Beginnings of my new shop. #1: First blog ever

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Blog entry by oksawdust posted 02-05-2011 06:42 AM 687 reads 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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Man. First time I have ever posted a blog. Anyway, I joined LumberJocks about 1 month ago, but due to computer issues and work I haven’t had lots of time to participate yet. Here’s the story of my journey so far. It all started when my wife became pregnant with our first child and we realized we needed to redo the room that was going to become her nursery. I bought my first miter saw, a really cheap Delta 10” ShopMaster, and then a Ridgid worm drive saw. I slowly began to acquire a tiny collection of used/gifted tools; 2 old skil routers, a small router table, some used hand saws, etc. All the while dreaming of the day I finally got to bring home what seemed to me to be the essential tool to begin my hobby/side job of woodworking – a table saw. Well things change and life sometimes has different ideas about how you should spend your free time. So for the last 6 years I have juggled a full time job, marriage with 3 children (4, 2, and 1), helping out so my wife could earn her second master’s degree and slowly remodeling our 55 year old house. All the while slowly creeping my way from rough carpentry and mild trim work to full blown woodworking. I began to subscribe to magazines: ShopNotes, Woodsmith, Workbench. I checked out websites: Lumberjocks, The Wood Whisperer, Charles Neil. Basically it was love from afar. The little free time I had at night spent just soaking up any and everything related to woodworking. I sat many nights on the couch feeding a baby while reading a wood magazine that was balanced on my knee. I read hundreds of reviews on every possible tool. I began saving money in an empty water jug in the garage, just pocket change and any I found while doing the laundry so that I could have a visual reminder of my goal. I was determined to make sure I bought the best tool I could afford and wanted. I used my slowly growing collection of tools to make some simple things: a cedar firewood box and an oak half lap picture frame for my parents as xmas gifts. I remodeled our bathroom and the room my 2 boys share. I built some shelves and a workbench in the garage. Basically anything I could plan and build on a small budget. This past fall all my waiting and saving started to pay off. Woodcraft ran a sale on Freud 3HP routers for $199, Home Depot had the Ridgid 6” jointer on sale for $260 and MLCS had a special on a router table, stand and aluminum plate package. Now we’re talking. I also made the short drive to Springfield, MO to check out the Grizzly showroom – WOW! I picked up the PC biscuit joiner for $155. And while I was there I got to experience hands on all of Grizzlies tools – very nice. Finallly, about 6 weeks ago I ran across the Ridgid router combo on sale at HD for $159. After 3 weeks of debating I finally talked myself into getting a HD card to take advantage of the 6 month no interest deal and I bought the router combo and the Ridgid planer (just to get the sale to the $300 cap for no interest). Well, it turns out the router set was actually $129 and I got $25 dollars off my first card purchase. $100 router combo – Awesome! Now all I need is my little yearly check from the uncle who never calls or writes unless he wants my money and I am headed back to Springfield to make a rather charitable donation to Mr. Balolia’s organization.
My first big projects planned are some new dressers for the boys and some kind of table for my daughter to play with her dollhouse, tinkerbells and ponies on. Thanks for reading. Sorry for rambling, but 6 years of waiting makes for lots of excitement.

-- It's not a misplaced hole, I just wanted to use my plug cutter.

2 comments so far

View workerinwood's profile


2716 posts in 2489 days

#1 posted 02-05-2011 03:50 PM

Time to get started – make saw dust!! Have fun, each project will be a learning experience.

-- Jack, Albuquerque

View CoolDavion's profile


419 posts in 3246 days

#2 posted 02-05-2011 04:30 PM

Sounds like a good start on the tools.

You will probably find more there are more tools that you want, but let the project dictate what what you need to get.

-- Do or do not, there is no try!

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