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Forum topic by doninvegas posted 04-05-2012 01:09 AM 1483 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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334 posts in 2930 days

04-05-2012 01:09 AM

If you get Woodshop News then you have read this. It’s the blog pot from A. J. Hamler. I thought it would be a good discussion.
“They say memory is the second thing to go when you get older. Can’t recall what the first thing was, which is good, since I obviously don’t miss it.
Those of us riding the aging demographic hump known as the baby boomers are beginning to feel the effects. When you stop to realize that something as trivial as James Bond movies are now half a century old, you know that a lot of the more important things are starting to show a bit of wear and tear.
When it comes to the shop, the two greatest effects of aging for me are that my eyes aren’t as good as they used to be, and I just can’t be on my feet for hour after hour without paying for it later. I’ve taken measures to combat both of these things, however.
Regular eye exams are mandatory for me (as they should be for everyone), and I dutifully update my eyeglass prescriptions. Last fall I was eligible for new frames with my vision insurance, and even though I rarely get new frames “just because I can,” I took advantage of it to have an extra pair of reading glasses just for shop use. My bifocals are fine for most shop work, but if I’m examining a finish, doing fine detail work, or drafting plans and drawings, those dedicated reading glasses really do the trick.
As to being on my feet, I’ve purchased a few of those cushioned floor mats that I’ve put in places where I stand the most for long periods, such as in front of the lathe and assembly bench. Combined with always wearing my most comfortable sneakers (the ones that are so worn that a homeless person would refuse them as a handout), those floor mats help tremendously.
So, I’m curious. I know that a lot of you are also boomers, so what effects of aging are impacting your shop work the most, and how are you dealing with them?”
For me it’s the eyesight and the dexterity and sometimes I just don’t feel like jumping out of bed and running to the shop. Let’s have another cup of coffee.

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

11 replies so far

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2712 days

#1 posted 04-05-2012 02:08 AM

007 was 50 years ago? That can’t be. I’m not that old am I? In answer to your question I too found those HF rubber mats to make life much easier on my back and feet. I buy some every time they go on sale. I just missed a deal on CL where a guy was selling 200 mats for $250.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View zewood's profile


6 posts in 2337 days

#2 posted 04-06-2012 02:43 AM

I’m not a boomer but do wear glasses and know what you mean!!!

View bandit571's profile


20209 posts in 2706 days

#3 posted 04-06-2012 02:50 AM

Reader glasses are a must for me. Floor mats??? I’ve got over an inch of wood shavings all over the floor, nice and soft to walk on. One other item is in the shop nowadays, a “lawn chair”. Hourly breaks in the chair, helps tired old legs.

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View SnowyRiver's profile


51457 posts in 3503 days

#4 posted 04-06-2012 03:12 AM

I use glasses too when I need to read, and of course when doing woodworking. They serve as my safety glasses too. I was near sighted years ago then had lasik eye surgery and now my vision is crystal clear from an arms length out, but I cant read anything :-)

I can still stand on the concrete floor for hours without too much trouble thankfully although I use soft soled running shoes which helps.

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

View willie's profile


534 posts in 2477 days

#5 posted 04-06-2012 03:37 AM

I need the glasses too, just can’t see the up-close stuff. The good shoes help but at the end of the day, I’m whooped!. The hardest part is getting started in the morning. As long as I keep going, it’s not too bad, but if I stop, I’m done. Once my old butt hits the recliner, game over! I also find I’m at the age that I don’t have as hard a time asking for help with something heavy or awkward as I used to. Life is not a competition anymore, I don’t need to prove anything to anybody. I just need to convince myself of that!

-- Every day above ground is a good day!!!

View sandhill's profile


2128 posts in 3946 days

#6 posted 04-06-2012 04:03 AM

I feel your pain… Eyes check, Hips check and now the right elbow.. I will not get a cortisone shot.
Try MBT’s they helped me a real lot.

View DIYaholic's profile


19623 posts in 2697 days

#7 posted 04-07-2012 04:30 AM

What was the question? Please respond in large bold text!!!
Where’s the “Geritol”?
Huh, what was that? Could you please speak up?
I ain’t bending down for ANYTHING worth less than a quarter!!!

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View BigYin's profile


418 posts in 2438 days

#8 posted 04-07-2012 05:13 AM

Ive stopped wearing sneakers and gone back to wearing heavy Boots, both for the support and protection offered and for the insulation from a concrete floor and have placed a length of old conveyer belt in front of the bench to stand on.
I just googled “Baby Boomer” and found i am one. (Born 1946-64)
Thanks guys, as well as reminding me of my bad back,failing eyesight etc you made me feel old.

-- ... Never Apologise For Being Right ...

View Gary's profile


9333 posts in 3455 days

#9 posted 04-07-2012 05:29 AM

Gettin old and hurtin is a real bummer. But, the pain reminds me that I still have on of those things thats hurting!

-- Gary, DeKalb Texas only 4 miles from the mill

View Bill White's profile (online now)

Bill White

4947 posts in 3983 days

#10 posted 04-07-2012 02:16 PM

One of those “picker up” thingys that the guys on the highway crews use to pick up trash from the roadways has been a great addition to my shop. Gets the stuff off high shelves, out of corners behind machines, etc. My old benderover (back) ain’t what it used to be.
It also helps getting the arbor nut out of the TS when I drop it.
My Merrell shoes.
Having a john in the shop.
Its just the little things in life…..............


View jusfine's profile


2422 posts in 2948 days

#11 posted 04-07-2012 04:48 PM

Great questions!

I feel some of the same issues.

One of mine is the ability to purchase the tools that I need, but I am lacking in the ambition to work in the shop as you mention. And when I do, I have a hard time figuring out where I left off.

Right now I have two projects for clients that I just cannot drag myself to the shop to finish.

Not really a lack of interest, just not feeling the desire all the time to build or create something.

Yes I wear glasses in the shop most days, and my plywood floor is covered in 3/4” rubber matting.

-- Randy "You are judged as much by the questions you ask as the answers you give..."

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