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My woodworking bookcase

February 9th, 2009

So much knowledge for such a little brain

Very shortly I’ll be sharing how I gather and organize information in the digital world especially as it relates to woodworking. In the meantime, after reading David Thiel’s recent post over at the Popular Woodworking blog where he shares his vast library, I thought I’d take a couple shots of my bookcase to share as well.

Each book has it merits of course and if I were to ever read them I could speak to that with some authority. As it stands, I’ve just scanned through most to see how they end. While most of these books were loaded with good information along the way, rarely did they come through will a killer ending or mind-blowing turn of events… not one “I see dead people” moment.

img_2846There is one book, however, that has served me far more than any other, and that book is “Illustrated Cabinetmaking” by Bill Hylton.  The book starts with very thorough coverage of joinery and goes on to show exploded diagrams of subassemblies followed by a wide variety of furniture applications, again all with exploded diagrams. These diagrams are extremely well done including useful annotations which clue you in on relevant details of the specific piece. Just perfect execution on making this material as easy to learn as possible.  This book will never gather dust in my home.

So without further ado, here’s my woodworking bookcase:

Pretty covers get the top

Pretty covers get the top


Books on first shelf

The Moxon shelf

The Moxon shelf


Yet another shelf with books whose titles you can't make out.

Last shelf of woodworking books

Last shelf of woodworking books

As you can see, I keep some antique hand tool, eye candy in the case as well. I can’t help but feel the sense of storied history of this craft and the amazing craftsman of the past when looking at such hand tools.  Take a closer look at the double sliding dovetail boxing on the Griffiths Norwich plow plane which sits atop the bookcase. Impressive craftsmanship, isn’t it.

Double Sliding Dovetails

Double Sliding Dovetails

Oops… Almost missed these three which weren’t in the bookcase as I’m currently reading them.

Apparantly to good to be sitting idle in a bookcase.

Apparently to good to be idly sitting on a bookshelf.

Note: This post is uncharacteristically low on the  disturbing-scale realtive to my other posts. Please see the “My favorite posts” links on the front page side-bar for a proper taste of the Woodzealot buffet. Be warned, while it is all-you-can-eat, pace yourself to advoid the inevitable nausea and feelings of regret that will quickly ensue.

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  1. February 10th, 2009 at 09:00 | #1

    Can I just be the first to point out that the “Kama Sutra” is perhaps the most popular wood book of all time.


  2. February 10th, 2009 at 14:16 | #2

    looking good. It looks like you only need a bookcase half the size, though.
    Keep it up@!

  3. February 10th, 2009 at 15:32 | #3

    Well done sir! You have the keen eye of an editor. I do keep woodworking books and wood working books in the same bookcase and do not distinguish between the two.

    I’d believe that the “Kama Sutra” also holds the distinction of being one of the oldest wood working books. Although clearly Moxon’s seminal work lies in a slightly different realm.

    Is it the size of the bookcase or what lies within that is important? Pretty deep stuff, huh?

    Actually I have a good number of box-making books that just weren’t worthy of displacing the tools in the case. It may be time, however, to pull out some of the molding planes and move the mass of magazines I subscribe to in there.

    Thanks for the comments.

  4. Joe Heasley
    February 16th, 2009 at 08:59 | #4

    “I just read it for the articles” comes to mind, but the opposite may be true. In any case, mines bigger than yours :)

  5. Josef Helmer
    March 7th, 2009 at 08:10 | #5

    A fine collection you got and a very pretty bookcase.
    Would you show us a few detailed shots of the case and the doors.
    Thanks very much and lots of wood.
    Jos Helmer, Alkmaar-NL

  6. March 18th, 2009 at 16:10 | #6


    Apologize for my extremely slow reply. I’d supply close-ups of the bookcase itself but it’s one of those veneered, MDF store-bought deals (purchased years ago before I ventured into woodworking so please don’t stone me on this one).

    My girlfriend just told me that size doesn’t matter. I did not ask any further questions.


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