Sunday, 15 January 2012

A Woodwork Bench for Beginners

I was given a link to the 'ever-ready' YouTube site. The link directed me to
a video that describes the building of an inexpensive, yet sturdy, pine and plywood workbench; a 'proper-job', ideal for a beginner.

The video does assume ownership of basic power tools, but I believe the bench could be built with basic hand-tools. Hand-held machines would just make the job easier and quicker. If you bought-in ready prepared timber, and made this bench with just hand-tools, then I suppose it might take you ten to fourteen days, assuming you work just in your evenings and at weekends.

If you are without a bench to start with, then no problem. Make the top first, and then put this onto a pair of trestles, to work from, whilst building the under-frame. If you don't have trestles, buy two pairs of those metal angled-brackets that take 4 x 2 timbers, to make a temporary pair of saw-horses/trestles. Then to hold stuff down buy or borrow some good sized 'G' cramps and maybe a couple of sash cramps. Where there's a will there's a way; not very original but true. So if you really do want and need a workbench check out the links at the foot of my blog homepage. Alan Holtham's link is at the top.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

My Influences

Woodworkers are like most creative people. We all have influences; mentors; the folk we try to emulate, and our favourite styles of work; stuff we strive to produce.
What of my influences? Well, my biggest influence is the guy who first taught me my woodwork, way back in the 1950s. Vic Wyatt, the school Woodwork teacher. Without him and his enthusiasm, I might never have got started. Okay, I suppose there would have been another teacher, if it hadn't been Mr. Wyatt. You know what I mean. He was the one who recognised my complete lack of ability, and who decided to do something about it. He isn't with us any more, but all the same if I were to dedicate this blog to anyone, it would be to him.

Over the years of course I fell under the spell of a few other mentors'. (Chief among whom was Charles H Hayward; via my first woodwork magazine, 'The Woodworker', of which Hayward was Editor-in-Chief.) Krenov too is another influence for me, but I didn't discover him until the 1970s. I love his approach to woodwork; the feeling he puts into his writing and his work. All of this gives me the excitement and inspiration to carry on. I don't make Krenov inspired pieces; (I don't make much at all lately, but I live in hope that my physical problems will be resolved.) but his philosophy I try to bring forward into my own work. I am interested deeply in the Arts and Crafts movement. Not necessarily because I like all of the designs, but because most of the work is true to my sentiments when I am belly-up to the bench. Plus, I get to use my favourite native timber/s; English Oak above all! I could go on, but I am overdue in the shop; I won't be doing much more than looking at my tools, and tidying up; but it's a start!

So now you know a little more about me, please come back and check if I have posted anything worthwhile. You never know; we might be lucky!

Stay well and work safe.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Watch this space.

This Woodman's world is about to be 'resawn'...

If you want to help me learn something, keep watching.