Fair Woodworking

February 15, 2012

Humility is a dish best served in front of others

To most people, yesterday was Valentines day. I celebrated it a day early so I could attend this months woodworking association meeting. Attendance was not optional for me since I had agreed to present on the use of hand tools.

I was pretty nervous about it but managed to keep from completely freezing up. I knew that doing any skill based demonstrations would be a risky proposition but I knew I’d have to do something. I decided on demonstrating how to use the reflection of a saw blade to give feedback on how stable the saw blade is when sawing. It’s what I use to see how good my form is when sawing.
Did a test cut, and they all confirmed it was pretty steady. With that bit of confidence I moved on to using the reflection to find square and then make the cut free hand.

I do this all the time in the shop. It’s how I always cut my tails, so if I could be comfortable doing anything, this would be it.

But on a foreign bench in front of the group? Well, let’s just say that it gave me an opportunity to show how to use my shooting board.

All in all, I missed some important points that I wish I remembered to cover, but I think it was fairly well received by most of the group. There was also some talk of a small workshop get together to learn to free hand sharpen.

Who knows, a convert could be in the bunch.

I just hope I don’t lose the ability to sharpen when in front of a group!


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