David P. Best Books Felder Tutorials YouTube Survival Guide Metalworking Machinist

David P. Best

I love to write - especially when I can combine my interest in other areas in my writing. Below are some of my publications - most drawing on my interest and experience in cooking, woodworking and machining. The following sections include links to my books, YouTube videos, shop blogs most of my written technical articles.

publications & videos

cooking, entertaining, and bartending

I have been cooking since my childhood, worked in a few pizza parlors in college, and taken a few classes with some world-renown chefs. Not that I'm a magnificent chef myself, but I aspire to be, and cherish opportunities to cook for others and entertain in my home.

David P Best Persoanl CookbookDavid P Best Persoanl Cookbook

I am lucky to have traveled extensively in Europe, Asia, and North America, and had the pleasure of dining at some really classy places –many of them holding one or more Michelin stars.

Throughout the years I have collected well over two-hundred favorite recipes, many of which are staples of my everyday meal preparation. This book is an assemblage of those recipes.

Very few of these recipes I can claim as my own – most are the creations of others. I publish this collection here for the benefit of others who share my passion for cooking and fine dining. Where the source is known, it is noted in green on the page. Click on the book cover to download the current version.

Have you ever wanted a concise guide to mixing a bunch of great cocktails?
Click on the photo below - you'll discover a two-page formulary that lists the ingredients, glassware, and how to serve over sixty outstanding classic cocktails.reference at the bon vivant bar in my home. Check it out - click on the cocktail image below.

David P Best Cocktail RecipesDavid P Best Cocktail Recipes

I keep this codex printed on a single sheet front & back and then laminated for quick access at the bar.

resources for Felder equipment owners

Felder Survival Guide for saw and spidle shaperFelder Survival Guide for saw and spidle shaper

I have been using Felder equipment and an active participant in the Felder Owners Group online for almost 25 years. Quite by accident I ended up becoming something of a technical expert on this European woodworking machinery – specifically the Felder line of sliding table saws, spindle shapers, jointers, and planers. Given the complexity of this equipment and the lack of user-friendly English documentation provided by the manufacturer, I decided to start writing down what I had learned in the process of setting up, aligning and using this equipment. My goal in documenting all this was to help others who are considering buying or are attempting to set up their Felder machines.

The Felder Survival Guides
Felder Survival Guide for JointerFelder Survival Guide for Jointer

The most recent Survival Guide is specific to Felder jointers and combination jointer/planer machines.

This Jointer Survival Guide is being published now for download as part of this new web site. You can download a PDF version of this guide by clicking on the cover image to the right.

Note that this is a preliminary version, and most of the specific instructions on how to make adjustments are based on the Format-4 Dual 51 jointer/planer, but the concepts apply to all Felder jointers with flip-up tables.

The first of these documentation efforts became a 280-page book titled The Ultimate Survival Guide (often referred to as "The Felder Survival Guide") published in 2004. It covered the installation, alignment and use of Felder sliding table saws and shapers with detailed written instructions and accompanying photographs explaining most aspects of setup and use of these machines.

Although no longer sold in printed form, I now offer a version in PDF format to those who contact me seeking a copy. If you are interested, reach out to me through the "contact" section of this website. Click the image of the cover to see sample pages.

A complete listing of the tools a user will need to commission a Felder saw, shaper, or jointer/planer. Includes specific recommendations with links to each tool discussed.

This document delves deeply into the Felder jointer table design with a comprehensive critique. It includes a discussion of the relative strengths and weakness of different Felder jointer and jointer/planer models.

A detailed discussion with illustrations regarding the use of the parallel fence on a sliding table saw, including the pros and cons of the various product offerings in this category.

This write-up discusses how to configure the rip fence on a Felder saw to get consistent dimensional results, and how to use the rip fence as a parallel fence to the right of the saw blade in making repetitive narrow-strip cuts that are not tapered in length.

This write-up provides a simple method to re-calibrate the digital crosscut stops on Felder equipment to accurately display length, as well as how to quickly switch between metric and imperial readouts.

Includes detailed drawings to make your own ZCI throat plate system, and instruction on how to properly install and align the ZCI.

watch my tutorial videos on YouTube
visit my shop and view project photo/video journals

books and articles for the hobby machinist

During the Covid era, I needed a research and writing project to fill the hours while stuck at home. I decided to fully explore and make sense of the somewhat arcane realm of indexible insert tooling for use in machining with a metal lathe. What started as a web post quickly expanded into a 100-page book with detailed illustrations and recommendations.

Indexable Tooling for the Metal Lathe
Book about indexable tooling for the latheBook about indexable tooling for the lathe

The result of this effort blossomed into the book Introduction to Indexable Tooling for the Metal Lathe: A User Guide – which is now available for purchase on Amazon. It pulls together the relevant information every metal lathe user should know and understand about indexable tooling and carbide inserts.

This handbook offers practical suggestions on what tools to buy to get started and how to expand your tool collection over time. And if you already own indexable tooling, it will help you decipher insert characteristics, and eliminate confusion when buying the correct insert for the job at hand. Click here for sample pages and a table of contents.

An overview of different types of milling machines with a detailed analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of each type, as well as specification comparisons for some alternative products offered by Precision Matthews.

A discussion of one approach to improving the rigidity of the cutting tool platform on medium-sized metal lathe, including a detailed build log and dimensioned drawings to make your own version.

A discussion the various ways to to hold tooling on a milling machine with an R8-tapered spindle. Includes a detailed discussion of power drawbars, the Tormach TTS system, and various quick-change systems available for milling machines.

Are you frustrated by parting operations on the metal lathe? This document demystifies what might be going wrong and lays out best practices for the operation.

This document contrasts and compares the most frequently used tool and spindle workholding approaches. A deep dive into the pros and cons of R8 collets versus ER versus 5C collets and collet closures and collet chucks that go with them.

This write-up is a summary of the different types of taps and dies used in machine threading applications, including the accessories and aids that help avoid broken taps and better fitting threads.

A brief but important examination of the types of alignment checks and verifications that should be performed on square-column benchtop milling machines, with a discussion of, and link to videos demonstrating the procedures.

There are face and shell mills from a number from different brands and sources. This write-up covers the details of the units from HAAS - a company well known for its CNC equipment and machining excellence. I recommend these cutting tools.

IF you interested in building a high-quality and robust rack for your lathe QC tooling, this document will show you how.

This short write-up will help you select an indexable tool for your metal lathe that can be used for 45° chamfering without having to rotate your tool post away from alignment with the spindle center-line.

Are you perplexed about how to disassemble your Asian-build medium-sized metal lathe to move it down steps or to strip and paint it? This write-up offers some help.

This document describes the three main types of coolant systems available for milling and lathe work, with a focus on the medium-quantity lubrication (MQL) type, and the NOGA and Fogbuster systems specifically.