Grandson's woodworking

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Project by rustfever posted 01-02-2011 02:10 AM 2103 views 0 times favorited 19 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I had a great Christmas. I spent time in the woodshop with my 9 year old Grandson, Andrew. He lives out-of-state, therefore this shop time has been in the planning for some months.

We spent time over three days, making a total of six pens and a cutting board. And yes, I taught him each step. I painstakingly explained each step, showing him the correct way to do the step, SAFELY. Of course, I would not let him use the table saw, but he used most every other tool required to build these item. The tools I taught him to use were the bandsaw, lathe, belt sander, drum sander, drill press, drill motor, orbital sander, router, clamps, and vise. At no time was he allowed to use any tool without first having a complete expaination of how to use it, SAFELY. I was ALWAYS at his shoulder.

The first day, we nearly completed two pens and started the cutting board. The next day we completed the pens, and worked upon the the cutting board. The third day we made two pens complete, and finished the cutting board. The cutting board was ‘pinned’ with 8 maple dowels, each 3/8” D x 3.25”L

This kid was STU=PEN=DOUS. He never disputed, never lost attention, never complained of the 40 degree temp in the shop. He never wanted to stop, but I forced him to take breaks, when I would explain another step or review again a saftey issue.

When he was done, he went to his two brothers and his father and presented each with a hand made pen. And the cutting board was given to his mother. He also made a pen to give to his teacher. He is keeping two, a thin-line Carob and a Wall-Street III of highly figured Claro Walnut. His older brothers both could not believe their ‘Baby Brother’ could do something that spectactular.

By the way, the woods used were Citrus (Spalted Valencia Orange), Carob, and figured Claro Walnut in the pens. The cutting board was of Rock Maple and Claro Walnut.

When leaving to return home, he asked if he could come this next summer and make more pens, a chess board, and some chess men. When leaving, he had to duck to get out of the door. He must have been at least 8’ tall. His feet were at least three feet off the floor!

I succeeded in doing one very important thing. I gave him the confidence in knowing that “Yes I Can!” And just maybe, I have instilled the beginnings of the love of fine woodworking.

-- Rustfever, Central California

19 comments so far

View Denappy's profile


116 posts in 3710 days

#1 posted 01-02-2011 02:14 AM

What an awesome way to spend time!

-- -=Den

View TheGravedigger's profile


963 posts in 4052 days

#2 posted 01-02-2011 02:15 AM

Outstanding! Anything that gets the kids away from the electronics is a good thing, and nothing is better than woodworking! As you say, a great way to build self-confidence and expose them to a wider world.

-- Robert - Visit my woodworking blog:

View Karson's profile


35126 posts in 4429 days

#3 posted 01-02-2011 03:32 AM

Irv: Isee he didn’t have his safety glasses on when working on the lathe.

You’ll need to reinforce that next time.

Great job on the training. I hope to have a few of those times coming up.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3802 days

#4 posted 01-02-2011 03:35 AM

It does not get any better than this. A special time for the both of you. Thanks for sharing.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View juniorjock's profile


1930 posts in 3794 days

#5 posted 01-02-2011 03:41 AM

Fantastic….... did you see the look on his face? Priceless.
- JJ

View Napaman's profile


5526 posts in 4105 days

#6 posted 01-02-2011 03:52 AM

very cool…that is some super nice work!!! careful with the long sleeves on the lathe…

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View Cheyenne's profile


110 posts in 2895 days

#7 posted 01-02-2011 04:05 AM

What a great story! I have a 4 month old so it’ll be a while but I’m looking forward to many of those father/son moments like you just had with your grandson. He may not realize it yet but he’ll be thankful for the introduction to woodworking and creativity at such a young age. My grandfather passed away when I was 10 but I have many fond memories of working with him in his shop. Enjoy your upcoming summer visit!

-- Cheyenne - Nashville,TN

View NormG's profile


6156 posts in 3032 days

#8 posted 01-02-2011 04:10 AM

Great way to spend the little you had. Well, he was planning to return, so he must have been impressed. I hope this continues

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View a1Jim's profile


117127 posts in 3605 days

#9 posted 01-02-2011 04:14 AM

I’m so envious my grand children live to far away to visit with. Enjoy every second before he grows up and is off doing his own thing.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Hallmark's profile


432 posts in 3135 days

#10 posted 01-02-2011 04:37 AM

Quality time, effort and outcome. Very well done by all.

-- Style is simple, but not my execution of it.

View rustfever's profile


752 posts in 3338 days

#11 posted 01-02-2011 04:55 AM

All pics were posed. When he has his full-face shield, dust mask, and hearing protection, he looks to be an alien. So those items came off for all of the pic’s.

-- Rustfever, Central California

View terrilynne's profile


836 posts in 2922 days

#12 posted 01-02-2011 04:58 AM

You have more than a grandson there, you have a buddy!

-- Terri, Rocky Mountain High Colorado!

View TreeBones's profile


1827 posts in 4052 days

#13 posted 01-02-2011 07:09 AM

Cant ask for any better. Make me proud.

-- Ron, Twain Harte, Ca. Portable on site Sawmill Service

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3143 days

#14 posted 01-02-2011 02:51 PM

thank´s for sharing your precius moment with us Rustfever :-)
nothing is better than to share some great moments with children doing something we love

Happy New-year

Ps. remember to build a higher door before he return

View helluvawreck's profile


31417 posts in 2895 days

#15 posted 01-02-2011 03:07 PM

Rustfever, I love to hear of stories where the older generation teaches the younger generation how to do things with their hands. This is a wonderful story and I can only imagine how proud you are of your grandson and how proud that he must be of his accomplishments. Congratulations.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

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