Working with jigsaws

One of the first pieces of advice you hear when you buy a bandsaw is to ditch the blade that comes with it and purchase a decent one.

That rings true in many instances, as the supplied blade can be inferior and be detrimental to the machine, making you believe the saw isn’t all it should be.

The same can be said of other tools that reiy on peripherals to achieve their best, and with a jigsaw there seems to be more blades and configurations than you can shake a stick at, let alone cut.

A trip to a car

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The Small World of Miniature Bayonets

A number of letter-opener bayonets associated with the United States Marine Corps have been featured in previous articles in this series. Two further examples have, however, recently become available for study. The first of these is 199 mm in overall length with a 140 mm blade and a 7.0 mm muzzle ring. There is no scabbard. This miniature is a chromium-plated aluminium (or alloy?) casting (non-magnetic). The pommel has a 17 mm-long rectangular-sectioned mortise along its upper side. On the reverse is a fixing catch button, spring loaded but otherwise functionless. The two dark-brown (wood-grain effect) plastic grips appear to

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The ABCs of ZCIs

A zero-clearance insert puts your stock throat plate to shame.

Your tablesaw has a big mouth, and it may be getting you into trouble. Here’s the problem: The stock throat plate that came with your saw has a large opening to allow the blade to tilt. That’s good for making beveled cuts, but the wide opening means that there’s no underlying support for the wood fibers. So, the wood tends to tear away at the sides of the kerf as the blade teeth come crashing through the underside of the stock, leaving a nasty looking cut that comments rather profanely

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Rock on!

Well, I thought Bosch had it cracked with the GST 135 BCE jigsaw, beating its rivals for ease of use and accuracy into a cocked hat, and the company cornered the market with it that’s for sure.

But Bosch is always looking for even better ways to skin a cat and now it has come up with the GST 140 BCE OK, if you own the previous model there’s no reason to dispatch it to the jigsaw graveyard because it still remains a fabulous saw in its own right, but if you are on the lookout for a top-end model,

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Quality from Quangsheng

I purchased my first Quangsheng plane just over a year ago and since then I’ve slowly been replacing my Stanley and Record family with their cousins from the Far East. What has really impressed me is the consistent quality that comes throughout the range, and this latest addition — a stainless steel spokeshave — is every bit as good.

It arrived housed in the Quangsheng trademark wooden box with its sliding lid, in which it will live safely for years to come.

Quality casting

The spokeshave is fractionally larger than the standard adjustable Stanley model, with an attractive gull-wing design

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Mid-market machine

Things are constantly on the up for the would-be table saw purchaser. Go back only a few years and it would be aluminium extruded tables for the entry and mid-level saws, but cast iron is the expected starting point for many of us now when we look for a table saw.

You can get a lot for your money if you look around, and here Record has gone for a small panel saw aimed at the light trade or higher end of the hobby market and equipped with some good features for around the £1000 mark.

Sliding beam

Most notable

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Lather letter opener

For Starters, Prepare the Blank

1. Select a 1 1/2Xl 1/2X12 blank. (We tried both walnut and curly maple.) Then, draw diagonal lines at each end to locate the center. On the end of the stock that will be the blade, draw a line through the center point perpendicular to the grain. (For reference, see the Blank Preparation drawing on page 26.) Now, use a bevel gauge to transfer this line to the other end of the blank. (Note: Aligning the offset centers perpendicular to the grain ensures that the face grain will be aligned with the faces of the

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Secrets of Damascus steel

Not all steel designs — Bulat!

Peter Anosov, Russian mining engineer, to rediscover the secret of Damascus steel

Bulat appreciated. He was a big fan of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich. He strongly encouraged the search for ores and device «receiver-mill» plants. In the Moscow Armory kept many weapons of that time with Damascus blades and ornate, which is listed in the description as «Moscow business.» We came to us and some documents that allow even mention the names of armourers forged Damascus steel swords of Indian iron. «Akatov, Maul — saber business owner — did damask two swords in the second

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Modern warfare is packed with high-tech weaponry, but until the end of the 19th century close combat on foot was still the order of the day. To win a sword fight, you had to be able to pull off a range of moves designed to distract, maim and ultimately defeat the enemy — whether that was within the sacrosanct rules of a duel or the chaos of a battlefield. There were many variations of sword fighting around the world, but despite their stylistic differences they all relied on a

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Hitachi C6UY circular saw

Good news! I think the Hitachi chief designer has been put on ‘gardening leave’ as the garish flashes and zigzags of black that seem to dominate anything new it launches have been removed, and this saw now looks more like then Hitachi of old, and if that matches the performance of old, then it’s a good thing in my book!

For a sami-diameter blade, this is a quick and sizable saw both in stature and cutting performance, and weighty enough to feel solid in use.

That’s down to a good build structure such as a hefty alloy base, 1300W motor

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