If you don’t already follow Paul Sellers blog, I invite you to go read his most recent post, Lifting Your Spirits – Working With Your Own Hands!.
I don’t consider this view to be my manifesto, either. What struck me while reading it was that all of us can choose to do woodworking for our own reasons. For me, the invasion of plastics doesn’t trouble me. The cheapness and inferiority of tools and things made with tools is what I don’t like.
My Veritas Carcass saws, with their “molded spine that incorporates stainless-steel powder for weight, glass fiber for stiffness, and an advanced polymer binder” backs, are great tools, in my opinion.
But my own reasons for woodworking don’t have to do with the chance to work with quality tools, or even to produce quality work. I think what captures me is the opportunity to do something with my own hands.
When I see all the top of the line machines being put to use on some woodworking shows, I imagine that process taking me further away from feeling the wood being worked.
I still desire some machines. Just yesterday I was browsing over some job-site table saws. I want to get one so I can accurately and efficiently make long rip cuts and more quickly have my lumber cut to size, so that I can work with it.
Granted, I need to identify and purchase a good panel saw. Even then though getting the lumber cut to size is something I want out of the way quickly, so I can get to the part of this hobby that I most enjoy.
While Sellers’ post isn’t my manifesto, I enjoyed reading it. Hearing why others love to do this work opens my eyes to new things.
I hope everyone will share more about why they enjoy this work. It isn’t about the “right way” and the “wrong way” to do woodworking. It’s about how it rewards each of us, differently.