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Is something wrong with me?

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Forum topic by Micahm posted 239 days ago 812 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Micahm

132 posts in 337 days


239 days ago

I am fairly new to woodworking but I noticed I go to websites like Woodcraft or Lee Valley or other sites, I am drooling over random tools that I have no use for a the moment and current projects. I see things like random marking gauges, spokeshaves, handplanes and even power tools and I am like “Ooo awww I want that, not sure what I would use it for, but I would like to have that…” The odd thing is, I just turned 21 and a few years ago I would do the same over new games and stuff that would come out, but now when I even think about games or playing games I am like ehh not really. Now days I find walking down the lumber isle at Lowes more exciting than walking down the entertainment and electronic isles at Wal-Mart. I use to spend a lot of time on the computer on Facebook and playing games, now my most visited pages are Well Facebook still is top since I check it daily to keep up with friends and check out the woodworking, blacksmithing, and artifact hunting group pages I am on, but my 2nd most visited is Lumberjocks, then the rest are literally sites to look up tools and other items. (Amazon, Ebay, Woodcraft, Acme Tool, Lowes, then Home Depot). I just think it is crazy how fast once I started the hobby and interest in woodworking that it has changed me in so many ways. I use to like in games where I was in control and could make decisions and use my imagination. Now I found out I can do the same with woodworking and it is so much more rewarding! You have nothing to show for how much time you spend on a game, but when you do woodworking, the more time you spend the more you have to show for it and more to be proud of. You make stuff, you use your imagination, you build skills that you can use for life, you can help people when they need something, you can make gifts, and you can make things for your two sweet nieces that most your wood working is centered around haha. If someone looked into my work area they would probably wonder why I have a small wooden desk, small wooden bench, and plans and lumber for a small seesaw which I haven’t gotten to yet. I just love woodworking and everything about it. I like power tools and the hand tools. I like the simple stuff and the more advanced. The rustic, traditional, and modern types. I just don’t know why I want my hands on every tool I see haha. I am like the cookie monster, but with tools! Anyone else have this problem?

-- The things I make may be for others, but how I make them is for me. - Tony Konovaloff


14 replies so far

View Marty Backe's profile

Marty Backe

152 posts in 1377 days


#1 posted 239 days ago

Yes, I think we all have this problem. It’s actually nice that you’ve been infected at such a young age. I think most people get the bug when they’ve bought their first house, and need to start fixing it up. You’ll be that much ahead by the time you get your first house.

Enjoy the process, and never get tired of new tools and techniques.

View jordanp's profile

jordanp

1033 posts in 545 days


#2 posted 239 days ago

Seems you are talking about me, I just started about a decade later.

Enjoy the early start I envy you for that.

Keep it up

-- J. Palmer Woodworks - Rockwall TX -I woke up this morning thinking “man, I really hope someone posted some soul scarring sh*t on LJs today.” -- - Billy

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

13378 posts in 943 days


#3 posted 239 days ago

I wish I had started when I was your age. I might have been good at it by now.

Yes I want all of the tools.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it. - It's not ability that we often lack, but the patience to use our ability

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BTimmons

2078 posts in 1090 days


#4 posted 238 days ago

No, nothing’s wrong with you. I’d say there’s a lot right with you. The difference between you and the vast majority of guys your age is that you’re getting your priorities straight before everyone else. As you noted, leveling up in a game or scoring big points pales in comparison to having crafted something tangible.

Consider yourself lucky that you caught the bug at a younger age. I’m 34 with a wife and an almost 4 year old kid. I used to be an avid PC gamer. At one point you’d find me playing Star Wars Battlefront online, almost always playing a sniper. I got to be such a ridiculously good shot that I’d regularly have opposing players accuse me of cheating with aimbot hacks. No, I was just that good. I could go all day if real life didn’t interfere.

But I gave up gaming altogether before my daughter was born, because I knew that I could either be a gamer or a father, so I opted for the latter. The extent of my gaming is now an occasional chess match on my phone. I only got serious about this in the last few years. Disposable income for new (or new-to-me) tools is pretty much non-existent most of the time.

Here’s my advice. Use this time before you have a family to provide for in order to invest in your tools and skills. Don’t go in the hole, but do buy the best you can afford. Find something you can do well and make a name for yourself. Watch everything wood-related on YouTube. A lot of folks have different ways of doing things. Find what works for you. Paralysis by analysis is an easy trap to fall into. This goes double for sharpening. It’s a skill that all your other hand tool skills will be built upon. Sharp tools make good work. But sharpening should only be a means to an end. For some it becomes an all-encompassing black hole, and once you cross the event horizon into obsession you’ll spend all your time chasing the perfect edge and never making anything. Making mistakes is all part of the process, and how you actually learn.

I see from your forum posts that you’re asking a lot of questions. That too, is good. Never stop doing that.

-- Brian Timmons, Big T Woodworks - https://www.etsy.com/shop/BigTWW - http://vimeo.com/98821147

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

15671 posts in 2823 days


#5 posted 238 days ago

Conventional wisdom says to buy a tool when you need it for the project you want to do. But when I drool over a tool, I become inspired by thinking about the things I could make with it. So I say let that inspiration drive your purchases, if you can afford to. It’s a great way to expand your skills.

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

View firefighterontheside's profile

firefighterontheside

3385 posts in 461 days


#6 posted 238 days ago

If there’s something wrong with you then there’s something wrong with me. I look at craigslist everyday for tools I don’t need. When my wife and kids take a nap in the afternoon, I spend that time in the shop. Truly, even though I’m a full time firefighter, I consider it my side job since woodworking is my real passion.

-- Bill M. I love my job as a firefighter, but nothing gives me the satisfaction of running my hand over a project that I have built and just finished sanding.

View DaddyZ's profile

DaddyZ

2377 posts in 1645 days


#7 posted 238 days ago

Yes you have something wrong with you.. It’s called to many tool fever.. to cure you must send me all your tools & I will send you the Remedy (salt Pill) ....

-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View None999's profile

None999

24 posts in 790 days


#8 posted 225 days ago

I believe it’s called WWTAD (Woodworking Tool Acquisition Disorder) and I have it, too. I must be genetically susceptible to this and related conditions because I’ve had similar, severe symptoms in other areas, such as firearms and ammunition handloading, flyfishing and fly tying, leatherworking, cigars, single malt, etc.

-- None

View Earlextech's profile

Earlextech

914 posts in 1295 days


#9 posted 225 days ago

We all have this disorder or we wouldn’t be here. I travel with The Woodworking Shows and have attended it for about 30 years and still everyday I’m at the show I still want everything there is. Buy what you need when you need it is my advice.

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "finished"!

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

11099 posts in 1710 days


#10 posted 224 days ago

I think you will find that it will best to start with good basic tools and the ones that fit your budget. While Woodcraft has some of the finest tools anywhere, take a look at Grizzly tools when outfitting your shop. There is nothing wrong with drooling over tools, but unless you’re made of money, you won’t be able to buy them all so choose wisely.

I see a lot of tools I like too but I’m frugal and try to make them if I can. I read reviews and tryout friends’ tools to see if they have the feel and features I like. Some tool stores let you try them out too. I also work the levers, locks and adjustments on the ones on display to see how they “feel”. Some are downright cumbersome and some are smooth as silk! No matter what you are looking at, if it is a big dollar amount, make sure you feel comfortable with it first.

When I started out I bought a lot of used tools at sales and upgraded as the money became available. I have an old Atlas floor model cast iron drill press I bought that way and it is a bit underpowered but I would not trade it for a lot of the new ones with their plastic parts and flimsy levers and locks.

Have a Merry Christmas and good hunting!!.............Jim

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

View woodbutcherbynight's profile

woodbutcherbynight

1236 posts in 1014 days


#11 posted 223 days ago

ALL the above posters offer great advice. While I can afford what I happen to see I learned the hard way to be frugal and careful with spending that hard earned cash. That being said I do enjoy a good window shopping experience at anyplace that sells tools, or woodcraft items. The internet allows us to look at more and compare so much easier but putting one’s hands on a tool has it’s place as well. Enjoy your hobby, embrace your NEED to buy every tool you see, but maybe remember you have to pay the electric bill this month and it gets kinda cold with no heat ya know? (laughing)

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

2731 posts in 1848 days


#12 posted 222 days ago

When I was in my pre-teens, I was a tool junkie. I bought quality tools with whatever money I had. At least once a week, I bought a new tool. I was around when tools were proudly made in America and steam locomotives were still in use. I’ve workied with tools since I was 8. I’m now 79. I still have some of the tools I bought way back and I’m glad I did. The quality of tools were way better than todays tools. I have had all these years to gain the experience that you will acquire now that you are in it. But don’t just go out and buy everything in sight. Do your research and buy only what you really need. Remember, “you get what you pay for”. Don’t expect a cheap tool to perform as well as a more expensive tool. I think by reading these forums, you have gotten a good idea as to what tools make happy campers. Don’t get too excited by the big box stores. They cater to the typical homeowner and contractor; not to the serious woodworker. One other bit of advise I have to offer; we use lots of fasteners; bolts, screws, nuts, etc. If you think you will be using a lot of one kind of fastener, buy them in bulk from places like McMaster-Carr or Fastenall. The blister packs sold in the big box stores can cost 3 to 4 times more than in bulk. Same with drill bits. Buy only the ones that you will be using regularily and then buy the best. A good 29 piece drill bit set can cost as much as $130, but many sizes never get used. Also get a cheap set of drill bits for jobs that don’t require a good finish, like pilot holes. For good woodworking, get a quality brad point set. HSS would be best though more expensive. It’s really hard for me to give advice as we live in a world much changed from the world I came from. It was easy to know and find quality tools 50+ years ago, but so much more difficult today with the junk that is flooding the market.

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waho6o9

4760 posts in 1182 days


#13 posted 222 days ago

Thank you for the sage advice and history Mr. Ron.

View BentheViking's profile

BentheViking

1746 posts in 1169 days


#14 posted 222 days ago

A few years ago I loved playing video games…now I could completely give a crap

My dad has a sign on his garage that says “He with the most tools when he dies wins”

Last year I told my wife that I needed to use my christmas money to buy the bosch trim router to route the hinges for the doors we were going to replace for all our interior doors in the house. Wasn’t sure when I was going to start but it was an excuse to get a tool. I bought the first door today.

-- It's made of wood. Real sturdy.--Chubbs Peterson

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