Sunday, July 5, 2009

Swedish Wagon Maker (1932)

This link was sent to me by Jonas Andersson--thank you!

The video shows a Swedish Wagon Maker making the parts for a wagon wheel. Notice that he seems to be using regular chisels and gouges (short-handled) on his lathe, how quickly he shapes the spokes with hand tools between huge pinch dogs, and how he applies glue to the tenons. Very cool video. Enjoy!

In case you missed the other film on Swedish woodworkers (posted earlier), click here.


Unknown said...

Thank you for that Kari. It brought back memories for me. I lived in the Azores from 1973 to 1977 and I used to work for a wagon maker in a small fishing village. We made the hubs and spokes just like the video. We also used the bow saw for all our cutting. I wish I had had a digital camera back then. I'll look for some of those old photos.

Stephen Shepherd said...


Facinating on how he lunges with his upper body to drive the chisels, bench not mortise chisels. The alignment of his bow saw doesn't seem to effect his sawing.

And it looks like he dips the ends of the spokes into a pot of hide glue.

His turning techniques don't follow the 'norm', short blades and handles and using the chisel bevel up. His steadyrest he used initially was interesting.

He also used a file to draw file the spokes prior to sanding.

Sure see a lot of stuff in these old movies.

Thanks for the link.


Unknown said...

There are some other interesting videos on that site. The one on the top row, third from the left includes a guy making wooden shoes, a spoon and a simple country chair.


Unknown said...

That is a fab old film a real look back in time.

Jake (sawdustby..) said...

Cool, keep'em coming. I really enjoy these looks back in time.


Dan said...

Thanks Kari! That was loaded with interesting details. His caliper/divider work was fascinating. I liked how he transferred the diameter with his calipers, used his dividers to figure the radius, used that to mark off 6 equidistant points around the circumference and then divided those into 12 for the spoke mortises. No measuring with a rule, and no calculator – awesome! I also liked how he adjusted his dividers by tapping them on the bench - I do that with my marking gauge, but never though of doing it with dividers.

This really reminded me of "The Wheelwright's Shop" by George Sturt.

Kari Hultman said...

Glad you all liked it--these old films are so interesting. If anyone finds more, feel free to send them my way!

Jerry, thanks for the reminder about the other film. I had posted that one some time ago and will add a blurb about it to this post in case others missed it.

gchpaco said...

I'm pleased as punch I seem to be progressing enough to the point where I understand everything he's doing. That makes me happy. I need those little struts he puts in his benchtop for drawknifing, though; that's a problem I've had repeatedly.

Robin Wood said...

Great video Kari, I was going to mention Sturt's Wheelwrights shop too, an all time classic tome on traditional woodworking.

I loved the bench dogs for the drawnife work on the spoke, interesting the jump from drawknife to small plane did they not use spokeshaves in Sweden I wonder?

Anonymous said...

After the small plane he use a spokeshave just for some seconds.

In "old" books from the forties or earlier the spokeshave is often named "spockskifva". Nowadays they are named spånhyvel in sweden

Heinrich H

Kari Hultman said...

gchpaco, I've never seen such large bench dogs but they would come in very handy.

Robin, several people have recommended Sturt's book to me. It's high time I got ahold of a copy.

Thanks for the information, Heinrich. Tack så mycket!

Anonymous said...

Varsågod !

Heinrich H