General Announcments


July Program

By Del Cover

High-Performance Wood Sanding

For July, we have a very special program by Sandor Naqyszalanczy. The evening's presentation is designed to teach you how to make the otherwise odious task of sanding wood more pleasant and effective. By learning how to choose the right sanding materials, tools and techniques to suit the job at hand, you will get terrific results quickly, simply and economically, using either hand or power sanding tools. Sandor is a professional furniture designer/craftsman with 21 years of experience and is the author of five books on woodworking, including "The wood Sanding Book" (Taunton Press, 1997). A former senior editor of Fine Woodworking Magazine, Sandor is currently the west coast editor of American Woodworker magazine.

Sandor was also our summer seminar speaker 4 years ago with a program on Jigs and fixtures.

The meeting will be on Wednesday, July 22 at 7pm at the Al Bahr Temple 5440 Kearney Villa Rd., behind the Hampton Inn.

See you there,

Del Cover
Program Chair

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September Program

By Doug Williams

David Frisk

For those of us who couldn't meet David Frisk at last April's shop tour of his woodcarving shop, we have been given a second chance. David will be the feature speaker at the next general meeting on September 23. He is a self-taught craftsman with more than 30 years of woodcarving experience. His specialty is heavy relief carving. His work is all over San Diego County, in private homes, at Jake's restaurant in Del Mar, Humphrey's restaurant, and Anthony's in La Jolla. He has agreed to talk to us about woodcarving and teach us some of his techniques. Judging from the interest shown toward woodcarving at the Del Mar Fair this year, we should have quite a few members interested in what David has to say. These kind of learning opportunities are just one of the benefits of being a member of SDFWA.

Del Cover
Program Chair

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May Shop Tour

by Ed Gladney

Once again we had an excellent shop tour. This time we were hosted by Roger Craig of Roger's Wood Turning. Over 50 members were present as Roger demonstrated his unique method for producing architectural turnings for the woodworking industry. Roger has designed and built very innovative machines that allow him to accomplish things not possible with traditional woodworking machinery. The tour started with Roger demonstrating turning on a machine which is a combination of a radial arm saw and a traditional lathe. The saw blade and arm of the radial arm saw travel along a screw mechanism at a slow speed set by a series of gears. The operator feeds the saw blade into the work which is mounted in the lathe and turning at a relatively slow rate. The saw blade follows a template which determines the final shape of the turning. The high speed of the saw blade cutting into the work as it is turning in the lathe produces very high quality turnings safely, accurately and much faster than with traditional turning chisels. Roger has perfected this design over the years and is currently using the 17th version of the machine. Another machine of his design combines a router with a lathe. By the use of a unique pin and gear system he is able to produce very unique spiraled turnings. In addition to these rather unique machines, Roger also uses a shaper and a pin router to produce moldings and stair parts. Roger's Wood Turning also supplies rounded corner moldings that are matched to samples supplied by the customer. These are produced on a high quality machine lathe and then quartered. Roger and his employees spent the entire morning demonstrating and explaining every aspect of his operation. Those of us who attended had the opportunity to observe a very talented and innovative woodworker who has built a successful business and reputation in the industry. Thank you, Roger, for a great tour.

Ed Gladney
Shop Tour Committee

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May Shop Tour

By Doug Williams

A generous amount of coffee, juice and fresh donuts waited for the fifty or more members who arrived to tour Roger's Woodturning in Vista. The owner of the shop, Roger Craig stepped to the front of the crowd and immediately announced the locations of the bathrooms. The crowd looked toward this man in awe because of his obvious insight. He must have noticed the large coffee containers standing in the parking lot, and like any woodworker, he jumped at the chance to solve the potential problems.

Roger told the crowd how he has always enjoyed working with wood, and how he has always had a need to create things with his hands. He then gave some of the history behind his shop. The fact that he started it in 1971, and how it sprang from advice given to him by his father. Roger's father told him to make a career from something that is important to him. To Roger that meant working with wood. He, like some SDFWA members, has been able to do something that most of us would like to do.

"I have turned my hobby into my job," said Roger.

Roger invited us inside and made us to feel free to roam around the entire shop. Two of Roger's long time employees, Gordon McGuirk and Dave Fleming were very accommodating. Gordon has worked with Roger for 17 years and Dave has worked with him for nine. Gordon and Dave took time while working on some of their products to explain how the make them and to answer any of the questions that we had.

Roger had prior to our arrival removed the safety covers from a couple of the large lathes so we could get a good look at their moving parts. (Before anyone screams SAFETY VIOLATION, Roger made sure to stand in front of the moving belts so nobody would get hurt.) It was necessary to see whole machine because they are not exactly conventional. They are actually combinations and adaptations of conventional machines. Roger had to make some of his machines, because there is nothing out there that fills his shops needs.

The first example of a machine he put together is a combination lathe and radial arm saw. The saw and the lathe are housed in a giant steel frame. The saw is attached to a large carriage, which moves along side of the lathe. The blade faces the material on the lathe and drags along the material. The saw is connected to a spring and pin assembly, which follows a template. The saw moves toward the material and away from the material as the pin moves in and out of the template. The template is a one to one match of the pattern that is turned on the lathe. The use of a template makes it possible to do production work.

"One big stumbling block of wood turning is getting pieces to be identical... and this machine obviously takes care of it," said Roger.

Another example of a machine Roger made is smaller than the first, but it uses a similar system. The main difference is it does not use a radial arm saw. The saw assembly sits on a steel plate that moves along the lathe. The plate also moves up and down on a bearing, and the weight of the saw assembly rests on a pin. That pin follows the acrylic template along the back of the machine. An acrylic template has to be used for this machine because the weight of the saw and plate rest on the pin.

Both of the machines described use circular saw blades. But, rather than cutting into the wood these machines drag their blades along the wood. This actually allows the blade to last twice as long, said Roger. The blade cuts with its side; using one side of the blade at a time.

Another machine is a lathe and router combination. This machine cuts those fancy spiral patterns in columns, balusters and banisters. But the most intriguing thing about this machine is the large clutch mechanism that Roger designed for it. Not only intriguing because of its size but because of what it does. The clutch is attached to one side of the lathe where the column or banister mounts. The clutch allows the material to be removed and replaced in an exact spot necessary to complete a design. It can be done over and over again creating identical designs on many different pieces.

Dave worked at the other end of the shop on a machine that makes corner trim for base molding. It has a hydraulic tracing assembly that is so sensitive it can trace the pattern of your finger nail, according to Roger. First Dave placed a pre-cut and pre-drilled cylinder of wood onto the machine's lathe. He did this by sliding it over a large dowel, which automatically centers every piece making them identical. Dave then placed a small piece of patterned base board into the hydraulic tracing assembly. The base board then becomes the template. The pattern is transferred from the template to the cylinder. The cylinder is then removed and cut into four quarter rounds on a band saw. That is how they make the base board to trim an outside corner.

Roger made sure to mention the dangers associated with cutting tools and why it is important for machine operators to pay attention to what they are doing. He happened to mentioned this right before he demonstrated his heavy artillery. That is his high speed router and shaper. He used the router to cut a pattern into a corner piece of a hand rail at 20,000 RPM. He then demonstrated how he cuts a pattern into a curved section of the hand rail on his shaper. The two machines' size, the size of their bits and the speed the machines generated, all complemented Roger's earlier point about safety in the shop.

Thank you, Roger, Gordon and Dave for showing all of us around Roger's Woodturning in Vista. And another thank you to Russ Crosby, Ed Gladney and the other members involved in coordinating the shop tours.

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May General Meeting

By Doug Williams

Brag Table:

Whetstone Utility Table

As we learned at the last general meeting, cutting tools such as planes and chisels need to be maintained in order to do their job. Just by luck, Don Holcomb, brought a table he built for sharpening his cutting tools. In the past Don would sit at his patio table with a pan of water, a small sheet of glass, his whetstones and his cutting tools. After everything was set up he would sharpen each tool. This table makes the job easier and convenient, according to Don. The table is made of pine, plywood and is finished with lacquer. The table holds two whetstones, one fine and one coarse. Each stone is secured on to the table with small pine wedges. The back of the table has a large flat area where a piece of glass securely fits.

The process is this, check the stones to see if they are flat. If not then, flattened the stones on the glass by using sandpaper and water. When the stones are flat, wedge them in place and begin sharpening your tools.

Bird Feeder

Vice President John Van Blerck brought in a gazebo styled bird house. John saw the bird house in someone's yard. He liked it so much he took a Polaroid of it, and he built his bird house from the picture. The birdhouse is made of 225 pieces of wood. The wood is originally from a planter box. Its roof is even lined with plastic to keep the birds and the seed dry. The seed is held in a glass cylinder that rests between the roof and the bird house floor. The cap in the center of the roof pulls out and the seed is poured right through the top. Finally, there are holes in the floor which allow it to be attached to a post. You can make your own bird house from looking at the picture in the newsletter.

Jerry Adams' Gifts

Once again Jerry Adams brought a slew of crafts to the general meeting. All to entice people to bring in some of their own projects, their own ideas. Jerry brought a note roller. It works with a role of receipt tape that is pulled to the necessary length of the note. Then the message is written on and torn off. The note roller also has a box on it that can be used to hold business cards or pencils. He displayed a box frame he built deep enough to display a sea-shell. Jerry brought a small clock constructed of just three blocks of wood. He brought a picture box with small frames for pictures in its lid. The box is just over four inches deep and six inches wide inside, which allows it to hold standard sized pictures. Jerry showed us a cookbook stand for use in a kitchen. Well, you might think, "so what!" But this one protects the book from any nasty food splatter. The stand is just a flat piece of poplar with grooves cut across its length. On the front of the wood are two hinges attached to a piece of plexiglass. A separate piece of plexiglass is slid into the grove that fits the size of the book. A book is then opened to the page, rested against the loose piece of plexiglass and the hinged piece of plexiglass is folded back against the open book. Not very complex, but valuable if you like to keep your cookbooks clean. Hey, this might be good for the shop too.

Cutting Board

Someone did hear the request coming from the share table. Mike Boren brought in a cutting board because he heard Jerry Adams asking for people share some of their projects. Mike's cutting board is made up of a series of strips of maple, walnut, bloodwood and oak. They are planed and joined together to make a flat board. After fastening the wood together he sanded the board applying liberon oil to it. Mike finishes the board, rubbing mineral oil into it with a steel wool pad. The cutting board took Mike about three hours to make. He says he has made them for friends as Christmas presents. When the group around the table heard that the board is to be used for cutting on they all seemed to look up as if to say, You cut on that beautiful wood?

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May Program on Sharpening

By Gordon Collinson

Russ Filbeck presented the program on May 27, 1998. Russ is one of our past presidents. He conducts several woodworking courses at Palomar College and in each of them he teaches tool sharpening. Some courses such as chair making call for the use and sharpening of some specialized tools such the adz, scorp travisher and the irregular shaped scraper. This evening however, Russ concentrated on basics, namely chisels, plane irons, hand scrapers, the sharpening media and the techniques. Michael Fairbanks provided great video enabling everyone to see the demonstrations close up. The edited tape will be available from the library. A reference book titled, "A Complete Guide to Sharpening" by Leonard Lee, of Lee Veritas was recommended, as was an article on Wet Wheel Grinders, from the Woodworkers Journal.

Honing Media

For many years craftsman used oilstone to hone tools. One objection to oilstone is that the fine metal dust suspended in the oil quickly spreads on to the hands, the bench and even the work.

In the late eighties the Japanese water stones were introduced here. These came in several grits, but more typically in just two grits, 1000 and 6000 as a combination double-sided stone costing around $30. These water stones cut faster than the oilstone but wear faster and therefore require maintenance to keep them flat. They can be flattening by rubbing the stone on wetted silicon carbide paper, which has been applied wet to a sheet of glass. Russ uses this on a serving tray to catch the water and slurry splashes. Various grits of silicon carbide paper, (100, 120, 220, 320 and 400) are stored under the glass.

The next progression was to the diamond stones. These are stainless steel plates over-plated with nickel to bond diamond dust to the surface. They stay flat and can be used with or without water. A medium or fine grit plate was used, followed by a final polishing on a ceramic ultra fine Spider Stone. These stones are readily available from local or mail order sources.

Another process referred to as the D & S. Scary Sharp System was shown. This consisted of quarter sheets of silicon carbide paper ranging from 120 through 2000 grit mounted on a sheet of glass with 3M 77-spray adhesive. The honing is done dry. A brush is required to remove the metal dust. Our SDFWA. member, Phil Stiver, has built and tried this system. Russ tried it and noted that it was quite fast, polishing from scratch (no pun intended) in 10 minutes. More details on this at


Wet wheel grinders are highly recommended for grinding woodworking tools. Some of us may have learned to use white dry grinding wheels mounted on a 1740-RPM grinder and especially made to reduce the heat. Even so this is still risky in that cutting edge heating can still occur and rapidly draw the temper of the steel. Wet wheel grinders rotate slowly, 70 rpm. The wheel is two inches wide and 10 inches in diameter. The Tormek System is a first class system, however, Delta has a much more economical, and quite adequate grinder for $129. Both have tool rests to aid in grinding the bevel angle. Care is required in clamping tools in the Tormek accessories to avoid tilting the tool.

There are only three reasons to grind a tool.
1. The tool is not square.
2. The edge has a chip.
3. Repeated honing has largely flattened the hollow ground bevel on a chisel. Chisels can be ground with a thirty-degree bevel or twenty- five degrees for fine paring.


A good definition of a sharp edge is as follows. Two highly polished surfaces coming together at an angle. If the surfaces are not highly polished the cutting edge will be ragged. These surfaces may be the back and bevel of a chisel coming together at thirty degrees or the edge and flat of a scraper at ninety degrees.

Honing Chisels

First the back of the chisel must be flattened and polished to remove all manufacturers grinding marks. This can be done on flat water stones. First using a 1000 grit and then a 6000 grit, producing a mirror finish across the entire width of the edge. It can extend as little as 1/32 inch back from the edge at the center of the blade. To hone the bevel, place it on the fine stone. Rock the bevel until both heel and toe are in contact with the stone. Lock the hands and arms and move the entire body back to draw the bevel along the stone. In few strokes the edge will be honed sufficiently, just a 1/64" - 1/32" back from the edge.

Honing Plane Irons

First polish the back of the iron as described for chisels. The plane iron bevel is formed using a rolling guide to accurately maintain the bevel angle. The veritas jig and guide is recommended to set the guide to the required bevel angle. Unlike chisels, plane irons are not left hollow ground. They are first honed to a 25 degree bevel on the 1000 grit stone and then the angle is raised slightly to form a micro bevel using the fine stone. This micro bevel makes sharpening easier because it just extends back 1/64" - 1/32" from the edge minimizing the area to be honed. Turning the guide roller on its cam raises the angle. Be sure to draw the blade back on the stone and not push forward on the first two or three strokes after raising the angle or the blade will dig in to the stone. Instructions supplied with the jig are very clear and complete.

Sharpening Hand Scrapers

  1. Remove the hook by placing the scraper flat on the bench and firmly stroking the sides near the edge of the scraper with a burnisher. Always smear an oil film on the burnisher before using.
  2. File the edges flat at 90 degrees using a mill file, and then hone the edge on a fine diamond plate. Do not use the normal flat surface of the stone or it will be damaged. Use the edge of the stone. A block of wood about 2" x 2" with a thin slot and two screws to squeeze the slot and clamp the scraper, will make a useful aid for holding the scraper perpendicular to the file and to the diamond honing plate.
  3. Hone the sides of the scraper on the stone until all areas near the edge are flat, then repeat on a fine stone. The scraper should now be sharp. Test it by pushing the scraper gently along the flat of your thumbnail. If it skids in some places hone some more. There should be a slight resistance as the edge scrapes along the flat of the thumbnail. At this point the scraper should cut shavings. There is no point in burnishing the hook back until the scraper is sharp.
  4. Set the scraper up vertically and take a single stroke along the edge with the burnisher at slightly less than 90 degrees. As you do this move along the burnisher so that it is not used at one spot continuously. If the hook is made too big the scraper will have to be laid over further to make it cut.
  5. You will now be able to cut shavings on hard maple.

Tool Protection

After spending time grinding and honing the perfect edge, provide protection for it. Plastic pill bottles or thirty five-millimeter film cases can be used with the tool thrust through the soft plastic lid into the container. Rust prevention is best achieved by smearing the tool with camellia oil. A small- saturated pad can be kept in a sealed container for this purpose. Camellia oil is available from Japan Woodworker 1-800-537-7820 Other oils may be used however they may become the source of fish eyes, if transferred to the wood, under a lacquer finish.

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August Shop Tour

By Doug Williams

Knight & Carver Yacht Center
Saturday, August 8th, 9:30 am to 11:00 am
1313 West 24th Street
National City

Our next shop tour will be another unique experience. We have the rare opportunity to experience the woodworking required to satisfy the harsh salt water environment required for yachts and sailboats. We will tour the Knight & Carver Yacht Center in National City. Knight & Carver has been one of the premier yacht builders in Southern California for 25 years.

From bow to stern Knight & Carver provides all aspects of yacht design and construction. Their clientele ranges from local sailors to Saudi princes. Their yachts vary from 33 to 120 foot with all the high tech and elegance the client may desire.

With many yachts in the yard, we'll be getting a chance to tour a few that are nearing completion. The marine industry have unique ways of making and installing cabinetry. Standards of materials and workmanship are extremely high and considerations for a seagoing craft must be applied. This will be a great opportunity to see how a shipwright performs his craft.

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August Work Shop

by John Van Blerck

Don't miss the first annual Wind chime building workshop

WHERE: Bill Collins' Workshop

		632 Ninth Avenue
		San Diego, CA 92101
		Tel: 619 232-4626

WHEN: Saturday, August 1st, 1998 at 9am.

MATERIALS: A choice of copper tubing or aluminum tubing, with either oak or maple. All materials including tubing, clear lacquer, patina chemicals, nylon string, and finishing oil will be provided.

COST: $15.00 if copper tubing is selected, $8.00 if aluminum tubing is selected.

John Van Blerck: 619-673-2104
E-mail :

This workshop will be limited the 25 people, so sign up soon!!

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October Seminar

by Bill Whitelaw

OCT. 2, 3, 4, 1998

This years seminar will feature Kelly Mehler. Kelly is a Kentucky woodworker and published author. A good example of his work can be found in "Design Book Six" on page 87. You will see skills that include turning, veneering , inlays, carcass construction, fluting and all the other skills that will pique your interest in attending a three day seminar. Friday night will be a slide show of his work and a bit of this woodworking philosophy. Saturday and Sunday will be full days of instruction in woodworking. As in the past , Harry will be providing refreshments along with donuts and coffee to get your eyes Open and your heart started. Lunch will also be provided both days.

Kelly's book is titled "THE TABLE SAW BOOK", is published by Taunton Press and will be provided as part of your admission. In addition Kelly will bring some copies of his video tape, "MASTERING YOUR TABLE SAW" for sale should you wish to purchase a copy.

I will be selling tickets at $30.00 for members and $50.00 for non- members (includes membership) for the seminar at the July and September meetings. If you wish to mail a check for your ticket, my address is:

Bill Whitelaw
355 Glencrest Drive
Solana Beach, Ca. 92075

Make your checks payable to SDFWA and enclose a stamped self addressed envelope to receive your ticket by mail. Be sure to hold on to your tickets, they may be used for something besides entry to the Seminar.

If this years seminar is half as good as our past seminars , you will receive a ten fold profit from what you learn. Ask anyone who has attended one of our past seminars if they got their moneys worth . I don't think you can find a single one who can say they feel they were cheated.

The seminar will again be held at the School for the Creative and Performing Arts in south bay. This is An excellent facility and the seats are comfortable, the viewing is augmented by video cameras for close ups of work in progress as Kelly shows and tells. Come join us, you will like it.

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Scholarship Committee

The SDFWA Scholarship winners thank the SDFWA members for their generosity and support of education in woodworking.

The winners of the eight $400.00 scholarships are:

1.Albert Trujillo Jr.Mission Bay High School
2.Mathew WillisCoronado High School
3.Paul ChaseCoronado High School
4.Nicholas SandruSan Marcos High School
5.Timothy McKibbenPalomar College
6.David AtkinsonPalomar College
7.Edwin ParadisePalomar College
8.Gary Russell Palomar College

The Scholarship Committee thanks the judges for their contribution in selecting the winners:
Larry Pierce, Dale Johnson, Chuck Meacham, Nick Disparti, Harry Meyer and Dan'l Thomas.

Congratulations and thanks, Harry, Dan'l and Russ
Scholarship Committee

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Special Note

by Russ Filbeck I wish to thank the San Diego Fine Woodworker's Association for selecting my ladder back chair for a special award in the Design In Wood Show. Thanks to all of you who help put this superb showcase together each year.

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Toy Program

Thanks to our many toy makers a lot of nice toys have been made so far this year, However, we can always use more. Christmas will be upon us before we know it, and we will need a significant number of toys for the toy drive. Pocket cars are always in demand so pick up kits from the toys table at the general meeting.

Following is a toy building workshop schedule:

Burt Skinner's shopLakeside443-1419July 25 and August 8 and August 22
Susan Kochel's shopAlpine445-6067August 15

Sign up sheets will be available at the July 22 General Meeting, or call to volunteer.

Bob Frederick and Burt Skinner
Toy Program

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Raffle News

Raffle operations return to the Resources Committee this month. With lots of ticket buyers, hard working resource committee members and cooperative sponsors you're sure to get your money's worth of fun and/or woodworking treasures. Here are a few of the items that will be taken home by lucky winners at the July meeting:

The raffle is not designed to raise money. Proceeds are turned back to the raffle for purchases. Discounted prices at Tool Depot, Eagle Tools and Junior's Tools and generous donations from Goldenberg Group and the new Tool Depot in Encinitas helped bring some of these top flight items to the raffle table.

Raffle items come from many sources such as donations from Resource Sponsors, by members, by special arrangement with program speakers and others. Every effort is made to have the value of each drawing item exceed $25.00. Your help and suggestions are appreciated.


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Internet e-mail FREE

You don't need to buy Internet access to use free Internet e-mail. Get completely free e-mail from Juno at Or call Juno at (800) 654-JUNO [654-5866]

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We need cutouts for Children's Hospital. Wood will be available at the meeting or call me. Check out the new colors available for the woodworkers aprons.

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Video Library Update

The SDFWA Video Library has received two new tapes.

  • Contemporary Lathe Turned Art by Pete Arenskov. This is not an instructional or how-to video, it features approximately 40 pieces of beautiful wood projects by well known wood turner Pete Arenskov. Time: 12 minutes.
  • Belt Sanding Drawer Fronts by Christian Becksvoort In 13 minutes you see how to align & make all drawers in a cabinet perfectly flush & smooth. Part of the Fine Woodworking Magazine Video collection from Taunton Press.

    Larry Okey
    Video Librarian

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    Valued Friend

    by Bill Collins

    The Association has lost a valued friend, member and skilled artist with the passing in June of Dan D'Ambrosia. Dan left a big family, lots of friends and a reputation of "being there" for toy workshops, the Maritime Museum, Fair setup, dumpster-diving for wood or any other task asked of him. No one will forget his prize-winning oak and brass six pounder cannon at the 1996 Del Mar Fair. At his request, it was fired at his funeral. The D'Ambrosia Family is now looking for a suitable display location where it can be enjoyed by lots of people and fired a few times every year.

    Call Bill Collins at 232-4626 if you have any ideas or contacts.

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    Spotlight on a Sponsor

    Goldenberg Group, Inc.
    3804 Main Street, Suite 5
    Chula Vista 91911

    Most SDFWA members live north of I-8 and west of I-15, but they'll find it well worth the drive down I-805 to the Chula Vista Main Street off ramp and a few blocks west to sponsor Goldenberg's big selection of Baltic Birch, Melamine, plywood, red and white oak, five grades of alder in thicknesses up to 8/4, soft maple in many thicknesses and very wide boards. You will also find very good prices on wood filler, glue and contact cement.

    Director Raul Travesi told the Resource Committee the company has set up a special account for the Association through which members may purchase at the best price Goldenberg offers its very best customers. These include Maquiladora plants which spend hundreds of thousands of dollars. No minimum for our members, but no sale if your dues aren't paid and you don't have a card. It's a friendly place, and the company is anxious to sell to members. (First of a series featuring SDFWA Resource Sponsor's)

    Resources Committee

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    President's Message-- General Announcements-- Special Announcements-- SDFWA Craftsman List-- Local Resources-- Classified Ads-- Woodworking Videos-- Woodworking Web Links-- Extras-- Meetings-- Membership-- Calendar-- Contacts

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