Wednesday, February 25, 2009

How To Make a Dovetail Joint

A dovetailed joint is a method of joining two bits of wood which not only is very strong but looks good too.

Even if you never make one its well worth knowing what a dovetail joint is. Nothing implies a sound knowledge of woodwork like looking at a piece of furniture and exclaiming "Ah nice to see a dovetailed joint used" or alternatively "Emmm should really have of used dovetails."

Step 1.

Take two equal sized bits of wood. At the end of one mark off in pencil two "doves tails" as shown. Note at the end of this you want the tail bits still attached to the wood.

Step 2. Mark off a line you are going to cut down too. This should be the length of the wood. Cut down each side of the triangle to this line. Use a tendon saw if available (that's a short saw about a foot in length)

Step 3. Now cut sideways on both sides and you should be able to remove two pieces.

Step 4. Using a chisel remove the middle bit.

Step 5. Now use this bit of wood to mark off the bits to remove for the other bit of wood. Remove those bits using the process outlined above.

Step 6. Admire your handiwork, then wish you were better at woodwork.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

How To: Thread a Needle

A useful first skill for any Chap who wants to repair his own buttons, sew up a tear in his sports jacket or do some emergency stitching on a gaping wound.


1. Cut the length of thread, about half and arm length is usually suitable.

2. Make sure the cut is clean, use scissors or a knife. If you just pull or bite the thread you will get a frayed end which is impossible to thread.

3. Wet your thumb and forefinger on your tongue.

4. Wet the end of the thread.

5. Hold the thread between thumb and forefinger with about 10mm sticking out.

6. Bring the eye of the needle to the thread.

7 Get Stitching.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Cook quality cheese on toast

Good cheese on toast is an essential skill, simple and quick to make. The standard cheese on toast is some light bread toasted with melted chedder on top but everyone can do this. The trick to being a chap is to raise the stakes somewhat.

1. Fresh uncut bread
2. Meduim or mature cheader (Mild is for wimps)
3. A blue cheese -> Brie is good.
4. Cherry Tomatoes.

1. Cut the bread into slices about 1/2 inch think.
2. Toast this bread on both sides under a medium grill until light brown.
3. Place on each side about 4 strips of Cheddar so it covers most of the side.
4. On top of this put 2 slices of brie one at the top and one at the bottom.
5. Cut the Cherry tomatoes in half and place one half on each quarter of a side.
6. Place back under the grill and grill till the cheese has turned light brown.
7. Eat.

Top Tip for chaps.
1. Real gentleman only toast one side of their bread.