Real Value in Creating Fine Woodworking

In creating fine woodworking, I look back on my life and see where the real values and highpoints in life have been and what have been life lessons that have helped to make me what or who I am today.  At this point I would usually start a discussion on spiritual things but not this time.  I believe everyone born has the ability to create something when given the opportunity to exercise that gift in them.  On a larger scale, see what man has accomplished just in my lifetime (middle 1930’s) because of man’s ability to mentally explore.  Marvelous works have been done in medicine, communications, transportation and many other things all throught up and created by men and women who put their pants on one leg at a time.

I have not created woodworkig projects that would on a scale survive the test of public scrutiny outside of my family and friends.  My pleasure came in mentally starting with a woodworking project that seemed achievable to me and then putting a rough drawing on paper.  I woud gather the tools and materials that I needed to complete what I planned to start.  It would be in the mind that the started project would take on new form and shape and the longer the project took to complete the greater the changes would be.

 

Trial & Error

Lessons can be painful when the mind isn't engaged

 

The true value that I found was in the exercise of the mind and training the body to use tools carefully.  When full mental attention is paid to a project, the cares of life seem to diminish.  It is my belief that all have some artistic abiity and as long as this ability is put into play to some degree the better a person’s life is.  I like creating fine woodworking projects because it teaches me I can do woodworking, not to professional standards, but pleasing to my family and me.

Woodworking Tool Maintenance

This is my most recent article “Woodworking Tool Maintenance” which has been published on articlebiz.com.  Very exciting.

Keeping your woodworking tools in good working condition is important for safety and quality of the project when creating fine woodworking.  Maintenance of tools is as important as the woodworking project you are working on.  Keeping tools in like new condition, by proper woodworking tool maintenance, will save time otherwise spent on tool repair and money spent on ruined projects and replacement of parts or tools.

Purchasing better quality tools is probably the best first step in a successful tool maintenance program.  Look to manufacturers with a reputation for high quality materials and design when searching for a new tool.  They will most likely save money in the long run because they will last longer and stand up under rougher work load.

You will know that your tools are due for maintenance when they aren’t performing as well as when they were new and the quality of your completed projects are not up to par.  Things to consider in setting up your woodworking tool maintenance program are keeping cutting edges sharp, moving parts lubricated, alignment mechanisms true and tools and work surfaces clean and free of corrosion.

Equipment and supplies needed for tool maintenance:

  • Tool sharpening system
  • Sharpening guide book
  • Table saw calibration system
  • Pitch and resin remover
  • Blade and bit maintenance kit
  • Lubricant
  • Maintenance guide

Keeping cutting edges sharp:

  • Have a professional sharpening service to put a new edge on a circular saw blade
  • It is best to replace dull band saw blades and router bits
  • A sharpening system that works for most popular drill bit types would be sound tool maintenance.
  • An advanced sharpening system and sharpening guide book are recommended for hand tools.

Lubricating moving parts:

  • Regularly lubricate bearings and moving parts
  • Use a blade lubricating stick on your band saw, coping saw, and scroll saw blades.

Woodworking Tool Maintenance

Keeping tools clean and smooth:

  • Have an adequate dust collection system
  • Clean saw blades with a pitch and resin remover and polish the blade when changing it
  • Clean router bits with same cleaner used on saw blades and lubricate
  • Replace worn drive belts and band saw tires
  • Put an add-on wheel brush on your band saw if it doesn’t have one
  • Kits for cleaning and lubricating all work surfaces are available which include everything necessary for this task.

Alignment:

  • A maintenance guide and table saw calibration system will help with this part of your maintenance program.
  • Upgrades to your table saws fence and miter gauge will improve its performance
  • Upgrade your band saw’s blade guiding system to improve its performance

The kits and supplies mentioned in this article may be found in most hardware and woodworking stores and on line.

To get the best results in creating fine woodworking projects, woodworking tool maintenance is a must.  Tools should be kept free of dust and cleaned properly after each use to maintain them in top working order.  Help in setting up a successful maintenance program is available in guide books, special kits for different phases of maintenance and different tools, and the instruction book that comes with each tool.  If you haven’t kept up with the maintenance of your tools before, now is the time to start regularly scheduled tool maintenance to prolong the life of your valuable woodworking tools and have a safe work environment while saving time and money.  What’s not to like about that?

Practicing Safety in Creating Fine Woodworking

I have found in my desire to create fine woodworking I grow impatient to complete a new project too quickley.  The effect quite often is sloppy workmanship and more often than not some sort of injury.  I will admit when I was younger I managed to escape a lot of injuries, but as I grow older I find I’m not as fortunate.

I like the new tablesaws that have all the safety features to keep us whole while creating fine  woodworking projects.  My own experience is to some times take shortcuts that can cause injury.  It can be a frightening thing to watch your thumb and that rapidly spinning blade make contact.  I think of many times I’ve had a piece of wood fly by my head because I was in too much of a hurry to install the guard.  My father-in-law watched me cut up a two by four with a skill saw and warned me that I would injure myself.  He was right because witin 15 minutes I was in need of bandages.  He, in earlier days, had worked in a saw mill where he had lost a finger.  I worked with a man that lost most of a thumb in a router and another man lost fingers twice in a shopsmith.  None of these accidents were the fault of the tools, only the operators.

My wife and I decided to remodel a bathroom.  One of the fixtures was a castiron bathtub.  The tub was too heavy for the two of us to carry out and once again, being impatient to get it out, I decided to break it up with a sledgehammer.  Swinging a 16 pound sledge against that tub and watching it break up can sure make you feel manly until a two pound piece of porcelin covered iron whacks you on the ankle.

I enjoy watching HGTV and DIY programs where remodeling and creating fine woodworking projects are shown and even there you can see the possibility of accidents happening.

As I look at my own family and friends and casual aquaintences, I realize this is a bigger subject than I first thought.  Much pain can be avoided with patience, caution and poper safety equipment.  Woodworking and the use of woodworking tools can be very rewarding but ignoring the safety devices recommendations can be very costly.

Woodworking Tools Replacement

Every so often I will start on a woodworking project for my wife, children or the church and I will stop and take stock of tools I’m going to need to complete my project.  Quite often I find a need to repair or replace the power tools that I have.  I also have a great fondness for some of the new tools that are on the market so it doesn’t take a great deal of persuasion to send me on a scouting trip to the tool store.  To my wife, I explain that this is just a fact finding trip not a buying trip.  There happens to be a method in my madness as first I won’t be dishonest with my wife but should she inquire what would make a nice birthday or Christmas present, I have a ready list.

Tools Ready for Replacement

Over the years I have acumulated several tools, many of which are just to tired to use any more, so I’ve begun to look for tools that will replace more than just one tool.  For instance I have a bandsaw and a scroll saw that are just about on their last legs.  I have seen an advertisement for a multipurpose saw and feel it would be a good replacement for my bandsaw, which I struggle with, and my scroll saw.  Another plus is that I would gain some much needed space in my garage.  It is the end of the year, Christmas sales then inventory tax sales are not far behind so I am going to scatter around several hints to make it easier for those who are having a difficult time with gift ideas.  May this season and your fine woodworking be joyful

Woodworking ,Getting Down to Basics

I have never considered myself possessing the natural ability of creating fine woodworking projects.  I have learned that, with the help of a proper set of tools and some professionally drawn plans plus patience, a person can usually turn out an acceptable product.
The tools part has a special place with me and I have purchased fair amount of tools over the years.  I have not as yet purchased one of the newer drill drivers and I have never had a radial arm saw.  I have never needed either of these items but would like to have them.  I have a neighbor who is moving after spending many years here.  Because he couldn’t take everything with him, he shared some woodworking tools with me.  Among them was a DeWalt 740 radial

After cleaning and lubricating

arm saw, one of two that he had.  It was taken out of use many years ago years ago because of a defective electrical switch.  Consequently, all metal to metal surfaces were starved for lubrication and so I began by lubricating as much as I could.  This was the beginning of the work to return the saw to service.

I realized that if the motor didn’t run, I would be wasting my time as I don’t have the ability or the extra money to fix or replace it.  So I waited a
day or so to jump the switch and test the motor.  The motor ran and I took great joy in the fact that I am going to be able to make this saw work.  After this I did a lot of cleaning and adjusting. I am not finished with it yet, still need to replace the switch, but I have a radial  arm  saw for creating fine woodworking projects.

My neighbor also gave me a large piece of walnut wood about two inches thick and thee feet be three feet and now all I need is an idea and a good set of plans and I can consider creating more fine woodworking projects.  I guess what I enjoy most is taking something that was probably kept around for parts and putting it back to it’s original purpose.