Okay, I'm just curious... How many of you own any Japanese hand tools? (Chisel, plane, saw, etc...) This sounds like a good candidate for a poll, but I think I'm just too thick to work that feature. I am obviously biased in this area, and I hate to lead the board away from the power tool buzz, but just humor (Limey, add a 'u' in there) me here.
Lou, I see you are in San Jose. Have you been to Japan Woodworker in Alameda? I was like a kid in a candy store! How about Hida Tool in Berkeley? You wanna talk to the guys that creep outa the back room at Hida, they are the real experts. They will help you way beyond your expectations. I now live in Japan (Okinawa) and strangely enough, we don't have stores like that here. I have been looking for fine tools since I got here in November last year, and all I seem to find are general hardware stores with the basic line of tools. Mind you, they are very well made, but not heirloom quality. I have been looking for a Japanese spokeshave, but to no avail. Today, I made one from the picture in the JW catalog. It turned out really well, but I took off the tip of my finger using a ryoba saw. Blood everywhwere! SWMBO freaked out. She knows that when I don't say anything and just go for the band-aids, it is not good. Oh well, it'll heal. It ain't too good for typing, though.
Yeah Joe, Suzuki, Dozuki,Zucchini.
I was tempted by one of those Japanese saws and like it. Although 40 years of pushing takes a while to break.
But I would say this. I have always, since my apprenticeship under Noah, been a great believer in sharp tools.
I bought at enormous expense one of the first Japanese waterstones to hit the UK. What a revelation after Carborundum India Stone and neatsfoot oil.
Still going stong on the SAME stone 20 years later, although I've added several more grits to the arsenal.
So my story is Waterstones..miracle cure that still does good.
Sorry to hear about the finger, mmmm.... obviously sticking a pin in an effigy still works! HEEHEEHEE }> }>
I got most of my stuff from Hida a long time ago when it was just a one man shop. The owner helped me and my friend pick out both chisels and a few hand planes. I have been back but it was still a long time ago. I have not been to the one in Alameda. The stuff I bought was not anywhere near the top of the line stuff, but what a furniture maker in Japan would own.
Just yesterday, we used clamps after glue simply to take the bow out of the wood we were using, and it straightened everything out for us. Usually though, any time you lay up a project the clamps are...