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Thread: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

  1. #1
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    Default So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    Mine were several whittling knives ground out from power hacksaw blades, heavy rubber tubing from the milking shed plus masking tape for the handles. I'd have been about 12 or 13, still have those. I ground them with a hand crank grinder by the way, dad was fine with me having sharp stuff but wouldn't let me use his bench grinder. I can understand that now but at the time I was very annoyed.
    I've been making tools ever since, cabinet scrapers from big ( 3 or 4 inch wide) bandsaw blades, round and hollow sole planes and moulding planes with irons made from old horse hoof files (good steel in those) special spanners ( the cylinder head bolts on a DBD32 BSA motorbike are really hard to get at) shaped chisels, bent files and so on.

    John Welsford
    An expert is but a beginner with experience.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    When I was maybe 8 or 9, our mob was building a raft. I decided we needed a mallet. I used my (luckily, just sharpened) pocket knife to rough out a head from some driftwood, ream a tapered hole for the handle, taper the handle and cut a slot for a rough wedge. Like many things in my woodworking career... I thought my genius self had invented the 'wedged tenon' joint, only to discover later that it had been around for a very long time. Then I drove a salvaged nail thru it. By that time, the rest of the gang has just about finished our raft. But I was able, later, to lash it all together much better using some staples discovered in an old fish warehouse, some salvaged wire rope, and my trusty mallet. I cherished that rude contraption, and used it often - until it finally died.

    But that wasn't much of a tool. Caveman crude. My first 'real' tool was using an old scraper blank to create a scratch stock for finalizing a delicate custom molding profile. That was a dozen years later, for my very first paying customer - my woodworking instructor - who introduced me to scratch stocks. My second year in the program, I was his 'shop assistant'. He was kind enough to commission me to build a cherry cradle for his first grandchild. It was my introduction to the lathe as well. And raised panels too. And pricing one's work.
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    http://www.harborwoodworking.com/boat.html

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  3. #3

    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    50 years ago I made my own custom knot eraser. Several variations later I still use it regularly.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    Probably a mallet. I have also made a draw knife for a mate, a boatbuilders bevel and converted a woody jack plane into a spar plane.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  5. #5
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    At about 12 I made a lot of tiny knives by cold forging some very hard 3'' nails on a bit of railway line Dad had. Filed edges on them and made handles from wraps of Sellotape. I sold them at school.
    '' You ain't gonna learn what you don't want to know. ''
    Grateful Dead

  6. #6
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    I made a wooden sledge for timber framing back in the day and a couple of carving mallets that my mentor insisted were mauls.
    The only one of any consequence is a wood bodied rabbet plane. The iron came from a broken wood bodied plane in a box of old tools from my uncles basement. I traced it o to a block of maple left over from building my workbench.
    The iron is very crude and appears to be forged. It takes and holds an edge beautifully and I use it when the job is too big for the 93 and too small for the #10.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    4' x 8' work bench pieced together from the scrap piles (and maybe a piece or two from the new stock) of newly constructed houses in the neighborhood at about age 10. Thanks for the wood, Mrs. Kennedy...

  8. #8
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    jogglestick

  9. #9
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    Hmmm, ...... maybe also a jogglestick.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    Quote Originally Posted by wizbang 13 View Post
    jogglestick
    Quote Originally Posted by nedL View Post
    Hmmm, ...... maybe also a jogglestick.
    Well... yes... that's a tool.

    But you boys probably shouldn't be talking about it in polite company. Or even @ WBF <G>
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    http://www.harborwoodworking.com/boat.html

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  11. #11
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    clamps


  12. #12
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    I made a Krenov style plane, but with a handle.

    Later in Boat school I make a maple mallet.

    I used both when building my boat.
    Gerard>
    Everett, WA

    Next election, vote against EVERY Republican, for EVERY office, at EVERY level. Be patriotic, save the country.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    A Mallet and a marking gauge with some neat little brass inlay, never could find some good thumbscrews in Aus to make a couple more of those marking gauges.
    My First Boat Build:
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    Iain Oughtred - Macgregor Canoe - 15 foot

  14. #14
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    Roving iron, roving hammer and dolly.
    IMAGINES VEL NON FUERINT

  15. #15
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    I bought this fellow's book in the early '80s and made a Shaving Bench and a number of other tools from it.

    http://www.pbs.org/woodwrightsshop/w.../books-guides/

    But I grew up on a farm. We made things when we needed them, starting in childhood.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Hadfield View Post
    I bought this fellow's book in the early '80s and made a Shaving Bench and a number of other tools from it.

    http://www.pbs.org/woodwrightsshop/w.../books-guides/

    But I grew up on a farm. We made things when we needed them, starting in childhood.
    Thats how I learned, small farmers dont go out with a chequebook and buy new stuff, they recycle and rebuild, or build from scratch.

    John Welsford
    An expert is but a beginner with experience.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    A tiny hollowing plane for dishing out the back and top of a mandolin. I then used it to scrape excess epoxy from a glassed WRC strip kayak hull and then ruined it on some daggy epoxy edges, at the same time mashing my knuckles.
    When I first joined WBF they made me write a book to prove I was a real yachty. I was so gullible.
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  18. #18
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    Probably when I was 14 or 16 years old (40+ years ago) a mallet from a block of apple (I still have it and use it often), a marking gauge (still have it, but have recently upgraded), and a clunky wood bodied plane (still have the blade).

  19. #19
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    Mine was a mallet too. I glued together a couple pieces of spruce 2x4 for the head and set a dowel in for the handle. Didn't drill the hole perpendicular, so the handle is at a funny angle.

    I still use it actually, kinda like it.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    Not really sure but one early tool was a wooden hatchet with laced on wood handle and green dogwood head fired to hardness over a campfire. Unbelievable how tough and actually usable that thing was. Handles of hickory for broken ones came at regular intervals, early on to recently.

    First real shop tool was a Krenov style hand plane with hard maple body and persimmon crosspin.
    Tom L

  21. #21
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    Default Re: So what was the first woodworking tool you made for yourself?

    A small bevel gauge. Only used it a few times, but enjoyed the making! Recently made a roving iron, which I'll be using soon.

    [IMG]bevel gauge by Michael Owen, on Flickr[/IMG]
    "near it, a small whale-boat, painted red and blue, the delight of the king's old age."

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