Keeping it Real

Lee Valley / Veritas is a company that produces some pretty innovative products – well thought out, designed, manufactured.

And every year for the past 8 years, on a certain day of the year, they have poured all that creativity into producing a product that looks as good as all the others, and as desirable, and yet is a joke.  An April Fools Day one.

And yet, even knowing some of these are meant as a joke, you can still find yourself wanting one! One was so popular as an idea, it has actually become a real (limited run) product!  A blank tape measure may have been meant as a joke, but the idea is fundamentally a good one.


Variable Gang (Dovetail) Saw

Full Round Spokeshave

Honing Guide Mk XXXXII

Pouchless (Magnetic) Toolbelt


Low Angle (Superblade) Jack Plane


Dovetail Anywhere

The latest tool from Veritas looks well thought out, and quite a bit of fun, especially if you don’t get to see the inside of your shed often.

Veritas Pocket Dovetailer

“That’s where the Veritas® Pocket Dovetailer comes in. With one tool, you can make airtight dovetails while at work, on the road, or even on vacation. This carefully crafted 6-in-1 multi-tool lets you do it all, wherever you want, whenever you want. Practice makes perfect, and this is the perfect tool to practice with.”

As is the norm with Veritas, this tool looks like it has had a lot of thought put into it, and would be very functional.  Even for an April Fools joke. And as with their others, you can still see yourself wanting one!

Lee Valley Tools Woodworking Catalog(ue)

Have you checked out Lee Valley’s latest (online) catalog(ue)? Some serious temptations in there to empty one’s wallet a fair number of times over!

Click on the picture below to be taken to their online catalog page.

So close yet so far

Had every intention today of picking up enough timber for either a small, or a normal sized workbench.  After all, it is been too long for me not to have a workbench in the shop, and my projects have been crying out for one.

Now I could always go the basic sort of design, MDF top capped with either thin MDF, or masonite.  Chances are, that is what I will end up with, at least for my first workbench, but I really have my heart set on having a solid jarrah workbench one day.

One of the site’s readers sent me a link to the Taunton Fine Woodworking site to see this workbench:

Taunton Workbench

Taunton Workbench

It is an Australian Woodworker, but his username on the Taunton site, afghh doesn’t provide me with any contact details to ask permission for his photo to be used here, so if he comes across this, a. sorry, b. can I have permission. c. if not, happy to remove the image! d. nice bench – how much did it cost, how long did it take? e. Is that you Fred? (There are not too many TS10L owners!)

What really struck me, is the tablesaw in the image is the same as mine – the TS10L, so it is obviously ideal for my shop as well.  It is a modification of the Lee Valley design.

Lee Valley Rolling Cabinet

Lee Valley Rolling Cabinet

When I priced up the Jarrah today at Mathews, it came to over $500, which floored me.  That much for enough Jarrah for a 1000x1000x65mm top?  I didn’t have time to recheck my calcs etc, so I ended up leaving without getting the timber I wanted.  I did pick up a length of PurpleHeart (5.4m x 150 x 50mm), which is a timber that I have wanted to have some of for ages for a few projects as a feature timber. That cost so much less (well under 1/2), so I keep looking at it and wondering if I should use it for the top, but then, is that really a good use for such a timber?  I suppose I was prepared to use Jarrah in that way, but that seems different somehow.

Perhaps I should just make it from gold – probably cheaper.

Veritas Pushing the Limits

Check out this for a honing guide from Lee Valley!



It’d be awesome for the busy workshop..

If it wasn’t April 1 ………….

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