Tom Caspar

Fundamentals of Hand Tools

Tom Caspar
Fundamentals of Hand Tools
  • In-depth Instruction; over 128 mins
  • On-demand video access anytime
  • Bonus downloadable PDF resources
  • Access to class Q&A
Meet your instructor, furniture maker and author Tom Caspar. Get an overview of Fundamentals of Hand Tools, and take a look at the tools that will be used throughout the Class.
Tom uses a table saw and a dado set to cut the only woodworking joint required for the project. He hand planes the sides of the box for a perfect fit into the dados made on the table saw.
To cut the angled ends of the box, Tom uses his Japanese pull saw and a simple guide. He cleans up the saw marks using a block plane. Sandpaper can't make it smoother!
The ends of the box have a subtle detail: a miter that tapers from top to bottom. Hard to do? Nope—Tom unveils a foolproof method to create these miters with a block plane. The bottom edge of the box is a graceful arch, which Tom makes using a pull saw, chisel and a specially modified spokeshave.
Fitting the bottom involves some careful measuring, but after the bottom is cut the box is ready to glue together. Tom demonstrates how to use a plane to make the top edges perfectly even after gluing.
Tom cuts rabbets around the underside of the lid using a router table, then cleans up the marks left by the router bit using a rabbet plane. He planes a chamfer around the top of the lid using a smooth plane guided by a unique shop-made jig. Lastly, Tom shows you his favorite wipe-on finish to make the wood glow.
Tom wraps up this Class with a reminder to practice the tips and techniques you learned in making this jewelry box, and apply your new hand tool skills to create a variety of projects in your shop.
7 Lessons
2  hrs 8  mins

In this online video class, Fundamentals of Hand Tools, Tom Caspar shows you the key fundamentals of using seven important woodworking hand tools while building a simple jewelry box. You’ll watch, practice and learn while Tom demonstrates how to use these key woodworking tools:

  1.  #4 bench plane
  2.  Japanese pull saw
  3. two types of block planes
  4.  firmer chisel
  5.  spokeshave
  6.  scraper
  7.  rabbet plane.

Tom’s interest in hand tools goes way back. “Forty years ago, I apprenticed in a shop where every piece of wood was planed or scraped by hand before assembly,” Tom says. “Doing the same task over and over was the best type of woodworking instruction I could get. It was hard work, but I loved it!”

Learning about hand tools takes you beyond what machines can do, Tom says. “Planes, chisels and hand saws don’t replace power tools in my shop. They’re a complement.” To build what you really want to build, he believes, you should master both hand and power tools. This online class will help you do just that.

Tom has been teaching “The Unplugged Workshop,” a course on hand tools for beginners, for the last 25 years. “My goal is to take the mystery out of hand work. This box is a great introduction to what hand tools can do.”

This woodworking project is more than just a teaching exercise, however. You can easily build several in a weekend, making it a perfect gift for your whole family.

By the way, you don’t really need hand tools to build it. They just make spending time in the shop more fun!

In addition to the video instruction that you’ll enjoy in the Fundamentals of Hand Tools class, you’ll also be able to access a printable PDF drawing of the jewelry box, as well as a Class Resource PDF that notes the tools and supplies used in the class.


Tom Caspar

Tom Caspar

Bonus materials available after purchase