miércoles, 21 de diciembre de 2016

A nice simple picture frame

Eva, who attended to my introductory workshop on joinery, asked for another one on making picture frames. I liked very much the idea and put myself to task. Here is the example I have made to show my students.

It actually is a great exercise, moderately challenging for a beginner but quite complete: we see mitered corners reinforced with splines, ploughing the glass rebates, the use of a hand plane to shoot end grain and finishing with shellac and carnauba wax. The basic structure can be completed by a student within one day, although cutting the back board and the glass to size and finishing could take some more.

It can be a good opportunity to introduce some machines such as a power router and miter saw, without forgetting some good accurate handwork.

An example in american white oak.

With the shooting board you can creep up to a perfect 45º miter and dimension the pieces to identical sizes.

Frame components ready for glue up.

A nice crisp joint with no glue line. 

Cutting the grooves for the reinforcement splines.

The splines are pieces of veneer that provide some long-grain gluing surface and in the case above, the dovetail disposition gives some extra mechanical resistance.

I like the simplicity of these little back holders.

Last step: finishing with shellac and carnauba wax.

A perfect smooth surface, pleasant to touch and to look at.

martes, 13 de diciembre de 2016

Texturing with carving gauges

I've been thinking for quite some time about introducing textures in the pieces of furniture that I am building. I have borrowed some antique gouges from a friend and here are some tests on a scrap piece of beech. You can see the tool's profile and foot print they leave. I'm happy with the results (specially the one at the top right) and I start now to do a research on brands and makers. Pfeil is on top of the list for now, but I'd love to find a fine gouge maker and buy some hand made. Any tips?

lunes, 12 de diciembre de 2016

Stock preparation for the upcoming workshops

I've been preparing the stock for the introductory workshops to come in December and also in January. 

Here you can see some nice european oak, american white oak, pine and some reclaimed exotic wood from a closing workshop, which I'm not sure what it is. It is a pleasure to work, though!

Here, some medullary rays smiling at you. I try to give the students good quality stock, quarter-sawn when possible.

Some shots on the introduction workshop we did the last weekend. 
Next dates are December 17th / 18th and January 28th / 29th.



lunes, 24 de octubre de 2016

Workshop on the three joints complete!

This past weekend I had great fun sharing what I know about hand woodworking with Blanca and Eva. The workshop was an introduction to the fundamentals through three basic joinery exercises: Mortise and tenon, groove and tong and dovetails. Although it was quite intense (8 hours a day) the girls stood up very well and were very engaged.

Here are some of the tools that I bring to the workshops, very fine and perfectly tuned.

We began the first day by sharpening some gear the girls had brought. This way we went through powered grinder, diamond stones, ceramic water stones and finally polishing compound to get  razor-sharp blades. The hair shaving test never lies! 

Proper sharpening can be a bit intimidating for beginners, as it takes some practice to keep consistent angles. A guide can be very helpful - I like the Eclipse guide for it's simplicity and good results.

 The girls mastered the planing technique and had the chance to compare a Stanley number 4 with a Veritas low angle bevel-up plane. Shooting board was introduced as well, a fundamental tool in the shop.

Precise marking and cutting methods are best learnt through practice. A guide (picture below) helps driving the chisel square and straight into the wood as the mortise is chopped.

A tenon goes next, made to perfectly fit the mortise we made before.

Crisp edges and well defined corners are indispensable to achieve fine joinery.

Comparing saw kerfs is a nice way to understand different types of saws, from a big occidental panel saw to a fine Gyoucho 372 (japanese saw) excelent for dovetailing.

In my opinion, is great to have a chance to compare different qualities and types of tools. And believe me, quality matters.

Here, a common bench chisel compared with a premium beveled-edge chisel with african blackwood handle by Blue Spruce. 

I was very pleased and I'm eager to repeat the experience! 
The girls seemed very satisfied as well.

Thanks a lot to Carlos from ArtallaBCN for offering the space! We were very kindly hosted. 

For more info and enrolling just mail me at:

sábado, 1 de octubre de 2016

Workshops on the way!

yep! I start teaching hand woodworking! It's happening in the woodcarving school ArtallaBCN in L'Hospitalet. The first workshop is fully booked but many are already on schedule! More info and subscriptions at 
german @ peraire .com

yep! he començat a donar classes d'ebenisteria artesanal amb eines manuals! serà a l'escola de talla ArttallaBCN a L'Hospitalet. El primer taller ja està ple però en faré molts més! Us podeu inscriure o obtenir més info enviant-me un mail a
german @ peraire .com

yep! he empezado a impartir clases de iniciación a la ebanistería artesanal en la escuela de talla ArtallaBCN en L'Hospitalet de Llobregat. El primer taller ya está lleno pero os podeéis inscribir a los muchos que vendrán! Más info en
german @ peraire .com

viernes, 9 de septiembre de 2016

Sewing chest

I finally finished my last project, this sewing chest.
It is made from american white oak and black walnut.
Finished with shellac and my own carnauba and bees wax blend.
65 x 45 x 30 cm.

Ebonised oak pulls.

I like to combine straight lines and subtle curves.

Dovetails, as always!

I love this Stanley router plane, It is 115 years old and still does a cracking job.

The carcass ready for assembly.

Dovetailed little drawers.

Shaping the legs with an HNT Gordon spokeshave, a great tool!