Aiello

  • Other
Bruce Wedlock, Mike Korsak
April, 2015

What applications do you use different glue types for? Glues such as PVA, epoxy, Unibond, polyurethanes, etc. Is it acceptable to use a combination?—Anon

  • Glue
Dave Emerson
April, 2015

Since cracking of wood for turning is sometimes unavoidable, how can I USE cracks in woodturning such as filling with colored epoxy, filling with a contrasting wood or stitching with leather or wire?—Gary Bashian

  • Turning
Jon Siegel
August, 2014

What are the differences in the use of resorcinol and epoxy glue for boat or outdoor uses?—John Watson

  • Glue
Steve Costain
August, 2014

What is the best way to darken etched graduations on older steel rules?—Al Saffron

  • Tools