You know when you are talking with someone you just met, you always talking about what you guys are doing for a living. Are you studying, what kind of job you have, and of course what you are doing in your spare time.
Well, my passion and hobby are woodworking. Whenever I get the chance of talking about woodworking my face just lights up! I think because of this, many people I talk with gets intrigued. They want to learn more.
Lets address a few of the most common questions I get from people who wants to learn more about woodworking.
Why do you love woodworking?
Like all kids, when I was young I just loved creating. If it was a snowman, a sandcastle or a smiley-face on my pancake, it didn’t matter what I was creating, as long as enjoyed doing it. And this is key now as well. I still love creating things, and woodworking just makes it easy for me to be more creative. I can try to build anything in my imagination out of wood. I get to escape from everyday stuff, and just be inside my woodworking bubble.
I get to build some beautiful small projects and occasionally create fine furniture. But the most rewarding thing, is probably the boasts and praises I get from those around me that gets to see my finished pieces. Woodworking is just plain fun!
How can I get started?
The first thing you need to learn is the basics behind woodworking. I would recommend you to get a book about woodworking for beginners. Also you will need some basic tools and some cheap materials like pine to get started. Why cheap material? Well, you shouldn’t spend a lot of money on expensive wood species like oak before you are able to build some nice things.
If you are a total beginner, and know almost nothing about woodworking, then I would recommend the “How To Build Anything” book. It is a great book for beginners, that explains how you can build whatever you like with just 3 basic power-tools. You will need a drill, a jigsaw and a circular saw.
What to build?
Maybe you want to create some beautiful small boxes, or maybe build fine furniture. Maybe you just want to be able to dress up some wood and use it as firewood. I know i have… Most of the projects I build are things that we need around the house. Storage, decoration and furniture. I always try to create something practical or beautiful.
I’m often on the Internet looking for inspiration and solutions on different tasks, projects and plans. There are literally hundreds of thousands of people out there that shares their projects with photos, videos and articles. You will definitely find something similar to what you want to build.
But first you need to learn the basics of woodworking, and learn the necessary skills. In the beginning you will probably make some errors, but with practice you can build anything.
The first project for many woodworkers are building a good solid workbench. Maybe you should too?
What tools do I need?
You can achieve to build beautiful pieces with a few basic hand tools. A hammer, chisels, try square, clamps and a hand plane goes a long way, as well as some screwdrivers.
For power tools I recommend a drill, jigsaw and a circular saw. Additionally you may buy a plunge router. Routers is maybe the most versatile tool in any workshop.
When the day has come where you want to expand your workshop, you can purchase a few stationary machines. Table saw, band saw, drill press, router table, jointer and planer are machines you would find in most woodworking workshops.
Start with only a few tools. You may find out that woodworking isn’t something for you, then at least you haven’t spent that much money. I have a few friends that like woodworking, but love their tools. I have spent money on tools I don’t really need, but which is nice to have.
However, with tools, especially power tools, there is the risk of injuring yourself. Always take the necessary precautions that follows the tools. Safety should be your number one priority!
Is space an issue?
This really depends on what kind of projects you are gonna build. Bigger furniture is usually built where you have good space. A garage, big basement or a big shed is recommended, but not required.
With smaller projects, you only need a workbench and a few basic tools. I’ve seen people who just have a small room dedicated to their woodworking endeavors, and they are creating the most beautiful things.
The key for an effective small woodworking workshop is good organisation of tools and supplies.
My advise for aspiring woodworkers
Here is my recommended starting plan:
- Get a beginner woodworking book.
- Gather some basic tools and build a solid workbench.
- Start building some easy projects.
- Master the skills of using basic hand tools.
- Explore building bigger and more advanced projects.
- Buy stationary tools only when it becomes necessary.
- Enjoy praises from friends, family and clients. (easy one)
I myself is not a master with hand tools, but I manage. The majority of my projects is built with power tools. The truth is that the majority of woodworkers are not that great with hand tools because they have machines that does most of the work. Machines are faster, and often more precise. With practice and the right tools, anyone can learn to build beautiful furniture.
I encourage you to learn how to master the usage of basic hand tools. Then you will be on your way to be a truly great woodworker.