Principles of Woodworking

Herman Hjorth

Milwaukee; The Bruce Publishing Co., 1930
Sixth Printing
[Using the figure, 2500 copies per printing, the sixth printing put 15,000 copies of Principles of Woodworking into circulation.]


During all ages wood has played an important and friendly part in the development of mankind. It enters, directly or indirectly, into the construction of more manufactured articles than any other material, and there is not an engineering project nor construction of any kind, in which wood is not used in some way.

A material, which enters so extensively into every phase of life, is of tremendous economic value to all civilized nations. The woodworking industries in this country, particularly the building and furniture industries, are among the most important, because they employ thousands of highly skilled workmen, designers, and artists, to produce useful as well as beautiful articles of wood. Other thousands are engaged in the distribution and selling of these products, and still other thousands in the manufacture of the numerous tools and machines used in woodworking.

This text is intended not only for the use of students in secondary and vocational schools, but also for adults who have taken up the study and practice of woodworking as a hobby.

Fundamental tool processes, common to all woodworking trades, have been compiled and arranged in family groups. With these as a basis, cabinetmaking has been emphasized throughout the book, because of its universal interest and appeal, and because this phase of woodworking is probably elected by most students.

All tool operations have been described and written in the form of instruction sheets. These have been further supplemented with related information about materials, tools, and machinery, and by a series of furniture projects, the construction of which has been carefully analyzed and described.

The teacher of woodworking will find the subject matter-both instruction sheets and related information - in convenient form for assignments.

Special attention is called to the method of planning and analyzing the various tool operations involved in the construction of an object.By following this method, any cabinet job may be analyzed and reference made by number to topics describing the various tool operations. After the students have become acquainted with the book, they should do their own thinking and planning, and should formulate their own job sheets for approval by the teacher.

The review questions at the end of each chapter should be of value to the student in testing his knowledge of a given topic, and to the teacher in checking up on his class.

The teacher of general science will find much helpful material onforest conservation, seasoning of lumber, and the physiological processes of the tree.

The teacher of physics will find the chapter on machinery helpful in illustrating the principles and practical applications of simple machines and the transmission of power.

It is the sincere hope of the author that the increasing number of "home woodworkers" will find this book helpful and stimulating, and that it will contribute to their interest and pleasure in craftsmanship. May they experience that satisfaction and joy of achievement which comes with a piece of work well done.

Grateful acknowledgment is hereby given to the following: Miss S. E. Sievers of Saunders Trades School for valuable help in reading and preparing the manuscript; Mr. J. Macdonald and Mr. H. A. Carl-berg of Saunders Trades School for suggestions and criticisms; Mr. Arthur Wakeling, Home Workshop Editor of Popular Science Monthly, for permission to use the material on Wood Turning and Inlaying which was published in a series of articles in that magazine, together with some of the illustrations in topics 255, 325, 326, 327, 328, 330, 334, and 341, which were used in these articles; the Forest Products Laboratory, Madison, Wis., and the National Lumber Manufacturers' Association for most of the illustrations appearing in the chapter on Wood; the Oliver Machinery Company for the illustrations in Figures 97 and 118; and the Editor of the Industrial-Arts Magazine for permission to use material published in that periodical.

Yonkers, N. Y.