TAG : hand tools


Making Hay By Hand: How to Use a Scythe

Originally published July/August 2012 Nothing so smells like summer more than a hayfield freshly mown. Even during winter when you break into those little bundles of summer sunshine, the scent will take you back — and the nutrition will help your flocks and herds thrive. Making hay is ...


Splitting Wood by Hand

Several years ago, my neighbor spent the better part of a summer splitting and stacking a large sugar maple tree he had cut down in his yard. For an hour or two every day, the “thunk” of the godevil striking the wood and the occasional high pitched “twang” of a maul hitting a splitting ...

hay field

Top 7 Tools for a Growing Homestead

By now you've bought the farm or a little plot of land to call your own and you’re digging into the soil. That also means you've begun a list of equipment you didn't realize was essential. You didn't wait to buy a tractor, did you? While you're taking stock of your homestead equipment, ...


Some Thoughts About Tools From A Woman’s Perspective

As a woman I have a unique appreciation of the right tools. Having used them for much of my life, I don’t take it for granted when I find something that works well for me, and I marvel at how much harder life must have been before modern tools were invented. As all of us women know, most ...

How to Make Primitive Tools Pt. 1: Homemade Saw Blades

In Makeshift Workshop Skills for Survival and Self-Reliance (Paladin Press, 2009), author James Ballou provides creative and, certainly, unconventional workshop skills from construction to repair. Ballou also offers useful DIY projects for around the shop. The following excerpt from chapter ...

Building A Kitchen Island Part 2: Working With Hand Tools

  For me, building a kitchen island with wood grown and milled into lumber on my farm is a labor of love. It's also slower than if I bought all the materials and didn't take the time to appreciate the process itself. In the Part 1, I reported on using my drill press to rough out the ...

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