big projects vs fun one stop shop projects???

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Blog entry by jacob34 posted 04-08-2012 04:16 AM 1037 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I recently, as a father of five and husband, will have found myself with little time in my workshop but the couple times I have I find that I want to do little quick projects. When I do a large project especially with my woodworking as I am amateur at best I plan every detail I can a hundred times and then expect a hundred more that I never planned for, whereas a small one stop shop project as I like to call them is often just spur of the moment and often because well I am pretty sure my tools get upset if they are not used often maybe not but hey I get grumpy if it is long between uses so lets just go with it.

I as most woodworkers do, go in spurts of wanting to be knee deep in a big project as I will be when I start on bookshelf’s for my boys and wife versus wanting to see a done project that day.

Either way I think whether a big project which lets be honest is really a series of little project put together or a rabbit napkin holder that your wife asks for and is done in an hour I always have a fun time just letting the wood talk to me and seeing what comes out.

-- so a bear and a rabbit are sitting on a log

8 comments so far

View Martyroc's profile


2712 posts in 2306 days

#1 posted 04-08-2012 02:59 PM

I hear you Jacob, nice bunny napkin holder, my daughter wants me to make one now.

-- Martin ....always count the number of fingers you have before, and after using the saw.

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

5863 posts in 3194 days

#2 posted 04-08-2012 07:05 PM

Hi Jake:

I always figured that any project you make, small or large, is fun to make, and no matter what the design or pattern is…...I’ve probably made a lot more small ones than big ones….The small ones takes less time (as well know), and you can get through quicker, too…..:). Any time in the shop is fun time, no matter what you’re working on….And with kiddos, you’ll wind up making more smaller ones than larger ones….lol. Unless they hit you up for a toy chest or a blanket chest for the spouse…..You’ll slow down then, bud…..!!! Enjoy….. I see you’ve already put that napkin holder to good use…..I don’t even have one of those…....-)

-- " At my age, happy hour is a crap and a nap".....

View a1Jim's profile


117095 posts in 3577 days

#3 posted 04-08-2012 07:11 PM

Fun and cool project good job.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View jacob34's profile


465 posts in 2264 days

#4 posted 04-08-2012 08:01 PM

Rick I completely agree anytime in the workshop is fun time, it is fun to make something for someone and see it either spawn desires from others or inspire requests for other projects. I was more talking about planning out a project vs. just going into the shop and building something with no real concept of what will be the end result until you start.

-- so a bear and a rabbit are sitting on a log

View stefang's profile


15881 posts in 3334 days

#5 posted 04-08-2012 09:28 PM

I think small projects are fun and a lot easier on the family. Hopefully you will get a lot of time for big complicated and lengthy projects when your kids are grown up and/or you are retired.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View clieb91's profile


3520 posts in 3935 days

#6 posted 04-09-2012 12:08 AM

Jacob, I hear ya. I have a number of projects that are sitting boiling on the burners and overly planned out but those small simple things that can be done by just walking into the shop. My favorite little projects are those that start out as “Daddy could you make a… ” You’ll see a few of these on my project list.
Once your kids have an idea of some of the things you can make they will be coming with a list. The plus side is my daughter loves to join me in the shop and we are working towards her working on her own little projects.

Keep having fun though no matter what the size of the project.


-- Chris L. "Don't Dream it, Be it."- (Purveyors of Portable Fun and Fidgets)

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

5863 posts in 3194 days

#7 posted 04-09-2012 04:01 AM


I know what you mean about planning a project…...Before I build anything like shop furniture or funiture for our house, or something for a customer, I always draw up a set of plans, since I have a degree in Drafting, I like to do it the “old way” with drafting equipment and good design…..but for smaller projects, I just go “by the seat of my britches”.......I enjoy the planning stage as much as the build…...nearly…..!!! A lot of times I just go by a rough sketch with diminisions if it’s not too elabarate…...

-- " At my age, happy hour is a crap and a nap".....

View jacob34's profile


465 posts in 2264 days

#8 posted 04-09-2012 04:36 AM

Rick I haft to be honest a lot of the appeal of my one shop stop projects really lies in getting to know my tools better and allowing me to trying things that I will put into other projects later on. I agree I also love to sit with a pencil and graphing paper plan out a project. As I get better and feel more comfortable with joints and other important aspects of bigger projects I will enjoy the process of seeing a vision become reality.

-- so a bear and a rabbit are sitting on a log

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