Tennessee Valley Woodworkers
   Vol. 19/ Issue 9             September 2004                Editor: Tom Gillard Jr. 

Meeting Notice:
The next meeting of the TN Valley Woodworkers
Will be held, September 21st at 7:00 p.m. in the
 Duck River Electric Building, Dechard, TN
All interested woodworkers are invited!

The following people have agreed to serve as contacts for their particular skills.  If you have questions, suggestions for activities, or other comments relating to these skills, please call these folks.  Their interest is to help the club better serve their area of expertise.  Your participation with them will help them achieve that goal.

  Tom Cowan    967-4835    Design       Phil Bishop         967-4626    Finishing
Tom Church   967-4460   Turning           Harry May          962-0215     Carving
Bob Reese      728-7974   Sharpening       Ross Roepke   455-9140       Jointery

Maurice Ryan  962-1555   Health and Safety 

List of Club Officers

                                                                        President:          Ken Gould
                                                                        V. President:        Barbara Keen
                                                                        Secretary:          Chuck Taylor
                                                                        Treasurer:          Henry Davis
                                                                        Publicity:          Larry Bowers
                                                                        Webmaster:    Richard Gulley
                                                                        Newsletter Editor:  Tom Gillard Jr.

Please remember, in your thoughts and prayers, all of the Military Troops serving our country.

Calendar of Events:

Sept. 19-24:  Coffee County Fair
(click above to see features)

October 23rd:  Phil Bishop Carving seminar
December 10th:  TVW Christmas Party

The Coffee County Fair is being held September 20-25. Our club will again set up in Morton Village. Club members will man the Morton Village booth on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, beginning at 2pm. Friday and Saturday sessions will begin at 10am and will include  the “Turning Bee”. Russ Willis and the guys will be picking from 4 until 6, during the Friday session. The carvers will also be presenting demonstrations at the booth, during some of the sessions.

The club booth will not be open on Tuesday, since this is the regular meeting night for our club.

Please bring items to display in our booth. Come and join the club and have a relaxed time at the Fair.

The club contact for this event is Doyle McConnell.


Bob Lowrance displayed a carving of an eagle and flag he had made at John Campbell School. He also had a relief carving of Pinocchio he had made for the Manchester Art display

Bill Davis brought an oak display case, a box elder bowl and three boxes.  One was made from 4 different woods.

Jim Roy brought a nice spalted hackberry bowl and a cherry footstool with turned legs.

Ross Roepke had four more boxes he had made for a charity auction.  He also had a table made from maple, mahogany and walnut.  The finish was Deft.

Mary Ellen Lindsay brought the finished caricature carving that she started during the last carving seminar.

Harry May brought a carving of three dolphins.  The wood was Bradford pear that Ken Gould had given him.

Jim Van Cleave had four of six jewelry boxes that he had made for cousins.  They were made from cherry and walnut.  He encouraged people to bring things to show and tell.

David Whyte had a grinding station that he had made.  The inspiration came from Bob Reese’s grinding seminar.

Maurice Ryan brought and discussed a replacement “hook and loop” for a random orbit sander that he had found at Lowe’s.  They can also be found at supergrit.com

Ken Gould had a 1920 banjo that came from Sears that he had reworked.  He had also made a fretless banjo of the 1830-1870 period. The wood was cherry, maple, ebony and blackwood.  The hide was from a deer that his father had killed. Geoff Roehm played it for him.

Craftsman 10 inch Radial Arm Saw with leg set and new table top.      $350.00
 Henry Davis, 393-3191

Refreshments were provided by Bob Leonard and the Bowers.  Thanks!!

Making Sense of Sandpaper
Final Part

The supporting role of backings and bonds

The backing's stiffness and flatness influence the quality and speed of the sandpaper's cut. For the most part, manufacturers choose adhesives and backings to augment the characteristics of a particular abrasive grit. You will have a hard time finding an aggressive abrasive mineral, for example, on a backing suited to a smooth cut.

The stiffer the paper, the less the abrasive minerals will deflect while cutting. They will cut deeper and, consequently, faster. Soft backings and bonds will allow the abrasives to deflect more, giving light scratches and a smooth finish. You must even consider what's behind the backing. Wrapping the sandpaper around a block of wood will allow a faster cut than sanding with the paper against the palm of your hand. For instance, an easy way to speed up your orbital sander is by exchanging the soft pad for a stiff one. The other consideration is the flatness of the backing, which has nothing to do with its stiffness. Flat backings position the minerals on a more even level so they cut at a more consistent depth, resulting in fewer stray scratches and a smoother surface.

Cloth is the stiffest but least-flat backing. It will produce the coarsest and fastest cut. Cloth comes in two grades, a heavy X and a light J. Paper is not as stiff as cloth but it's flatter. It comes in grades A, C,D, E and F (lightest to heaviest). A-weight paper that has been waterproofed is approximately equivalent to a B-weight paper, if one existed. Polyester films, including Mylar, look and feel like plastic.  They are extremely flat and pretty stiff. They will give the most consistently even cut and at a faster rate than paper.

The backings for hand sheets and belts are designed to flex around curves without breaking. This is not true for sanding discs for random-orbit sanders. They are designed to remain perfectly flat, and if used like a hand sheet, the adhesive will crack off in large sections. This is called knife-edging because the mineral and adhesive separated from the backing, form knife-like edges that dig into and mark the work.

Adhesive bonds on modern sandpaper are almost exclusively urea- or phenolic-formaldehyde resins. Both are heat-resistant, waterproof and stiff. Hide glue is sometimes used in conjunction with a resin on paper sheets. It is not waterproof or heat-resistant, but hide glue is cheap and very flexible.

When this article was written, Strother Purdy was an assistant editor of Fine  Woodworking.

Photos: Strother Purdy; drawing: Tim Langenderfer

From Fine Woodworking #125, pp. 62-67

Taunton press.com

Franklin County Library Request:
Tom McGill attended a preliminary meeting with the library and is working on the sizes of the cabinets needed.  They will be approximately 22 feet long.  He will call a meeting of volunteers to decide how to approach the project.

Wood Profile - Douglas Fir

The globe-trotting he-man of American softwoods
Diaries claim that early loggers in what came to be Oregon and Washington often felled 400'-tall trees, each containing enough high-grade lumber to build seven houses! The lofty tree was the Douglas fir, and it still dominates the great forests of the Pacific Northwest.
In 1827, English botanical explorer David Douglas recognized the fir's resource potential. Hoping that the easily grown tree could adapt to his country's reforestation efforts, he shipped seed cones from the Columbia River basin back to the British Isles.
From that introduction, the fir found favor as fast-growing timber first in England, then throughout western Europe. Now, even the adopted habitats of Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa boast Douglas fir forests.

Wood identification
In the U.S., Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) naturally ranges from the Mexican border north to Alaska, and from the Pacific coast east to the Rocky Mountains. Often found in pure stands, Douglas fir can attain an average mature height of about 300' and diameters from 10' to 17'.
On older trees, the rough bark may be 12" thick. Younger trees have a smooth bark with frequent blisters filled with a pungent resin.
Tiny winged seeds, released from cones as large as a man's fist, quickly germinate in sufficient sunlight. Because of this, Douglas fir quickly takes over and reforests burned or clearcut areas.
Douglas fir's pinkish-yellow to orange-red heartwood provides a distinct contrast in the growth rings. On flatsawed boards and rotary cut veneer, this translates to an abrupt color change. The thin band of sapwood is often nearly pure white.

Working properties
In comparison to its weight, Douglas fir ranks as the strongest of all American woods. It is also stiff, stable, and relatively decay resistant.
Douglas fir's coarse texture can't easily be worked with hand tools. And to avoid tearing grain, even power tool blades must be sharp. Yet, the wood grips nails and screws securely, and readily accepts all types of adhesives.
Because Douglas fir contains fewer resins than many other softwoods, count on success with paint and clear finishes. Staining, however, becomes a problem due to the light-to-dark variation between growth rings that causes uneven coloration.

Uses in woodworking
Vast quantities of Douglas fir provide dimension lumber for the construction industry and veneers for plywood. The wood's appearance and easy-working properties have earned it a spot in the manufacturing of windows, doors, and moldings.
Flatsawed, Douglas fir makes attractive, serviceable cabinets and paintable furniture. Sawn as vertical grain, Douglas fir performs well as flooring and looks stunning as cabinetry.

Cost and availability
Found across most of the nation as common construction lumber, Douglas fir falls in the inexpensive price range of about $1 per lineal foot. However, sawed for vertical grain and graded for "superior finish," the cost rises by at least three times. Douglas fir plywood in all grades is readily available.

Illustration: Steve Schindler
Photographs: Western Wood Products Assn.

See you on the 21st.

click on the image to go to these sites

Donations to the club have been made by these companies.