Let’s face it marking gauges are not flashy, cost very little and after the piece of furniture is produced, there is little evidence or much thought given to what part the marking tools played in its production.
But in my opinion, one of the most important tools used by woodworkers, and the one that I reach for in most of my projects, is the humble marking gauge.
On a recent trip to England I was taken to a very Parisian style café. Hanging on the wall were several exquisite large bread boards of varying shapes.
You’ve probably seen them – 45cm in diameter with a narrow handle. They fascinated me, how could something so wide and thin not be warped?
As luck would have it, my sister has a couple tucked on a high shelf in her kitchen. It wasn’t until I had the chance to take them down and give them a good assessment that the warp-free secret was revealed.
As a woodworker and avid ‘upcycler’, I am always loathed to see wood go to waste. So, when a friend said they had some wormy maple they couldn’t use I knew I just had to have it. Instantly I knew I wanted to make something with it that would show off the worm holes to create a beautifully organic effect in the piece.
I have long been a proponent of recycling wood – and when a friend of mine said they wanted a rustic coffee table I jumped at the chance to use some reclaimed barn boards to craft a new coffee table.