It's Alive!!!

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by Raymond Dersch posted 05-28-2008 07:07 PM 902 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

So over the Memorial Day weekend (which I hope you all had a great one!) I decided to build my first ever workbench. Actually, this is the first thing I’ve ever built; period. I thought it’d be a great way to acclimate myself with my new power tools before I started in on the bevy of other honey do’s that have started to pile up ever since I told my wife I wanted to learn wood working and carpentry skills. After working on it for 2 days and about 5 bazillion trips to Home Depot there are a few lessons I learned from this project:

1. Read the instructions…twice.

2. Measure…twice.

3. Re-read the instructions.

4. Measure…again.

5. Cut.

6. Do not trust that the 4×4’s you buy are actually 4×4’s. Mine were 3.5×3.5. (Is that normal?) My 2×6’s were actually 1.5×6. That really threw off my measurements, but now I know.

7. I think the most expensive part of the project was the gas money required for the multiple trips to Home Depot. Be sure to account for that!

8. The right tools make the project enjoyable and much easier. Using the wrong tools will most likely result in another trip to yep, you guessed it: Home Depot.

9. Safety equipment is a MUST. Ear/Eye protection is not negotiable. If you’re new to wood working don’t even think about skimping here; get protection.

10. Even with a relatively simple project like this it produces A LOT of saw dust. It smells awesome but the wife wasn’t real pleased that I took up more than my alloted one car garage space, and had saw dust from floor to ceiling and through all 3 garage spots. Note: Dust collection may be a good idea.

In then end my table did come out pretty good and the satisfaction of having done it myself was worth the frustrations. So my maiden voyage with power tools and wood ended with a completed project and me retaining all my fingers so I’m going to consider it a resounding success! This was a most enjoyable project and I’m really looking forward to the next one.

-- A King, realizing his incompetence, can either delegate or abdicate his duties. A Father can do neither. -Marlene Dietrich

7 comments so far

View Taigert's profile


593 posts in 4138 days

#1 posted 05-28-2008 07:29 PM

Welcome to LJ’s
As a new woody you will have to learn the rules!

Rule 1. the size they sell it as is never what you get a 2×4 is always 1 1/2”x 3 1/2 you pay for the sawdust left at the mill. Wait till you try to buy Hardwood 4/4 means 4 quarters which should an inch right. Wrong it will most likely be 15/16”

Rule 2. Don’t shop at Home depot!!!!!!!!!! Find a real lumber yard and build up a relationship with them.

Theres a bunch more rules you will pick up as you go along. But always be SAFE and have fun!

-- Taigert - Milan, IN

View rtb's profile


1101 posts in 4011 days

#2 posted 05-29-2008 02:02 AM

A few things that you might find helpful.
1. use your public library, books, magazines etc. don”t subscribe to any magazines until you review them, some are not the best for beginners and may be very discouraging BUT if a short time you will learn a lot so don’t be afraid to challenge yourself.

2. If in doubt ask, LJ’s have all the answers (to woodworking questions) and we will go through this with you ‘cause we’ve all had to go through it ourselves.

-- RTB. stray animals are just looking for love

View bbqking's profile


328 posts in 4021 days

#3 posted 05-29-2008 02:13 AM

If you are looking for a dust collection system, check out my recent review here on LJ’s. bbqKing.

-- bbqKing, Lawrenceville

View pyromedic602's profile


164 posts in 4046 days

#4 posted 05-29-2008 04:19 AM

Remember a phrase I read on hear some where, not sure who said to give the credit. I am merily repeating or para phrasing, You didn’t make a mistake, you merely made a redesign. be safe and have fun. The learning process is part of the for especially. Every time I try something new I get excited at the challenge wheter it is right or wrong I always learn in the shop.

-- Pyromedic602, free wood is always good wood

View Napaman's profile


5530 posts in 4375 days

#5 posted 05-29-2008 04:31 AM

well said (or re-said) PYRO…so true…have fun…I started up a year and a half ago and it has been a slow (sometimes painful $$$$) process but I have loved every minute of it…

LJ;s is a great place…I have popped a question up in the morning and by lunch time I have more answers then i can understand…

enjoy the learning!!! cant wait to see the work bench…I am waiting on that project until i have more room…

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5623 posts in 4010 days

#6 posted 05-29-2008 06:10 AM

Pictures! I’d like to see how your bench looks. Sound like you had a pretty successful weekend…

Welcome to LJ’s

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18497 posts in 3974 days

#7 posted 06-08-2008 09:32 AM

Mistakes? I once told an apologetic apprentice he was just going through the processes. When you see someone who is a master, you can bet he has made a lot of mistakes. That’s when you learn and remember the most. The worse they are, the better the lesson ;-) Joel 2:25

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics