French Braces

Van Morrison, rain coming down on the woodshop roof, a French brace…I have a confession to make. I think I just fell in love with hand tools.

Tonight I hand drilled the dog holes into the workbench using a 5/8 auger bit with a French made bit brace. I’ve never used a bit brace before and I wasn’t sure what to expect drilling through 3+ inches of white oak. I was pleasantly surprised. It was work, but good work and I don’t feel like I had to try much harder than with a power drill. Also, using the bit brace seemed to lend itself to drill nicely perpendicular holes. But I think the best piece of all of this was just working with my hands and body with no noise or dust flying. It struck a chord with me.

I think I’m hooked.

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