Eastern Massachussetts Guild of Woodworkers

Upcoming Guild Events

March 09, 2024 9:00 AM • MassArt, 621 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02115 Please click for updated free parking info
April 13, 2024 9:00 AM • Needham Furniture Makers, 590 Hillside Ave, Needham, MA 02494
May 11, 2024 9:00 AM • Lowell Makes, 130 Western Ave, Lowell, MA 01851 and virtual on Zoom

March 2024 Tip

Make Clamps Easier to Turn

Click here

Upcoming Non-Guild Events

March 15, 2024 7:00 AM • 10211 Lewis Dr, Damascus MD
March 22, 2024 10:00 AM • Wyndham Garden, York, PA
March 23, 2024 10:00 AM • Saratoga Springs NY
March 26, 2024 • Portland OR


Andrew Hunter Presents "Japanese Hand Tools"

at Lincoln-Sudbury High School

February, 2024

Credits Vincent Valvo

Mickey Callahan Presents "Hand Tool Finesse Work" at Woodcraft Walpole

                                                      January, 2024

Zoom Credits Vincent Valvo

Andrew Hunter's Portfolio

Due to a strong request to know more about Andrew Hunter's work, Marc Holland has provided pictures of Andrew's furniture, work space, and other related pictures as seen below.  Scroll to the right or left for more pages. You can also click a picture for an enlarged view and then move to the next or previous picture.

In addition there were requests for a list of Andrew's presentation handouts click Japanese Tool Resources and Books and Japanese Tool Dealers and More Tool Resources for PDFs that can be downloaded or printed.

Bevel Cut

New or Improved? An Age-old Dilemma

by Andrew Davis


It always seems to come to this.  Another decision to be made.  If it's not an issue about the dimension of the piece, it's about the joinery, or perhaps, salvaging a part that's not exactly intended.  I won't even go into the various possible finishes.  There are a gazillion decisions to be made.  Think of a piece or style you've never made before.  What if it's about the price of a tool, whether it's worth the value?  If it's a go then there's a decision where to locate it in the workshop.  And that's where this intro meets Andrew's March Bevel Cut article.

The issue he poses is one that we all have encountered.  What if a woodworker, after laboring over the research and deciding on the cost/benefit to purchase the tool finds that a newer and improved version appears in the ads?  Hold off acting out.  Instead read New or Improved? An Age-old Dilemma as Analytical Andrew reveals his decision options. 

Andrew welcomes your feedback.

Measure Twice, Cut Once - Wisdom From the Shop

Sharp as a Tack

by Rob Carver




Some similes make sense.  Many don't.  Similes are used for comparisons and attempt to emphasize the comparison.  Consider "light as a feather".  Depending on the feather, if you want emphasis you could find things lighter than a feather like a crumb, a ladybug, or the obvious, air.  How about "clean as a whistle".  Some whistles are not clean at all.  In fact, they can be pretty messy.  Maybe it's the clean sound because whistles have few overtones.  Consider "fast as the wind".  Too bad the simile predates 1970 when the U.S. National Hurricane Center developed the Hurricane scale with Categories 1 through 5.  It could have been "fast as Cat 5".


Once a phrase catches on, similes are forever like "sharp as a tack".  Who uses tacks anymore and what's the meaning of sharp?  Read Sharp as a Tack.


You can reach Rob by clicking Rob Carver.

Map of Member Locations


For in-person meetings, the possibility to carpool to monthly and FIG meetings, and other group gatherings may be of use to you.  Tom Shirley has updated the Member Map as of December, 2023 that displays members' locations on a Google map.  This is private information, so to access the map ou must be logged in.  To interact with the map, simply click the map above.  You can also click Member Map from the Member Map dropdown list.  Once there you can pan, zoom in and out, and click a pin to see the member's name and location.

Featured Piece of the Month

Shaker Style Cherry Coffee Table

by Tom Shirley



Curly Cherry is such a dynamic species that it can be a centerpiece in any room.  When Tom was asked by a relative to build a coffee table he had an opportunity to use his curly cherry stock.  The design was his and a Shaker style was agreed upon.  Knowing the functional use of drawers in a coffee table he decided to add a couple.  Or did he?  Take a look at the coffee table picture.  The view is showing where the drawers should be.  Did he forget to add the drawers?  Did he decide that the curly cherry pattern was stunning enough?  As you've experienced, woodworkers sometimes change the design based of unforeseen events but not necessarily in this case.


Tom writes about his process, pitfalls, joinery, and more.  Given the number of mortise/tenon pairs the table couldn't be more sturdy. This is a very considered design and a terrific model to consider how to join legs, aprons, and drawer rails.  Drawers rails?  Check out Tom's Shaker Style Cherry Coffee Table. He does a wonderful job of drawing you into building his piece as though you are watching it happen in person. 


Further information can be requested from Tom Shirley.

Remember this column is not necessarily dedicated to furniture pieces.  Tools, jigs, processes, and other woodworking related themes are also relevant.


Mentoring in the EMGW

Mentoring in the Guild takes many forms.  Everything from a brief conversation or email on a particular technique to a full-blown cooperative effort to build an entire piece.  Most mentoring occurs informally among members.  However, the Mentor Program provides an easy way, especially for new members, to get involved in mentoring.  Members listed on the Mentor Program page of this website have expressed a willingness to help other members in a variety of ways.

To read more about the Mentor Program, click here or navigate to About Us then Mentor Program.  To see the list of Mentor members with their interests and contact information, click here or navigate to Members then Mentors.

Starting out in Woodworking? EMGW Members Compiled a Guidebook for You

Considering getting into woodworking?  A team of members of EMGW has written a guidebook targeted for new woodworkers and a refresher for other woodworkers.

The guidebook is complimentary.  It can be viewed and downloaded for your reading pleasure.  We hope that reading the guidebook will engender interest in woodworking and membership in our guild.  Click here for a priceless copy.

Considerable work has already gone into renewing older and securing new discounts from various sources.  To review the list on the website you must first login then click Members and then Special Membership Discounts.

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