For those who are unfamiliar with the “out of print” Time Life’s “Art of Woodworking Books”, you’re in for a real treat. Those publications were jammed packed with woodworking techniques, highly detailed illustrations, diagrams and pictures but alas, those books are out of print…………………..or are they? 

Fox Chapel Publishing has repackaged, reformatted and resized Time Life’s classic work into three new series and they are available now and very afforable.

These are the manuals that should come with every new purchase of woodworking equipment, it’s that simple.

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Fox Chapel Logo

A few words about Fox Chapel Publishing.   

Fox Chapel Publishing was founded in 1991 by Alan Giagnocavo and since that time, Fox Chapel has published more than 200 books and currently introduces almost 30 new titles each year. Fox Chapel also publishes two magazines, Woodcarving Illustrated and Scroll Saw Woodworking & Crafts They currently distribute more than 1,000 woodworking books from other publishers around the world.

I have found Fox Chapel Publishing to be an enormous woodworking resource no matter what your skill level or particular woodworking focus is. Woodworking books covering a vast array of topics, woodworking magazines and instructional DVD’s are just the beginning of what Fox Chapel has on its shelves ready to be shipped. Take a look at their website and see for yourself, you won’t be disappointed.



Not long ago, Fox Chapel Publishing purchased the entire, out of print content from Time Life’s “Art of Woodworking Books” repackaged and reformatted those volumes into 3 new series.

  1. Back to Basics
  2. Built to Last
  3. The Missing Shop Manuals

I’ve got the Missing Shop Manual series and I want to share my thoughts about this series with you.

The Missing Shop Manual Series currently has 5 titles and I’m told by Fox Chapel that there are another 8 titles coming soon to this series.

The current titles are:

  1. Table Saw
  2. Glue and Clamps
  3. Circular Saws and Jig Saws
  4. Drills and Drill Presses
  5. Lathe

Each and every one of these books are 5”X7” in size and are written with a straight-forward approach and illustration that leave nothing to the imagination.

Table Saw:

This book is my favorite in the series, not because the others in the series are lacking anything but because I’m a big fan of the table saw and what it can do for you as a woodworker.

This book has 142 pages and it’s full of detailed illustrations on how to safely execute not only day to day operations but it delves into specialized operations like cove cutting, panel raising and so on.  Each chapter of this book takes the reader into every aspect of the table saw and there is always an emphasis on safety.  Chapter 12 covers table saw jigs and 8 essential jigs for the table saw are featured and how to easily construct them in an easy to understand and fully illustrated format.

Chapter 4 is the chapter on table saw safety and it’s worth the read, several times over. There is even an illustration on a notched-beveled featherboard which is something that I’ll be sure to build as soon as I’m in my shop.

Here are the first five chapter titles of the Table Saw book and a short synopsis of what each chapter contains.

Chapter 1: Choosing a table saw.

  •  the differences between bench top saws, contractor saw and cabinet saws
  • examining your requirements for a table saw (which one is right for you)

Chapter 2:  Table saw setup.

  • checking and adjusting blade and table alignment
  • miter gauge adjustment
  • rip fence alignment
  • adjusting tilt mechanism
  • setting blade angle
  • maintaining switches
  • splitter and anti kickback fingers
  • drive belts and maintaining table tops

Chapter 3:  Table saw blades.

  • blade maintenance
  • anatomy of a blade
  • carbide blade types
  • changing a blade
  • blade cleaning and storage

Chapter 4: Table Saw Safety.

  •  common sense
  • blade guard and splitter
  • push sticks
  • featherboards
  • beveled and shimmed featherboards

Chapter 5: Ripping Wood to Width

  • starting the cut
  • approaching the blade
  • passing the blade
  • completing the cut
  • hands free off switch
  • ripping a large panel
  • ripping thick stock
  • tapers

And this is only the first five of twelve chapters of this book…………………………

You can easily see that nothing has been overlooked when this book was written. Each and every one of the books in the Missing Shop Manual series is as carefully and thoughtfully written and illustrated as the Table Saw book of this series. And if you’re in the market for a book on the table saw, glue and clamps, the lathe, circular saws & jig saws or drills and drill presses then look no further……………….

The Missing Shop Manual series is just what you’ve been looking for and much more. I’ve poured over every book in this series and to say that I’m impressed is a gross understatement. These are the books that should come with every new purchase of woodworking equipment.

I’ve included a number of photos I’ve taken from some the books in this series to give you an idea of what to expect……………………you won’t be disappointed.