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Biggest disappointment so far has been the jig I built for cutting miters. It is off in some way so that the four sides of the frame just don't close up. I did learn that narrow kerf blades can deflect, which was one of the problems. Learned that wide kerf blades are much less likely to deflect, and kerf width needs to be considered in some cases.

I also learned that to make picture frames, you really need a miter trimmer (Lion type). Got a Griz trimmer and voila, perfect miters. Learned once again, that sometimes you just have to have a specific tool to get the result you want. Precision isn't as exacting for woodworking in general, but sometimes, it is everything.

This was an interesting question because there have been so many frustrating experiments, and so many lessons. Looking forward to others' responses.
 

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three story, (24'5'' tall), 60'' wide, self supporting spiral (free standing) staircase that was 12° out of rotation, 1¼'' short (due to weight compression) and lamination separations (material failure due to stresses from weight)...
 

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CableGuy...
Insulating my garage, very disappointing . I learned don't show pictures of your garage on a router wood forum till its insulated...
so how would this be a disappointment...
 
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My views on this are going to be exactly OPPOSITE from what one might expect...

Being an inventor, I LOVE TO MAKE MISTAKES, I know this initially sounds silly; but here is the truth: Rarely does an invention END-UP as it has been originally conceived! No body wants a bad reputation, so new ideas are best tested and critiqued. Everything I have invented, turned-out different by the time it "Hit the market" than the original idea. I'm a deep thinker and I utilize hand sketches and AutoCAD (2d & 3d) to produce (eventual) virtual models of my ideas.

The best way for me to learn is to make mistakes - so I view "MISTAKES" or "FAILURES" as learning experiences. But, let me also say this: I get told often that, "I tried that and it didn't work" - this doesn't even slow me down. Talk about thinking outside of the box - I don't even know where said "box" is!

Otis Guillebeau from Auburn, Georgia
 

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three story, (24'5'' tall), 60'' wide, self supporting spiral (free standing) staircase that was 12° out of rotation, 1¼'' short (due to weight compression) and lamination separations (material failure due to stresses from weight)...
Even being a failure, it still sounds like quite an accomplishment. I can hardly imagine a 5' wide spiral wood staircase 24' tall.
 

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My views on this are going to be exactly OPPOSITE from what one might expect...

Being an inventor, I LOVE TO MAKE MISTAKES, I know this initially sounds silly; but here is the truth: Rarely does an invention END-UP as it has been originally conceived! No body wants a bad reputation, so new ideas are best tested and critiqued. Everything I have invented, turned-out different by the time it "Hit the market" than the original idea. I'm a deep thinker and I utilize hand sketches and AutoCAD (2d & 3d) to produce (eventual) virtual models of my ideas.

The best way for me to learn is to make mistakes - so I view "MISTAKES" or "FAILURES" as learning experiences. But, let me also say this: I get told often that, "I tried that and it didn't work" - this doesn't even slow me down. Talk about thinking outside of the box - I don't even know where said "box" is!

Otis Guillebeau from Auburn, Georgia
Outstanding attitude, Otis!

We only learn from our mistakes. They make us better at what we do. I still get frustrated with myself when I make stupid mistakes, like cutting a drawer bottom to a wrong dimension. However, those are the types of mistakes that not only teach us, but can warn us that we are not paying attention. Sometimes they tell you it is time to back off before we make a mistake we WILL regret.

The old saying, that, "those who do not learn from history, are bound to repeat it", can be applied to woodworking.
 
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Even being a failure, it still sounds like quite an accomplishment. I can hardly imagine a 5' wide spiral wood staircase 24' tall.
tear it down and do it again...
 

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Pretty much everything I do. But then, I tend to have unrealistic expectations, especially for the first time I've tried something. What I've learned from my friend Oliver is to make a mock-up out of cardboard, or scrap wood, first to see how the process is going to work before I mess up expensive wood.
 

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My views on this are going to be exactly OPPOSITE from what one might expect...

Being an inventor, I LOVE TO MAKE MISTAKES, I know this initially sounds silly; but here is the truth: Rarely does an invention END-UP as it has been originally conceived! No body wants a bad reputation, so new ideas are best tested and critiqued. Everything I have invented, turned-out different by the time it "Hit the market" than the original idea. I'm a deep thinker and I utilize hand sketches and AutoCAD (2d & 3d) to produce (eventual) virtual models of my ideas.

The best way for me to learn is to make mistakes - so I view "MISTAKES" or "FAILURES" as learning experiences. But, let me also say this: I get told often that, "I tried that and it didn't work" - this doesn't even slow me down. Talk about thinking outside of the box - I don't even know where said "box" is!

Otis Guillebeau from Auburn, Georgia
I'm with you, Otis, few of my projects end up the way they were initially envisioned — and usually they end up better. Of course along the way I may have to switch to Plan B or Plan C even when those additional plans didn't exist until "the multiplicities of interacting factors" forced what we in the artillery call a Bold Range Change. :laugh:
 
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I'm with you, Otis, few of my projects end up the way they were initially envisioned — and usually they end up better. Of course along the way I may have to switch to Plan B or Plan C even when those additional plans didn't exist until "the multiplicities of interacting factors" forced what we in the artillery call a Bold Range Change. :laugh:
ahhhh.
plan ''C'' because ''B'' was a bummer...
 
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Cor !


Rog
 

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"A man's reach should exceed his grasp." Robert Browning


Rog
 
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Life.
as soon as you learn something, you forget something.
as soon as you want to do something, you find your body doesnt want to do it.

Dont think I'm ever going to get the hang of it.
Another lesson: When I do one new thing right, and something I thought I knew wrong, it is time to slow down. Sometimes I think that using power tools makes it easy to get in a rushed state, which is when the old lesson doesn't have time to come to you. At least that seems to be what happens to me. Patience is a great lesson, worth the occasional supplication "God, give me patience, and I mean RIGHT NOW!"

Switching to hand tools sometimes breaks this false sense of urgency.
 

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I look at them as "learning experiences" it just helps when you didn't spend an amount equal to a college tuition on it . . . . and I can always make a second version more correctly . .. lol
 

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Most of my projects have some disappointment involved but like Otis and Oliver I can usually find a way to solve the problems rather than start over. I haven't tried any tall free standing spiral stairs though. That sounds like an expensive learning curve.

Like Desert Rat Tom I find I make mistakes much more slowly using hand tools.
 
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On every project I do ,I have to go into "Save Mode" before it is finished. And I think that figuring out how to save it is the challenge for me. Very few have gone in the garbage,some have become shop fixtures tho.

Herb

In that first picture, I can't work in shop with gloves on, or all my projects would end up in the garbage.
 
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