Woodshop Library

THE COMPLETE MANUAL OF WOOD BENDING, by Lon Schleining, is an illustrated guide on the pros and cons of milled, laminated and steam-bent work. Topics covered include the correct method of constructing a steam box, the benefits of making full-sized plans, lamination problems, working with compression straps, proper and safe shaper setup and more. The section on lamination-bending examines all the principles of the process and complications that could arise. A part on determining layer thickness notes that if a laminate doesn't bend readily around the radius, the entire bundle won't bend either and the layers need to be thinner. Bending theory is discussed in the Steam Bending section, where photos back up text that explains how convex surfaces stretch while concave ones compress. Readers are advised to practice this difficult, expensive, and unpredictable process by using small oak pieces measuring 2' to 3' in length. Schleining teaches woodworking at Cerritos College in Norwalk, Calif. and has been a professional stair builder for the past 20 years. He lectures throughout the United States on steam-bending. The 208-page softcover sells for $25.95. Contact: Linden Publishing, Inc., 2006 S. Mary, Fresno, CA 93721. Tel: 800-345-4447. www.woodworkerslibrary.com

EXERCISE WORKBOOK FOR BEGINNING AUTOCAD, by Cheryl R. Shrock, is ideal for classroom instruction or as a self-study tutorial. Complete with two 30-day trial CDs of AutoCAD 2007, the workbook includes the design program's new and enhanced commands and features. Included are 30 lessons with step-by-step instructions followed by exercises designed for practicing commands learned within the lesson. The book works to familiarize users with the drawing commands first, then teaches them to create their own setup drawings. Shrock is a professor of computer-aided design at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, Calif. She is an Autodesk registered author and has written more than a dozen workbooks on AutoCAD. The 440-page softcover, along with the two 30-day trial CDs of AutoCAD 2007, sells for $36.95. Contact: Industrial Press Inc., 989 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10018. Tel: 212-889-6330. www.industrialpress.com

THE CONVERSION & SEASONING OF WOOD, by William H. Brown, covers the aspects of timber conversion along with practical cutting methods to produce economically and to preserve the best features of the wood. A section on the methods of drying timber discusses air drying, kilning and dehumidification. Black and white illustrations are helpful in understanding the context. For example, when milling, the first cut is the most important and requires an accurate guide system on which the roller can run to insure a level cut. Illustrations show how the guide can be made in one of several ways. Also, hand-drawn diagrams of cross-cut sections of boards and logs indicate the typical ways boards and logs shrink and change shape due to natural and manmade stresses. Of interest is the chapter on shrinkage and movement of the wood, which explains how potential movement can be predicted if the moisture content of the wood is known and environmental air conditions are understood. The 222-page softcover sells for $18.95. Contact: Linden Publishing, Inc., 2006 S. Mary, Fresno, CA 93721. Tel: 800-345-4447. www.woodworkerslibrary.com

— Jennifer Hicks