Where do you find plans for woodworking projects? [Archive] - Router Forums

Where do you find plans for woodworking projects?

Router Forums
11-26-2015, 01:48 PM
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Where do you find plans for woodworking projects?

Do you have sources where you buy them?

Do you use programs like SketchUp or simply draw out your ideas on paper to create your own?

Cherryville Chuck
11-26-2015, 02:01 PM
I often see photos or drawings of something I like and then modify it to suit my personal tastes, draw quite a few out on paper, and have used Sketchup for some preliminary stuff but haven't used or studied it enough to be proficient enough to make a complete and complex drawing using it.

Bodger96
11-26-2015, 02:47 PM
Books, magazines, the internet, purchase and make up my own the old fashioned way with a pencil and drawing tools. I want learn sketch up though.

Regards Bob

Stick486
11-26-2015, 03:47 PM
https://www.routerforums.com/members/router-forums-albums-featured-articles-picture4409-where-do-you-find-plans-woodworking-projects.jpg


Where do you find plans for woodworking projects?

Do you have sources where you buy them?

Do you use programs like SketchUp or simply draw out your ideas on paper to create your own?

customer brings them in...
or on the fly and a rough sketch...

tomp913
11-26-2015, 04:24 PM
Had a customer who showed me an article in "Better Homes & Gardens".

Stick486
11-26-2015, 04:41 PM
Had a customer who showed me an article in "Better Homes & Gardens".

excellent...

DesertRatTom
11-26-2015, 04:45 PM
Many times from the publications, in particular Shop Notes. Just bought all issues on a dvd. I also see some very neat things on YouTube and develop my own plan. Mostly I draw out by own plan with pencil on grid paper. I'm pretty good at visualizing things in three dimensions. There have been a number of jigs that were inspired by content here.

PhilBa
11-26-2015, 06:17 PM
I am genetically incapable of following someone else's plans so I look at a bunch of pictures of the thing I want to build and make my own plans in SU. I will look at free plans to see how the designer went about it but have yet to find plans that don't require major modifications to meet my needs. The advantage of building it first in SU is that you know pretty much how to build it. Not so many surprises after that. All of my recent projects have been that way.

denniswoody
11-26-2015, 07:02 PM
Once I have a project in mind I go to a number of sources for ideas. Magazines such as Fine woodworking or just searches on the net or catalogs from retailers or... Then I do my own design. If it is a complicated project I will do a very detailed drawing with precise measurements. I have never used SU as the time investment to become really proficient isn't worth it. My drawings are good enough.

MT Stringer
11-26-2015, 07:27 PM
Magazines, Internet forums, friends on FB (can you make this?).

I draw it up using Sketchup and go for it. :grin:

RainMan 2.0
11-26-2015, 11:38 PM
In my case it's been the forum members here . Gotten some great ideas and advice from you guys :)

Oh crap , I left myself open for another insulation joke :fie:

schnewj
11-27-2015, 12:10 AM
In my case it's been the forum members here . Gotten some great ideas and advice from you guys :)

Oh crap , I left myself open for another insulation joke :fie:

Nope, no insulation discussions...not worth it!:no:

Stick486
11-27-2015, 12:39 AM
Nope, no insulation discussions...not worth it!:no:

besides...
they weren't jokes...

Knothead47
11-27-2015, 08:53 AM
I just do a search on the Internet. Some places charge for plans, others are free (my favorite word). Tried Sketch Up and Gave Up. Went back to the pencil, graph paper and ruler. Hard to learn new tricks for this old dog.

thomas1389
11-27-2015, 09:10 AM
In my case it's been the forum members here . Gotten some great ideas and advice from you guys :)

Oh crap , I left myself open for another insulation joke :fie:

Clever move, Cable Guy! By your remark about leaving yourself open, you've effectively cut them off at the pass and "insulated" yourself against an "insulation" response. Now that's clever psychology!

ksidwy
11-27-2015, 11:53 AM
Books, magazines, internet and forums...
Sid.

Gaffboat
11-27-2015, 12:21 PM
They rumble around in my head until they finally demand to be built. :yes4: To paraphrase a movie line: "Plans? We don' need no stinking plans!"

sunnybob
11-27-2015, 03:04 PM
Where do you find plans for woodworking projects?

?


In my head! I make more sawdust that way. :nerd::smile::frown::crying:

Roy Drake
11-27-2015, 06:21 PM
Magazines. Purchased DVD's & Plans, Forums. Internet. My radar is always on. If I could just get the courage to try them!

MEBCWD
11-27-2015, 09:24 PM
I get inspiration from the internet, magazines, nature and customer ideas.

I usually start with a quick sketch so I don't forget the idea but I do have to admit when several months have gone by sometimes I have no idea what the idea was when I did the sketch.
When going back through the sketches if I like an idea well enough then it will do a better drawing and possibly some notes. If I still like the idea after playing with the it a little more then I will draw it in Sketch-Up and add details.

If it is a CNC project it usually starts with the same quick sketch then layout begins in the design software that best suits the project.

I majored in Drafting Design Technology and minored in Mathematics in college so I do know how to use a t-square, set of triangles, compass and protractor but I do my drawings on the computer.

JFPNCM
11-28-2015, 12:41 AM
Beg, borrow, steal and then modify. Alternatively, if it didn't come out as intended, it's art.

Stick486
11-28-2015, 12:49 AM
Beg, borrow, steal and then modify. Alternatively, if it didn't come out as intended, it's art.

or new milestones...

JFPNCM
11-29-2015, 01:28 AM
or new milestones...

Both work. But I've found that saying "Art did it" works as well.

Stick486
11-29-2015, 01:42 AM
Both work. But I've found that saying "Art did it" works as well.

ground breaking inspiration/innovation...

DaninVan
11-29-2015, 02:49 AM
"...but have yet to find plans that don't require major modifications to meet my needs."
-Phil
*Surprise*...isn't that pretty much how women view men?! ;)

Stick486
11-29-2015, 03:12 AM
"...but have yet to find plans that don't require major modifications to meet my needs."
-Phil
*Surprise*...isn't that pretty much how women view men?! ;)

so after awhile you loose track of what you use to be????

DaninVan
11-29-2015, 03:35 AM
so after awhile you loose track of what you use to be????

Whoever called women the fair sex didn't know anything about justice.

Stick486
11-29-2015, 01:16 PM
justice... heh...

JFPNCM
11-30-2015, 01:01 AM
justice... heh...

More like eh

Stick486
11-30-2015, 01:21 AM
More like eh

eh it is...

aahwhatever2
12-01-2015, 08:55 AM
I actually like Pinterest. My wife is always saving pictures of things she wants.... It's a growing list of Honey Do's.

I like the thought of Sketch Up, but it seems like to much "work." LOL

Jerry Bowen
12-01-2015, 09:17 AM
When I see a photo or have an idea in my head I automaticlally know how to build it, don't need plans, though I admit that some modifications are often needed along the way of the actual build.

This approach is used in light of the fact that I can't see well enough to read a set of plans. I admire those that can draw a set of plans and then follow them. My brother is so good at this, but you have to do what works for you. I don't feel one bit handicapped doing my projects the way I have do them.

Jerry

paulloseby
12-02-2015, 02:18 PM
After years of pencil and paper, downloaded a Sketchup plan and thought I would give it a go myself. Steep learning curve for a 67 year old but thoroughly enjoying it and it really brings a new dimension to your drawings. I bought a basic dvd from Joe Zeh and that has been a tremendous help. I could have saved myself a lot of time by watching that first before trying to do it myself

Moz
12-02-2015, 03:24 PM
I thought "Ted" and his infinite redirects of almost every plan idea I click on was the "ONLY" source for woodworking plans on the internet...ROFL

I SO detest that guy...

Google Image search gets my imagination into trouble, every single time. I'll be looking for something, and there will be a photo of some project that may or may not be related to what I'm researching...next thing I know, I'm imagining all kinds of creations...

I'm currently abusing plastic 4 gallon water bottles, trying to craft a "bee vacuum..."
Yeah, "Art" is what many of my imaginative inventions become...:D

~M

timbertailor
12-02-2015, 04:18 PM
I take pride in coming up with my own designs. That is the fun\creative part. The rest is just working with your hands.

OPG3
12-02-2015, 08:55 PM
My projects are NEED-BASED. If something is needed, I try to figure-out the best way to accomplish that goal.
These needs come to me from many directions. Joy is extremely creative and often has great ideas, but needs me or my team to build something for her.
My daughters also come to me with ideas that need building. Almost all of these ideas are something for their home or work. It could be a custom piece of furniture, or something with moving parts. It might be a custom sewing machine table or a holder for multiple glue guns. It might be a table for a heat press or a specialized computer table.

I have a hobby of collecting reptiles and often I find need to develop a specialized cage or device for one of the reptiles. I have hundreds of friends who also share my interest in reptiles and often ask me to build something specialized for them. Just last month, National Geographic did a television documentary about me and my reptile hobby and cage building - it was a lot of fun.

Some of you may remember that I'm currently building a new office. It is really cool and has some unique features that are my own original ideas. This week, I am building cabinets over my new work table - even the cabinets are an unusual design to accommodate my specialized needs. Not terribly long after that, I plan to build a cantilevering and rolling, sloped-top reference table. The sloping top will include a translucent Plexiglas or Lexan surface with lighting below - which will function as a "light table". I am currently hoping to locate a "Spirol", which is a slotted aluminum tube used to contain rolled (downward) drawings on old-fashioned drawing tables. If I am unable to locate one, I guess that will be something else I need to build.

Often, my projects have dimensional constraints - so carefully measuring and planning ahead weighs heavily in the accurate design of things such as this. For my drafting needs, I have AutoCAD 2016 - which I upgraded to back in August. I do quite a bit of 3d solid modeling and plot isometric views frequently on the HP T920 plotter or an HP Officejet Pro 8610. Rapid prototypes are outsourced, but a 3d plotter has been ordered by another division of our company.

Otis Guillebeau from Auburn, Georgia

Xanthorrhoeas
12-02-2015, 10:54 PM
I have never seen a design that does just what I want, but antique furniture, photos and magazine articles generate ideas. For new items I'm mostly a "seat of the pants" woodworker and, once I have a general idea, I design with rough sketches and then make it up as I go along. That wouldn't work for a production woodworker but it is ok for someone like me that has the time to spend the time to get it right (and hide the errors!).

Geevesmac
12-02-2015, 11:24 PM
On of the best investments I have made was the complete Fine Woodworking catalogue on line (or you can also buy it on DVD). Most of the articles in their books originate in FWW, and they are available as a stand-alone free of charge. The search facility is reasonably effective, but it does help to know the actual title of the FWW article. I am sure my wife regrets the day I bought it, as it consumes countless hours.

ness
12-03-2015, 12:50 AM
I have set up a site were you can use free cabinet and stair software to make plans.
You can either make projects from scratch or download templates and tweak to requirements. Once the design set up you can get all the cutting lists, drawings, and also DXF files to use in SketchUp, AutoCad or run a CNC.
Our site is a membership site with free and paid options. But the software is free to use and enables you to design much faster than SketchUp or CAD.
Here's our site:

ttocsmij
12-03-2015, 01:17 AM
My fav is the Woodsmith magazine (www dot woodsmith dot com). Professional and detailed without being condescending. Always a good read with interesting projects and tips.

Two others that come to mind are Popular Woodworking ( www dot popularwoodworking dot com ) and Fine Woodworking ( www dot finewoodworking dot com ).

All offer online access to their content as well as back issues and subscriptions for future issues, and DVDs and/or USB sticks of past content. Sadly, I used to subscribe to all of these fine publications until 2006 when I was dis-employed with extreme prejudice by a vindictive hr associate but that is a tale for another time.

P.S. Sorry about all the links you have to type in. I don't have enough forum posts to include real links yet. Sorry.

Rich t
12-03-2015, 05:40 AM
customer brings them in...
or on the fly and a rough sketch...
I also modify something I see on line.
Although, I was a mechanical designer in a prior lifetime and still have the drawing package I used in my profession.
I've adapted it to woodworking and it works quite well for what I do.
Regards,
Rich T

shadetre
12-03-2015, 06:18 AM
I find inspiration from many sources, on line, books and magazines, but the plans I draw on graph paper. I find that using as detailed as possible drawing of joint areas helps me avoid getting bitten at assembly time. I probably spend as much time drawing as I do in the shop but I have fewer 'oh crap' moments due to this.

Oakwerks
12-03-2015, 07:40 AM
Most of mine come out of my head..... But, Pinterest is a huge source for plans and ideas for jigs....

richtad
12-10-2015, 04:58 AM
If someone wants something, I'll go into google, try to find a similar item, or use some of the wood magazines that I have.I'll email it to the customer..
If they like it, I'll design and detail it with my own design ideas.
I have an old cad program, it's called solidworks.
I was a mech designer in one of my former jobs, and used this program.
One good thing about computer design, you can save, change, re-use, with little or no lost time.
To be honest, I feel my designs are from a slogan Rush Linbaugh uses. "On loan from God"
Regards,
Rich T

kevin887
12-16-2015, 08:06 PM
Internet forums, google search, facebook page.

Estoril-5
10-30-2016, 12:39 PM
I generally see something and start to replicate but on the way I have eureka moments and then tweak the design. After all the tweaks it's different enough from the original.

Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk

JOAT
10-30-2016, 08:01 PM
I just do a search on the Internet. Some places charge for plans, others are free (my favorite word). Tried Sketch Up and Gave Up. Went back to the pencil, graph paper and ruler. Hard to learn new tricks for this old dog.

Apparently this thread was from when I was on hiatus. I don't follow plans when I have them they're for guidance, not to follow. Plans are what whoever made the plans likes. I stick with pencil, 1/4" graph paper, and a ruler. I have no desire to use sketchup, or whatever, no fun using any of those.

JOAT
10-30-2016, 08:06 PM
"...but have yet to find plans that don't require major modifications to meet my needs."
-Phil
*Surprise*...isn't that pretty much how women view men?! ;)

Exactly, plans are for inspiration only.

Hmph. My second wife thought that way. I fixed that issue when I told her to hit the road, six days in.

bandsaw barry
11-30-2016, 05:23 PM
Clients usually email me a photo from a catalogue or a link on the web. I then phone or email them to receive their preferences. I use TurboCad to draw up an orthogonal using the Golden Rule where appropriate (or a 6:10 ratio - easier for metric). A 3D rendered drawing is developed from this and emailed to the client for acceptance or modification.

fmrleatherneck
12-02-2016, 09:38 AM
Customers bring in ideas, "napkin sketches", or occasionally actual plans, .... but, mostly, my head is so full of ideas, I always have 6 to 10 projects in some stage of "in process" in my shop. Many people tell me I should hire help to get things moved out of the shop, but, ... "been there / done that", a few times, both professionally and personally.

To me, managing people to complete my "vision" of a thing is just too draining. I would much rather take my time and have it (...whatever "it" is!), done MY WAY; right, wrong, or somewhere in the middle, and on my timetable!

Dezri Dean
02-23-2017, 03:46 PM
I usually draw (or sketch) my own.
I see something, a picture, an advertisement and sometimes just a picture in my mind - then I sometimes draw out a real plan...