Karl Holtey profile in Handplane Essentials


Over the past 5 years I’ve found the first edition of Chris’ book Handplane Essentials to be an invaluable reference, so when he announced last year that he was working on a revised second edition I knew I would have to pick up a copy. What I didn’t realise, until an eagle-eyed reader at EWS 2017 told me, was that along with a lot of new content by Chris the 2nd edition of Handplane Essentials also contains my profile on Karl Holtey.

My copy arrived last week, and although I have only had a brief opportunity to flick through it so far, my first impressions are that the second edition builds on what was already an excellent body of reference material. To have one of my articles included in this collection is a real thrill, and I’m looking forward to stealing some time to read the new edition in depth. Handplane Essentials can be found in the Popular Woodworking store here.


Karl Holtey, Plane Pioneer


If you’re not already a regular reader of Popular Woodworking magazine then shame on you. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t read my article on plane making legend Karl Holtey – the full article (from the June 2016 issue) is now available to on read on the Popular Woodworking website free of charge. So if you are interested in one of the most important tool makers of our time, point your browser: here.


Karl Holtey in his Highland workshop


In print on both sides of the Atlantic

The June issue of Popular Woodworking is now in stores on both sides of the Atlantic, and carries my feature on Karl Holtey (including quotes from interviews with Chris Schwarz, Wayne Anderson, Raney Nelson and Konrad Sauer). Also featured is a staked table project by Chris, Megan’s medicine cabinet, and Peter Follansbee’s excellent regular column.

My copy landed on my door mat yesterday, and it was a real buzz to see my words nestling amongst articles by such well acclaimed woodworkers and writers.

Over the Wireless in Unexpected Places

So here’s another announcement I’ve been patiently waiting to make.

Last October I took a trip up to the Scottish Highlands and spent two days with storied plane maker Karl Holtey, and his wife Claire. Karl is in the process of finishing his final run of planes, after which retirement beckons. The purpose of my fieldtrip was to interview Karl on his career, processes, and plans for retirement, for an article for Popular Woodworking (my very first for PW).

The June issue of Popular Woodworking has now been unveiled, and you can read the introduction to my article on the PW website here.  In addition to the interview with Karl, the article also includes interviews with Wayne Anderson, Raney Nelson, Konrad Sauer, and Chris Schwarz.

The PW June issue is in stores from 26 April, and I am looking forward to it very much.

And before you ask, no, this is not some elaborate April Fool (unless Megan has been plotting this since August 2015, in which case I entirely deserve to be duped…).