If you are following along with these tests and have looked at the melamine tests I did a few weeks back using masking tape and Frog tape to see if either one of them will reduce or eliminate tear out, the results are quite clear, the tape did nothing to reduce tear out, in fact, it could be argued the Frog tape made the cuts slightly worse. Since most people are using natural wood, it only follows that I should be testing natural wood as well to give some conclusive results to these tests.
I had many people provide many suggestions in the comments section of the last test offering their knowledge on how to better cut melamine, but the test was not how to cut melamine, the test was to see if tape could actually make a difference in the cuts, and in that case, it did not ... check out the results of what it did on natural woods here ...
A short time ago, I made a video to see if using a Zero Clearance Insert in a table saw would give cleaner cuts with less tear out than a non-zero clearance insert. The results that I came up with using double sided melamine doing this test, was clear that making and using zero clearance inserts made no difference to the quality of the cuts. That test used double sided melamine as the cutting medium and many people wondered if there would be a difference if I ran the same test, but this time using natural wood or even plywood. I was not sure if the results would be different, but I suspected they would be very similar to the melamine tests, but that was a guess and the only real way of knowing is to run the test.
I decided to use three different kinds of wood for this test, Oak, Pine and a good, cabinet quality 3/4" plywood. I would to both a ripping and a cross-cutting test on all these wood with both zero clearance and non-zero clearance throat plates then compare the differences ...
Thanks to the nice people and ISOTunes, I got a chance to try out and review a couple of their wireless safety earbuds in my own workshop for a few weeks. Until they had contacted me, I was unaware that there these units were available and since I have been struggling for years to find ear protection that works for me, I was quite anxious to try these out. In the past I have tried the little foam inserts and they work ok, but taking them in and out constantly, is time consuming and fiddly, and they are only good for a very few insertions before they no longer work properly. I have a few different sets of over-the-ear earmuff style ear protectors, and they work ok but the biggest challenge I have with these is that because I am constantly listening for ambient noise in the workshop because of the video taping I am doing, I can't wear hearing protection all the time or I miss outside noises that can affect the audio recording. The fact that I am always wearing eye protection on a cord around my neck, and constantly taking of and putting on my glasses, most ear muffs are bothersome to wear.
I spend a lot of time in my workshop, not just recording videos, but also doing prep work in advance of making videos which can consist of preparing wood, making mock-up items, testing designs and even making prototypes. During this time that I am not recording, I enjoy listening to music, sometimes it's my own purchased music, other times I will tune into a radio station on my mobile phone and stream that music to my small portable Bluetooth speaker. During this time I also putting on and taking off earmuff safety protectors and of course my safety glasses. >>>> Link to Woodworkweb Amazon Affiliate Store - https://www.amazon.com/shop/woodworkweb <<<<
Every year, in recent history, a local oranization has been putting on a "guy" swap meet in a nearby town. People come from far and wide to sell their items just as others come from long distances to purchase items offered for sale. The items as a varied as you can imagine and what shows up one year may not the next. It's a cornicopia of people and things and a whole lot of fun. This year I put out and offer ... anyone who wanted to join me on a walkabout, we would meet up at 9am at the entrance and go through together from there. Three local woodworkers showed up, 2 immediately ventured off on their own and another an myself got to wander the grounds looking at tools and other items to see if there was anything that interested us. As it turned out, 2 of the guys got a couple of great buys on some tools and I just spent the time taking pictures that were used to assemble this brief slide show of the event.
Just like any swap meet, it's a buyer beware scenario. Some years I have purchased a good item or 2, other years I have purchased items that ended up in the electronics recycdling bin of scrap metal, but I don't talk about my lost deals. In the end, I always have a great time and it was even better this year to share the experience with subscribers and friends ... can wait until next year ...
I believe that most woodworkers are very in-tune with where their wood comes from and all of them that I know of, will go to great lengths to use their lumber sparingly to make sure there is a little waste as possible. Many, like me, will also take advantage of obtaining used lumber, also called salvage or re-claimed lumber. There is often a bit more work in using this wood but there is also a bit of satisfaction knowing that it wasn't just simply sent to the landfill or burned, and that it could be re-used for other things. I don't go out of my way looking for this wood, but I never pass up an opportunity when I see it. In this case I was lucky to get quite a few sheets of 1/8 plywood paneling that had been removed from the interior of a house. I have been using it for cabinet back and jisgs for many many years. When I decided to make this finishing products storage cabinet I immediately though of using my re-claimed lumber stash.
Because I was using 1/8" plywood for the structure, in order to make the cabinet sturdy, I ended up using 2" x 3/4" as the shell to glue the plywood to. This made a very strong but surprisingly light cabinet. Much lighter that say using 3/4" plywood or a similar structural component, and for something that is only holding storage items, this was more than adequate.
I was fortunate to even find used hardware for this project, even the wheels, door pulls and hinges were re-claimed from some other project somewhere and I purchased them from the the Habitat for Humanity Store that I frequently visit and am happy to help contribute to ... they do good work. Of course the main purpose of this cabinet for me, is to get all my wood finishing products in one location. I have, on occasion, made trips to the hardware store to purchase product, like varnish, to finish one of my projects, then after I have opened and used it and put it away, I discover I already had a can of this in a place I had forgot to look, so hopefully this cabinet will help me be a bit more diligent in using what I have first .... hopefully.
News and updates around the shop ... and the announcement for a Meet Up at the 2017 Vintage Swap Meet at the OK Tire parking lot, Duncan BC for Sunday May 7th. We will meet at the entrance at 9 am and tour the grounds together for an hour or so ... then head off for coffee. This date is now confirmed - Sunday May 7, 2017
If you are going to be attending, send me an email through the "Contact Us" link in the left hand column of woodworkweb. This will be fun and who knows what finds there will be, it's always a surprise.