Olly Writes

Woodwork, writing, walks, DIY and more!

Tag Archives: dakota

Pluggin’ Those Holes

A few months ago, during one of their all-too-frequent sales, I ordered a pocket hole plug cutter from Rutlands. This was in the time before I purchased my pocket screw jig but, as it was on special offer and I knew I’d be wanting one eventually, I decided to take the plunge. At the time though, they were out of stock and unable to clarify when it would be available again… They were talking months, not weeks!

A few months went by and, only a few weeks ago, I placed another order with them for this same item, as it was now shown live on their website as ‘in stock’ and available to buy. Thankfully, the plug cutter arrived next-working day and, although I haven’t done an awful lot with it since, I have at least been able to tinker with it enough to be able to share some of my initial impressions and opinions of its performance with you, here.

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Christmas 2011

This isn’t going to be as scintillating as I would like. At least, not on the woodworking front, anyway. I’m sure there are others out there who discovered several wood or tool-related gifts lying under their tree this year and that’s great. I rarely ever ask for woodworking kit at Christmas because I fear that the buyer won’t fully understand what they’re buying or what it could mean for me. Neither am I in favour of identifying the item in a catalogue – where then, is your surprise and delight on the big day? Not to mention the fact that woodworking, as a whole, is rather expensive; regardless of whether you’re an occasional hobbyist or someone who works with their hands full-time for a business.

This year, I didn’t ask for anything at all! There are one or two power tools that I’d like to buy in the new year but again, cost becomes an issue and, really, I should be looking to invest in some timber for 2012, as I really don’t feel like I got much done in the past twelve months. If I have to, I can certainly get along with what I already have. It’s not as if I ‘need’ even one small item that’s otherwise halting all progress in my workshop. If anything, it’s a combination of the weather and life in general that’s keeping me inactive right now.

Regardless of all that; I was very happy to receive one particular gift, this year:

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I Do Love Cookies!

Anyone who’s been following this blog for the past year will know that I’m a fan of Rockler’s work-holding Bench Cookies [if not then, see this post, from almost one-year to the day!]. Back in the autumn, I noticed that the Bench Cookie range had extended over in the US. Thankfully, the new ‘Plus‘ range of accessories made it in to Rutlands’ 2011 catalogue at the dawn  of this year and they’re now available to the UK market (certain products were even on special offer, recently…). It’s taken about three-weeks but, I finally got my order in and, earlier this week, I got to try them out for myself.

Brand new to the UK!

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Planer Knife-Setting Jigs

A couple of years ago, Rutlands introduced a new knife-setting jig to their range for setting the blades accurately on surface planing and thicknessing machines (I guess you might also be able to use it on some spindle tooling as well). Since its first appearance in their catalogue, I hadn’t been able to find a single review or even a few brief comments from someone who might have bought one… They’re currently on special offer for this week and so, I decided to take a punt!

My new knife-setting jig.

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Another Quangsheng Plane

Where I say ‘another‘ in the title above, what I mean is that this block plane is the first one from the Quangsheng range that I have owned. I was so impressed with the rebating block plane that I borrowed [thanks again, Matthew!] several months ago, that I couldn’t resist buying one of these in the current Rutlands sale, with the ridiculously low prices. Actually, it’s a shame they don’t also stock the rebating planes, or else I’d have bought one of those as well! 😀

Ignore the label, Tom...! 😉

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Cable Clamps

As part of my latest order from Rutlands, one of the newest innovations from across the pond arrived on my workbench this morning, in the form of these Cable Clamps.

Read all about them…

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