Gazette Archive 12/24/01
A Book Review by Sheldon Grand
Title: Tremendous Toy Trucks
Terrific tome tells twelve tantalizing tales to toiling tester. If you're in a hurry, the previous sentence contains the essence of this review; but if you've got time for a bit more, read on.
When I first received the book for review I proceeded to read it cover to cover. The introduction covered Machine setup, Gluing and clamping, Template use, Choice of wood, Wood supply, and Wheels and axle pins. The last subject is the only one where I disagree with the author - he suggests purchase of those items because making them "is a time-consuming process if you want them to look as good as the factory-made wheels do." To me it's like suggesting that Michelangelo should have purchased David's slingshot for the sculpture.
As I went further through the chapters of the book, each devoted to one of twelve specific types of toy truck (my eight-year old granddaughter selected the tow truck as my project for her while her six-year old sister chose the fork lift), I thought it would be helpful to include in this review a list of the power tools used by the author on the various designs. I started over in my reading and prepared my list as I went along. When I reached the appendix at the end of the book, I discovered that the author had been there and done that, and also covered the hand tools used, accessories for his power tools, and made recommendations for sanding and finishing the units.
All in all the book is a great choice for those with young children and grandchildren, and also for the budding Michelangelos out there.
I cannot resist the opportunity to express my wish that publishers who cater to woodworkers would include with their books a CD or floppy disk containing graphics of patterns and templates which we could print on our own computers and use as we like.
Editor's Note: The Taunton Press has graciously donated several books for review which are passed on to our members free of charge in exchange for thoughtful, honest reviews. Thank You! And you can usually find their titles at a discount from Barnes And Noble or at the Fine Woodworking Website.