Mark ( on November 2nd, 2009

Another in the series of reviews of DVD’s from the SmartFlix Woodworking University.  This time I review the DVD: Basic Inlay Techniques by Larry Robinson.

InlayThis DVD is the first and most basic in a series of three done by Larry Robinson.  Larry has a long history of inlay specializing in inlay for musical instruments.  This DVD series are a companion to his book The Art of Inlay.

The DVD production is very basic and no frills and Larry’s demeanor is fairly stoic.  If you are looking for a Hollywood production with lots of fanfare, you should probably keep looking.  However, if you want to learn the basic techniques of inlaying, this DVD should fit the bill.

The DVD covers a good bit on materials and their properties.  Even though Robinson uses only Abalone and Silver on the inlay project in this DVD, he runs the gamut on what kinds of things can be used and challenges the viewer to use anything that their tools can cut to achieve a desired result – and to ignore the traditionalists!

Speaking of tools, in the DVD, Robinson shows how with a modest set of tools you can achieve suburb results doing inlay while following his techniques.  Included in this section is a discussion on the simple birds-mouth sawing platform and vacuum system for collection dust that Robinson uses during his work.

The bulk of the DVD takes the viewer through the process of developing and inlaying a Butterfly image into a block of wood.  This includes the tracing of a picture of the Butterfly and the refinement of that tracing to optimize it for inlay.  Of course, the material selection, sawing and filing techniques for each of the puzzle-piece shapes in the pattern are covered as well as the techniques for inlaying and gluing them into the wood substrate.  The end result is a very nice inlay using minimal tools.  AT the opening and closing of the DVD there are numerous still pictures of Robinson’s inlay work for inspiration and after viewing him do the basic one in the DVD it becomes apparent that to aspire to work like his one must simply master the basic techniques that he prescribes in this DVD.

Don’t forget, if you are a new customer and interested in renting these DVD’s, SmartFlix has offered readers of The Craftsman’s Path a $2 discount coupon for your use. Simply use the coupon code: CRAFTPATH when you check out!

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One Response to “DVD Review: Basic Inlay Techniques by Larry Robinson”

  1. hi mark,
    was just cleaning out some old emails and re-discovered an email with your website. glad to see you’re still on top of your wood-working projects. turns out we have another thing in common besides the music and software dev. I also use WordPress for my website.
    Have a nice holiday !

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