|Forum topic by MsDebbieP||posted 1815 days ago||927 views||1 time favorited||24 replies|
1815 days ago
Dec. 29, 2008
Jan. 7, 2009
The “Focus On…” topic in our January, 2009 issue of our LJ eMag, gave us a mini-biography of one of our members, Karson Morrison. When I asked Karson a few questions regarding his woodworking history, he kindly took the time to write the following. I didn’t want to lose a single word of what he wrote so, with his permission, I am posting his story here:
Hi! My name is Karson Morrison and I have a woodworking problem.
My first time doing woodworking was as a small tyke. I think I remember doing it because I have the memory in my mind but I’ve heard my father talking about it.
I must have kept bugging him to let me use the table saw. So he prepped me about doing things safely. Hold the wood tight and keep it against the mitre gauge, push it through the blade and then pull the gauge back.
So I did as he said, and then I casually reached over the blade and picked up the cut off piece. I’m guessing that dad was not too happy.
My first woodworking accident was at age 13. We had just moved from Canada to the United States and we were living with my uncle. I was helping to build a wooden platform that a small kids pool could be placed upon. I was cutting all of the boards to be the same length and I asked him for a saw. He gave me a handsaw and said “here is a dull one so you won’t cut yourself”. I drew my line across all of the boards and I was cutting the boards off. As I was cutting the saw blade raked across my knee and 5 stitches later I was back at it. My uncle remembered that to his dying day.
Dad was a farmer in his first life and when farming went to crap in Western Canada he moved to Ontario where his father had grown up before he emigrated to the west. Dad’s woodworking was of the home and barn repair. I was born in Ontario in 1942, Dad worked for a church as a handyman and janitor after their move. My earliest memory was being lost in the move between the two homes. They were a block away and I couldn’t find them at either house. I remember helping dad fix up the old garage as a rental home in our back yard. But, I really remember mixing all of the cement for the floor. I was less than ten and I mixed all of the cement. 1 bucket of sand, 1 bucket of gravel and a coffee can of cement. He had them all premeasured so all I had to do was put them in the mixer and add the water. It was a tiring day.
After our move to the United States at age 13, it was more remodeling work. Add a room on a house, sell the house all within 10 months. Then settling down in the final family home. It was in high school that I was introduced to formal woodworking. Built a bookcase and no one in the family knows where it went, and a cedar chest for my sister (Still trying to get the pictures for a post) and a walnut stereo cabinet, since demolished to use the wood for something else.
After I got married to my lovely wife Linda we bought and moved into our new/old house. All woodworking was still home repair and fix up stuff.
After a transfer to St Louis and a couple of kids I got involved in making kids toys and name puzzles. This woodworking paid for my tools and supplies.
Another transfer to New Jersey and a new home with all of the upgrading. Built a barn for some horses, fixed up the basement and the garage became my workshop. Finally bought a table saw and sold the Sears Radial Arm saw. The table saw was a Fay-Egan probably 1940-1950 version. 16” blade, 5HP and 3-phase. The top is 40X44 solid cast iron, the sides of the case are 3/8” plate steel. You sit it down and it doesn’t move.
First furniture item was a baby cradle. Still trying to get pictures. Then a few years later another baby cradle. (Project not yet posted). Then I tackled some kitchen cabinets posted under my wife’s id since they were for her. And then a move to Delaware in preparation of retiring.
Got my workshop, got some time, got busy making sawdust. Then I heard about a website called LumberJocks. Woodworking stopped and I spent all of my time on the computer. Probably not true, just seems that way sometimes.
Made a pulpit for a sawmill owner in exchange for some lumber, made a bedroom set in exchange for some lumber. Started two lingerie chests 5 years ago (still unfinished). Started a buffet Hutch for my wife 18 mo ago (still unfinished), started kitchen cabinets for my wife (6 months ago, currently under construction but being used)
Got involved with a woodworking club after moving to Delaware, and became treasurer and now President. Got involved with a Life Saving Station in Delaware and have made some Museum pieces for them and waiting for them to get some wheels made so I can make a Beach Cart for the Museum. Got involved with the toy making operation with the woodworking club. We make around 1200-1300 toys each year that we give to other charities for their distribution at Christmas time. We meet every Wed, 50 weeks of the year for making toys.
Going to start working with two schools in 2009 to assist them in making toys for our distribution day. Both of these contacts were a result of the club having articles written about our charity outreach in local newspapers.
Almost everything that I’ve learned about woodworking I’ve picked up by reading and doing. One kitchen counter top split all to pieces because I cross glued under the surface. So I don’t do that anymore. I’ve assisted three of my children in making woodworking items in my shop and have taken them to classes taught by the woodworking club. They’re learning as am I.
I’ve made lots of great friends, some that I’ve met in person Lee Jesberger, Mark Decou and his wife Shelly. Others that I’ve met at LumberJocks Picnics where we’ve shared a meal and some wood, zipsss, bobAinNJ, Mark Geserick, BryanO and Greg3G. Then there are others that I’ve met in person Kev, Joel Tilly, Charles Neil, steamDonkey, Depictureboy and acanthuscarver
I talk to many others on the phone and shared time with them, and stories with them and prayers with them. Our Mark Oscorner, Dusty and JockMike2 are three people that I’d like to acknowledge. There are many others and I’m sure that there will be many more.
My greatest mentor would have to be my Dad. He gave me the early training and later in life I gave him training on toy making. I miss him a lot, this year would have been his 100 birthday.
-- ~ Debbie, Canada (http://www.execulink.com/~yohan)