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Forum topic by MikeR0916 posted 12-31-2015 07:28 PM 746 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2 posts in 841 days

12-31-2015 07:28 PM

I just wanted to introduce myself and ask a question. I apologize if this isn’t the right place to ask. Anyways, hey everyone! Just joined today and can’t wait to see all the advice and topics on here. Im a 26 year old railroader with two pits and a love for building. I moved about six months ago, and my new place is big enough for a small shop of my own. So the first thing I did was start building a nice stable work bench. I’ve acquired a lot of tools the past couple months making things for other people and things around my new shop. I’ve framed homes for companies and made some furniture back in high school. So I’m a beginner to furniture making. My question is, as a beginner where is a good place to start and keep learning new things and progressing as a wood worker. I’ve been practicing laying out dovetails and cutting them and building small boxes. I was just curious if anyone out there had any advice on learning and becoming a woodworker. Building has always been a passion of mine, and being a decent wood worker is a dream since my first table in high school haha. Sorry for the long paragraph, I tried to keep it short. Happy holidays everyone and thank you in advance for any replies.

7 replies so far

View bbrown's profile


230 posts in 3515 days

#1 posted 01-02-2016 02:40 AM

I’d look into maybe considering a weekend or longer class. Where are you located?

There are some great opportunities out there with excellent instructors. The return on a serious class can take you miles in your education very quickly. I’ve even saved money by taking some classes with Chuck Bender and Mario Rodriguez, by realizing all the tools that I did NOT need to buy!

I think that the info in books and magazines can be overwhelming and even confusing for the beginner. Look up Glen Huey, who also started as a builder. He drifted to making classic reproduction furniture and built quite a business. You are young and have a good base, so you have a world of possibilities open to you. If you are really serious I’d look at the North Bennett Street School or another apprenticeship program. If you are highly motivated and a quick learner, you can do it on your own. It helps a lot to have some accomplished buddies nearby that can help when you need it.

-- Bill Micah 6:8

View mudflap4869's profile


1656 posts in 1422 days

#2 posted 01-02-2016 04:10 AM

Check with your local vo-tech. They generaly have woodworking classes that might lead you in the right direction. And stay tuned in to LJs you will overwhelmed by all the good advice here. Just remember that THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A STUPID QUESTION. We all started out with zero kinowledge of the craft and asked a million questions of those who had experience. A true woodworker will always welcome the opportunity to assist another and answer any question that they can. If they don’t have the answer they can generaly reccomend someone who does.

-- Still trying to master kindling making

View a1Jim's profile


117060 posts in 3540 days

#3 posted 01-02-2016 04:33 AM

Hi there Mike Welcome to Ljs
Sounds like you have you eye on some pretty good classes,you might check out Charles Neil he has in class and online programs,if you’re not familiar with him here’s a link ,check out his furniture the proof is in his work.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View bbrown's profile


230 posts in 3515 days

#4 posted 01-02-2016 11:45 AM

I see that you are from Cleveland. “360 Woodworking” is located nearby. That’s Glen Huey and Chuck Bender’s new educational woodworking endeavor. They have classes for all levels. I’d highly recommend getting into some of those. There are regional clubs as well where you can meet folks who are passionate about woodworking. You are in a good area for that. The Society of Reproduction Furniture Makers has an Ohio River Chapter…..

We are always here for you as well!

-- Bill Micah 6:8

View WoodNSawdust's profile


1417 posts in 1139 days

#5 posted 01-02-2016 02:51 PM

I would suggest selecting a project that you would consider (a little) difficult and try building it. Add whatever tools you need to complete the project and ask questions when necessary. There are plenty of Internet sources of wisdom.

-- "I love it when a plan comes together" John "Hannibal" Smith

View MikeR0916's profile


2 posts in 841 days

#6 posted 01-03-2016 10:23 AM

Guys thank you all for your replies!!! I’m going to look into all of these suggestions and get to some classes. Yes, I am from Cleveland Ohio. I’ll be looking into these recommendations this week on my day off. I’ll be sure to do my research and take the proper steps to become an accomplished wood worker. Thank you all again for your replies and suggestions. I appreciate it very much.

View moke's profile


1154 posts in 2739 days

#7 posted 01-04-2016 07:14 PM

Welcome Mike….this is a great place to ask questions…..the knowledge here has helped me tremendously!!! As for learning, I like to surf you tube….also, I found a wood turners club here and they have a mentor program that has helped me a lot!!!!

-- Mike

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