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Copyright 2020 
Tidewater Woodworking  President:Fran Foster, Vice President: Greg Guertin, Treasurer:Chris Zuchristian, Secretary:  

TWWWG Heading imageman glitter
October 2020
I Need More Clamps!
Web Links At the Meeting Last Meeting Notes Tip of the Month Editors Notes

What's In The Newsletter?

  • Editors Report
  • Jim Francis On Gun Stock Checkering
  • SAPFM Meeting
  • Guild Woodworking Projects

Editors Report ...

 My apologizes for the lateness of the October newsletter.  Back on September 18, 45 days ago, I volunteered to work with the City of Chesapeake Registers Office for the November election.  I have been running the polling operations inside of the registrars office from 7:45 AM till about 5:15 PM Monday - Friday.  The nine and a half hour days, lots of them with no breaks, take a toll on my body and there is nothing left in the tank when I get home to go to the shop or work on the newsletter.  Through Friday, October 30, 2020 there have been more than 11,000 deposit their ballots in the ballot scanner.  Friday we were processing voters at a rate of about 100 voters per hour!  831 people cast their ballot that day!

My final note on the election this Tuesday, November 3.  Voting is heavy.  We expect that about half of all of the voters in the City of Chesapeake will have voted.  If you are voting on November 3rd, plan on standing in line for a long time.  Dress appropriately, take your meds with you and if you requested an absentee ballot but have not returned it, BRING IT WITH YOU.  It will save you from voting a provisional ballot and having it reviewed AFTER the November 3rd election.

That brings me to the TWWWG elections to be held in the month of November.  With the Covid 19 virus and a late start in 2020 to our elections I do not have the slate of officers to publish in this months newsletter.  Once the committee comes up with the slate of officers for 2021 we will get out an e-mail blast to the members and how the voting process will proceed.

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Jim Francis On Gun Stock Checkering

If you're settling in for the winter (even maybe a little snow) and are looking for a shop adventure, gun stock checkering might be of interest.  Checkering combined with low relief carving can take a nice rifle or shotgun to the next sweetness level.  What's involved in checkering?  Following's an overview.

Definition:  Checkering creates rows of parallel V-grooves that cross at a given angle to form little diamond shapes.  The function of checkering is to give the shooter more grip on the stock (especially when wet or greasy), to wick perspiration away from the hands during shooting, and as decoration.  Checkering in its current form started about 150 years ago. Checkering was not a new thing, of course, but patterns and ways of application were usually different.  Checkering can be cut in several ways. Most commonly applied techniques are pointed, flattop and semi flattop checkering. Another variety is skip line or French checkering. In this technique lines are simply skipped at regular interval creating a tartan like effect, hence it is also called Scottish checkering.

Tools and Process:  Take a look at this video: https://www.youtubecom/watch?v=4lbK3us_JCY

What tools a person needs to start checkering:  Gunline tools provides checkering tools, and their Leader Set ( is a nice set for the beginner.  It contains a 2-edge spacer to mark and begin creating the grooves, a V-Edger to deepen the grooves, a Pointer to finalize the grooves and create diamond shapes, and a border tool to create a beaded border around the pattern.   Other tools used are probably already in your shop; scribe, bench chisel, and V-tool or veiner.  Note that the spacing tools are identified by the spacing of lines they create (i.e. 16, 18, 20, 22, 24 lines per inch). 


•  Checkering - A book of Checkering for the Beginner by S. L. Mays.  A good first book that gives a good view of tools, techniques and patterns.

•  Checkering and Carving of Gunstocks by Monty Kennedy.  A timeless reference that shows how the masters accomplished this work.

Final comments: 

•  Checkering uses the same hand-eye coordination and attention to detail as traditional carving, chip carving, and engraving; so it's a nice complement to those disciplines.

•  Quality of wood in the stock, and hardness of finish affect the quality of diamonds created.  The goal is to create neat, complete diamonds.  Typically fewer lines per inch are used with lower quality wood to prevent broken diamonds.

•  If anyone is interested in an in-shop demo, feel free to contact Jim Francis.

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Society of American Period Furniture Makers (SAPFM)

 The Society of American Period Furniture Makers Tidewater Chapter will have their fall meeting at Ben Hoobs shop in Hertford, NC on November 7, 2020 starting at 9:00 AM.

Current plans are to order BBQ plates from Captain Bobs at a cost of around $20.00

If you plan on attending, Barry needs your RSVP by Tuesday at the latest.  You can RSVP Barry Daniel at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Current schedule is:

Ben Hobbs - Doors and Sash making

Andrew Ownbey - Mortise a Lockset

Jim Francis - Letter Carving

Barry Daniel - Scratch Stock

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Guild Woodworking Projects

Ed Bunker leads off this months newsletter with his amazing chess board and chess men.  The chess board is made of Mahogany and Maple and framed by Cypress.  The chess men are made of Walnut and Poplar.  The finish is several coats of shellac.

The project below, a pocket watch holder, was originally credited to Jim Francis but actually belongs to Bret Lancaster.  The picture was on Jim phone, forwarded to my wife's phone and then eventually sent to my e-mail account.   We will look for a description of the project in next months newsletter from Bret.


Karl Bogot presents his "Meet The Maker" picture and his bandsaw box. 

Guild member Karl Bogott will be the November "Meet the Maker" at Woodcraft. A collection of his cutting and carving boards, snack trays, flexible placemats, cheese slicers and other items made from castoffs and leftovers will be on display and offered for sale in the case at the Woodcraft register all of November. Sales are cash only except on November 21, the Saturday when Karl will be there to talk about his craft. When he is there, Karl can accept payment by PayPal and credit card, as well as cash. He may do a demo, as well, and will announce that on his Facebook page. He will also have a greater selection of items.


Thinking of a handcrafted Christmas or housewarming gift?

Karl also posted this amazing photo of his bandsaw box.


Finally, Gary Stephens shows the finished product of his brothers rotating vertical gun rack.  The components were featured a couple of months ago.