Defining Air, Retrofitting Saws, a Language Lesson

Defining Air, Retrofitting Saws, a Language Lesson

Blind Readers

After we aired a letter from a reader who is a blind woodworker, this email came from another. – Editor

“Awesome job! I am also a  blind woodworker, and I’d like to address this to Matt Becker. Thank you for making your site more accessible. I have noticed that when I click on ‘read more’ for Rob’s editorial, there is no heading label on the site to read the rest of his comments. This also occurs for the ‘free plans’ area. I use Window-eyes as my screen reader, and as Max commented, the letter h takes me from heading to heading. The rest of the areas for heading labels I think are good. Keep up the great work, and again, thanks for addressing the accessibility issues.” – Stephen Schmucker

You’re quite welcome. And thank you for both continuing to be a loyal reader, and for the feedback that helps us make things easier for our blind readers. – Editor


A discussion about preventing skinning of oil based coatings included the mention of Bloxygen, an aerosol can of inert gas free of oxygen. – Editor

“Air is made up of mostly nitrogen and oxygen with a small amount of argon, so if you remove the oxygen, call it nitrogen. It is difficult to displace all oxygen above a liquid interface by squirting nitrogen from an aerosol can. A better solution is to get some argon from a welding supply house and blanket the product you’re trying to protect. Argon is heavier than air and will displace the gas above the liquid surface, thus ensuring a barrier.” – Bill Gerritsen

The folks who make Bloxygen would doubtless agree with you. Their website states “Bloxygen uses ultra pure argon gas to drive the oxygen out of your container. Because Bloxygen is heavier than air, it will separate the liquid surface from any air that may remain in the container.” We suspect that for most readers, buying a can of Bloxygen  either online or at your local Rockler store is both cheaper and easier than buying a tank of argon, along with valve and hose. – Editor

JET Retrofit

“Your issue talks about JET and all the new innovations. I have been trying to get some feedback on a retrofit riving knife for my 10-inch JET contractor’s saw, but I’ve been unsuccessful. In this day of safety issues and with the new regulations on improved splitters on new saws, shouldn’t people with relatively new table saws be able to benefit from the same safer conditions as people who can afford expensive new table saws? Thank you.” – Ray Consilvio

Barry Schwaiger from JET answers: “The internal trunnion design for a saw with a standard splitter is vastly different than one with a riving knife. The manner in which a riving knife articulates up and down with the blade is very different than that of a splitter which is statically mounted to a casting. Therefore, the cost to retrofit would most likely exceed the value of a used saw.”

Which Plywood?

“I have been reading your eZine since it started. I am not that good of a woodworker, so I use mostly plywood. In your plans, when you make something in plywood, it would be nice if you could put in the quality or grade of the plywood. I know it would help me a lot.” – Bill Sender

Bill, the quality of the plywood you use is more a personal choice than an absolute related to the plans themselves. What grade or face type you choose is based on what you can afford and the appearance you prefer. However, we always support buying the best wood you can afford because, no matter what your skill level, your projects contain not just wood, but also your valuable time and effort. – Editor

End Sealing

A question about milled wood left in a basement inspired this letter. – Editor

“You don’t mention sealing the ends. This is also important to prevent checking and warping.” – Richard Leister

Indeed it is, and that’s great advice for green wood. However, in this case our answer team interpreted the letter to mean the lumber was already dried and milled, but had reacted to being stored in the basement. – Editor

Typo Corner

When is a typo not a typo? When it reflects the origin of the correct word. – Editor

“I am a novis when it comes to woodworking.”

Though we use the word novice to mean a beginner, that word comes from the Latin novis, which means new or newness. – Editor

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