Shapes of Things

So this is my year-end review.  I know, very exciting reading; probably means no pictures as well.  But come this time next year it might be interesting to show the (possibly lack of) progress I’ve made.  And I’m going to lay out a few goals.  I’ve read somewhere that listing your goals increases the chances of actually completing them threefold.  I might need to double check that statistic.

This time last year I had a Skil table saw from Lowe’s, a Miller’s Falls smoothing plane, and a pile of lumber for a workbench.  My Miller’s Falls No 14 had arrived and I had no idea how to really use it.  Or sharpen it.  I ended up selling that Skil saw and replaced it with a Grizzly G0715 I found on Craig’s List.  The bench was completed in early February and I continued to pick up a few tools a month (mostly used from eBay).

About mid year or so I joined the Hand Tool School which was incredibly helpful.  Slight sidetrack, the Hand Tool School is a great resouce and Shannon (he runs it and the site Renaissance Woodworker) is very generous with his time and knowledge.  Living in Florida the opportunity to take a woodworking class is slim to none or not very practical.  At least not for me.  If you are in the same situation then I highly recommend the HTS.  Sidetrack over.

I completed a few projects this year though nothing overly impressive.  Which is not too surprising since I didn’t have a tool set to get anything done.  So now that I have most of the tools from The Anarchist’s Tool Chest (that’s what you’re going by as well, right?) I’m looking to spend 2015 building as much as I can.

Sounds like a list is coming up.

I’m going to divide this list into two parts.  The first will be what I feel like I need to get done and the second part will be the pipe dream section.  Here we go.

Dutch Tool Chest-  I’m currently looking for wood to get this done as soon as possible.  I’ve spend many hours looking at tool chests and wall mounted cabinets and the DTC seems like the best for my situation.  I don’t have wall space for a tool cabinet contraption and lack floor space for a full blown tool chest.

Dovetail joints-  I need to get these down cold.  I’m thinking of doing a 30 day dovetail challenge and cut a set a day for a month.

Mortise and tenon joints-  Same thing as the dovetails minus the 30 day challenge.  I got a mortise chisel for Christmas so the time is right.

Shaker side tables-  I have the wood for 2 Shaker side tables but I need to get better at dovetail joints and mortise and tenons.  Everyone and their mom builds these and for a good reason.  A mixture of different joints and a fairly simple and nice piece of furniture.  I plan to move on these by February.

Take a class-  This most likely belongs in the pipe dream section.  I’d really like to attend a class but it doesn’t seem very likely.  There was one I was looking at in Alabama but the class topic still hasn’t been announced and the overall timing is not great for me.  I’m not holding my breath on this one.

Dovetail floating shelves-  FWW has an article on floating shelves that would help organize the ocean of books in our house.  I’d link something here but I think the article is behind their pay wall.  If you can picture a rectangle attached to the wall via French cleat that’s pretty close.

Mystery piece of something-  There’s something somewhat small that I want to build.  But someone who I might be the recipient of such item will read this and that would spoil the surprise.  That’s all I’ll say for now.

Boxes-  I’d like to make a few mitered boxes and small pencil boxes with box joints and dovetails.  No real need for these but they’re good quick projects.

Pipe dream section

Campaign furniture pieces-  Reading Campaign Furniture by Chris Schwarz revealed a whole world of furniture previously unbeknownst.  I really like this stuff.  In a more than perfect world I’d like to build the campaign secretary.  Realistically, the campaign desk has a more realistic chance of happening.  A girl can dream, can’t he?

Woodworking class-  See same entry above.

CD cabinet holder thing-  We’ve gotten rid of most of our particle board furniture but this is the last piece.  It’s not a bad piece of furniture but I can make something better.  We have a lot of music in our house and this is a fully enclosed cabinet that holds CDs.  I’ve outgrown the storage capability of the cabinet and that’s not including my wife’s CDs.  Not a hard project but also not a big priority.

That’s about all I can think of right now.  In general, I want to expand my knowledge as much as possible and push myself to see how far I can go before it all caves in on me.

Hope everyone had a great Christmas and a safe New Year.

Until next time, have a good one.

Eat a peach,




2 thoughts on “Shapes of Things

  1. Campaign Furniture impressed me too. I really like the look. I’ve decided that the ability to do the large pieces in that book, such as the chest or the secretary, will mark the moment at which I won’t consider myself a beginner anymore and actually consider myself somewhat skilled. Not to say there won’t still be plenty more to learn…..


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