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Blog entry by Todd A. Clippinger posted 906 days ago 5459 reads 3 times favorited 59 comments Add to Favorites Watch

The Journey

It’s been a lot of work to get to this point. Since taking a beating from the recession, I took all of the work I could get to recover over the last couple of years. Between working projects out of my shop, working with another contractor, and Rita opening a cafe in downtown Billings, there was not any free time to get out any blogs let alone video.

I have been chomping at the bit to get back to sharing with the woodworking community. Sharing the craft with others has become a passion of mine. I have enjoyed an amazing journey in my own growth of woodworking skills, and I love helping others so that they may enjoy that same growth as well. I also find that sharing has sparked a new level of growth in myself. The woodworking journey never ends!

A Peak Behind The Scenes

Another task that took up my time, was setting up the infrastructure for better video. I recognized that I needed to make some changes in the shop to produce higher quality video. This included adding more light fixtures to increase lumens per square foot and to create even lighting. I went from a total of 44 bulbs to 84. Yes, I nearly doubled my light output (and power consumption.)

I set the wiring and switches up for “work mode” and “video mode.” In work mode I only run the same lights that I always have to provide enough light for working on projects. In video mode I turn on the additional lighting to provide brighter, more even coverage for a better video image.

I noticed another problem during some test shoots, the old magnetic ballasts created a lot of hum and buzz. So I changed out the last 10 magnetic ballasts for new electronic units. Not only do the lights run silently now, but the start up is much faster. This was a nice improvement.

It is a good thing to have remodeling skills. I have saved myself a good chunk of change being able to do the work myself but it has been a lot of time and effort.

Third Time Is A Charm

The new lights required a good bit of wiring, and the fixture layout required moving the attic access ladder to a new location. Removing & re-installing the spring loaded attic ladder by myself is something like handling a human size mouse trap. The effort was worthwhile since I found a better location that does not require me to move anything on the floor to drop the ladder. Previously, I had to move my 8” jointer to drop the attic ladder. My shop layout is on plan #3 and so these things happen. I think that I have finally nailed it down this time both on the floor and ceiling layout.

I’m A Mac

Other infrastructure upgrades include a new 27” iMac (freaking sweet!) and editing software. I upgraded from iMovie, which I think is a great program, to Final Cut Pro X. FCPX is waaay more powerful and with that power comes a new level of complexity.

Just like with woodworking, you can read or watch tutorials on the subject all you want, but it’s only by doing will you really understand the craft. I was going to do a shop tour, but it turned into a simple look around the shop with a movie preview theme for fun. It’s short but it was an exercise for me to try out the new capabilities of FCPX.

Stay tuned, there will be more videos coming from the American Craftsman Workshop as I continue supporting the woodworking community!

Your friend in the shop,

Todd A. Clippinger

Share the Love~Share the Knowledge

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com



59 comments so far

View Karson's profile

Karson

34852 posts in 2996 days


#1 posted 906 days ago

Todd: A great looking tour. I love the titles and the movement. Great job on your editing.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8711 posts in 2695 days


#2 posted 906 days ago

Thanks Karson. Now that I have had my introduction to working with FCPX, I will try to focus on getting out some real content other than just some views of the shop.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View gbear's profile

gbear

389 posts in 2695 days


#3 posted 906 days ago

Hey Todd… the shop looks great. I love those lights. I need to do the same thing but keep putting it off.
Maybe now this will be my inspriation. Glad you are staying busy!

-- gbear, Carmichael, CA

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8711 posts in 2695 days


#4 posted 906 days ago

Hey gear, maybe I will motivate you with lumen envy:)

I would like to run all of the lights all of the time. It is so nice and bright with everything on. It makes seeing critical detail easy on the eyes.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View Charles Maxwell's profile

Charles Maxwell

939 posts in 2403 days


#5 posted 906 days ago

Welcome back dude!

-- Max the "night janitor" at www.hardwoodclocks.com

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8711 posts in 2695 days


#6 posted 906 days ago

Thanks Charles! It is so good to be making my way back to sharing. I have missed mingling with everyone at LJ.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View DocSavage45's profile (online now)

DocSavage45

4732 posts in 1438 days


#7 posted 906 days ago

Todd,

It either takes time or money. I am in a similar mode, but right now I have returned to my long time profession to keep us afloat. I too did wiring, w/aproval by inspector. Framing, concrete work, drywall, etc for my shop. My construction skills would be at least a B+ and I am endeavoring to hone my cabinet builder, chair maker skills, As time allows.

Thanks for sharing your journey will look forward to your showmanship and craftsmanship!

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8711 posts in 2695 days


#8 posted 906 days ago

DocSavage45 – You gotta do what you gotta do to stay alive. I am not immune to that principle either.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View john1102's profile

john1102

59 posts in 1264 days


#9 posted 906 days ago

Great video Todd. Those lights in the clips are incredible, awesome craftsmanship. Thanks for sharing all that you do.

John

View DocSavage45's profile (online now)

DocSavage45

4732 posts in 1438 days


#10 posted 906 days ago

:)

Now to tackle my favorite thing, billing insurance companies! Ewwww!

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8711 posts in 2695 days


#11 posted 906 days ago

Doc – Nothing like seeing a man realize his dream of filing and shuffling papers around.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View Bob Kollman's profile

Bob Kollman

1796 posts in 1787 days


#12 posted 906 days ago

Todd, I have noticed your absence. Nice lighting and being older I would keep the video lighting on
all the time!!! I also believe this lay out is really nice, as I looked on your shop the flow is seamless
and is as good as I have seen in any shop.

-- Bob Kenosha Wi.

View Maveric777's profile

Maveric777

2687 posts in 1673 days


#13 posted 906 days ago

Good to see you back Todd…

-- Dan ~ Texarkana, Tx.

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8711 posts in 2695 days


#14 posted 906 days ago

Bob – Your comments are spot-on concerning layout and flow. I am operating in 964sf of space. This may seem like a lot to everyone in a single or two car garage, or in a basement workshop. But as a pro this is a relatively small space. But it is an efficient space due to the layout and discipline with which I operate.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8711 posts in 2695 days


#15 posted 906 days ago

Thanks Maveric!

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

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