Eye Diy

International Woodworking Fair: Day 3

By Hendrik Varju August 24th, 2012

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As planned, I did make it over to the Lee Valley/Veritas booth Thursday afternoon and again Friday morning. Wally Wilson gave me the grand tour of all the new Veritas products hitting the market around now or very shortly. I found out there are lots of great things coming down the line, including the new PM-V11 steel, which is used in new bench chisels and plane irons. It adds better edge retention with relative ease of sharpening—both sound good to me. There are too many new tools to mention here, but I will say that the new limited edition stainless steel marking gauge is one sweet tool and hits shelves in time for Lee Valley’s 35th anniversary. I also heard someone say that I have to check out the new Veritas “Jack Rabbit” plane, which had me a bit confused. I envisioned a hand plane that is either very quick or somehow hops across the wood before I realized that it’s the Veritas “Jack Rabbet” plane. It’s a bevel-up jack plane designed for cutting rabbets and comes with a removable fence. Fortunately, this plane cuts slowly and quickly, and it does not “hop” or chatter across the wood. Very smooth.

While you don’t have to travel all the way to Atlanta to see Lee Valley, I think a lot of us Canadians can only beam with pride when we see a Canadian company become such a leader in this craft and industry. Hearing Americans raving about the tools is a great source of national pride for me and I’m sure many others.

I finally completed the first building Thursday, which mainly features tools, machinery and jigs and I’m focusing my day today on the second building. The second building is full of hardware, lumber dealers, veneer suppliers, upholstery companies, lighting specialists and finishing companies. I’m sure I’m forgetting something because the number of vendors is a bit overwhelming. It’s just amazing what is out there.

As I said in my previous post, I attended the Wood Industry Canada Night last night. This event was for “Canadian attendees only” and I was shocked to see somewhere around 350 to 400 people there! Who would have guessed that so many Canadians attend this event? In addition to some great food, they also supplied beer, wine and soft drinks.  And would you believe that they specifically sourced three different brands of Canadian beer just for us? No other types of beer were offered. Talk about taking care of our needs.

I also chatted with a number of people I had never met before, including a delightful couple who travelled all the way from Saskatchewan for the show. We had a great chat about woodworking, Toronto, CHW magazine and lots more. What wonderful people they were to chat with.

Fortunately, my insoles are holding up, though I’m starting to wish I could rent a small golf cart. Anyway, I’ll return again in the morning for a final visit to some of my favourite booths.

I’ll report back one more time before catching my flight back.

Hendrik Varju
Passion for Wood

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