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Forum topic by jimswoodshop posted 1466 days ago 1983 views 0 times favorited 73 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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jimswoodshop

19 posts in 1519 days


1466 days ago

I have a nice well equiped shop that i have built up over the last 15 years. the tools are all professional size and quailty. I feel this is the shop I will never out grow or have to replace for the rest of my life or the next 50 years whichever comes first. I have a few friends that ask to borrow the shop from time to time. They are good well intended people that have basic knowledge of tool usage and woodworking skills. They try and respect the tools in the shop but they are rough on them and dont understand maintence care and proper use. I want to be the good friend and share what I have. I have tried working with them and showed then how to cut joint and process the rough lumber and talked with them about wiping down the tools after any moisture has been on the metals and othe tips to keep these tools working in top shape for years to come. My question to you is how do you handle this situation in your shop. Thanks Jim

-- Will work for Wood


73 replies so far

View miles125's profile

miles125

2179 posts in 2608 days


#1 posted 1466 days ago

As therapy go out in your shop and set sweating glasses of ice water on all your equipment and just leave it. You’d be surprised how tough the stuff is and how it’s rather silly to worry over actually causing it any meaningful harm. Friends…now those are different.

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

3350 posts in 2563 days


#2 posted 1466 days ago

Ain’t gonna happen in my shop.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

View tyskkvinna's profile

tyskkvinna

1308 posts in 1589 days


#3 posted 1466 days ago

I know most LJ’ers are against sharing tools. It’s extremely reasonable of them to do so, as well.

Part of my job, is sharing tools. I run the machine shop at our sci/tech centre and the equipment is available to people to use. Part of my rule for using any of it is “If you wish to use my tools, you will use them as I tell you to”. you are allowed to use the tools when I am present, or when I have given you explicit permission to use a tool at any time. You do not get to jump right into all of the tools, no matter what experience you claim to have prior. Every machine has quirks, and I want to make sure you know all of them for a machine before you use them.

Granted, it’s a bit different when it’s friends coming in expecting to use your stuff. Though I do encounter an awful lot of friends who feel it’s silly that I impose the same rules on them. Rules are rules, everybody gets to suffer equally in my shop.

-- Lis - Michigan - http://www.missmooseart.com - https://www.etsy.com/people/lisbokt

View docholladay's profile

docholladay

1286 posts in 1662 days


#4 posted 1466 days ago

I look at it this way, you are generous to allow these friends the use of your shop. You have spent a lot of time and money in machinery and setup of the shop. I have two sons that like to come into my shop and build things from scraps. I have given them some of their own tools to work with, but they do occasionally need to use the machines and other tools. I only allow this, when I am there to supervise and I expect them to treat the tool the same way that I would. If they wish to be allowed to use the tools, then these are the rules to live by. If they aren’t willing follow those rules, then they don’t get to use the tools. I would suggest the same approach. Anyone that will not respect you enough to be careful with these “expensive” tools that you have invested in, doesn’t deserve the right to have access. It is good of you to be willing to share and help others. There is a responsibility on their part to be allowed that privilege.

-- Hey, woodworking ain't brain surgery. Just do something and keep trying till you get it. Doc

View Milo's profile

Milo

849 posts in 1922 days


#5 posted 1466 days ago

Noone (I think) has mention LIABILITY in this thread yet. NOONE uses tool in my shop except, primarily for tihs very reason. Someone loses a finger, your screwed.

Sorry for the bad language.

Just plop down that Liabilty issue down in front of your friends and make a momument of it. Let no amount of “ah, we’re friends, I’d never do that to ya” sway your thinking.

It’s an easy, and very safe, “out” of letting people use your tools.

-- Beer, Beer, Thank God for Beer. It's my way of keeping my mind fresh and clear...

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

15667 posts in 2821 days


#6 posted 1466 days ago

If you want a good excuse to say “no”, Milo’s option is perfect. Other than that, the only choice I see is to continue doing what you are doing….. instruct them in the proper use and care of the tools, and grit your teeth when they mess up.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View vicrider's profile

vicrider

178 posts in 1501 days


#7 posted 1466 days ago

In my experience, the liability issue is top priority. I will let friends borrow screwdrivers and wrenches, but when it comes to the finger-eating machines, no way. I wouldn’t want to lose what little I have just to do someone a favor. Of course, I have been known to blow a day or two or more doing it for them.

I have found that if you address the issue up front and with explanations, real friends won’t be offended.

vicrider

-- vicrider

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2697 posts in 1889 days


#8 posted 1466 days ago

In a perfect world, people would actually respect the property of others. Unfornunately we don’t live in a perfect world. I have replaced too many tools over the years that I loaned to “friends” because they either never returned them or desroyed them. I still will loan my shop or tools to a select few, but as time goes on, I am very reluctant to do so.

In my production shop, I have always had to “share” with others. Of course, they work for me. I am amazed how little most of them care about keeping up with, or taking care of my tools. I can’t buy really good hand tools there because of that.

I built my home shop to get away from that. It is nice to always be able to find what I need—when I need it.
I didn’t start out so cynical, but being abused has a way of messing with your attitude.

-- She thought I hung the moon--now she just thinks I did it wrong

View Gregn's profile

Gregn

1642 posts in 1586 days


#9 posted 1466 days ago

Lets see you said you have a nice shop, or was it you had a nice shop. With the exception of kids I don’t allow the use of my shop. With kids I’m teaching them something and their time is limited at that. As for friends I don’t loan out my shop. To one or two I may borrow out a tool but thats a different subject. The shop is my domain and there I rule the world. I invite who I want into my shop to visit, and who I don’t want in my shop.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

14612 posts in 2279 days


#10 posted 1466 days ago

I have to agree with Miles125, the stuff is tough. I would take it on a case by case basis. I would accomodate “good” friends, but not those who are fair weather friends.

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View miles125's profile

miles125

2179 posts in 2608 days


#11 posted 1466 days ago

I can’t imagine anyone on their death bed saying “I wish i’d been more persnickety about keeping my fleeting stuff in perfect order and insisted more that my friends not screw it up”. I’m just saying….

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

3659 posts in 2266 days


#12 posted 1466 days ago

NOBODY borrows my tools or uses my shop. I’ll offer to help them do the job (so I am using my own tools) or just do it for them.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View Sawdust2's profile

Sawdust2

1467 posts in 2690 days


#13 posted 1466 days ago

I have a group that comes to my house. They are all experienced. They can use any tool.
I have a friend with an even better shop and when I go there I can use any tool.
Something breaks we all get in on the fix.
I have never had a power tool wear out because I let a friend use it.
I do not, as a general rule, let a power tool leave the shop.
But, my friends take care, are careful, and it is good to have someone back you up every now and then.

Works for us.

Lee

-- No piece is cut too short. It was meant for a smaller project.

View christopheralan's profile

christopheralan

1105 posts in 2323 days


#14 posted 1466 days ago

My shop, my tools. Period. I hate to be a back-side about it, but everyone knows the deal. My shop helps me make money, and I can’t afford to be without a tool due to someone making a mistake. There is also a liability in having other in my shop. I can’t pay for their medical bills if something were to happen. My friends and neighbors all know my stance on this subject and they all respect it, due to the fact that the rule applies to everyone. No exceptions.

-- christopheralan http://www.projectwoodworks.com

View BTKS's profile

BTKS

1967 posts in 2067 days


#15 posted 1466 days ago

Just had a buddy see my shop the other day and bring up the topic of working up some boards there. I got a real uneasy feeling and wondered how I was going to handle it if he followed up with actually bringing out some boards.
I think this particular guy will replace anything he damages but it opens the precedent of, “he used the shop, why can’t I.”
Thanks for getting me thinking.
Milo and others, thanks for bringing up LIABILITY. As much as I hate the thought of having insurance companies and lawyers affect how I decide what to do with my tools it is reality. Money talks!
Later, BTKS

-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

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