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Forum topic by CantBurn posted 06-14-2012 05:14 AM 1964 views 0 times favorited 21 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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69 posts in 2545 days

06-14-2012 05:14 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question tip resource

So we have all seen the sites that tout the most plans, the cheapest. The question I pose is this, which is it? Or, without saying it depends on what I’m looking for. Just an overall opinion of the “best” is fine. Thanks.

-- Chris-Woodstock, Illinois

21 replies so far

View pintodeluxe's profile


5328 posts in 2532 days

#1 posted 06-14-2012 05:55 AM

I usually like Fine Woodworking plans, and have ordered from them before.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3027 days

#2 posted 06-14-2012 05:56 AM

I never use plans…I just use my own imagination and mind to figure out what I am building. For me personally, using plans would seem to make the process too mechanical.

View CantBurn's profile


69 posts in 2545 days

#3 posted 06-14-2012 08:18 AM

Thanks so far.

Pint-I will check those out.

Greg-I know what you mean. A. I’m not that imaginative and B. I like plans especially when it comes to some measurements. I’m usually a terrible gauge of heights that are good. And obviously, once I cut for height, I can’t add more wood if it needs to be higher.

-- Chris-Woodstock, Illinois

View chrisstef's profile


16650 posts in 2725 days

#4 posted 06-14-2012 12:39 PM

Chris – Im also a bad judge of heights and proportions so ive found that when im about to build, lets say, a coffee table, ill check out a retailer online and grab their measurements as a base line for proportions. Ive also been adopting the “sneak up on it” approach which has been working pretty well for me. I cut everythign just a little bit bigger than ill need it and usually plane away the materials until i get a nice good fit. I call it Ninja woodworking, those guys are sneaky.

-- Something, something, something.

View Gene Howe's profile

Gene Howe

9266 posts in 3147 days

#5 posted 06-14-2012 01:11 PM

Wood magazine has some decent plans on their site.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

View Ted's profile


2808 posts in 1930 days

#6 posted 06-14-2012 01:22 PM

I like plans as a rough guide to help me avoid simple oversights, make materials lists, and to get new ideas. I don’t follow the plans but I like having them for reference. has quite a collection of free plans gathered from around the internet.

-- The first cordless tool was a stick. The first power tool was a rock.

View DamnYankee's profile


3301 posts in 2281 days

#7 posted 06-14-2012 01:24 PM

What Ted said.

-- Shameless - Winner of two Stumpy Nubs Awards

View DamnYankee's profile


3301 posts in 2281 days

#8 posted 06-14-2012 01:25 PM

Even when I’ve set out to make by a plan I’ve ended up modifying it.

-- Shameless - Winner of two Stumpy Nubs Awards

View CantBurn's profile


69 posts in 2545 days

#9 posted 06-14-2012 02:17 PM

All good tips, its nice to see I’m not the only one who can find some use of plans. I figure that until I become Norm, it’s nice to have them as a safety net. Thanks for the link Ted.

-- Chris-Woodstock, Illinois

View lumberjoe's profile


2893 posts in 1967 days

#10 posted 06-14-2012 02:30 PM

A great tip for newbies someone here told me once; build SOMETHING from super simple and detailed plans. Even if you don’t like it. You will learn a lot about how to put things together properly, planning your cuts to minimize waste, and some neat “tricks” that after you do you will say “why the $%^& didn’t I think of that before!


View helluvawreck's profile


27208 posts in 2585 days

#11 posted 06-14-2012 02:40 PM

It’s nice to have plans but to be honest most of the things that I have built have been done from pictures and then even modified for my own needs. There are plenty of pictures on the internet. A while back I did use a plan for a full size corner cabinet to make a matching pair of built in corner cabinets for our living room. However, the plan was still modified. The plans were good quality, however, and came from Wood Magazine.


-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View a1Jim's profile


115927 posts in 3296 days

#12 posted 06-14-2012 03:06 PM

I find many of the plans my students bring me are flawed but there is on place that I’ve found that have very accurate and useful projects “Woodsmith”

-- Custom furniture

View bhack's profile


349 posts in 3439 days

#13 posted 06-14-2012 03:08 PM

I don’t think there is a best site. It really depends on what you are looking far.,, many of the magazines web site have plans tab. I like using plans because I am designed challenged so I like plans.

-- Bill - If I knew GRANDKIDS were so much fun I would have had them first.

View chrisstef's profile


16650 posts in 2725 days

#14 posted 06-14-2012 07:51 PM

anywhere but “Ted’s Woodworking” ... Ted’s a hack.

-- Something, something, something.

View Remedyman's profile


47 posts in 1916 days

#15 posted 06-14-2012 08:19 PM

Chrisstef, you do realize now I have to go look at Ted’s woodworking just to check it out. Shame on you and your negative advertising.

Maybe I will respond with what I find there.

-- As long as our customers are happy, we have done a good job. Even if we are our own customer.

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