When my wife and I first moved into our home one of the first things I
had to replace was the storm door. Not a big job we drove out to our
local box store picked out the one we wanted drove home and I
installled it. A proud new investment and a task completed on the
to do list. Fast forward a few years later and our investment was less then grand, the
door started to delapidate among other issues with it and being less than happy we just
excepted it and moved on with another new door. My first thoughts when this happened
where of logic, you know things happen. Maybe faulty materials or a manufacturing issue
I wasn't really sure, but what ever the problem was I was sure that it was behind me by replacing it.
Except I forgot that thing called Newten's Law, and I ended up in the same situation with this door. At this
point in the road I was completely done with box store and I went into my shop to build
a storm door. At the time I had a bunch of oak on hand, not ideal but I though it can't be
worse than what I'm dealing with now so I moved forward. And with a few mortises and tenons
then borrowing the window assembly from the old storm door before I new it I was done.
I had built my own storm door, the best part of this story is that as of today that door has been on
my home longer than the first two doors together and still looks just as good as the day I built it.
I think the lesson to be learned in all this is you get what you pay for, if you spend a
few dollars you'll get a few mile out it. But the next time that woodworker tells you
it will cost more then you can buy it for at a box store, understand that you are getting
a craftsmanship that can't be bought and true craftsmanship will stand the tests of time..
So you have to ask yourself. Do you want something that will last or do you just want to get by ?
Recently I was asked what was the most difficult thing I've ever built. Now having been asked this before my usual response is boarder line smart aleck, and usually implies that nothing is hard
followed up with a big smile. There almost always seems to be an assumption of pieces
like the slant top desk I built as being difficult, and I think it's because of the intricacy of the desk's
gallery. The truth is, it wasn't difficult it was time consuming with a huge attention to detail. But in fairness I think everyone has their own idea of what difficult is, for me it would be a project that involves multiple angles that have to be cut precise with lots of repetition involved. Having turned a few segmented vases and bowls they fall into this category. Several small pieces of wood cut at a given angle then glued together to form hopefully the perfect ring, repeated multiple times to create several more rings. Some smaller, some larger and then all stacked and glued together then with your fingers crossed and one eye open you turn it on the lathe and hopefully end up with tight glue joints and a beautiful new creation, if not you end up with a lesson and another log for the fire. Segmented wood turnings create a challenge that I will always enjoy, and for their difficulty are at the top of my list. If you have never attempted a segmented turning give it try, you will not regret either the challenge or the results when you get it right. It's a lot to be proud of and I have a lot of respect for the people who have made this their world in woodworking.
The Shavingwood Workshop Blog