Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 27

Thread: FWW Magazine Oct 2021

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Nolensville, Tennessee
    Posts
    38

    FWW Magazine Oct 2021

    I have been a FWW subscriber for nearly 35 years, so I understand that keeping the content interesting year after year is a challenge. But, I still eagerly await each new issue. So I just read the latest issue this morning: a 4 page article on setting a stool on fire and calling the result a "finish", and then a 9 page article on wall anchors. I double checked the cover to see if I was reading Better Homes and Gardens, but no, it says FWW on the cover. It may be time to rethink the renewal this year...

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by Lewis Justis View Post
    I have been a FWW subscriber for nearly 35 years, so I understand that keeping the content interesting year after year is a challenge. But, I still eagerly await each new issue. So I just read the latest issue this morning: a 4 page article on setting a stool on fire and calling the result a "finish", and then a 9 page article on wall anchors. I double checked the cover to see if I was reading Better Homes and Gardens, but no, it says FWW on the cover. It may be time to rethink the renewal this year...
    Shou sugi ban is indeed a very nice, interesting finish when accomplished well. Not right for every surface, but very tactile.

  3. #3
    Shou sugi ban is primarily intended for exterior cedar siding, there is a chemical reaction that occurs to give the wood it's fire resistant properties and longevity.

    Western woodworkers often take other culture's customs and methods of work and take them far beyond what they're original intent was.
    Right now Shou sugi ban is all the rage and any project made out of any wood is in danger of someone burning it.

  4. #4
    Lewis, I understand your point. When the 396th article on using spacers on a router table fence to sneak up on cleaner cuts is one of the features in FWW, it is a bit disappointing.
    On the other hand, I really dug and learned a few things from the article on the steam-bent torchier lamp with veneer shade. Intuition says an epoxy treatment to a .020"thick piece of veneer = a brittle sheet, yet they flex it just fine - gotta try that!

    Again, to your point, content in some of these has been a bit pedestrian as of late. Worse yet, last summer, the editor of Popular Woodworking made a formal statement that a complete revolution was necessary for the magazine in order to fit his political viewpoint. I immediately dropped all contact and subscriptions, since he decided to change it into "Political-Woodworking" magazine.
    What a shame. Was it just me, or did others catch this and react similarly?

    The minute politics is interjected into the presentation, I'm doing a 180 (just like this forum, and I agree completely). Just hacks me off.
    Woodworking should remain a way to escape from the daily grind of politics - we want a neutral, personal-skills building experience for the relaxation, learning and sense of accomplishment, not more politically motivated agendas subliminally programing us to someone else's ideals.
    Just destroys the honesty and simplicity inherent in woodworking. In this way, the articles/contents are reduced to simply props to support someone's idealized vision of what the world is really supposed to look like.
    Good grief.
    Last edited by Jeff Roltgen; 08-20-2021 at 11:33 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    441
    Well stated, Jeff.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    Posts
    6,005
    I was a charter subscriber, but didn't renew, sometime in the mid '90's. I remember when the first issue came, where I was, and how excited I was. I spent a lot of money with their advertisers, back then.

  7. #7
    I try to keep an open mind. Yes, there can be a fair amount of repetitive content in FWW, but if you read closely, there always seems to be something new to learn, and some of the work, like the steam bent torchiere lamp Jeff mentioned, is really inspiring, to me at least. The Gallery section always contains some impressive work. The floating wall shelf they showcased is a fascinating form, and the method of turning four at once on the lathe with the kraft paper joint for knocking it apart later was pretty cool.
    Do you think you'd find Mario Rodriguez's article on the Scandinavian table in Better Homes and Gardens?

    Some of the FWW articles from a guy named Michael Cullen over the past couple of years have been excellent. I especially liked his articles on his unique approach to bandsawn boxes, texturing with hand tools and milk paint. They did a live webinar demonstration with him last month that was great.

    I've also noticed with some of the new contributors, that maybe they are trying to keep current with the younger demographic of woodworkers. This must be why they are showcasing some of the younger YouTube woodworkers, and female ones at that, like Tamar. These woodworkers are more "maker" oriented and cross over into different materials and novel methods more readily than some of us more traditional, older woodworkers.
    I don't think this is about politics, or that it is a bad thing, it's just an evolving trend in the craft and it happens in all fields.

    It's easy to rank on things, but you can always find the positive, and opportunities for learning if you're willing to look and willing to keep an open mind.
    Last edited by Edwin Santos; 08-20-2021 at 12:24 PM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Camillus, NY
    Posts
    337
    Lewis- I suggest that you submit some article ideas to FWW....or better yet an article on one of your classic builds.
    Jerry

    "It is better to fail in originality than succeed in imitation" - Herman Melville

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    San Antonio, TX
    Posts
    435
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Roltgen View Post
    L Worse yet, last summer, the editor of Popular Woodworking made a formal statement that a complete revolution was necessary for the magazine in order to fit his political viewpoint. I immediately dropped all contact and subscriptions, since he decided to change it into "Political-Woodworking" magazine.
    What a shame. Was it just me, or did others catch this and react similarly?
    They switched editors since then. Logan Wittmer who was an assistant editor at Woodsmith took over as Editor in Chief earlier this year (April? ... I think the October issue is his first as chief, but apparently they are still working through stuff in the pipeline). Listening to him on the Shopnotes Podcast he does not seem to have a political agenda.

    Remember they got sold (due to bankruptcy) in 2019 and that can entail a challenging transition.

    I am curious as to how a woodworking magazine expresses a political viewpoint, but then again I don't often read the editor's column. I'll have to check my issues from last summer to see if I can figure that out, but for me if there is useful information and decent project ideas I'll subscribe.

  10. #10
    Finding and presenting new content every month is difficult.
    I have also found myself paging through much more quickly as time goes by.
    Things like certain styles of furniture come and go, to stay relevant, they need to write about them like epoxy river tables or the recent Shou sugi ban technique. You might not like it but they need to try and appeal to everyone they can to keep subscriptions up.
    FWW has the oldest average age of readers out of all the major publications. They literally need some new readers.
    I agree with Jerry Wright, write articles or at least letters voicing your concern. Tell them what you would like to see, typically these publications are open to suggestions and new content from readers.
    JMHO

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    E TN, near Knoxville
    Posts
    11,173
    I dropped my subscription when there was too much reviewing and selling of new tools and not enough how to build skills and make things. I have the digital set so I can look up something if needed. I still enjoy looking through the older issues (i.e. 80's).

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Nolensville, Tennessee
    Posts
    38
    Thanks everyone for the great discussion and good points on both sides. As I said, I understand the challenge of keeping the content fresh. I suppose since I have been reading FWW for a long time, I remember when it was on an entirely different level than most of the rest of the woodworking magazines, and I never thought I would see an article such as the "wall anchor" spread. I'm not saying that I don't get anything out of it now, or that it is all "fluff" now, just that the overall quality of content is in decline. Thanks again for the discussion.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    830
    Part of it could be that as time passes people become more advanced in their abilities, and are looking for more advanced topics than they did initially. So old timers are less likely to enjoy run of the mill content than new people.

    Must be a tough business if not a lot of new woodworkers are showing up...
    Too much to do...Not enough time...life is too short!

  14. #14
    I just cannot image how tough it must be to try to run a profitable business publishing magazines these days. No matter the audience.

    Erik
    Felder USA Territory Representative: Central & South Texas

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Peoria, IL
    Posts
    2,501
    I agree completely. Not long ago they did a 6 page article on driving wood screws. Incra solved that fine adjustment to a router fence decades ago. So more pages wasted with a solution to a non problem.
    Last edited by Richard Coers; 08-20-2021 at 6:49 PM.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •