I love woodworking forums. The free flow of information, the friendships, the “strong discussions” about power tools… One of my favorite forums remains FamilyWoodworking.org, both for the spirit in which they built it and the friendliness of the guys posting there.

Here’s an example of what I consider to be a “gem” of a Family Woodworking post: “My Take on Wood Hinges” by Alex Reid. Reid describes and documents his process for building gorgeous wooden hinges, and then receives suggestions from forum members on alterations.

From his introduction:

“In this tutorial for making and installing wooden hinges I use ebony blanks cut and milled to a specific size related to the size of my cutting bit. I use a 3.2mm (1/8”) cutting bit mounted in my router table. The width of the blank will therefore be 3.2 multiplied by the number of fingers and slots. I want a hinge that has 4 fingers/3 slots and the mate will have 3 fingers/4 slots. So the width of my hinge will be 3.2×7=22.4. (You can also make them a little wider and cut to size on the table saw after slotting the finger joints). The length of the blanks will be any length desired but should be around 75mm (3”) for ease of clamping and cutting on the finger joint jig. The thickness of the blank will be 6mm or if you are working in inches 1/4” will work well. (Here also you can use a thicker blank and re-saw later for a production run).”

His tutorial spans several posts in the forum so he put the entire thing in a PDF file for those of you who’d like to print it out and work from home:

Wooden Hinge Making Tutorial (PDF)

Read the forum post here: My Take on Wood Hinges