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Saturday, 26 November 2011

New handles for Narex 8116 Cabinetmaker's Chisels

We really, really like Narex's 8116 Cabinetmaker's Chisels, superb steel, fine accurate machining, great profile and a great price, but I couldn't help feeling that the handles would be so much better if they were just a fraction smaller on the smaller sizes. We mentioned it to the management and before you could say "To bylo rychlé!" a sample of the new handle was resting comfortably in my hand!

The first shipment of the new ones arrived today, so we will be dispatching them with the smaller handles as standard when our new website launches (fingers crossed) on December 5th.

In the meantime, please use the shipping comments box to add 'smaller handles please' or 'larger handles please' and we will send you the appropriate chisels.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Lateral Thinking !

One of the minor points levelled against bevel up planes is that their capacitity for lateral adjustment is limited becuase the cutting iron is nestled down between the side wings.

Here's a quick and easy way to give your bevel up plane as much lateral adjustment as a bevel down one.

First mark up the sides of the iron with a permanent marker so that you can monitor your progress.

Next carefully hold the blade over a linisher (a well secured upturned belt sander will do if you don't have one). Allow the shoulder of the blade to make contact first and then gently lower the blade until the sparks start just behind your thumb. You are aiming for this (click for a closer look):

A nice even taper running from about halfway up the iron to the shoulder, taking about 1.5mm to 2mm out of the width on each side at the shoulder.

The result:

About twice as much adjustment as you had with the parallel sided iron, and the front end remains parallel so it will still fit into a side clamping honing guide.

The Quangsheng iron I am using here is differentially hardened carbon steel (only hardened from the slot down so that the soft upper part dampens vibration). Air hardening steels are all or nothing, so if you try this with an A2 blade the whole thing will be hard and it may take a little longer to grind back.

Monday, 14 November 2011

Free Shipping Fortnight!

...or you scratch my back and I'll scratch yours.

There are all mannor of things that can go wrong with an order - computer says one shelf says nil, lost in the post, defects, niggles and other fluff to sort out. True, it is rare, but it would be churlish to pretend that it doesn't happen occasionally.

We work incredibly hard to ensure that these problems never get as far as the customer, but if there is one thing that makes complete and total customer satisfaction easier to achieve it is time!

In order to sway the balance of time in our favour we are offering FREE shipping on all UK orders for the next two weeks (13 - 26 November) in the hope that we can persuade our regular customers to get their Christmas orders in nice and early. Just to spice things up a bit further we have waved our discounting wand over a selection of popular products and put them up on the homepage.

At the end of the day I don't want to spend Christmas day worrying about whether Mr Jones from Llandeilo received his Quangsheng No.4 in time. I'd much rather be enjoying the way my carefully waterstone sharpened carving knife will sever immaculate wafer thin slices of roast fore rib of beef with no downward pressure at all, or marvelling at the fact that my four year old son actually likes brussels sprouts! If you are prepared to indulge me this small favour I am more than happy to redress the balance with a bit of free shipping.