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If you want to match the finish of a particular piece of furniture, the Finisher’s Colorwheel will help you get close, even if you know nothing about matching color.

To find the right mixture, turn the inside wheel and look for the closest color to appear in one of the windows. The color wheel will tell you how to mix the color using standard liquid dyes, powder dyes, or liquid stains in the following colors: white, raw umber, french yellow ochre, burnt sienna, cordovan, burnt umber, raw sienna, black, yellow, green, red, and orange.

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You’re looking at a reproduction of a Stanley #113 compass or circular plane from KUNZ of Germany. A compass plane has a rounded sole for planing curved surfaces. Some compass planes have a fixed sole, but others have an adjustable sole like the one above.

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Most table saw fences don’t come with a digital readout accurate to 0.001″. You can buy products that add this feature, but they can be expensive and they’ll only work on the tool on which you mount it. With Mag-Dro’s magnetic caliper base, you can take a 6″ caliper, a tool you probably already have in your shop, and turn it into a positioning tool.

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Background
I first saw the Resp-O-Rator Jr. a few years ago while reading my tool site feeds. The fact that it was only available at Hartville Tool and not at someplace I normally shop, like Amazon, relegated it to my list of tools I’d like to buy someday.

What interested me was that it looked like an interesting solution to many of my issues with paper masks:

  • They steam up glasses, both safety and prescription
  • They don’t feel very comfortable
  • They are a pain to take on and off, especially while wearing a hat
  • They really don’t fit well enough to stop all the dust

At a higher price, a paper mask with a valve helps with fogging somewhat by directing your hot, moist breath out the valve rather than letting it leak out the edges, but it’s still a pain to wear. A full-blown respirator works better still, but is expensive and somewhat heavier.

So, rather than fitting over your mouth and nose, the Resp-O-Rator Jr. goes in your mouth somewhat like a snorkel. This is a much smaller area to seal — plus it’s air and water tight. They provide a coated wire nose piece that pinches your nostrils shut so you don’t accidentally breath in through your nose.

In Use
Recently, I needed to buy a tool that I could only find reasonably priced at Hartville Tools. As I was checking out, I looked at my list and remembered the Resp-O-Rator Jr., so I thew it into the cart. After using it for a few hours in the shop I’d like to share my observations.

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They’ll stare in wonder at how you got the unbroken ring around your creation, but you’ll know it was easy with just a little practice and the right tool. That tool is a captive ring cutter like this one from Robert Sorby. And you’re not just limited to making captive rings — with these tools you can also make other rings like bracelets, napkin rings, or even wheels.

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Sharpening is an art — some would call it a black art, but an art nonetheless. You can obtain excellent results with nothing more than a few stones and hours and hours and hours of practice, or you can buy honing guides that almost ensure that novices can achieve acceptable results if they follow directions. That’s not to say that honing guide are for novices, though; there’s a place for them at any skill level.

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Recently, while I was browsing the Hartville Tool catalog, I found Woodjoy’s marking and cutting gauge.  It’s a tool that works on similar principles to the their chairmaker’s router I wrote about a few years ago, and it even looks like it might use the same reversible edge guide.

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What if you could turn all day and not worry about sharpening your tools? With the Ci1 Easy Rougher from Easy Wood Tools, when the edge gets dull you can just turn the cutter 90° and keep on turning.

The manufacturer CNC-machines the Ci1’s shaft from solid stainless steel bar stock. The shaft fits into a finished maple handle and accepts three different cutters, depending on whether you want a square, 4″ radius, or 2″ radius cut. The tool cuts up to 1/2″ deep per pass left, right, or straight using the same approach angle.

The Ci1 generally ships with the 4″ radius cutter for around $130. Replacement cutters run about $14. Since they claim the Ci1 produces large volumes of shavings, you can also buy a Lexan chip deflector that attaches directly to the shaft to deflect them away from you.

Ci1 Easy Rougher [Easy Wood Tools]
Street Pricing [Google Products]
Via Amazon [What’s This?]

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Building upon their MJ Splitter that we featured yesterday, Micro Jig recently introduced the MJ Splitter SteelPRO.  Both of these products are designed to be inserted into a zero-clearance insert on your table saw to keep the kerf in the workpiece from pinching the blade.

Rather than using plastic like the original MJ Splitter, Micro Jig makes the SteelPRO splitters from stainless steel — including the pins — and covers them in high-density polycarbonate. In addition to their more rugged construction, MicroJig added a few new features.

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I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not sure where I left the blade guard/splitter for my table saw, and frankly I don’t really care; it’s a real pain to remove and replace and it gets in the way of at least half of the operations I perform. Now, I really like the idea of a built-in riving knife that moves with the blade, so maybe on my next saw — but for now this removable splitter from Micro Jig has caught my eye.

Not only does the MJ Splitter keep the workpiece from pinching the blade, it also can act as a mini-featherboard to keep the workpiece against the fence after it exits the blade — something that’s not easy to do any other way. By choosing one of the four sides of the two included splitters, you can adjust the amount of pressure the splitters apply by changing how much it is offset from the blade in increments of .003″.

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