New Year's Woodworking Resolutions

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Forum topic by poopiekat posted 01-01-2011 09:40 PM 1227 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4188 posts in 3152 days

01-01-2011 09:40 PM

Since nobody has gotten the ball rolling yet, I’ll start it: What resolutions have you mulled over, and perhaps adopted as a change in your woodworking habits for this new year?
I’ve restricted myself to two: 1.) I am not buying any more sandpaper coarser than 320 grit. Well, except for a V-sander project which is on the books for the near-future. I resolved to never again allow mistakes to pass, with the intention of sanding the crap out of them later. This is the attitude that prevents me from really paying attention to the accuracy of my joints, using my ROSs as a crutch. I am now confident in my surface planing skills with hand tools and scrapers. No sanding for the purpose of sizing or surface prep. Finer grits reserved for light scuffing between coats, and 1000+ grits for sharpening cutting edges only. 2.) Putting my tools away, taking one tool out at a time, and putting it back wherever it is stored before reaching for another one. It’s kind of counter-intuitive, putting a tool away when you KNOW you’re going to use it again in ten minutes. But I’ll accumulate thirty different things laid out on every horizontal surface as I work, and then suddenly I cannot find the tool I need even if it is in plain view. Other than that, it will be biz as usual in the poopiekat workshop. I also think I may unblock a few people, depending on their potential to bite me in the butt for having done so, and/or if I notice they’ve unblocked me. Call it ’Glasnost.’ Happy New Year, one and all!

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

22 replies so far

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 2492 days

#1 posted 01-02-2011 12:00 AM

I’m not into making formal resolutions but I have a few objectives for the new year.

- The first is to learn to say “no” on projects I really don’t want to do.

- The second is to learn how to effectively use the Ringmaster I bought a few years ago.

- The third, like you, is to keep my tools better organized.

- Finally, I will not buy any tool that I don’t have an explicit place for in my shop.

I used to brag that, in my shop, there was a place for everything and everything was (usually) in it’s place. Now my everything has been growing and my place for everything has not. Actually, everything still has its place but sometimes it is the end of the workbench or the floor in the corner (not acceptable). I will create acceptable places for everything and not buy another tool unless I have an explicit plan regarding the place for it.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View ellen35's profile


2719 posts in 2850 days

#2 posted 01-02-2011 12:14 AM

I will not keep any scraps smaller than a splinter any more… I swear!
Like Rich, I hope to keep my shop neater and cleaner this year.

-- "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good." Voltaire

View Gregn's profile


1642 posts in 2401 days

#3 posted 01-02-2011 12:17 AM

Good Luck with #2 putting tools back promptly and using only one at a time. I struggle with that one myself.
As for myself it has been agreed that our tax returns will go this year to getting my shop wired by spring. So that I can get my tools out of storage and start using them again. So most of my time will be spent on shop projects this year. With that being said, I have had plenty of time to research and explore new methods of work to improve on my skills and talents. 1.I’ve always wanted to do inlay work so in between shop projects this will be one of the skills I intend to learn to do. 2. Is to work on using different types of joinery instead of the simple common joints. 3.Is to start using hand tools more and to improve my hand tool skills.
With Mom’s passing back in October this will keep me busy without having to drop things to be with her in her time of need, as I had been doing the last three years. So Its going to be almost like starting over with new beginnings for me this year. Happy New Year

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

View thiel's profile


374 posts in 2710 days

#4 posted 01-02-2011 02:31 AM

I’m going to learn how to plane and scrape. :-)

-- Laziness minus Apathy equals Efficiency

View doninvegas's profile


334 posts in 2325 days

#5 posted 01-02-2011 02:53 AM

Mine is to SLOW DOWN. I get way too impatient when I’m waiting for glue or finish to dry.
I also want to be less cocky. I make something the first time and think I can whip them out without thinking anymore. Doesn’t work that way.

-- "Courage is being scared to death -- but saddling up anyway."

View CoolDavion's profile


419 posts in 3242 days

#6 posted 01-02-2011 02:54 AM

- get organized (the house and garage) this will hopefully give me some more room ( and a couple projects)
- sharpen and use my planes and chisels

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

View greg48's profile


588 posts in 2175 days

#7 posted 01-02-2011 03:02 AM

Unlike Rich, I hope never to say no to a project, especially for the grand daughter. Secondly, I hope to remain vigilant at retaining all my digits.

-- Greg, No. Cal. - "Gaudete in Domino Semper"

View ChrisCarr's profile


196 posts in 2316 days

#8 posted 01-02-2011 05:12 AM

1. Use less crappy wood (pine , spruce, even poplar) and work more with hardwoods.

2. Only use sharp blades/knives. I won’t try to speed by projects using dulled equipment just to save a few bucks.

View a1Jim's profile


115167 posts in 2995 days

#9 posted 01-02-2011 05:17 AM

I’m resolved not to have any new years resolutions . :))

-- Custom furniture

View GaryL's profile


1094 posts in 2248 days

#10 posted 01-02-2011 05:35 AM

I’m determined to get more shop cabinetry built and get rid of some of the hogpog mix of storage that I’ve colllected over the years.

-- Gary; Marysville, MI...Involve your children in your projects as much as possible, the return is priceless.

View Don's profile


514 posts in 2491 days

#11 posted 01-02-2011 06:39 AM

The idea of making resolutions just because a digit changed on the calendar always seemed kind of silly to me. If I’m serious about changing the way I do something, then I’ll change it. I won’t wait for some arbitrary date to arrive.

-- Don - I wood work if I could. Redmond WA.

View terrilynne's profile


834 posts in 2311 days

#12 posted 01-02-2011 06:53 AM

I try not to make promises I can’t keep, even to myself.

-- Terri, Rocky Mountain High Colorado!

View poopiekat's profile


4188 posts in 3152 days

#13 posted 01-02-2011 05:11 PM

As woodworkers we all have ideas for change floating around in our heads, bad habits we know we have to break, procedures and processes that need attention, and personal objectives we’ll never meet if we continue doing what we do. The way the holidays fell on the calendar this year gave many of us an extra day or two, which is a great time to gain some introspective soul-searching. It appears some of us are happy where we are, others yearning for a higher level of self-fulfillment, and others yet indifferent to the notion of assessing who they are and what they do. Resolutions are made for various reasons, some for approaching a loftier goal, others just for the emotional feel-good benefit from it.
ps a1Jim, alas you have made a resolution after all! Thx for proving my tagline, wink, wink!

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

View Bluepine38's profile


3336 posts in 2503 days

#14 posted 01-02-2011 05:18 PM

Like Greg48 I can not say no to a grandchild, great grandchildren are even harder to say no to. Since I
am getting slower, I was wondering if they make his avatar in a powered version so I could bend nails
twice as fast LOL. I resolve to either build a new workshop, or insulate the present one better, I can
not work easily when the thermometer is below 50 degrees.

-- As ever, Gus-the 77 yr young apprentice carpenter

View therookie's profile


887 posts in 2245 days

#15 posted 01-02-2011 05:25 PM

I am promising to get my first 5 commissions this year and get the ball rolling for my woodworking business and hopefully make a dent in the cost of the vehicle I want.


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