The Christmas paper is all gone and the tree is down and stowed. Now is the New Year and it is time to replace talk the talk with walk the walk. I have been slowly expanding my tool collection in the last couple years and this Christmas rounded out my collection for a half dozen projects I have been wanting to try. First on the list is a bar that I have drawn up plans for from a set I saw online. While I decided curves and bending wood was out of my class, I plan some ornate routing to make it far more than the basic bar plan I found.
One of my favorite “gifts” is a really nice set of router bits that I spent a few ours with already just experimenting to see what I could do and how detailed I might be able to get. Fortunately I have a fair amount of scrap wood lying about so I can practice on that instead of the expensive wood I have for my projects. I was able to but a good amount of very nice dried cherry from a local Amish sawmill at a good price and that is what I am using to build the bar.
Aside from the relatively impressive set of router bits (as opposed to the small set of 10 I had previously), my favorite tool is a small palm size finish nailer I am hoping will make must faster and shorter work of the detailing on a lot of projects. Hopefully it will reduce both the time and error of using the taps I have relied on in the past. Just the number of quick “repairs” to other things around the house has made that a worthwhile investment.
The big tool I had been waiting on was a combination Jointer-Planer. It is far outside my needs and skills really, but when my father in law mentioned he was going to sell it as age had caught up with him and he just did not plan to spend his time in the wood shop any more I could not resist. It is an FS30 Smart 12 Inch Jointer Planer the best part is it comes with an excellent instructor a phone call away. I have done a few test cuts on it and am really excited about what I have been able to do with it. Really this tool is what has made my dream of actual wood working possible.
The old planer and jointer machine I had aside from taking up too much room in my garage workshop simple do not cut nearly as well as this one. By the time I replace the knives I would have too much invested in too old and not high enough quality tools so this was a big step up for me. Hopefully the new tools will enable me to do some of the projects I have been dreaming about in the New Year.