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Blog entry by Jarod posted 12-12-2008 03:43 PM 1401 reads 0 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I used to be primarily a lurker in online communities, lately i’ve gotten away from that, so here’s an intro. My name I Jarod, i’m 36 years old, living in Austin, TX. I grew up in central Illinois. I’ve been married for 2 years, and we have 2 dogs (Grim – Doberman and Cassidy – pit/german shepherd) and 2 cats (MonkeyButt & Peatrice). I’m a software developer, focused primarily in Java. I’ve been working in the industry since 1996, but i’ve been programming in general since I was about 10 years old. I love motorcycles & computers/electronics and gadgets of all sorts. I also have a strong affinity for wood, and a fascination with boxes for some reason. I’ve built a 1974 HD XLH from the ground up in a custom chopper frame and then sold it & bought other bikes. Right now I have an 06 HD FXDBI & a 2000 Honda XR650R in my garage. I do not have a proper wood workshop though. I have a variety of tools, mostly inherited. A band saw, craftsman scroll saw, a circular saw and a drill press are the primary pieces. Also an air compressor & grinders & metal working tools. My wife has noticed my fascination with boxes & has been encouraging me to make things.

I love making things. Electronics projects have been at the forefront lately. I use a piece of hardware called an Arduino to program & build circuits with. The Arduino has so many possibilities, so that will have to be a separate entry if anyone is actually interested.

Growing up, my dad had a basic shop centered around a hulking (to my young self) Craftsman radial arm saw. We built quite a few projects, including a massive doll house for my little sister. Later on, I took on several projects in shop classes over my high school years.

So, i’m looking for advice on getting back into woodworking & setting up shop. I think my first two investments as far as tools go are a table saw & router/router table. I’m going to have to relearn some basics i’m sure. The first priority is going to have to be cleaning out my garage/shop & making storage & organizational spaces. Also i’m planning on building a basic deck for our house.

There’s my intro, this site looks awsome from the welcome i’ve gotten & the level of craftsmanship here. I’m looking forward to gleaming info from y’all.

13 comments so far

View lew's profile


12885 posts in 4299 days

#1 posted 12-12-2008 03:54 PM

Welcome to Lumberjocks. I know you will like it here! If you have questions, ask away!

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 4216 days

#2 posted 12-12-2008 04:51 PM

Welcome to LumberJocks!

View Josh's profile


119 posts in 4481 days

#3 posted 12-12-2008 05:00 PM

Welcome to the site. You’ll love it here.

View Joshua Howe's profile

Joshua Howe

71 posts in 4017 days

#4 posted 12-12-2008 05:01 PM

Welcome and you are right I have only been here 21days couldn’t be happier with this site I am still a new. And have been help more than I could have ever expected. They’re are NO dumb questions. So definitely ask if you aren’t sure. And again welcome to the family! And a table saw is a really good starting point but if it isn’t in the budget right off. You should look on craigslist. Sometimes depending on the size of material you can clamp a straight edge to what you are cutting or I have seen where people set up a really primitive table saw by screwing a skill saw to a piece of plywood and clamping a board for a fence. I AM NOT SAYING THIS IS SAFE BY ANY MEANS, ALWAYS THINK THINGS THROUGH BEFORE DOING. Measure 10 times cut once. And above all have fun!

-- Wood,clay,metal, and stone are all just materials, until an artist's hand touches them.--TreeFormDesign

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 4790 days

#5 posted 12-12-2008 06:42 PM

Welcome to Lumberjocks. It is a great place and have many skilled people, more important than that are the people you will come to know and develope relationships with. This truly is a family of woodworkers. So feel at home and if you need anything or want to know anything don’t hesitate to ask, and as Joshua pointed out, there are no dumb questions, only I can ask those.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View KBC's profile


34 posts in 4004 days

#6 posted 12-12-2008 06:50 PM

Hi jarod welcome and enjoy!.

Yes the tools you have mentioned are important for a larger variety of projects.First is having the open space needed for them…:)

I have also found he metal working skill helps in the woodworking projects,combining the 2 fields has made a lot of interesting projects come to life!

Hope your Illinois roots haven’t left you…I left and had to return,,couldn’t get Lincoln out of the blood.

Keep those tools polished.


-- Ken, Northern Illinois,[email protected]

View Kindlingmaker's profile


2658 posts in 4070 days

#7 posted 12-12-2008 09:21 PM

Welcome Jarod. Quality tools are a must if you really want to refine your skills and to grow new ones. I started with junk stuff and almost gave up on ever being able to make anything out of wood, then I started buying better tools and the difference is like night and day. Buy a HF chisel for $2 and use it then buy a Two Cherrys chisel for $45 and use it, when that is done you will be placing the better chisel under your pillow each night! ; ) lol

-- Never board, always knotty, lots of growth rings

View Greg's profile


221 posts in 4001 days

#8 posted 12-13-2008 12:47 AM

Welcome aboard, all you got to do is ask here and you will find a wealth of knowledge

-- Greg S.E. Ga.

View pommy's profile


1697 posts in 4235 days

#9 posted 12-13-2008 01:23 AM

welcome Jarod from us Lumberjocks from over the pondhere in the uk you will love it here so many master craftman here with so much knowledge enjoy….........

andy aka pommy

-- cut it saw it scrap it SKPE: ANDREW.CARTER69

View Woodhacker's profile


1139 posts in 4267 days

#10 posted 12-13-2008 03:12 AM

Jarod, welcome to LJ. You’ll like it here.

Good choice for your first tools. If you’re going to build a deck a miter saw might come it handy too.

(Even though it’s not woodowrking, If you have a picture of the 74 HD you could post I’d like to see it. I had a 2002 Honda VTX1800R until last May when a lady hit me from behind as I was making a turn. Fortunately the bike was the only one “totaled”.)

-- Martin, Kansas

View map's profile


98 posts in 4057 days

#11 posted 12-13-2008 08:57 AM


First, welcome! If you are interested in the creative butchering of wood, this is the place.

regarding tools, I would agree with your selection of a table saw. One of the many cabinet saws would be great if it is within your budget. If not, look at Craigs List for an older Craftsman saw. You can often find them for $50-$100. Add a new belt and fence and you can have a very usefiul tool.

Have fun!


-- measure once, cut once, swear, start over

View TraumaJacques's profile


433 posts in 4044 days

#12 posted 12-15-2008 05:02 PM

Welcome to LJ. cant wait to see how you can combine your mechanical and woodworking skills. Remember than our forefathers had no table saws and they still created amazing stuff.

-- All bleeding will eventually stop.

View matt garcia's profile

matt garcia

1912 posts in 4215 days

#13 posted 12-16-2008 05:45 AM

Here is some advice concerning a garage workshop:

Invest in mobile bases for your future woodworking machines!

-- Matt Garcia Wannabe Period Furniture Maker, Houston TX

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