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Forum topic by a1Jim posted 08-24-2012 08:15 PM 3431 views 0 times favorited 62 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View a1Jim's profile


117090 posts in 3572 days

08-24-2012 08:15 PM

Topic tags/keywords: resource

I don’t know if there are other members that fight this kind of disorder but I discovered I had this disorder late in life. This disorder makes many things kind of upside down or backwards when reading or doing some projects. When building projects there are days that go perfectly well and other days that everything you do is amiss .
Yesterday I thought I would build a small cabinet to store some of my finishing products in,I’ve build hundreds of cabinets before. This is not a large cabinet only 30” tall and 20” deep by 24” wide . This was to be about a 20 minutes job . Since I was making it for the shop I thought I would try something I hadn’t tried before,just doing a 3/8” rabbit on the top and bottom of the sides and the top and bottom pieces of ply to interlock .This went fairly quick , I ripped the ply to size ,then routered the sides for adjustable self pins,rabbited the edges. I’m now into this project 15 minutes. I’m thinking a little glue shoot some brads into the over lapping joints then I’m ready for a back. I go to put it togehter and find I routered rabbits into the wrong sides of of the bottom, dang!!! ok it’s just a shop cabinet I’ll just glue a couple strips into the wrong rabbits and rabitt the other sides,RIGHT?-wrong I had this cabinet together and apart three times because the sides were unequal in size either in width or length. The last time I took it apart I left it in the shop and called it a day. The next day I did something I normally do checked all the measurements ,checked my routeing and did a dry fit. Still off on side,one more trim and another dry fit and It flew together quickly checked square,good to go. I now only have 4+ hours in making one lowly cabinet.
As a woodworking instructor what would I tell a student went wrong? I think in this case I broke most of the rules. #1 make a simple drawing #2 check your material for defects#3 double check all of your materials measurements(measure twice…) #4 don’t get in a hurry #5 check all of you milling (routing in this case) #6 always dry fit before gluing up your project # 7 use proven methods of joinery #8 Don’t forget the basics.
Can I blame this on dyslexia ? Probably not this time. :) But I truly have to fight this disorder and repair.remake or restart many projects because of it. The one thing it’s taught me is to keep on plugging along
I hope this lesson in humility can help others regardless of your level of experience.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

62 replies so far

View DocSavage45's profile


8549 posts in 2837 days

#1 posted 08-24-2012 08:26 PM

Diagnosis is OLD.DD LOL! Not dyslexia. The other thing I’ve added to this is Charles’ statement “Measure three times, then sneek up on it!” :-)

Old developmental disorder, just thought it up, but accurate, for me ‘cause I’m always forgetting the recent stuff.

Oh maybe you were referring to dementia. :-)

Oh yeah, be patient with you?

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10094 posts in 4047 days

#2 posted 08-24-2012 08:35 PM

Welcome to the Old Age Club!

Nowadays one cannot rely on memory… you have to write everything down… and remember where you wrote it… in the shop one must dry fit, check, & dry fit again… just to be sure… Every move… every cut… must be rehearsed making sure nothing gets in the way of the cut… etc. etc.

Take your TIME!

DO NOT RUSH the job… no matter how SIMPLE you think it is…

Again, welcome to the club! LOL

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:"

View lysdexic's profile


5254 posts in 2617 days

#3 posted 08-24-2012 08:36 PM

A picture helps me keep things striahgt.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - out_of_focus1.618

View Tennessee's profile


2872 posts in 2509 days

#4 posted 08-24-2012 08:37 PM

This kind of stuff happens to me. It is why I have four Starrett rulers lying around the shop, since I always misplace tools in a shop a little bigger than a one car garage. I bought a cheap HVLP spray gun today in Lowes, then got home and remembered that I had one in storage I’d never used. Duh…
We all have bad days, and as we get older, it is good to remember that our minds will not be as sharp, it becomes harder to take the cap off a new bottle of mountain dew, (no, they didn’t screw them on harder…), and sometimes, you just have to walk away and rest a while, let your mind catch up.

Today I was working on a really hard guitar, and had it hanging in my shop as the wipe on grain enhancer dried prior to shooting on the lacquer. Even though I know this position in my shop, all the guitars hang there sooner or later, sure as God made little green apples I managed to knock it off its hanger, and only pure luck let me catch it as it nicked one of my bench vices on the way down. Little sanding, another coat of grain enhancer, off we go again. But I left the shop, as I knew I was getting tired and more mistakes would certainly happen if I pushed forward.
Man’s just got to know his limitations…

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

5948 posts in 3347 days

#5 posted 08-24-2012 08:37 PM

I do stuff like that on every project!
But I’m old so I can get away with it!

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View a1Jim's profile


117090 posts in 3572 days

#6 posted 08-24-2012 08:53 PM

Thanks for your input guys very helpful,now I know I’m not the only guy pulling these kind of stunts.

Good save on the guitar Paul

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

20472 posts in 3100 days

#7 posted 08-24-2012 09:03 PM

That is when it is time to grab a beer and suspend work for that day and attack it tomorrow. I do it a lot. It must be a wood worker’s thing, but that makes you very good at recovery!!

Jim, you’re one of US!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.......................Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View SteveL's profile


167 posts in 3763 days

#8 posted 08-24-2012 09:07 PM

Yeah, not only am I getting older, I am lysdexic too. Too easily I’ll see a dimension like 32” and measure out 23”. Not only that, the second law of thermodynamics says that entropy always increases. Another name for entropy is disorder, and in my shop, disorder is always greater toward the end of a project. This makes it more likely that I’ll pick up the wrong part to cut or use a tool thinking it’s set for one cut, but it was actually set for another. I always buy enough stock to make 5 legs for a 4 leg table, and have more than one table top that was cut the wrong size just waiting for me to make another set of legs with shorter aprons.

Remember that for old woodworkers, there’s only a plane shaving or two between “dimension” and “dementia”!

-- SteveL

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 2482 days

#9 posted 08-24-2012 09:12 PM

Jim, I too am getting a bit long in the tooth.

I’ve learned that between your #4 and #5 rules I have to add #4a: lay everything together as well as possible and MARK the sides to be cut so if you see the marks it means you can safely cut!

I have a nice shop cabinet I made that is just beautiful, made from AC plywood.. too bad all the “A” sides are on the inside and all the “C” sides are visible!

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View b2rtch's profile


4861 posts in 3043 days

#10 posted 08-24-2012 09:26 PM

When I do something like that I do not blame it on old age ( even if I am old ) but on little too much wine.
Jim do like me: blame the wine.

-- Bert

View teejk's profile


1215 posts in 2679 days

#11 posted 08-24-2012 09:36 PM

or do like me and not mention it to anybody…

View stefang's profile


15881 posts in 3329 days

#12 posted 08-24-2012 09:49 PM

You don’t have to be dyslexic to make those kind of mistakes Jim. We all do wrong stuff like you described. I think we are sometimes just not paying enough attention to the task at hand. It happens to everyone (especially me).

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Richard's profile


400 posts in 2686 days

#13 posted 08-24-2012 09:52 PM

I have found that when I am working from a plan or sketch I have to leave notes to myself as if I was writing for a dimwitted stranger. Even then I find myself challenging my own thought process, because I cannot remember how I arrived at that conclusion.

Don’t feel bad about it Jim, I think we have all had days when everything we touch seems to go sideways.

-- "It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3303 days

#14 posted 08-24-2012 10:05 PM

That happens to me quite frequently since my brain bypass surgery.

View b2rtch's profile


4861 posts in 3043 days

#15 posted 08-24-2012 10:08 PM

“That happens to me quite frequently since my brain bypass surgery.”

I love it.

-- Bert

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