Great quote struck a chord with me this morning.

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Forum topic by camps764 posted 05-31-2014 12:10 PM 1365 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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867 posts in 2329 days

05-31-2014 12:10 PM

“A determined soul will do more with a rusty monkey wrench than a loafer will accomplish with all the tools in a machine shop.” Robert Hughes (1938-2012), Australian art critic

I don’t know about y’all, but I know sometimes I feel the “just one more tool” or “I wish I had a nicer (insert tool name here), then I’d REALLY be able to turn out some great work”

I was browsing some quotes over coffee this morning, and came across the one above. It made me smile, and is a good reminder that its the craftsman that makes the furniture, not the tools.

I’ll be printing this one off, and hanging it in the shop.

-- Steve

16 replies so far

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19597 posts in 2644 days

#1 posted 05-31-2014 01:10 PM

That quote rings soooo true.

There goes MY excuse!!! ;^)

-- 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 sras's profile


4791 posts in 3098 days

#2 posted 05-31-2014 01:30 PM

Another one along a similar line…

It’s a poor craftsman who blames his tools.

I heard that when I was complaining about trying a difficult pool table shot with a crooked cue. After hearing that line, I agreed and made the shot.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

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Gene Howe

10373 posts in 3397 days

#3 posted 05-31-2014 01:37 PM

As a superb craftsman who produces magnificent work, I’ll not lower myself to comment. (tongue planted firmly in cheek)

-- 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

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DeLayne Peck

533 posts in 2170 days

#4 posted 05-31-2014 03:33 PM

Ah, but then there is the determined soul with all the tools in a machine shop! To that I say, “Craiglist Ho! Buy and trade up, intrepid craftsman!”

-- DJ Peck, Lincoln Nebraska. Lord, keep your arm around my shoulder and your hand over my mouth.

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867 posts in 2329 days

#5 posted 05-31-2014 03:57 PM

Always enjoy your perspective DJ, always makes me laugh.

-- Steve

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2659 days

#6 posted 06-01-2014 12:57 AM

My response is “He who dies with the most tools wins!”

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

View bigblockyeti's profile


5101 posts in 1689 days

#7 posted 06-01-2014 02:51 AM

Sometimes that longed for tool, while might not be absolutely necessary, sure can make the process much easier vs. how it’s currently being done!

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867 posts in 2329 days

#8 posted 06-01-2014 07:21 PM

Ain’t that the truth!

-- Steve

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2387 posts in 3516 days

#9 posted 06-01-2014 10:11 PM

I sort of see my wife and I as “determined souls” but we have more than a rusty monkey wrench to work with. As I see it, a loafer will not have much more than a rusty monkey wrench, where as a determined soul will work hard and will grow, which means his tools/machines will grow along with his/her skills. As a professional, I strongly believe it is a combination of technique/skill combined with quality of material and quality of tool. Sure some lesser quality tools will do just as well, but the better equipped one can be the better off one can be when a project needs to be complete. We have projects we get hired on that provide strict deadlines and high standards that we could have in no way been successful with back when we had less to work with.

We used to flatten glue up panels with a 3 by 18 Porter cable sander, now we use a 26” Dual drum sander and plan to upgrade to a 36” wide belt soon.

We used to use a small circular saw to build cabinets. Now we use 3 PM 66 saws each set up to task to minimize set up times. We plan a near future upgrade to a CNC for sheet processing.

We used to do FF with biscuits and 2 left thumbs, then upgraded to pocket hole machines and FF table.

Used to build doors on 2.25 hp router table, now use 7.5 hp shapers. Actually we outsource now.

My point is, a determined soul will have plenty to work with and will maximize skill and assets. A bum will know his remote control well but will be ill equipped to rectify his dead battery issue 6 months down the road…

-- .

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867 posts in 2329 days

#10 posted 06-02-2014 12:58 AM

Great perspective Jerry, I can totally get on board with what yer sayin’ For a pro it makes sense to upgrade tools to continue to improve efficiencies and get more work out the door faster and at higher quality.

-- Steve

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5101 posts in 1689 days

#11 posted 06-02-2014 01:03 AM

I keep telling my wife I need nicer tools if she wants nicer furniture. . . . it doesn’t always work.

View InstantSiv's profile


262 posts in 1564 days

#12 posted 06-09-2014 08:44 PM

Don’t fall for that crap! Skills are nothing without tools and tools are nothing without a skilled person to use it.

It’s like comparing a low income person who saves a lot to a high income person who saves nothing. Come retirement they’re about in the same place.

You want skills and tools. You want high income and a high savings rate.

View redSLED's profile


790 posts in 1861 days

#13 posted 06-11-2014 03:49 AM

Another one I saw somewhere was “He who dies with the most tools dies the poorest.” Can’t yet decide how I feel about that one. Damn wisdom quotes.

-- Perfection is the difference between too much and not enough.

View Texcaster's profile


1277 posts in 1643 days

#14 posted 06-11-2014 05:19 AM

This very determined soul is getting runs on the board with what we would call junk. I would be very happy to own one of his acoustics.

-- Mama calls me Texcaster but my real name is Mr. Earl.

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867 posts in 2329 days

#15 posted 06-11-2014 12:19 PM

Dang Tex, thats a great share. Who the heck needs clamps when you got an old bike innertube?

That video does a great job embodying the quote IMHO.

-- Steve

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