Woodworking 101: My Class at Palomar College #3: Project Selection

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Blog entry by WayneS posted 09-07-2007 12:13 AM 1932 reads 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Wood Technology Part 3 of Woodworking 101: My Class at Palomar College series Part 4: Lumber Selection »

Yesterday was light in terms of new information presented, but was a very important day. We finally selected the plans for our projects from a selection of four very nice clock designs. My choice …a Shaker style. I decided to go with the Shaker style clock for two reasons. I wanted something without a lot of detail that will allow me to focus more on the process, and for the simple fact that I like furniture with clean lines.

Besides selecting our project plans we covered in detail how to read the plans. Not overly compex stuff, but the explanations really helped the learning curve. We also did a group exercise in figuring out how many board feet the project will take. My plans will call for roughly 10 board feet. Now the exciting process of selecting my stock begins. So many choices ….YIKES!

After class, myself and two classmates ventured over to Tropical Exotic Hardwoods in Carlsbad. WOW …this place has an amazing selection of woods. I won’t even begin to try and list the incredible inventory they have, but here is a link to the price list. CAUTION ...drool will cause rust on the electrical components of your keyboard, cover with plastic before clicking this link.

Before my next post I will have selected my lumber, and hopefullly have begun the process of milling if for project use. I will do my best to document the process in great detail. Now I just have to decide if I go with some stock from Palomar’s Urban Forestry project (discount prices), or if I go for the gusto and select something really exotic. I’m leaning towards the Urban Forestry route, just because it’s my first project, and I know there will be learning opportunities (mistakes ;P). Besides, they have a really nice selection – I have my eye on a nice piece of Carolina Cherry. Any words of wisdom would be appreciated.

Thanks for reading.

-- Wayne - Newbie looking to learn!

9 comments so far

View WayneC's profile


13775 posts in 4245 days

#1 posted 09-07-2007 12:17 AM

Great blog entry. Cherry and shaker go together in my book. Any thoughts of drawing up your plans in sketchup?

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View WayneS 's profile


34 posts in 4079 days

#2 posted 09-07-2007 12:27 AM

LOL …you read my mind. I’m Going to dive into it this weekend. Besides …it will be a great test run to see if I have the skills to enter the current contest.

-- Wayne - Newbie looking to learn!

View MsDebbieP's profile


18616 posts in 4308 days

#3 posted 09-07-2007 12:31 AM

re: wood selection— just remember that this project will be around forever and dear to your heart!! (no matter what wood you select but you might as well make it out of a wood that you love.. in my opinion).

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Bob Babcock's profile

Bob Babcock

1809 posts in 4234 days

#4 posted 09-07-2007 01:10 AM

The cherry sounds good to me for the same reason Wayne stated. Let me know if you get stuck on anything in Sketchup.

-- Bob

View Karson's profile


35134 posts in 4548 days

#5 posted 09-07-2007 04:16 AM

Go for the cherry there will be lots of time to go for some real exotics. As you said you were going for the simple lines of Shaker.

Some exotic woods might distract from that.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia †

View Buckskin's profile


486 posts in 4136 days

#6 posted 09-07-2007 04:39 AM

Well coming from a pine guy, I will have to join the consensus and vote for the cherry as well. Good luck with your first project!!!!

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 4110 days

#7 posted 09-07-2007 02:39 PM

Yep, Cherry and Shaker.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View Bill's profile


2579 posts in 4309 days

#8 posted 09-07-2007 05:23 PM

Sounds like a good plan Wayne. I missed seeing your pictures in the story this time. Hopefully, we will see a lot more in the next installment.

-- Bill, Turlock California,

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4136 days

#9 posted 09-14-2007 04:30 AM

You should have seen Tropical Exotic Hardwoods before he moved to the small place he’s in now.
It was very big with an entire yard full of lumber. The owner Mitch is over flowing into the shop
space next door as it is.

It’s a great place to find that special piece of wood. That’s where I got the wood for the top of
the hope chest I posted here.

Good prices compared to some other places in So. Cal. If you are interested in other places let me know.
I grew up in the area.


-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

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