All posts filed under: Product Review

Makita BO5021K Random Orbit Sander – Product Review

My first Makita. The BO5021K; will it be better than my old Porter Cable palm sander? Many years ago, I bought a Porter Cable random orbit sander (ROS) which served me well for a number of years, but I knew I was in trouble when it suddenly became a variable speed sander and shouldn’t have. The motor was about to kick the bucket and I had come to rely heavily on that little sander, so a new one was a necessity. But, with all of the sanders on the market, which one should I buy? There are heavy duty six inch sanders with heavy duty prices. I wasn’t sure I needed that – my little Porter Cable did the trick for many years, so I decided pretty quickly to stay with a five inch model. I am an on-line member at Fine Woodworking.com. This membership gives me access to a ton of information. Many of the past articles from Fine Woodworking magazine are there including product reviews. I found one which gave Makita’s six inch …

Charles Neil’s Pre-Color Conditioner – Product Review

Over the past decades, I have made many furniture projects out of pine. It was my wood of choice for a long time, but that changed some time ago. I began having increasing problems getting a pleasing result when staining pine. I once heard how lumber, especially woods like pine are being grown more rapidly which is problematic because this favors softer, less dense lumber. This softer wood, often with wild grain, is more likely to accept stain in different ways yielding a blotchy look. Even pine that isn’t of the rapid growth variety can stain unevenly along with maple and cherry. To combat this problem, “pre-stain conditioners” were developed to slow down the absorption of stain into wood. In theory this causes a more even color in woods like pine, but these conditioners have a side effect: this lower absorption causes a medium brown stain to become a light brown stain. And depending on characteristics of the wood, blotching can still occur. So, I have had limited success with conditioners. I subscribe to Marc …

Wood River Taper Jig – Product Review

I have had all sorts of problems with the drawers in my built-in project. One pesky problem is that one of my drawer openings is slightly out of square. I took great care to cut the drawer face nice and square, making sure that I had a nice, even reveal between it and the face frame of the built-in. But, one of the cross pieces is slightly off. This means that I need to cut a slight taper on the drawer face to fix it. The taper is so slight that it won’t be that noticeable. Quick fix #1 I went to Woodcraft and bought a Wood River Tapering Jig. I thought this would be an inexpensive and fast way to get the necessary taper cut using my table saw and I would then have the jig for future use. After assembly, the taper jig was a big disappointment. The instructions were extremely poor – a line drawing of the jig and it’s parts and it looked like the drawing had been run through a …