Faith in what is unknown can be difficult. Why do we believe in what we believe in? Is it just a matter of faith? Many times that is all it takes. Faith....and a multimillion dollar advertising budget. Advertising, as you know, is a great catalyst of faith.
Glue. Ordinary, regular, everyday glue. This is a post about glue. Now that we are clear on that I feel I can continue.
I say that 'faith' is attaching a series of wooden boards together, with nothing more than yellow glue and expecting it to hold for a generation. Faith in action is selling said item for over a hundred bucks. Take for example your average wooden kitchen cutting board. Did you know that your fancy wooden kitchen cutting board is nothing more than wood and glue. That's it. Wood. Glue, and maybe some laxative for a finish. I'm not kidding you! This is the real scoop here! The most popular hundred-plus-dollar-wooden-cutting-board-finish is mineral oil. So wood, glue and a bottle of unstopper.
Now you're telling me you that this oily wooden glued up plank, that you cut up your chicken on every night is stable. Sure is! Dang strong. I'm sorry, I'm not a chemist, I don't understand it. For me it just is. I can't understand it I just believe. And that new found faith in glue was pretty hard to come by.
Lets face it, when you think of glue. you think 'oops'! Oops! I've gone and busted something. Something that was important, special or that you really had no business even touching in the first place. Panic sets in, as you look at this thing that is now in more pieces than it was ever designed to be. What do I do now? Okay, relax... Where's the glue!!
In my mind glue is a cover up, a sham, and substitute born out of desperation. I've done something stupid, like put too much pressure on a plastic part and now I'm hoping that this stuff can bail me out of hot water.
"Well if his hat is attached to that beam, and he's hanging on it.... Shoot, man! It should hold this tiny plastic tab on."
Right?! Wrong! How many times has glue let me down. Plenty. I have good reason not to trust it.
I now have to put that aside, because in woodworking, glue stands alone. Many tables are connected solely with glue joints. In fact a really nice piece of furniture is one without any fasteners. No nails, no screws, no dowels. Just solid joinery and yellow glue. Weird. So if you spend a few hundred dollars on a nice bed or bookcase, you can almost bet it will be void of any metal. I don't know about you, but I think, using furniture like that that takes faith. For me it's a lot to come to grips with.
Where have all the fingers gone, long time ago?
Where have all the fingers gone, gone to table saws everyone
When will they ever learn, when will they ever learn?"
I have a new hobby. Finger cutting. Okay, given the squeamish nature of some folks, and the opening lines of this post let me pause. I would like to say that I have never in my life cut myself with a power saw. I have all my fingers and no gruesome tales to spin here. Honestly.
That being said, my new hobby has my certain hazards that never existed with my other pastimes. Computing is a rather safe use of your free time. I have never, for instance, worried about safe mouse handling, or what horrible things I could do to myself if I left my attention drift.
August for me, was the month that I acquired a table saw. Life will never be the same. I now can demolish an unsuspecting piece of wood in a spectacular display of flying sawdust, whirling blades of carbide tipped steel and the added potential of severe bodily harm. All in the name of 'fun'.
Is it dangerous? Absolutely, but so are many hobbies. Motorcycling, and then there's...birdwatching? Okay I'm drawing a blank, but I know there are others like, shark petting or something. Sure it might not be as interesting as being a gongoozler, but it sure ranks at least second best.
What I find most rewarding is the potential. Potentially I could be building stuff. Currently I've spending most of time getting my shop setup. It's very self serving at this point. I've only build a couple of items, but I've spend hours in the garage. I always feel busy, but I'm not sure how productive I've been. For instance I spent an entire afternoon pretending electricity was never invented, as I used a hand saw and chisels to make dovetails. After two hours I had chopped through an unreal amount of wood yet still unable to get a really clean fit. All the while an expensive dovetail jig sat weeping under my workbench. There is a whole branch of these fanatics in woodworking. They call themselves hand tool users. It's like a freaking Neanderthal cult.
It's that sort of total time sucking ability that really draws me to woodworking. It takes time to plan, design and then build jigs to help you build the real stuff you intend to build. Honest, this is a normal woodworking practice. I've spent my last two weekends building jigs for my table saw. These are setups that help me do things like, cut clean 45 degree angles, crosscuts, splines and other exciting ways to cut away at your expensive planks of wood. It's like hanging out with your doddering grandpa for the whole day. I'm totally loving it. Now, if you'll excuse me I have to go and wax my table saw.