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Project Information

I built this shelf system in 2010-11. My wife wanted some shelves in the office and I designed them to fit around her desk. They were also designed to fit on a wall at least 10' long. I had to split the shelf system up to fit our current office.

Half way through the project I had a slight snafu. It was 3 p.m. on a 100 degree day in July. I was in a hurry and couldn't find my push stick for the table saw. I instead decided to use my thumb to push the 5/4 cherry stock through the table saw. Not the best Idea.

Long story short, the surgeon reattached the thumb and I was able to finish the shelves the following spring. I now have full use the appendage with some loss of feeling. That day stands as a lesson to me each time I work in the shop, mow the lawn, wire an outlet or engage in any other potentially dangerous activity.

Here are what have been lovingly christened my "thumb shelves."

Gallery

Comments

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you might regain some of the feeling….maybe. I believe I read once that nerves grow 1/64th inch a year. I cut the palm side of my right index finger and lost some feeling there. It took several years for the feeling to get back to normal. At least I think it is normal. One of those tough lessons though. Glad it is still there and functions somewhat normal.
 

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Good news is the bookshelf looks great. Hopefully the thumb health evolves for you.
 

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Beautiful book case. Sorry about the thumb though. A good story/lesson for the rest of us.
 

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Sorry about your thumb…

Here's what I picked out of the story: "It was 3 p.m. on a 100 degree day in July. I was in a hurry…"

There was just a discussion not too long ago about when it gets too hot to work in the shop. My answer was: For me personally, whenever it gets so hot that I don't enjoy it, I leave the shop. Some of it is safety - me, personally, if the weather is hot enough to make me irritable, I am much more likely to make mistakes. Better to lose a day than lose a digit!

As for I was in a hurry - that's when I always make the stupidest mistakes!
 

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Ethan,

Your Book Shelves/Storage project turned out beautifully.

Thanks for sharing the story of your hurried accident and your new Mantra;

"MEASURE TWICE (find my push stick) CUT ONCE." ;-)

Best Regards. - Grandpa Len.

Work Safely and have Fun.
 

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+1 to the measure twice (find my push stick) cut once :) Certainly a great looking set of shelves!! Glad that you maintained all digits despite the lengthy recoop experience. Thanks for sharing…
 

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Ethan, I feel (felt) your pain. I split my thumb in two about 10 years ago. From the tip down to the 2nd knuckle that connects it to my hand. It has a way of making you think things through from then on. I am glad you kept your thumb! The shelfs look great.
 

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They are very nice shelves but not loosing your thumb over for sure. I sure am glad the doctor was able to reattach your thumb. I hope that you still have some strength and movement in it even if it is numb.

helluvawreck aka Charles
http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com
 

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Nice job on the shelves. Thanks for not showing a pic of the thumb. :)
 

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Beautiful bookshelves, look professional. Great design and finish. Great work and sorry for the thumb, important is we've learned a great lesson from it.
 
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