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Thread: Ignorance is bliss?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
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    springfield,or
    Posts
    381

    Ignorance is bliss?

    I started making a copy / matching night stand for my wife a few days ago. I made my night stand many years ago, at the beginning of my wood working journey. It is very utilitarian, basically just 2x construction material ripped in 1-1/2" squares. All pieces are 1-1/2" square, legs, stretchers, top is laminated out of it. When I made that I knew almost nothing. I had another project to make some shelving / cabinets for the garage and owned a chop saw, corded drill, speed square and then the cheapest table saw I could find on Craigslist, to rip the plywood. Long of the short is none of the 2x material was dimensioned beyond how it came from the home center. I screwed it all together, sanded down the uneven spots, stained, and put it in my bedroom. In fact it still is right next to me. I was thrilled with how it turned out and still really like it. I never checked it for square, never worried about if the material was flat, was just really happy that is looked nice and worked.

    I now find myself fretting over everything. Is the material exactly square, is it perfectly flat Along it's length, mortise slightly fat, toss it. Even on this very simple project, I find myself meticulously dimensioning every piece. I find the more I know the more I fret, paralysis by analysis. I like to think I am just wanting to become better, but some days...

    Anyways just a vent among others some of which I'm sure have had the same issues. I mostly just try to power through it, as I generally feel there's no replacement for experience.

    So what keeps you motivated when the stars aren't lining up?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    South Coastal Massachusetts
    Posts
    6,190
    Quote Originally Posted by Michael J Evans View Post
    So what keeps you motivated when the stars aren't lining up?
    Rum, mostly.
    *****

    A few years ago, I abandoned the perfectionist approach and began to measure each piece to fit the last. With attention broken into sub assemblies, "analysis paralysis" was banished from my shop.

    I concentrate on smooth, rather than flat.
    Gliding parts over piston fitting.
    Pleasant feel of the parts we handle over ornament.

    When you finish a project, no one can ever take accomplishments from you.

    Nightstand in QS Sycamore https://imgur.com/gallery/8OQd08w

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Michael J Evans View Post
    So what keeps you motivated when the stars aren't lining up?
    Woodworking is a boost for me. It takes my mind, soul and body at work and at ease. I find it beautiful and fulfilling. I have the same relation with my horses.

    I feel lucky to have them and when I feel heavy I donít unload that weight on their back. I go run some miles, I do accounting and I bring them a bucket of carrots.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Michael J Evans View Post
    I started making a copy / matching night stand for my wife a few days ago. I made my night stand many years ago, at the beginning of my wood working journey. It is very utilitarian, basically just 2x construction material ripped in 1-1/2" squares. All pieces are 1-1/2" square, legs, stretchers, top is laminated out of it. When I made that I knew almost nothing. I had another project to make some shelving / cabinets for the garage and owned a chop saw, corded drill, speed square and then the cheapest table saw I could find on Craigslist, to rip the plywood. Long of the short is none of the 2x material was dimensioned beyond how it came from the home center. I screwed it all together, sanded down the uneven spots, stained, and put it in my bedroom. In fact it still is right next to me. I was thrilled with how it turned out and still really like it. I never checked it for square, never worried about if the material was flat, was just really happy that is looked nice and worked.

    I now find myself fretting over everything. Is the material exactly square, is it perfectly flat Along it's length, mortise slightly fat, toss it. Even on this very simple project, I find myself meticulously dimensioning every piece. I find the more I know the more I fret, paralysis by analysis. I like to think I am just wanting to become better, but some days...

    Anyways just a vent among others some of which I'm sure have had the same issues. I mostly just try to power through it, as I generally feel there's no replacement for experience.

    So what keeps you motivated when the stars aren't lining up?
    Michael,

    I'm pretty much in Jim's school except it's Whisky and usually a peaty one.

    I'm mostly interested in vernacular furniture instead of "of the Manor furniture" which doesn't mean sloppy but is a little more forgiving of less than perfection.

    ken

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Matthews View Post
    Rum, mostly.
    *****

    A few years ago, I abandoned the perfectionist approach and began to measure each piece to fit the last. With attention broken into sub assemblies, "analysis paralysis" was banished from my shop.

    I concentrate on smooth, rather than flat.
    Gliding parts over piston fitting.
    Pleasant feel of the parts we handle over ornament.

    When you finish a project, no one can ever take accomplishments from you.

    Nightstand in QS Sycamore https://imgur.com/gallery/8OQd08w
    Jim,

    That's my kind of furniture, beautiful.

    ken

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2020
    Location
    Santa Barbara, CA
    Posts
    76
    Ha! I just posted over in the “anybody building anything” thread along these same lines. Sometimes it is fun to try and get everything perfect, but I find it really rewarding to just knock things out sometimes. Get a reference face and edge square to each other, get the other faces close to square and straight, try and get everything to fit first try, and if there are some little things that aren’t quite right just deal with it and move on.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    Central Florida
    Posts
    92
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Matthews View Post
    Rum, mostly.
    *****
    Lmao Jim!

    Love the nightstand. Looking forward to using sycamore...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    South Coastal Massachusetts
    Posts
    6,190
    Quote Originally Posted by Josh Robinson View Post
    Lmao Jim!

    Love the nightstand. Looking forward to using sycamore...
    It required scraping to get a usable surface. None of my planes could manage the Quartersawn stuff. It might be heresy to admit the amount of sanding required.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    617
    In my case the stars seldon line up. When they go sideways, I go sulk for a while. I've been known to uncork a bottle of Rye or Bourbon in the evening after a bad day. Then I either fix or workaround the issue ot else trash it and start over. It is a hobby for me, so all that really gets hurt is my self-image.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    springfield,or
    Posts
    381
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Matthews View Post
    Rum, mostly.
    *****

    A few years ago, I abandoned the perfectionist approach and began to measure each piece to fit the last. With attention broken into sub assemblies, "analysis paralysis" was banished from my shop.

    I concentrate on smooth, rather than flat.
    Gliding parts over piston fitting.
    Pleasant feel of the parts we handle over ornament.

    When you finish a project, no one can ever take accomplishments from you.

    Nightstand in QS Sycamore https://imgur.com/gallery/8OQd08w
    Jim that gave me a good chuckle thank you.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    springfield,or
    Posts
    381
    Well gent's obviously the concensus is to drink more beer 🍻.
    Thanks for the input and chuckles. Much appreciated.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    617
    Quote Originally Posted by Michael J Evans View Post
    Well gent's obviously the concensus is to drink more beer .
    Thanks for the input and chuckles. Much appreciated.
    Just remember that life is too short to drink lousy beer.

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