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Articles by Gary Katz

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Victorian Window Head

For the last six or seven years, I’ve included some type of architectural trim presentation during my Finish Carpentry Clinics at Katz Roadshow events. For most of that time, I’ve built a fancy pediment with raking molding joined by a transition piece—a Greek Revival design common throughout the country. You can read more about that pediment in “Greek Revival and Italianate Trim.” Read the full article…

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Kreg Foreman VS Kreg Foreman

 

A head-to-head tool review

I’ve used a Kreg pocket hole jig for years. Like a lot of woodworkers and carpenters, pocket holes have changed the way I work and made my job a lot easier. But years ago I grew tired of drilling so many holes by hand, especially when we were doing wainscoting in 30′ x 40′ rooms, one house after another. So I bought a Kreg Foreman. It was a pricey decision, and worth every penny. But now Kreg has come out with a new Foreman and it’s HALF THE PRICE! Read the full article…

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The ‘New’ K5 Kreg Jig     

It might not be so new anymore—it took me months to get my hands on the K5 Pocket Hole jig, but it was worth the wait. Years ago, the Kreg Tool Company changed the way we work by popularizing pocket-hole joinery. Since then, they’ve continued to improve on the original model. The new K5 Jig is extremely easy to adjust, comes with a box-full of accessories, and even though most everything is plastic and has that DIYer feel, this is a tool for professionals. Read the full article…

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Pattern Books from Andersen Windows

I saw my first pattern book while visiting the Huntington Library Rare Books department in 1992 or 93. The book was Designs by Inigo Jones, written by William Kent and published in 1727. By the time I opened that book, I’d been working as a carpenter for more than fifteen years and specializing in finish carpentry for nearly ten years. Looking back, it’s amazing that I was able to survive without any understanding of architectural design, in a profession dependent upon architectural design. Read the full article…

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Festool CT Wings

The first time I used a Bosch sliding compound miter saw, with up-front bevel lock, I didn’t like the saw at all—it weighed too much. But after working with it for six months, I loved it (as long as someone else would carry it!). And when I first starting using a Kapex, I didn’t like it at all. Other than the fact that I could carry it myself, I just wasn’t comfortable using it. Within a month, I loved it. Tools are like that. You have to use them before you really get to known them, and some you end up loving. Read the full article…

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Greek Revival and Italianate Trim

Years ago, in a Fine Homebuilding article, I explained how to build corbels for an Italianate mirror frame. I ran out of pages in that short article before I could discuss how to layout the pediment. I have plenty of room here, so I’ll cover that part of the story, and I’ll include all the material that we couldn’t fit into the Fine Homebuilding Master Carpenter article. Read the full article…

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Out-of-sight Exterior Pocket Doors

At my new home, I built a small guest cabin down by the river (reservations are booked years in advance, so good luck with that!). I wanted to open up the west wall of the cabin, along the river, to both the sight and the sound of the water. But I couldn’t afford a 12-ft. wide commercially manufactured sliding door unit. And besides, I wanted it to look cool. So I made the unit myself. Read the full article…

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Installing Baseboard

The joinery in baseboard forms the foundation for nearly all the joinery in finish carpentry, which makes perfect sense because baseboard is meant to replicate the foundation—the plinth—of a classical column. Though casing is the first molding profile noticed in a home, and often the first molding installed in a home, baseboard is usually the first molding that an apprentice carpenter learns to cut, and for good reason. Read the full article…

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