Took a break from working this weekend—cool project at my day job—to go to a series of demos/classes at my ( local? ) Rockler Store in Tukwila, WA. I guess local is in the eyes of the beholder; Its about 50 miles away. I had put a reminder in my cellphone calendar several months ago, but only had it alert me “the day of” not the prior day. Fortunately I’m an early riser. Off I went.
They had two great demos. Turning and Making Raised Panels. I was really interested in the Raised Panel class since that has been the major project in the backlog. The previous attempt I had at raised panel door almost ended in disaster; why I’ve been building a new router table.
The Raised Pane demo didn’t go as smoothly as the instructor wanted. The router bits had been reassembled differently than the standard setup he had expected, so the tenons were off and loose. That however turned out to be great for the rest of us as we got some additional instruction on adjustment and troubleshooting setups. During the demo he gave out some great tips to us novices. [e.g., to test whether your rail and stile set up is correct, a test cut on a test work piece that had the previous rail or stile cut using the other will zero out the profile. Something I didn’t think about before but good to know].
The demo was 80% how-to 20% advertising for products. It must have worked as I think everyone in the class bought at least one item covered after the demo. Then again maybe we were already in a mindset to purchase products but wanted to be sure we were buying the right stuff and get pointers on how to use it as in my case. I got the Freud 3 piece Ogee Raised Panel set (which is on sale) and a few more dust collection items.
Then went back to get the Coping Sled based upon Dave’s (Part Time Sales & Instructor/ Full Time Cabinet Maker) recommendation: “You don’t want to do end cuts without a sled” The he showed a missing finger tip.
I had planned on getting the Woodpecker Coping Sled, but the Rockler one was a good deal and figured at worst it would be a good starter sled.
-- bkseitz, Washington "if everything is going well, you've obviously overlooked something"