My new hobby #1: Getting started

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Blog entry by DanClem posted 02-25-2011 09:34 AM 1585 reads 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of My new hobby series Part 2: Planning for handcut dovetails »

Good day to all who have chosen to turn a listening ear my way. I am a full time student and stay at home dad here in the great state of NC, who has found a new and exciting hobby in woodworking. I have always been fascinated and intrigued by what people could do with and to wood and now I’ve decided, with the blessing of the love of my life, to delve into the world of custom woodwork.

To start this foray into the unknown, and grease the wife gears a little, my first project is going to be rail mounted planter boxes for the front porch so my wife can grow herbs and edible flowers. Some of the later projects I would like to tackle are a toy chest for my daughter, a set of Adirondack chairs for me and the women in my life, matching pair for my wife and I with foot stools and a smaller version for my daughter and if I can get my hands on the tools necessary, an end grain cutting board similar to the one detailed on this site by dewoodwork.

All this to say, to those that have graciously read this, my first blog entry ever, I welcome any and all hints, tips and general words of wisdom from all of you, my fellow lumberjocks.

Thank you, and until next time, goodnight.

-- "Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." Ben Franklin

12 comments so far

View steliart's profile


2736 posts in 2740 days

#1 posted 02-25-2011 11:12 AM

welcome to LJs you will soon find out that this is a great school and we are all students

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions !!!

View TJ65's profile


1378 posts in 3102 days

#2 posted 02-25-2011 12:11 PM

Welcome, you can never start too late on woodworking!
Any problems along the way just ask. Lj’ers are great at answering the tough questions – and not so tough!

-- Theresa,

View Gator's profile


383 posts in 3728 days

#3 posted 02-25-2011 12:44 PM

Welcome to LJ. This is a great place to learn all about .. almost anything.. heck you might even get some woodworking tips from time to time.. LOL

Enjoy, and looking forward to seeing your projects.


-- Master designer of precision sawdust and one of a kind slivers.

View woody57's profile


650 posts in 3479 days

#4 posted 02-25-2011 02:16 PM

You are going to love it here.
Just ask and it shall be told to you my son.

-- Emmett, from Georgia

View gagewestern's profile


308 posts in 3402 days

#5 posted 02-25-2011 02:22 PM

i think your in for alot of fun!!

-- gagewestern

View Maveric777's profile


2693 posts in 3128 days

#6 posted 02-25-2011 03:50 PM

Welcome to Lumber Jocks! With me being still new myself (only been in woodworking about a year and half now) I can throw a few words of advice out there for ya…

1) Stick around Lumber Jocks. I have learned so much and made incredible friends here on this site. There never seems to be a stupid question (although I always feared asking) and there is a general teaching, learning, and sharing atmosphere that just cant be matched anywhere IMHO…

2) Read, read, read, I read all the info i can where ever I can find it. Looks for books on sale or visit your library. I make a strong attempt to read at least 20 minutes before bed about something to do with woodworking. Helps me go to sleep and I always find new things I never knew.

3) Never be afraid to experiment. You may not hit a home run with your first crack at something, but i can guarantee you will learn something from it.

4) You don’t have to have the best tools in the world to woodwork. Being a guy and the whole “I want it all” mentality a lot of us have (me included) this was/is a tough one for me. I’m getting better…

5) Most importantly…. Have Fun!

-- Dan ~ Texarkana, Tx.

View rogerw's profile


262 posts in 2741 days

#7 posted 02-25-2011 03:54 PM

Welcome Dan! My only advice to you would be have fun, don’t be afraid to ask, and most important… watch the fingers! lol


-- >> my shop teacher used to say "do the best at everything you make for your mom because you're going to see it for the rest of your life!" <<

View helluvawreck's profile


31681 posts in 2918 days

#8 posted 02-25-2011 04:02 PM

I’ve seen a list of your tools else where. One tip which you might know already is that if you have a circular saw and/or a router you can cut and rout panels very accurately with a good straight piece of wood and a couple of c-clamps. Just clamp the wood squarely across the plywood or wood and use it to guide the saw or router. This will help a lot until you get a table saw and router table. Even after you get these it will help you if you have a small shop which makes it difficult to handle large sheets. I have had my shop for a while but I still do this occasionally and if you do it with care it is accurate. I hope that you enjoy Lumberjocks.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View bigike's profile


4052 posts in 3340 days

#9 posted 02-25-2011 04:29 PM

Welcome to best and most addictive site on the planet. Becoming an LJ is one of the most important tools your gonna use in and out of the shop, Good Luck and hope to see some blogged projects soon.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop,

View ratchet's profile


1391 posts in 3839 days

#10 posted 02-25-2011 04:39 PM

Welcom to lj’s! I’m in NC as well. Sounds like you have a good project list already. Looking forward to seeing some of you projects.

View Gregn's profile


1642 posts in 3035 days

#11 posted 02-25-2011 05:13 PM

Welcome to LumberJocks Dan.

Don’t worry about what tools you have, you’ll get into that part of the game soon enough. Instead learn to get the most use out of the tools you have. Whether you use hand tools or power tools there are a lot of different ways to safely use your tools to get the most from your tools. Also remember a sharp tool works easiest.

As Maveric said READ theres a wealth of information out there to learn from. As stated before there are no stupid questions except the one not asked. LumberJocks is full of experience to learn and glean from.

Your list of starting projects is a good place to start with working with the tools you have already. Have fun.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View DanClem's profile


13 posts in 2700 days

#12 posted 02-25-2011 07:35 PM

Thanks for all the warm greetings and tips. Maveric, I started really reading about woodworking a week ago and I can’t seem to get enough. I am always on line looking for some tip, or trick I can use later.

I’m looking forward to sharing my projects with all you LJ’s and will enjoy seeing what all you do as well. Good luck and as Roger said, watch the fingers!

-- "Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." Ben Franklin

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