Building the shop #1: After a 21 year hiatus, I'm back!

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Blog entry by MrMeasureTwice posted 11-26-2011 09:35 AM 1588 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Building the shop series Part 2: The beginning... »

Twenty years ago was the last time I did any real woodworking. That was at NAS Moffett Field, where I was stationed as a Weapons System Technician on the Lockheed P-3C Orion aircraft. The base has a terrific wood shop and I treid to go as often as possible. Unfortunately, my hectic Navy life was less than conducive to long hours in the shop, so I did what I could.

A year later I decided to leave the Navy. Since then I have only cut wood out of necessity and basic need, not for fun. So sad…

BACKGROUND: I began woodworking in 7th grade and took woodshop every semester or quarter all the way through high school and even a semester in college. When I was in the shop, i was comfortable, happy and creating things. My first teacher, Mr. Klassen, was a passionate woodworker and a terrific teacher. Though I had several more teachers after Mr. Klassen, I never enjoyed one more than him. And, he was t he one who instilled SAFETY FIRST in my head, long before the Navy got hold of me and continued to pound it into my noggin.

Boring you with each year and what I made will simply, well, bore you… besides, I have no pictures of ANY of my creations, so, I am not going to do that. Instead, let’s fast-forward through a 25 year marriage (still intact), three grown kids (still alive), countless job changes and five years in Kansas. I’m a California native, Northern California to be exact, and I love this area.

ANYWAY – here I am, mid-life crisis age and what to do? I don’t want a cute convertible. I don’t want a cute 24 year old brunette. I want to CUT WOOD!!!

So, I begin my trek of cleaning out the garage so I can do a little bit of woodworking.

Four weeks ago I stepped into the garage and just looked around. DANG! I have accumulated a lot of CRAP over the years. LET THE PURGING BEGIN!!! And so it began… every evening and every weekend I began to throw stuff out, consolidate the truly important things and move things around to make space. I have 10 steel shelving units – that’s how much crap I have…. Ya, LOTS OF CRAP.

Fast forward to this long weekend… Today, I can see my area coming together. I still have three shelving units to move or get rid of and several boxes yet to go through, but since I started this quest I acquired another rolling toolbox to store the rest of my tools. Lo and behold, I need one more… seems I have a lot of tools. Those I will not throw away unless they are cheap Chinese crap. The Snap-on, MAC and Craftsman tools ALL stay – even if there are duplicate, or even triplicate tools.

I’ve decided to dismantle the reloading bench and sell my equipment too. I have enough ammo to outfit a neighborhood brigade, so I really don’t NEED to reload. Besides, reloading is terribly time consuming and I continue to buy factory ammo and add to my stockpile anyway. That will free up one of the shelving units too.

A trip to the storage unit this weekend and I will have the other two shelves cleared and ready to move or dismantle.

... be back on Sunday the 27th with a few before and after pictures and some details on my first cuts after the twenty-one year hiatus.


-- May your shop be filled with chips and sawdust all year long, – “Mr. Measure Twice”

7 comments so far

View Toolz's profile


1004 posts in 5240 days

#1 posted 11-26-2011 01:30 PM

Sounds like a good beginning. Hang in there and make room for lots of Wood.

-- Larry "Work like a Captain but Play like a Pirate!"

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 4801 days

#2 posted 11-26-2011 02:06 PM

well its a great start, cuttting wood is good, making something beautiful with it is even better, creation and art maybe will find a way into your work…look forward to seeing what you do and make…have fun…glad you choose wood working and not an affair… or a boat…man, thats money in a hole…but they are extremely fun…and maybe you should build a boat…there ya go…first project…lol….....or maybe a birdhouse….

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View gul's profile


400 posts in 4459 days

#3 posted 11-26-2011 04:19 PM

Welcome back to woodworking! Hope we get to see your projects soon :)

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 4612 days

#4 posted 11-26-2011 06:08 PM

you better tosse the rest in there before you know it
there isn´t room enoff for the dust and to fly the chips
oh yah and there is something they call wood (what ever that is ) that needs to be stored dry
so unless you have a big barn you better tosse the rest …. :-)

welcome back look forward to see your creations here


View MrMeasureTwice's profile


129 posts in 3918 days

#5 posted 11-26-2011 06:10 PM

Toolz, Grizzman, Gul – thanks for the welcome! Frist project, hmmmmm… I was thinking a nice little footstool set. Seems my wife is always looking for a footstool, so seems like a good “out of the gate” project.

Ya, no affairs for me… I am one of those guys who actually loves and respects his wife and I really don’t have a desire for all the complications and heartache. ;-)

A boat. Well, I do live in the delta. Two big rivers join up right here in town. Me thinks that can be a later project once I am in the groove again.

-- May your shop be filled with chips and sawdust all year long, – “Mr. Measure Twice”

View MrMeasureTwice's profile


129 posts in 3918 days

#6 posted 11-26-2011 06:59 PM

Wood? I need wood??? :-)

The shop is in a 1 car section of my 3 car garage, so it’s not huge, but with some of the space-saving projects I’ve chosen, the shop will be well outfitted, and, will have storage for wood too. I hope…

-- May your shop be filled with chips and sawdust all year long, – “Mr. Measure Twice”

View MrMeasureTwice's profile


129 posts in 3918 days

#7 posted 11-26-2011 07:20 PM

So, here is the beginning of t he big purge… midday, crap all over the place!

-- May your shop be filled with chips and sawdust all year long, – “Mr. Measure Twice”

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