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251 Views 20 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  mwigington
Greetings from East Texas. I just found this site and am hoping to get some help. A little about me, I help my wife with a furniture business and I also dabble in making products for sale such as planter boxes and beer caddies. My grandfather was a woodworker, built all kinds of things. He even once made his own wood shingles for a kitchen addon he did to his house. I'm not so nearly as good as he, but maybe one day.

Thanks for having me!
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I'm with you on the table saw. My first was a Delta, 1hp, on a clearance sale new for $300. It was OK, but I then bought a Laguna Fusion saw, and the difference in accuracy was amazing. More power and convertable to 220 as well. Laguna is best known for their band saw, and I later bought a Laguna 14 inch 14/12, which is a wonderful and beautifully engineered saw. But most of the time I use a 6 inch table top band saw, which has a brand name, but is identical to the WEN saw for a third less than the brand name.

What are you doing for sawdust collection? Sawdust, especially the ultra fine stuff will clog your lungs and shorten your life. I have two Harbor Freight units, one for my back yard shop, the other for the big tools in my garage. The shop is too small to hold the big tools This is a picture of my shop DC setup. The shop shed is right next to my outside office shed, so I enclosed the space between and keep the DC in that chamber. This allows recirculating cleaned, air conditioned or AC air. The DC units were on sale, so I bought two for $152 each. The shop shed has a Wynn drum filter that catches down to one micron. If you look at the wall on the right, you can see there is another 20x20 filter where the air returns to the shop. The cone is the large version of the Dust Deputy cyclone and that's a 30 gallon drum--easy to empty.

Like you, I love hand planes, and have several made by WoodRiver. I have a #4 and #6, plus a couple of smaller ones. A block plane, and one for tenons. PLlus one I rarely use that I got because it's so beautiful, called a router plane. It has attachments for cutting inlays, and it's wonderful to use. Made by Veritas.

I have a 10 inch Bosch sliding, compound miter saw, but I don't use it very often and wish I'd just bought a simple chop saw and spent the rest on wood. I make picture frames for my wife, so I have some specialty tools to cut perfect 45 degree miters.

I prefer to do most of my router work on a table. Marc Sommerfeld has a series of YouTube videos on using his tools, which are wonderful for learning to use a router. I use a Triton TRA001, the same as Marc's, which has a built in lift and plenty of power. I have a couple of Bosch 1617s, one was used to be in the table. I hardly ever use them anymore so I"m likely to sell them soon. For the hand held work, I have a Bosch Colt, which I use for mortising for hinges when I replaced all the interior doors in our house. There are mid size trim routers that are better choice now.

My shop shed and garage are finished and wired for the tools. My wife treated me to an electrician who set up a 60 amp sub panel for my shed shop. It has three, 20 amp circuits, all color coded so I don't overload any one. My wife once asked if I was ever going to make money from all those tools, I replied, "about as much as you will from your quilting equipment," which cost about the same as all my tools combined.

I got old and a little fragile, so I don't do as much woodworking anymore, just picture frames for my artist wife. But it has been a very satisfying hobby for decades now. As a kid I grew up in an old farmhouse that needed constant repairs, so I have been making sawdust for a long time.

I've attached a pdf of the 18 areas and things that accelerated my learning curve for woodworking. It's long and very detailed and has lots of pictures. It is meant to help others avoid some of my expensive mistakes. Just remember you don't have to buy everything all at once. But do buy good quality tools, even if you have to use a little credit. Buy in haste, repent at leisure.
Currently I am not doing anything for sawdust collection. We sweep/vacuum it up and I wear a nice mask to keep from breathing it. I retired after 33 years of municipal work but had to go back to work because my insurance went up and the economy went down. So I don't get to do a lot of woodworking right now except what my wife's business needs done. I'm not breathing it everyday at the moment. We have talked about a dust collection system and we do need it, that is for sure.

That router plane is very nice! I am envious. :) I have a few of the old Stanley small planes and one big one. I have a Ryobi plunge router and an inexpensive Kobalt tabletop router table. I have an old Sears router that I love, but I think the bearings are going on it. When you turn it on, something is making a screaming noise, and I have decided it's best not to find out so I haven't used it in a long time. It's good quality and if I could find the parts to fix it, I would. My brother gave me a Craftsman miter saw with a laser guide. It's really nice. I used it to build the planter boxes.

When we moved to East Texas in 78, we built our own house. I have helped make sawdust for a long time lol :) Dad wouldn't let me touch the table saw or circular saw till I was a teenager. Funny how he didn't mind me using an ax to split the firewood, though. HA! I grew up on a small farm here near a little town called Big Sandy Texas. I've done everything from milking cows, helping my grandfather run traps, to picking peas and digging taters. As much as I didn't overly enjoy it when I was a kid, I miss those simpler days for sure! We did everything ourselves back then and that is what has endeared woodworking to me now that I am in my fifties.

I have downloaded the pdf and will read it, thank you so much!
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