Friday, December 28, 2007

GAS Alert

I was digging through a pile of old woodworking magazines today and came across the very first on I bought when I took up woodwork. Surprised me how many years I've been doing this (although not THAT many!)
And as I flicked through a few pages I noticed a familiar theme for hobby woodworkers. One that I have noticed on a few woodwork blogs I keep an eye on. And that is the old cry "when I have enough tools and a dream workshop I will start producing stuff".
When I took up woodwork it was to make my own furniture - custom sized to fit my home, built to a higher standard than the rubbish we see in shops and made for less money. And it is way to easy to become distracted from that original goal and become a "tool head". You know, if only I had (insert latest tool release here) I could make that table we want. And we are all guilty of this.
Be honest - how many tools do you REALLY need to make a worthy project? Take a moment to take stock - do you really need 6 routers and 9 smoothing planes........... ;)
It is too easy to be distracted - get in that workshop, sharpen a few tools and MAKE something.
Now pass me that Axminster catalogue......... ;)


Michael Rogen said...

You are most certainly correct. Whether it's in the US where i live or the UK where you live and everywhere in between, we are all guilty of it at some point. I've only been doing this for a couple of years and saw how easily one could fall into that trap. So I took a workshop this past September and built a handcarved dovetailed blanket chest. I'm almost finished with it, but i needed to force myself into actually building something and I don't think that I will have any problems anymore. I have three projects waiing to be started. It's certainly more fun doing something than talkig about it.

Happy New Year to all!!


Ethan said...


I need to start keeping up with your blog on a more regular basis... You have lots of good things to say!

This post really hits home with me - probably with a lot of woodworkers.

In my case, having moved into a new house recently (and left my workbench behind), I probably DO need to make a new workbench before I can get things going again.

But given my current location and shop access (large space in a basement, but no easy external access via walkout basement doors), I find myself rethinking my woodworking approach. I think I'm going to focus more on hand tools and the power tools I do buy in the future will probably be Festool. Since I don't have a huge number of power tools anyway, it isn't like I'll have a lot of wasted tools sitting in my garage. The wife says I can keep the tablesaw up there as long as she can park her car in it.

In any case... I need to build a bench.