I've had a few questions on how I made my brace pictured in an earlier post so I decided to provide some better pictures.
The one I made is a copy of an original that I believe dates to the early nineteenth century. The body of my brace is made out of yellow birch as well as the pad. I copied the pad from the original with its tapering octagon. In the future I think I will use hickory for the pads. The head of the brace is made out of hard maple because that was the only wood I had large enough to get the diameter I wanted. The head is held on by a friction fit wooden pin. I wouldn't make the pin permanent its nice being able to take it apart.
I love the brace and it works great. Make one there not that hard. The only hard part is finding bits. I recommend using only small bits like spoon or spur bits. You get too big and the torque will break the wood. Don't use auger bits save them for metal braces.