This is likely going to be long and I tend to ramble, so bear with me if you are truly interested. I thought I would give an intro to who I am and how I came to be here. I’ve been a Lumberjocks “lurker” for about 2 years now. Not going to lie, I felt very intimidated by the knowledge of the people in this community and the quality of their work. I wanted to learn,acquire some skill and more tools before I started posting anything.
First, a bit about me. I’m 47, married and have a 17 year old son who is a senior. I grew up on a hobby farm and my general mechanical and basic woodworking set started there. There was never any money, so we cobbled everything to keep the house, barn, outbuildings up and the machinery running. Once out of high school I went to college and fell on my face. Although I did great in high school, I did not have the self discipline to succeed in college. Had a very fun year though, hiccup. So after blowing 15 grand to party for a year I got into construction and did that for about 7 years until being gone and working sun-up til sundown april-november started affecting my marriage. Got a job in a window factory for awhile, hated it and after my son was born I had the opportunity to quit my job and stay home and take care of my son. Over the next 3 years I started my own computer sales and consulting business and got a part-time job managing at a local restaurant. When my son was 3, I was offered the general manager job at the restaurant and have been doing that ever since. Dropped the computer business because I didn’t have the time for it, but have still kept up with the latest and greatest and am looking forward to having a CNC Router sometime soon.
My wife and I bought a house in town 22 years ago that was 100 years old when we bought it. It was a nice house with a detached garage, but small. Remodeled the upstairs bedrooms when we moved in basically because it didn’t have enough closet space for my loving wife’s crap, lol. Did a lot of work on that crooked house over the next 20 years. Crooked due to settling and apparently not having any good measuring devices back then. One end of my living room was 9” narrower than the other for instance.
Anyway, I probably would have gotten into woodworking much earlier in life if I had had the time, space and money. All of those things were a problem. At this point in my life I had become a jack of all trades, master of none in a way. Almost all of my woodworking was limited to construction, I did some metal building construction so have done some metal fab exp and can weld but am not very good at it. I could wire your home and do all your plumbing, but not to code probably. I could design and create a basic website for you and fix your computer (as long as it’s not an apple). I could pour your concrete driveway or sidewalk, bale your hay, raise your livestock, cut your firewood, etc, etc.
Alright, so 2 years ago, we bought a house about 2 miles north of town on a lake. When we started looking, I had two requirements really. Outside of town and a basement that I could finish or a finished basement so I could have a “man cave” or at least a place to escape to. Found some nice places outside of town and a really nice place on the Wisconsin River that I liked but my wife didn’t. We didn’t think we could afford living on the water when we started looking but there were so many houses for sale in our area that the housing market was pretty suppressed so we started looking at a couple lakefront properties and found one that we both loved that was just a bit above our price range. No basement, but attached 3 car insulated and heated garage that is almost the same square footage as my last house.
So we bought the house and the third stall is partitioned from the rest because the previous owner had a shop out there. Hello Burb’s Workshop! One of my requirements for a new house was a nice basement but because this house is only a little bit above the water level, no basement. But when you have a garage that is heated and basically 36×52, I had room for a man cave in the 2 car end and room for a dedicated shop 36 feet away from the house so I won’t bother my wife with my late night activities.
Well we now had our dream house, I had a new workshop and place for a man cave so what did I do? Within 2 weeks of moving in, I started building my “basement bar” in my garage!
The next blog post or possibly a couple of them will cover my bar build with pictures, my first exposure to Lumberjocks and the start of my journey into woodworking beyond construction building. Thanks for reading.
-- ---The day I learn nothing of value will be the day I'm laid to rest--- Burbs