Three New T-Bevels from Bridge City and Other Fun Stuff…

Drivel Starved Nation!

I know you are starving for some drivel, so hopefully this will tide you over for a bit. In a previous post I mentioned that we have radically changed the TB-2 and here is a sneak peek–

TB2 v2

There will be three versions, an aluminum body, a stainless body, and the deluxe stainless that features three saddle squares. This version is a “stretched” version of our CT-15 Multi-Square. All three feature stainless steel blades.

The cutout in the blades will allow you to make 8:1 dovetails that are not perpendicular to the face of your stock. This is handy if you ever build curved carcasses. All three will be announced next week along with the TS-1 v2, which is the coolest small scale square we have ever built!

Remember that disastrous close-out sale early in the year where we charged everybody 43 times for their $100 order? As gesture of good will and to assuage the overwhelming sense of guilt that mess caused us, I pledged to make a special tool and send it to sale participants for FREE. Well this week most of the components arrived so sometime in the next 3-4 weeks a little surprise will show up on your doorstep. Also, we are adding new stuff to the close-out page all the time, so if you haven’t checked it in lately…

Early this year I taught two classes on the JMP and students started versions of my “Fog of War”. Last week I received some images from fellow DSN member and JMP owner Don Synder. I thought his take on this concept was worth sharing. Here is a top view of his board which if you cannot tell is a boatload of work;

On closer inspection you can see the meticulous detail of each square…

The players;

Another view;

Don-Congratulations! Your piece is a tour-de-force of JMP effort. DSN Members: If you want to pick Don’s brain on how he did this, comment here and I will remind Don that he needs to answer all questions on this totally awesome and worthless blog!

A while back I noticed some tools were missing from our prototype shop. In particular, an old wood vise to which I was emotionally attached. I loved this vice as in real bad. Imagine my surprise when Michael Berg shared this image with me of his son Calder;


If this wasn’t such a great image I would have called the cops.

Until next time…


21 comments on this post:

  1. John,

    I understand your dismay about losing your wood vise. On the other hand, the ingenuity displayed by Calder to steal the vise, build a bench his size, install the vise and now use it. Well, I think that the best you can do now is just sit back and watch the young genius at work. :o The second point I would make is that it is a WOOD vise or material you, unfortunately, may not use any more.

    Just as an interesting aside, Calder is already surpassing me and Rutager and is nipping at Peter’s heels. I mean look at what he has already built? Maybe Michael will lend him out to help me with my entertainment center??? Michael??? :o :o


  2. Don,

    This is going to hurt but how long did it take you to cut out all of those pieces for the chess set?? What an incredible job and beautiful as well. If you are going to be in Portland for the Gala, I hope that you bring this with you. I would love to see it.


  3. Fellow DSN Members,

    I am going to quite wickedly with malice and forethought divulge a brand new product that John and Rutager have been secretly working on. Did he say Rutager? Yes, I did and that alone should underline why Julian, Ed and I felt this secret too should no longer hide with the mushrooms. I am doing this as a patriotic DSN member and could no longer allow this new JMP be built without your knowledge and input.

    It is going to revolutionize this industry and like another newish product is going to be a boon for those of us of the Baby Boomer generation. But, to build it in secret, with Rutager? What kind of information is being secretly sucked out of Rutager’s head about you Dennis or Masood. Truly, it could be that the information coming out of Rutager’s head about us is useless or as John claims just metadata but I don’t buy it. So, let’s move on because I need to board a plane quickly as Ed and I are going to meet in the Sheremetyevo Airport Transit Lounge in Moscow.

    As a hint, BCTW does not make the other product but at the very least , one member of BCTW, that being John, owns one.

    INTRODUCING: The ONE, the ONLY, I give you the new, the one of a kind, something never seen or even thought of before ………………..the E-JMP!!!!!! Yes, like the e-bike only far better.

    Think of the possibilities, you can make the cuts using the muscle power of your arm or let the ultra quiet electric motor make the cuts should you get tired or perhaps if you have many repetitive cuts. Set’em up and bang’em out.

    Now dear fellow DSN, I must sadly depart. I hope that you understand why I placed your need to know above my own life and liberty. It is my highest hope that you will take my sacrifice and use it to give your own input into what the E-JMP should be able to do as well as what should be leaked from Rutager. :o :o

    I bid you adieu,


  4. John,

    These are very nice. You guys are going to be real busy making these as the CT-15 is the tool that everyone at the shows wanted.

    I’m excited about having the ability to layout dovetails on something that might not be straight or square; anything that takes away limitations from one’s work should be celebrated.

    What are your child labor laws like in Portland? Hire that kid if possible; he did more work in a few minutes than Michael did all of last week!


    P.S. Don’t show that to Michael until my rabbet plane is shipped, thanks.

  5. Fred,
    You ask ‘how long did it take?’ That’s an ouchie because it made me think about my advancing age. I worked with wood a bit in childhood but put it down to keep up with school work. Then I took it up again around 1968 and have kept at it since. So, I guess the answer to your question is ‘about 45 years.’ Whatever small bit of skill I accumulated as those years unfolded played a role in making the chess board and pieces. That’s one way to answer. Here’s another. I took John’s JMP class in May. There, I got about half as far as other students who had their own JMP and experience with it, students such as Rudiger. I finished the board and pieces about 5 weeks after returning home from class with a newly purchased JMP. So, the effort took 5 weeks less time out for eating, sleeping, going out to movies, going to a couple meetings, and other such distractions. I didn’t keep track of distraction time, so I don’t know what to subtract from 5 weeks to determine project time. Ouch again. In making the board, I used the JMPv2 and KM-1 a lot. I found these to be great tools for doing accurate, repetitive work. John and the other students made his class a great experience.
    cheers……. Don S

  6. Rutager,
    Sorry that I misspelled your name in my reply to Fred. I saw the error as soon as I pushed the ‘submit’ button but could not find a way to edit a posting after submitting it. I’ll write it 100 times and have it correct next time!
    Don S

  7. Don,

    No worries, the other day I talked with a lady on the phone for 45 minutes to get trained to drive for a local Golden Retriever rescue and when she sent out the email to let the group know I was trained, she identified me as a woman, twice, so I’ll talk the miss-spell over that!

    You did a great job on the chess set and board, I haven’t heard of anyone else in class finishing one yet, besides you. I dabbled on mine trying a few variations using the DJ-1 to add details and built a couple jigs to do the facets on the saw.

    I think we all need to start working on John right now to hold another JMP class next year, I had a blast and my skills went way up. So, John, thoughts?

    Rutager (Rudiger, Ma’am!)

  8. Rutager,

    I am doing two JMP classes next year, one will repeat the “Fog of War” (with a few variations of course) and the other will reveal a new JMP project that I am working on.


  9. Something I’ve wondered about the tools with built-in saddle squares is how “floppy” they are.

  10. David,

    You asked for this…

    They are firm. And if not, easy to make firm.

    You are getting old enough to where floppy should not be part of your vocabulary.

    It’s a math thing…

    - John

  11. John,

    Given your math, I apparently am going the wrong way. Will the e-bike reverse my issue? By that, I mean the older I am getting the floppier my body is getting. :o :o

    Confused in West Chester


  12. There were two directions I thought you may have been going. I thought I took the high one…
    Bemused, at the Barnes Foundation in Philly

  13. John,

    It’s great you’re going to be teaching two JMP classes next year, I’ll be sure to sign up for at least one; I hope to see the rest of the DSN in attendance. There really is no substitute to being “forced” to use the tool for a week straight to build skills and think up new ideas. It’s also a great place to see what other people have built to customize their saws. I’m predicting two sold out classes.


  14. john, on a high road comment, you might discuss the addition of the squishy washer on the jmp so that the keel does not get jammed when the crank handle is too forcefully closed. you spent a lot of time field fixing that problem not only for me but others in the class as well.

    not to say it won’t happen again, but it would be a good preventive add-on for the older machines to be done prior to anyone’s attendance in next year’s class.

  15. Dave,

    Good point! Will post on the JMP forum.

    I hope you don’t get altitude sickness up here! :)


  16. you’re welcome. also gave that book to my cousin who’s father fought in guadalcanal and never talked about his war experience to his kids. think that book brings a lot of perspective to children of tight-lipped wwii veterans, esp. those in the pacific theater.

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