Book and Tool ReviewsWoodshop News

Measure Twice, Cut Once – Book Review

Measure Twice, Cut Once – Book Review

Book Review of Jim Tolpin’s book “Measure Twice, Cut Once

You Can pick up a Copy of the Book here

In the world of woodworking, the quest for perfection often leads us to search for knowledge and guidance. It’s not always easy to find a comprehensive resource that imparts practical skills and offers that elusive skill known as “common sense. The book “Measure Twice, Cut Once” by Jim Tolpin will help you in this regard, providing insights for woodworkers of all skill levels. While it may lack project guides, it makes up for it with tons of tips and techniques to help you achieve clean cuts, perfect proportions, and snug joints.

The Subtitle Says It All

The book’s lengthy subtitle practically acts as a roadmap for what you can expect from its pages: “Simple, effective ways (with and without a rule) for you to measure, scale, draw, and calculate to guarantee clean cuts, good proportion, snug joints, and the right fit every time.”

Embracing the Wisdom of Common Sense

One of the standout features of this book is the infusion of common sense throughout its pages. As you delve into the content, you’ll likely find yourself repeatedly saying, “Well, that’s so obvious – why didn’t I know that?” Jim’s approach is straightforward, making woodworking concepts accessible to anyone who wants to learn.

A Focus on Fundamentals

As woodworkers, publishing companies have trained us to expect to see project-based articles in woodworking books.  You won’t find that here.  There is an intentional absence of specific woodworking projects in this book. This book caters to a different audience – those willing to think for themselves and embrace the power of design.  It is geared towards understanding that mastering the fundamentals is the key to woodworking excellence. The book “Measure Twice, Cut Once” breaks down woodworking into essential elements. It comprises three chapters that delve into concepts of proportion and measurement, drawing techniques, and creating working drawings and cut lists. Three additional chapters cover measurement and layout tools, the layout process, and cutting to lines. The final chapter is a valuable insight on preventing and fixing mistakes.

Sketchup Courses for Beginners and Advanced users

A Better Way for Woodworkers

Jim Tolpin lays out tried and true woodworking techniques in this book. As you work in your shop, you may want to keep it close by for reference and inspiration. It’s a book that deserves a spot in your workshop for quick reference.

In a world flooded with woodworking guides and project books, the book “Measure Twice Cut Once” by Jim Tolpin shares wisdom and common sense. It’s for woodworkers who want to hone their skills, avoid costly mistakes, and, ultimately, achieve a level of exceptional craftsmanship.


I’m the owner of Benham Design Concepts, a mixed media art studio where I design and build custom furniture and other works of art using wood, glass, stone, and various metals.
In this blog, I talk about the art I create, my journey, and the things I learn along the way.

Leave a Reply