Autumn Newsletter 2017
In this issue: A Few Words from Rich
What's New at Micro Fence
Featured Item Sale Opportunity
Tips and Techniques
Woodworker's Spotlight on David Clark
A Few Words from Rich
Our new website was launched the first week in August and after a few weeks of scrutiny, it's proven to be a great investment. Our customers have reported a much improved experience in purchasing and in accessing information. Moving forward, our intention is to develop a good deal more video content that's focused on the woodworking operations that the Micro Fence System was designed to improve.
What's New at Micro Fence
We can now fit the Cordless XTR01 Router From Makita
This 18V, 4amp little monster offers variable speed from 10-30,000 RPM and eliminates the power cord from your routing endeavors. It’s motor can fit in our Plunge Base with the same adapter ring we use for the Makita RT0701C. Additionally, our Edge Guide and/or Circle Jig can be mounted directly on the XTR01 factory base.
We finally got around to shooting a little 'on-site' video of the walnut TV lift cabinet that Rich built last summer. Click on the video screen above to see it in action.
You can see more about it's construction in our archived newsletter from Christmas of 2016.
New ideas and items are always coming to the Micro Fence System.
Keep up with all of our products by visiting us on our website Microfence.com.
You'll find all our latest products on the "News" page as well as new developments and sale announcements.
Use any of the Following Coupons (good until October 9, 2017): "MFC15" - For the Edge Guide Stop Collar Package "CJA15" - For the Circle Jig Attachment & Stabilizer Bar Package "VCA15" - For the Vacuum Center Assembly "MAINT15" - For the Maintenance Kit
These coupons are available exclusively to our newsletter subscribers. Simply apply the appropriate coupon at checkout (Offer expires on 10-09-2017).
Tips and Techniques
The Maintanence Kit
The Micro Fence System is manufactured to close-tolerance specifications and when maintained properly will offer a life-time of smooth and trouble-free service. One of the most important parts of that maintenance is cleanliness. DynaGlide Plus is our cleaner/lubricant of choice when our tools are assembled at the factory. It's use is highly recommended for on-going maintenance.
This kit, which is currently on sale, includes a can of the DynaGlide Plus, a 5cc bottle of spindle oil, swabs for cleaning internal surfaces, and a pair of retaining ring pliers so that the motor carriages of either of our Plunge Bases can be removed for cleaning. In short, along with a roll of shop (or paper) towels, everything you'll need to keep your Micro Fence System working at maximum efficiency.
1. When cleaning either of our regular or Micro Plunge Bases, start by removing the external snap rings at the top of the chrome-plated posts. Squeezing the handles of the snap ring pliers together will expand the snap ring so that it can be removed from it's groove.
2. When both snap rings have been removed, the motor carriage and plunge springs can be removed. This will permit thorough cleaning of both the chrome posts and the inside of the bronze bushings with DynaGlide Plus.
3. Use one of the wool swabs sprayed with DynaGlide Plus to clean the inside surfaces of both bronze bushings. After wiping the swab clean, repeat until no further dirt or grime is seen collecting on the swab.
4. Apply DynaGlide to a paper/shop towel.
5. Wiping down the chrome posts with a paper or shop towel sprayed with DynaGlide will both clean and distribute the lubricant for complete coverage.
6. Though infrequently needed, a single drop of Phil Oil applied to the micrometer spindle will keep it operating smoothly. (Note: Excessive oil will only serve as a dust trap and cause a build-up of dirt and grime.) Apply an occasional single drop of Phil Oil under the spindle's locking thumbscrew.
7. On a frequent basis, spray the guide shafts of the Edge Guide and/or Circle Jig with DynaGlide Plus to keep them clean and smooth. If oxidation has occurred, scouring the stainless shafts with #0000 steel wool can bring back their luster.
8. Wipe off excess DynaGlide with a paper towel and your tools will slide smoothly and last longer.
Do you have any "Tips and Techniques" that you would want to share?
This newsletter Spotlight features our customer, Mr. David Clark.
David recently called me to see about a replacement handle for his Micro Plunge Base, (the tool had fallen off his bench and shattered the plastic locking knob). When I asked what project he was using the tool for, he told me about the chevalet marquetry saws that he makes. I've always been interested in marquetry and was delighted to learn that someone was building the tools that support this art form here in the US. I thought these unique saws would be of interest to our newsletter subscribers.
David Clark Owner Operator
Ever since a kid, I've had a thing about woodworking. It started with shop classes in the 7th grade and continued throughout high school and college where I graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Arts - with the core training being woodworking.
The next 13 years was spent teaching woodworking at the secondary level, followed by several years partnering in a commercial cabinet shop. We liquidated that business in 1982, and I spent the next 27 years pursuing a sales career. After retirement, it was once again back to woodworking, focusing on boxes of all types.
In September of 2015 while attending the WIA conference in Kansas City, I had the privilege of meeting W. Patrick Edwards. Patrick is the founder and principal of The American School of French Marquetry in San Diego. While discussing the subject of Marquetry, Patrick related his attempts to market a chevalet kit. As a result of that discussion, and with much guidance from Patrick, I have started building and selling the kits, which brings us to the reason for this website.
A little historical perspective of the Chevy:
During the golden age of Marquetry, one of the tools that evolved for making the masterpieces of the time was the carpenters wooden "donkey" or vise as pictured on the left. It was comprised of a bench with a foot operated vise to hold the marquetry "packet" as the marquetarian cut it with a small fret saw. It evolved over the years; with one of the latter improvements being the addition of a horizontal arm and sliding saw frame as shown on the right. Today we know this tool as the "Chevalet de Marqueterie" or "Easel for Marquetry". Although produced in quantity during the 17th & 18th centuries, the demand has steeply declined with industrialization and cultural changes. Consequently, these tools are no longer commercially produced. Today, Marquetarians who wish to use the "traditional" marquetry saw have a limited supply of the original machines, and those that have survived can be in disrepair, or if in good condition can demand a premium. Other options are to either build one for themselves or hire a woodworker to build one for them. Building a "Chevy" is far removed from the delicate art of Marquetry, requiring commercial quality tools, timber working skills, and a substantial investment of one's time. Most artisans would prefer cutting veneers instead of timber; and this is where we come in. We have developed the kit for those who have neither the time, the tools or the inclination to build their own. Our kits are made from choice American hardwoods, and include everything you need to put together a beautiful detailed replica of the originals that were made during the heyday of this remarkable tool.
I'm delighted to offer these unique saws in the spirit of the French phrase, "Ici nous sauvons le passe pour le futur" - "Here we save the past for the future". This tool played an important part in the history of Marquetry, and it's modern day presence encourages today's marquetarians to keep the traditional craft alive, preserving and enriching the world of Marquetry.
Here is a photo of the "finished" chevalet. We build either a right handed or left handed model and size each kit for its owner. We do special requests provided they don't compromise the aesthetics or function of the tool. This tool is modeled after Pierre Ramond's drawings of the chevalet in the 1989 edition of his book "Marquetry" published by Taunton Press, and varies only in minor details of machining and finish.
(This particular photo shows a modified tool with an extended cross arm to accommodate a longer saw frame as requested by the customer).
Shown here is the kit ready for shipment. All parts are machined, pre-assembled, sanded and packed securely for safe transit. Besides the wooden parts shown here, the hardware kit and assembly manual are included.
The Micro Plunge Base, fitted with a Proxxon handpiece proved to be an effective combination for cutting the square mortises for the nuts used in the chevalet kits.
Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter! Please refresh your subscription if your email address changes. Throughout the year we will be conducting free drawings and offering price reductions on various components of our system (watch our 'Featured Products' section). The notification of these opportunities will be exclusive to our subscribers.