Well I now know how badly I want to learn to use hand tools – I’ve signed up for a class in Dallas!
Now you have to understand that the last time I drove to Dallas by myself, the firemen who rescued me told me at the hospital that when they reached the scene they were sure they were looking at a “body bag candidate.” I was going the speed limit (my first mistake) on 75 Central Expressway – the guy behind me was not. He was going much faster, much, much faster. He put the rear bumper of my Subaru Legacy right up against my front seat. If you know anything about Subaru’s you know that they are sturdy, and I am glad they are. I firmly believe that if I had been in any other midsize car I would not be here telling my story. Almost 8 years later when I see the pictures of my car, I count every blessing I have. The irony, to me anyway, was that when my car got hit, I apparently spun around and grazed another car. The driver of the car I hit made a claim against my insurance and got a settlement. I could not get my insurance company to get a decent settlement with the driver who hit me—- but they rolled over and paid out the nose to the driver of the car I can’t even remember hitting! All that car needed was a new bumper cover – it drove away from the scene. My car had to be taken away on a flatbed. Seems unjust.
Anyway, I digress. Fast forward 8 years——I plan to drive to Dallas not once but twice next week for this class. Will let you know how it goes. That is if I don’t chicken out! I hope I don’t. (I did make sure that I would not have to get onto 75 Central Expressway – I’m pretty sure I would not have signed up for the class if I could not get there without getting on 75.)
Tonight I worked on my sharpening skills. Got a long ways to go with this aspect. I can’t seem to hold the bevel against the stone consistently. I can get a burr on the back of the cutter on about 90% of the width, but not the last 10%. I know it’s just technique. It may be that I’ll need to learn to hold it differently than I am. My hands are not very strong, I’m pretty sure that’s not the problem as it seems like all the videos I’ve seen it does not look like you have to press hard down on the cutter. I don’t think it’s the stone being hollowed out at all as I took my straight edge to it and it was dead flat. Hopefully the class will help – it’s a hands on class so I’ll get some individual pointers which I’m sure will help.
Despite knowing better, I got impatient tonight and instead of waiting on a friend to come over and help me, I went ahead and got up on a ladder and hung a light above my bench—- having light sure makes a difference! Hopefully it will be worth the chewing out I’ll get when he sees what I’ve done. With any luck I’ll survive driving to Dallas and his wrath next week!!!
Wish m luck! Will keep you posted.
-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine