what got you started making sawdust?

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Blog entry by hoosier0311 posted 12-02-2012 12:50 AM 1229 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I was reading Cabinet mans post about the lamps, thought it was a very cool story. Got me to thinking that he and I followed a similar path. I got out of the Marines in the late 80s, landed a job at a printing company. Wasn’t making big money, but getting by I guess. My wife and I bought a fixer upper in southern lancaster county, and thats when it got going. This place needed everything. My grandfather was a woodworker and I was fortunate enough to inheret many of his tools. Some 2×4s and plywood and wa-laa we had new kitchen cabinets, sorta LOL. I made things simply because we could not afford to buy them. The fixer upper came with a barn so I had the space to work on things. BUt it seems I had little mini-shops in whatever room I was working on. The shop grew and my tools got better, ended up replacing the old stuff I got at yard sales and auctions with new(er) stuff and so on and so forth. Years went by and we could afford to buy stuff, but my wife would always say, “you can make better stuff than that so why don’t we hit the lumber yard instead of the furniture store” HOW COOL IS THAT!
at any rate I guess my woodworking soul was built from nessescity, but turned into something I just do not want to be with out.
I would love to hear how others got started.

-- atta boy Clarence!

4 comments so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30631 posts in 3501 days

#1 posted 12-02-2012 01:35 AM

Same type story. Needed a couple things around the house I felt I could make myself. That was years ago and I can’t quit!

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 4400 days

#2 posted 12-02-2012 12:48 PM

I had a few woodworking tools to use for home repairs and making simple things like 2×4 work benches, etc. One day I was shopping at Wall-Mart and they had turkey decoys marked down to $1.50 each. I was going to buy one for next hunting season, but I had a thought… Put ‘em on E-Bay! The original retail price was $15 to $20 each. I asked how many I could buy at the $1.50 price. The clerk said, all of ‘em. We’ve got a truck load in the back. So, I bought all of them and filled my pickup truck and the passenger seat with boxes of decoys. After I got home I found I had 4 types, so I put one each on ebay to keep from flooding the market. They sold for an average between $10 & $15 plus shipping. Only one problem. After a few weeks every Wall-Mart in the world started dumping excess inventory and E-Bay was flooded with turkey decoys… The bids dropped to about what I’d paid for them. So, I started looking for a way to add value. It took one day to figure out a simple to make turkey call. Another day to make the first batch of 50 and a third day to first dip them in stain, and next to dip them in varnish. By the time the first auction was over, they were dry and ready to ship. I serial numbered and signed them as collectors turkey calls. I also included a 5 page booklet I wrote about using the decoy and my turkey call for turkey hunting. The price of my auctions went up and got higher as I posted the signed & numbered calls in descending order. As we got closer to #1 the winning big climbed to surprising heights. I got a lot of offers to buy #1… One dealer wanted to order them in batches of 10. My first woodworking venture turned one poplar board and one smaller walnut board into $$$$$ I made a couple of thousand dollars over a 6 month period. Then I started looking for a wood product I could make into something to build into a retirement business.

Here’s my project on how to make turkey calls.

Click for details

-- Hal, Tennessee

View NedB's profile


659 posts in 4728 days

#3 posted 12-03-2012 06:49 PM

Similar situation… I moved in with the LOML and her (now our) three sons, and the eldest needed a new bed. We went shopping and found nothing suitable. I threw together a platform bed for him which lasted over 10 years, getting passed down through the younger boys. Now I have a 12’x20’ barn shop out behind the house.

-- Ned - 2B1ASK1

View rockinmichael's profile


35 posts in 3547 days

#4 posted 12-05-2012 04:06 AM

I just started making things with random home depot and lowe’s parts, and one day picked up a shop notes magazine. A few years later, I had a full shop.

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