Extreme Joinery was among the most commented articles in the past few weeks at Woodworking Network online, and through Facebook and Twitter. Interlocking wood pieces form the structural basis for a 5,500-square-foot building in Japan. Based on a children’s puzzle, 6-foot and 12-foot interlocking cypress pieces were put together without nails to form the structure, part of a museum.

Cypress is not only sustainable but is comforting material to the owners. — Stuart Paley, Bevel-siding.com

A serious waste of wood. Old barns here in the U.S. were made of interlocking timbers and wooden dowels. Less wood used, more space inside and many survived earthquakes and high winds. Just because wood is a renewable resource doesn’t mean it should be wasted. — Bob Chesley, Grand Rapids, MI

A waste of wood? That’s not a waste of wood.... Bureaucracy keeping loggers from entering a burned forest, that’s a waste of wood. What I’d like to see is a line drawing of the basic joint. That would be instructive — Jim, Georgia

The waste comments are a waste of time. It’s a unique study and piece, not a proposal to revolutionize the construction industry. Besides, no matter the amount of timber used, I’d be willing to wager that its carbon footprint is still less than that of traditional materials and construction methods, when you factor in all the chain-of-custody of extracting and gathering raw materials, transforming them through manufacture into building materials, then transporting to and transforming into assemblies/subassemblies/parts at fabrication plants, then transporting to and assembling at the job site. The situation gets even more evident if you factor that during their lifetime, the trees were contributors to a negative footprint, with all the CO² they absorbed and the O² they released. — Stephen Haley, Dallas, TX

Woodworking Network Poll Should flesh-detecting table saw brakes be mandatory for everyone?

In what cases should a flesh-detecting tablesaw brake be required?

• Everywhere 27%

• Only for students 15%

• For commercial manufacturers 2%

• In custom woodworking
shops 1%

• For hobbyists 1%

• Nowhere 55%

Another Topic: Flesh Detecting Tablesaw Brakes? A California table saw safety law could require flesh-detecting brakes, like SawStop. An online poll finds support for Home Depot and Lowe’s position against it.

What happens when a woodworker is injured while using their malfunctioning SawStop table saw? How are you going to know if it is functioning properly without destroying a saw blade and the aluminum block? — Trevor, Canada

Maybe the legal actions that will ensue will put an end to the controversy. These are attempts to nanny the industry one state at a time. I have all of my fingers, toes, both eyes and hearing at the age of 50; as a young man I mowed yards, baled hay, and was an infantryman
   Then I went to work for my father-in-law in his cabinet shop because I had always been near wood and tools. I was taught as a child and growing up safety, proper use and the consequence of improper use of those tools....Consequence is what is not being taught today and frankly, it makes me real mad. — Andrew M. Roy Sr., Semla, NC

Government regulation is a blunt tool and it gets out of hand at times. That said, any industry that gets regulated by the government generally has only itself to blame. It takes the government a long time before they react, so an industry typically has to ignore the warning signs a long time before they get regulated. The table saw industry in America took decades to add the simplest of safety device: the riving knife. They could have taken a leadership stance instead of having the conversation taken out of their hands. — Jim K., North Carolina

Also commented upon: FSC - No Valued Added Clients ask for FSC-certified wood. Does it provide any value? No, says window restorer and guest bloggist Brooks Gentleman.
Spot on! It’s a red tape money grab. — Mike Overfelt, Omaha, NE

In the end it’s all about jobs. They circumvented their customers, the builders and woodworkers with the boots on the ground, and went to our clients saying we were bad, and they were here to save the world from us. Very effective marketing on FSC’s part. Unless you are involved with LEED projects, though, FSC has become largely irrelevant. — David Short, Northampton, MA

Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.