I remember as a kid going down to my Dad’s basement workshop where the sweet smell of freshly cut wood drew me in. I’d watch as he sawed, drilled, planed and put together all sorts of wooden creations. He would give me this little red hand-drill and a piece of scrap 2×4 and tell me to drill some holes for him. I never knew why he wanted me to drill the holes. He never used them. But I guess it kept me busy while he worked on the ‘big’ machines.
That was about 40 years ago now. My dad has passed on but in the last few years I’ve been getting the bug. The need to build ‘something’. I had turned my first love and hobby into a career – photography (www.MGphotography.com if you’re interested) but now I need a hobby to help me unwind and, well, be a hobby. So, here I am at 52 starting a new hobby that takes a lifetime of learning. Better late than never eh?!
I’ve got the basic hand tools, hand power tools, a new Ridgid 3660 TS, 12” Compound Mitre Saw and recently a Craftex 6” Jointer that a good friend gave me – but I’m mostly interested in pursuing this craft with hand tools.
I bought a set of good Japanese Chisels from Lee Valley – but not sure what to do with them. I’ve got a new Veritas Workbench – absolutely beautiful. I realized early that a good bench is necessary for good woodworking so decided to buy one rather than attempt to build one with my limited knowledge. That was a good move.
My first project, an Oak step stool. Never worked with this hard wood before. It’s almost finished and taught me that I need more tools!! Looking through the Lee Valley catalogue just makes me drool. There’s so many things I need RIGHT NOW, but the budget doesn’t allow that. I think I need a good, all around plane. Which also means I need to get a sharpening system (which will help with the chisels I don’t know what to do with too). Which also means I need to build a place to store this stuff. Gee… reminds me of photography. Which reminds me… I need a new lens!
-- Mike Guilbault, Penetanguishene, Ontario