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What else attracts you to woodworking

2525 Views 36 Replies 35 Participants Last post by  Ottis
I was just working on a project and while using a smoothing plane, when I realized that one of the nicest experiences in woodworking is the sound and feel of taking a thin shaving using a smoothing plane.

I find it kind of weird, we talk about, skills, techniques, tools, finishing and all the rest of what is necessary for learning and accomplishing a project, but we seldom recognize the other more subtle things that make woodworking so enjoyable. So I would like to pose the question, what else about woodworking attracts you to the hobby?
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The memeories of those who taught me and nurtured the love of woodworking. My father, my grandfather, my mentor Bob.

But every time I pick up a hand plane, I think back to my woodworking teacher from the 4th through 8th grades, Mr. Haas. An older gentleman, very formal and proper, but somehow, he could reach into our souls.

And he was never one to allow us to rest a plane on its sole for fear of knicking the blade. To this day (I'm 52), I ALWAYS lay my planes down on their sides.

And every time I pick up a plane, I feel the comfort of Mr. Haas' knowing gaze and kind smile!
For me is a a huge stress releiver. Getting into the shop and closing the door is like I stepped into a fairy tale. All of the problems of the world are locked outside and I dont even think of them.

The long and short of it, "My shop is my escape"
I enjoy antique collecting, and woodworking helps me to recreate replica colonial pieces that I love so much.
The workshop Is my domain. I go there and escape the bullsh*t of my regular job.
I love the feel of the timber. The smell of wood being milled. The fact that I can take a bit of rough stock and in a few short hours there is a thing of beauty that I have had a part in making…..The final step.. adding an oil finish and watching the color and grain POP.
The biggest thrill you can get as a woodworker is the look of surprise and delight on the face of a client when you deliver the piece and they say.. I didn't know what I wanted until you built it.. that is exactly what I wanted!!
The shop. I set it up. I rearrange things to make it more usable. I use the jigs I made and produce something. It's my place.

The plane shaving is a satisfying experience to me also. Seeing the even shaving come off and hearing the shoosh of each stroke.
That great feeling of crafting something with my hands….I have always enjoyed that feeling…Coming up with the design….solving the problems…watching the project come to life out of the wood….having the grain light up when I put on the finish….and like degoose said…the face of someone when you show them the project. Especially if I made it for them.

Like they said in the Blues Brothers…. No chemical product can match the rush when the band hits the grove and people are swaying and clapping (I'm not sure that is the exact quote…but close enough) Thats what this hobby does for me - and it recharges me….

Plus, what else has this great bunch of folks sharing this same passion…It crosses generations, gender, race religion.. You don't hear whether this LJ or that is a muslim…etc etc….It's just something we can all share…..

Soapbox over….thanks for the thread…
I agree with the plane noise… the clean swish… s w i s h …

I like the FEEL of a good piece of wood… so nice & square, etc.

... and once in awhile, you get a really good smell out of it too!

Popping the grain when the first part of Finishing is done… Just awesome!

... then being able to SEE the project put to good use, as designed…

Comparing Store prices to the cost of making it yourself… and knowing the quality difference! Y E S !!
It's the chicks. The screaming, half-naked groupies throwing themselves at my feet.
I have been blessed by being a furniture/cabinet designer and builder for over 35 years. Now that I have retired I have been setting up my new shop and building what I want - when I want. No more deadlines! I enjoyed my work but now love builidng things for my love ones. If I elect to build something for someone else I can but don't have to. I to have a space I call my own, my shop.

God Bless
I like the benefit of just being able to think about a project when I can.. especially during a long drive.. solving problems and making decisions.. having something else to look forward to all the time. Not as good as actual shop time, with the groupies and all that, but it's a big part of it to me.
Apparently, Charlie's woodworking is a lot different than what I do.
I have to agree with Russel. I have a nephew who lives in Baton Rouge. I may have to arrange a visit and "swing" by Charlie's place.

But, as for woodworking, I really can't identify a casual element that got me into it. As mentioned by others I just enjoy the stress relief- whether it be from daily activities or from my wife's yelling :). Not that working wood, itself, is free from stress (especially when I have put a dado on the wrong side of panel).
2 things come to mind

watching the long winds of shavings fly all over the shop when turning a green peice of wood with a freshly sharpened bowl gouge

that few seconds when you (with one hand) squeeze the tommy bars in your lathe chuck and with your other hold you competed bowl/plate and it just pops off the lathe into you hands
i personally like the design aspect the best
Hi Jeff,
One thing I like about this hobby is the interesting people who are woodwork hobbyists.
Have a good one.
It's Creation! Taking some vague itch of an idea and "birthing" it into the world. And everybody's "vision" is entirely unique and singular, NEVER to be repeated anywhere or at anytime exactly the same by anyone.
It might sound pompous or over glorified, but it's like controlling a small portion of destiny and we humans hunger to leave some sort of mark in the world! Something that says "I WAS HERE!" after we are not…
I read where people work from home on the computer in their robes or what not.

Well since my woodworking shop is about ten steps from my back door I have been trying something new and relaxing.

I love the cool morning air, the aroma of freshly cut wood, how I feel at one with my woodworking tools as I plane rough cut lumber on my power planer in nothing more than tighty whities, safety glasses, and ear muffs. Hey, safety first.

I did try it in the buff once, but some areas are definitely supposed to stay splinter free!

For some reason I'm not seeing the women Charlie M speaks of????

All joking aside, I still think my profile page here at Lumberjocks still sums it up for me.

Oh yea, I apologize if I have now ruined woodworking for anyone with any visuals they may have gotten from the above.
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All kidding aside, this is a great topic because I agree with everyone. Every response I read, I'm thinking "Yeah…that's it!" And then I read the next response and think, "Oh, yeah! That too!"

Oh, and Kirk…. go put some pants on, man.
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