Page 1 of 7 12345 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 93

Thread: So what did you learn the HARD way...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Fort Worth, Tx
    Posts
    4,756

    So what did you learn the HARD way...

    I am sure there are lots of things that we have all learned the hard way. I know I have learned the hard way a lot over the years and even more the last 6 or 8 months.

    The latest was using little brass screws.

    You have to pre-drill as deep as the screw in hardwood and you better use bees wax on them and then you don't tighten them like they were a 5/16th bolt or.... they snap right off.

    On the two boxes I am building right now it took me 3 screws before I got it though my head, had to drill out 3 screws then plug the holes and redo them.

    So what is one thing that you learned the hard way?

  2. #2
    Bill - regarding the brass screws, in addition to the steps you have discovered it is also helpful to get some steel screws of the same size and use those to first establish the threads in the hole.

    What I have learned the hard way is to make sure your collet is real tight on the router. I was making box joints for the first time a few months ago, first bunch fit like a dream....then gaps started developing. Huh? Ohhh, the fingers are getting longer. The up-spirial bit was slowing creeping up on each cut. Fortunately is was just some joints that got wrecked, but it was still painful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Wichita, Kansas
    Posts
    251
    It seems like I learned everything the hardway!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    4,717
    Just about all the lessons I remember were learned the hard way. The ones not learned the hard way, haven't really been "learned" yet...they're more of an "awareness".

    Here's a couple that stuck:
    - cheap cutters and tools cost more
    - machine maintenance costs less
    - "impatience" takes longer
    - if it doesn't "feel" right, don't do it...
    - it's only wood, and it does grow on trees....don't beat yourself up over mistakes


    .
    Last edited by scott spencer; 10-07-2007 at 7:10 AM.
    Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Fallbrook, California
    Posts
    3,562

    Cool

    I tell my third grade students that it's OK to make mistakes and that we learn more from our mistakes than we do getting it right the first time. I'm sure that I learned that while woodworking.
    Don Bullock
    Woebgon Bassets
    AKC Championss

    The man who makes no mistakes does not usually make anything.
    -- Edward John Phelps

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    extreme southeast Nebraska
    Posts
    3,113
    FWIW.

    On the screw subject, I learned to put beeswax or use a paraffin candle on the threads, the the important thing was to make the screw hole the minor diameter of the thread (measured at the bottom of the threads on the screw), and to use a nail the proper size in a drill (I use an archimedis drill) to make the hole and a bit deeper than the depth of the screw.

    This accomplishes two things, 1. it makes the screw easier to screw in. 2. it makes for better holding, as no material is removed only compresses the material, and after a little bit as the material tries to reexpand to its normal shape it gives much more holding power. This is especially true in soft woods.

    I also use a push drill with a screwdriver bit to install the screws and quit when the bit quits turning on its own, then give it 1/8 turn more to torque it.

    I try not to use phillips head screws as they are not time period correct for my style of wood working. I alter the straight bits so the point is square to the sides of the screw slot and fill the slot well which more or less eliminates twist or jump out. Look closely at the hex screwdriver bit ends or look at a good set of gunsmithing screwdriver ends.

    My .005 worth
    Last edited by harry strasil; 10-06-2007 at 9:58 AM.
    Jr.
    Hand tools are very modern- they are all cordless
    NORMAL is just a setting on the washing machine.
    Be who you are and say what you feel... because those that matter... don't mind...and those that mind...don't matter!
    By Hammer and Hand All Arts Do Stand

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Fort Worth, Tx
    Posts
    4,756
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Watkins View Post
    Bill - regarding the brass screws, in addition to the steps you have discovered it is also helpful to get some steel screws of the same size and use those to first establish the threads in the hole.

    What I have learned the hard way is to make sure your collet is real tight on the router. I was making box joints for the first time a few months ago, first bunch fit like a dream....then gaps started developing. Huh? Ohhh, the fingers are getting longer. The up-spirial bit was slowing creeping up on each cut. Fortunately is was just some joints that got wrecked, but it was still painful.
    Good idea, I will get some steel ones and try that the next time, I hate to have to drill them out, just not fun.

    I had a bit walk up on my router once, but I was just doing some test cute so it made no difference, so I tighten it very tight now.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Randolph County NC
    Posts
    184

    I learned the hard way...

    ...to not take for granted that your wife can turn off the same breaker twice in a row. I learned standard house current is wholly sufficient to expunge from your mind any attention it is giving to the body's balance.
    I learned those cheap plastic multi drawer storage containers you screw to the wall to keep your extensive accumulation of stainless hardware sorted will not, in any way whatsoever, support the weight of an adult male enough to even measurably slow their velocity in a fall. I learned those storage containers keep said hardware in an exponentially more compact area than the garage floor. I learned a fall from an 8ft step ladder can be complicated greatly by what's between you and terra firma. I learned a five gallon bucked provides a poor point of impact upon termination of your decent when falling from that ladder. I learned it's not only possible, but probable, that the construction integrity of a 14.4v cordless drill will be stressed beyond it's limitations upon impact with concrete after that same plummet. I also learned my vocabulary doesn't contain enough four letter words to drown out a wife's laughter when she realizes you aren't seriously injured in a fall.

    When you think about it, it's truly amazing what can be learned by the human mind in a few short seconds of its existence.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    22,087
    Blog Entries
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Huber View Post
    I am sure there are lots of things that we have all learned the hard way. I know I have learned the hard way a lot over the years and even more the last 6 or 8 months.

    The latest was using little brass screws.

    You have to pre-drill as deep as the screw in hardwood and you better use bees wax on them and then you don't tighten them like they were a 5/16th bolt or.... they snap right off.

    On the two boxes I am building right now it took me 3 screws before I got it though my head, had to drill out 3 screws then plug the holes and redo them.

    So what is one thing that you learned the hard way?
    As long as we're talking about things that didn't involve physical pain; As Dave points out, have some steel screws on hand to pre-screw your holes for your brass. Get the same thread pattern, etc.

    Screws in general were a chance to foul a piece when I was starting out. Improper pilot hole size, shank holes, cheap countersink bits and all that. I took some time to join forums like this and read mags and such. A lot of what we do hasn't changed in a long, long time. Its amazing how well things go when you do it like the guy who's been doing it for 20 years does it.

    I have a constant battle to suppress some weird desire I have to do it "a better way" (meaning my way). Once I figured out I didn't know every darn thing and started paying attention to those with experience, my shop time enjoyment factor has increased drastically.
    "Never underestimate the power of negative people in large groups." - George Carlin (paraphrased)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    22,087
    Blog Entries
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Welborn View Post
    ...to not take for granted that your wife can turn off the same breaker twice in a row. I learned standard house current is wholly sufficient to expunge from your mind any attention it is giving to the body's balance.
    I learned those cheap plastic multi drawer storage containers you screw to the wall to keep your extensive accumulation of stainless hardware sorted will not, in any way whatsoever, support the weight of an adult male enough to even measurably slow their velocity in a fall. I learned those storage containers keep said hardware in an exponentially more compact area than the garage floor. I learned a fall from an 8ft step ladder can be complicated greatly by what's between you and terra firma. I learned a five gallon bucked provides a poor point of impact upon termination of your decent when falling from that ladder. I learned it's not only possible, but probable, that the construction integrity of a 14.4v cordless drill will be stressed beyond it's limitations upon impact with concrete after that same plummet. I also learned my vocabulary doesn't contain enough four letter words to drown out a wife's laughter when she realizes you aren't seriously injured in a fall.

    When you think about it, it's truly amazing what can be learned by the human mind in a few short seconds of its existence.
    Now I'm sorry I even responded. Stan's post gets the prize . . . I'm still laughing . . . Glad you weren't hurt Stan.
    "Never underestimate the power of negative people in large groups." - George Carlin (paraphrased)

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Sun Peaks, BC Canada
    Posts
    66
    It's got to be flat and square. If it isn't flat and square at the start, it's not going to be flat and square at the end.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Plymouth County, Massachusetts
    Posts
    2,933
    As a leader in a job shop type atmosphere, I once had a rookie under my wings who questioned every method that we had "proven- out" many times over the years. Alot of jobs had 6 or more operations before the "finished product" was accomplished.
    At first it was amusing to watch the rookie spend a whole day machining parts in the "wrong" sequence and having him getting to a dead end and "junking" the parts. He was a "smart" kid but he would take college courses at nite and quit because he said "they don't know what there talking about".
    Don't know where I was going with this but here was a kid who spent alot of time "looking" for knowledge, and it was right in front of his eyes and still couldn't see it. He drifted from one department to another before we had to let him go. Whenever I got together with other leaders and his name came up in the discussion, I would hear the same thing. " he was always trying to re-invent the wheel"
    Whenever I hear that expression about the wheel, I think about 17 years ago and a long haired kid who played drums in the band.
    Gary

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Huber View Post

    So what is one thing that you learned the hard way?
    There's an easy way? Wow.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Waterford, MI
    Posts
    4,673
    1- Use zero clearance inserts on the TS. I have a permanent lump on one finger from some splinters shooting back that's like a sticky note reminder.
    2- Dull tools are an accident waiting to happen.
    3- Dont buy cheap tools
    4- Dont push your luck with minimum glueing temps
    All things I learnt the hard way.
    Use the fence Luke

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Tucson
    Posts
    5,001
    Blog Entries
    1
    Don't try to trim even the slightest amount of material off in the router table doing a pull cut w/o ample feather boards and a big push block. (Nipped the side of my finger and fingernail off x-mas eve 06') fortunately it grew back.

    Spiral 3/8 router bit....50 bucks
    End of finger missing hospital bill 740.00 bucks (for a band-aid and a tetanus shot)
    Having it grow back with no problem......PRICELESS!!!!
    What you listen to is your business....what you hear is ours.

Similar Threads

  1. Hard Maple / Soft Maple ??
    By Tony Falotico in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 01-08-2007, 2:01 PM
  2. Maple plywood - Hard or Soft
    By Michael Merrill in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 06-07-2006, 9:48 PM
  3. Finishing hard maple problems.
    By Perry Schmidt in forum Off Topic Forum
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 01-25-2006, 1:34 PM
  4. Argh, I need to learn TurboCad
    By Gary Herrmann in forum Design Forum
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 01-10-2006, 7:45 AM
  5. Average price of extra wide hard maple??
    By Bob Weisner in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 12-20-2005, 2:44 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •