Issue 12 T.O.C. – Michael Updegraff – “Risk and Reward”

This post is part of a blog series revealing the table of contents of upcoming Issue Twelve. As is our custom, we’ll be discussing one article per weekday in order to give you a taste of what is come. 

The subscription window which includes Issue Twelve is open now.

To get Issue Twelve when it ships early April, you can sign up for a subscription here. 

If you aren’t sure about your subscription status, you can reach out to Grace at Keep in mind though, if you are set to auto-renew, you never have to worry about getting the next issue of  Mortise & Tenon. Issue Twelve is coming your way soon!


Michael Updegraff – “Risk and Reward”

Risk. It’s a concept we’re all familiar with in today’s world. From warnings on fast-food coffee cups to the perceived dangers of hiking in the woods, we hear about it from all directions. And the discipline of woodworking is no different. 

Newcomers often approach the craft with trepidation, believing the mainstream consensus that working wood means using machines – expensive, loud, and potentially hazardous. But how much of that consensus is based on cunning marketing by machine manufacturers? Are power tools necessary for a productive shop? And what are the facts about how dangerous they truly are?

Author Michael Updegraff explores the risks and rewards of making furniture. Drawing from insights offered by a woodworking-magazine-editor-turned-hand-surgeon, as well as a legendary (and opinionated) maker of Welsh stick chairs, Updegraff seeks the unvarnished truth about machines in the shop and the benefits of working unplugged, by hand. He takes a practical look at shop skills and practices to improve focus and avoid injury, all with the aim of drawing greater enjoyment, safety, and satisfaction from our work.

Subscribe now to reserve your copy of Issue Twelve.


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