Introduction

Few things determine your success as a fine, hand tool woodworker more than the sharpness of your tools. And nothing makes woodworking more frustrating than a dull edge. In this course, award-winning craftsman and instructor Frank Strazza will reveal to you his secrets for honing a razor edge on your woodworking tools.

First, he will go over the pros and cons of different types of sharpening stones and tell you which ones he uses, and why. Then he will walk you step by step through sharpening chisels, planes, saws and scrapers. Not only will you learn to sharpen them but Frank will be showing you how to restore a saw, complete with jointing and setting the teeth, as well as how to repair a damaged chisel and how to setup and tune a brand new one.

When you’ve finished this course, you’ll be inspired to head to the shop, pull all your tools out and sharpen them up. Then you’ll discover the sheer joy of working wood with a razor edge. Your saws won’t fight you anymore, your chisels will slice through end grain like butter and your planes will make shavings you can be proud of! Most of all, your projects will take a noticeable step up in quality.

How to Purchase the Course

To get started learning, just click on the “Begin Free Trial” button which will take you to the membership page. Choose the Basic membership (either annual or monthly) and select “Traditional Crafts” from the drop-down menu. After submitting your payment info on the checkout page, go to the top righthand side of the menu bar and click on the login icon and check that you are logged in with your username and password.  You will have immediate access to the videos. Your card won’t be charged for 2 days so if you cancel before then, you’ll be charged nothing. You can also buy the course outright by clicking on the “Buy Course” button. With this option, you’ll have permanent access to this course but not to any other courses.

About the Instructor

Frank Strazza’s first recollection of any interest in woodworking is from the age of seven when  his mother found an old hand-crank drill at an antique trading post. This piqued Frank’s interest in tools and in working with wood. At an early age he took some woodworking classes on weekday evenings and at the age of twelve, he built a cedar chest with hand cut dovetails throughout.

Frank apprenticed with Heritage Craftsman, first in Austin, Texas and then later at Homestead Heritage in central Texas. He has been working with wood for over 25 years and his work has been featured in both local and national publications, including Woodworker West, Woodwork Magazine and Fine Woodworking. Frank has won many awards for many of his pieces, including multiple first place awards both at the Texas Furniture Makers Show and at the International Design in Wood Exhibition in California. He, along with several other of our craftsmen, was even the first American woodworker in over 100 years to be commissioned by the President to make a furniture piece for the permanent collection at the White House.

Frank teaches woodworking out of his many years of experience in building furniture. He is a full time instructor at the Heritage School of Woodworking, located in central Texas. His passion for the craft shines through in his work as well as his teaching. Frank lives in central Texas with his wife, Amy and five young children. In his spare time he enjoys bicycling with his children, reading about woodworking as well as playing the cello in his community orchestra.

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Product Description

Introduction

Few things determine your success as a fine, hand tool woodworker more than the sharpness of your tools. And nothing makes woodworking more frustrating than a dull edge. In this course, award-winning craftsman and instructor Frank Strazza will reveal to you his secrets for honing a razor edge on your woodworking tools.

First, he will go over the pros and cons of different types of sharpening stones and tell you which ones he uses, and why. Then he will walk you step by step through sharpening chisels, planes, saws and scrapers. Not only will you learn to sharpen them but Frank will be showing you how to restore a saw, complete with jointing and setting the teeth, as well as how to repair a damaged chisel and how to setup and tune a brand new one.

When you’ve finished this course, you’ll be inspired to head to the shop, pull all your tools out and sharpen them up. Then you’ll discover the sheer joy of working wood with a razor edge. Your saws won’t fight you anymore, your chisels will slice through end grain like butter and your planes will make shavings you can be proud of! Most of all, your projects will take a noticeable step up in quality.

How to Purchase the Course

To get started learning, just click on the “Begin Free Trial” button which will take you to the membership page. Choose the Basic membership (either annual or monthly) and select “Traditional Crafts” from the drop-down menu. After submitting your payment info on the checkout page, go to the top righthand side of the menu bar and click on the login icon and check that you are logged in with your username and password.  You will have immediate access to the videos. Your card won’t be charged for 2 days so if you cancel before then, you’ll be charged nothing. You can also buy the course outright by clicking on the “Buy Course” button. With this option, you’ll have permanent access to this course but not to any other courses.

About the Instructor

Frank Strazza’s first recollection of any interest in woodworking is from the age of seven when  his mother found an old hand-crank drill at an antique trading post. This piqued Frank’s interest in tools and in working with wood. At an early age he took some woodworking classes on weekday evenings and at the age of twelve, he built a cedar chest with hand cut dovetails throughout.

Frank apprenticed with Heritage Craftsman, first in Austin, Texas and then later at Homestead Heritage in central Texas. He has been working with wood for over 25 years and his work has been featured in both local and national publications, including Woodworker West, Woodwork Magazine and Fine Woodworking. Frank has won many awards for many of his pieces, including multiple first place awards both at the Texas Furniture Makers Show and at the International Design in Wood Exhibition in California. He, along with several other of our craftsmen, was even the first American woodworker in over 100 years to be commissioned by the President to make a furniture piece for the permanent collection at the White House.

Frank teaches woodworking out of his many years of experience in building furniture. He is a full time instructor at the Heritage School of Woodworking, located in central Texas. His passion for the craft shines through in his work as well as his teaching. Frank lives in central Texas with his wife, Amy and five young children. In his spare time he enjoys bicycling with his children, reading about woodworking as well as playing the cello in his community orchestra.

Ron M. Hallsville, TX
I am building a workbench. In looking at many, I see the bench vise located on the left end with the long vise on the opposite end. Being right-handed, the bench vise seems backward. I would locate the bench vise on the right hand end with the long vise on the opposite end. Am I missing something, or is the left end mount just traditional?
August 5, 2014 06:57
James R. Benton, LA
Another question. Do you recommend progressive pitch sharpening on dovetail saws? Could you please explain the process if you do?
August 13, 2014 23:21
Frank S. Waco, TX
HI James, I personally don't do a progressive pitch on the saw. I like the rhythm to be the same when I am sawing and a progressive pitch would throw that off. Plus the real advantage to a progressive pitch is starting the saw! Which of course is just the start of the whole process. Watch the video on sawing practice to understand more about this as well. You may also look at the videos where I show those big wooden saw teeth cutouts. That helps to see the rake angles.
August 14, 2014 09:37
Frank S. Waco, TX
More than anything else your handedness determines the best vise location. Right-handers usually like a front vise on the left of the bench. That way when crosscutting a board with a handsaw the cut off and can be held by the left hand. When the front vice is installed on the left you'll want the end vise added to the right near the front. Another reason to put the tail vise on your right is you want to be able to turn the screw with your right hand. Being right handed, I have used the above configuration for over 20 years and its worked great. I have had lefties in the shop and all wish they had the reverse configuration, so reverse the locations if you're a lefty!
August 14, 2014 09:52