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The Woodwright's Guide

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About the Author

The longtime master housewright at Colonial Williamsburg, Roy Underhill is the leading authority on old-time woodworking techniques. He created The Woodwright's Shop for public television in 1979. The series, produced by the University of North Carolina Center for Public Television, has aired nationally since 1981, with thirteen new programs introduced each year. Roy is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and holds a master's degree from Duke University.


Following the loose theme of wedge use and blades, Underhill, popular author and star of the PBS series The Woodwright's Shop, meanders his way through historic tool use. From felling and processing trees to log construction and on to tool care and tool manufacture, there are no simplified projects and no step-by-step instructions. Black-and-white hand-drawn illustrations are scattered throughout the book. Odd and wonderful little tangents are peppered throughout as well (e.g., tricks with nails). Ideal for the experienced woodworker who wants to try a traditional direction with traditional tools, this is recommended for larger woodworking collections. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

"I own all of Underhill's books. . . . So it is no small thing when I say that Underhill's new book (his first in 12 years) is his best. . . . Unlike his previous books . . . "The Woodwright's Guide" is focused entirely on technique. . . . Underhill's other great strength is his ability to explain extremely complex ideas in a way that makes it feel like you've suddenly achieved Buddhist enlightenment." --Christopher Schwarz, "Woodworking Magazine" Weblog ""The Woodwright's Guide" captures the true glory and mystery of the material that built this country, from the first swing of the axe to the final shaving of a smoothing plane. Roy Underhill's impressive technical knowledge, respect for traditional methods, and amusing storytelling make this his finest effort to date. I devoured every word and enjoyed it immensely." -- Christopher Schwarz, editor of "Popular Woodworking" and "Woodworking Magazine"

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