Now I am not one to spend a lot of money on tools. I just don’t see the need. Don’t get me wrong I am all about the right tool for the job but if any of you have seen the sites on my favorites list you know you can do without. I have many years in the trades, around 30, to know if you have the right tool for the job it will make life a lot easier and usually the end result will be much better. The funny thing about woodworking is I have not brought that attitude toward this craft. I have found out that the adage still holds true in many ways but there are seemingly many more ways around it than in the previous other trades I have attempted. So for me this almost always brings up the topic of old tools and why to purchase. I love me some old tools is probably the biggest hurdle to get over. I have a growing addiction for hunting them down and only because I do not have enough money do I not have an addiction for buying them. I can’t seem to stop perusing the old tool sites and garage sale/flea markets in search of said tools. I am more able to convince myself to buy an older tool than a new one because there is that part of the equation of I will never find this tool again especially in this kind of condition so If I don’t buy it now I will never get another chance. The other part is “they just don’t make tools like they used to”. I mean what a sales pitch for these older tool dealers! They don’t even have to whisper that particular phrase in my ear. I yell it to myself! It takes all I have to summon the courage and walk away. Most of that courage only comes from the fact that I have to eat and I know if I buy said tool I will be eating mac and cheese for a long time and depending on the price it could be a long while.
This I think is where all the You Tube videos come into play in my woodworking. Out of the many of videos available I have the chance to basically sit in on a craftsman and pic his brain on the way he was taught and therefore the way his teacher was taught and so forth. I get the aded advantage of all that experience right in my home and can learn in a fraction of the time that it tok the previous generation to. I do not have to buy those old tools right now when I can’t afford it I can watch some vides and try to curtail that impulse to buy said tools. I can also see how much that tool will actually help me in my shop or how much I would actually use it. Or would it just look all shiny/beautifully worn sitting so graceful on that hanging tool box with all those pretty dovetails that I have never got around to making. So I can sit here and logically talk myself out of buying these tools and they are very good arguments but man when I am in the heat of battle the only thing that keeps me from the purchase is the money. If I had the money how different my shop would look! I wonder how good at this I would be because I would probably not get into the making of jigs as much as I have which I think has immensely improved my woodworking. It makes me slow down, which after years in trades is very hard to do, and take a minute to execute my task and not just complete it. I am on a tight budget and I cannot afford to waist material. By making jigs and taking a breath it makes me a better woodworker and craftsman. I would have never said that even 5 years ago. So as always “If I can do it so can YOU!”