Well, I'm back from the Charlotte show.
It was smaller than their last show here 6 years ago, and parking was $8 instead of the $5 that it had been for previous Woodworking Shows that had been held at this location. I had printed a discount coupon from their website, so I paid $12 at the door with the coupon instead of the $14 show price. Today they were offering tickets that are good for all three days instead of the reduced price if you wanted to come back the next day that they were offering when they were here the last time.
I saw the whole show, walking slow and taking my time in less than 1 hour. Then went back and took in a few classes. Some friends were manning the NC Woodworker Club booth, so I spent the rest of the afternoon with them.
I have a friend woodworker who couldn't go with me today because of other commitments, so I'll likely be back there again tomorrow, with him. It will be his first time at one of these shows, so he should enjoy it. Tomorrow I'll likely spend more time sitting in on the classes while he roams through the vendor booths. I was on my feet way too much today and my metal knees are complaining about it.
If you decide to go, maybe you should bring a lunch, because hot dogs were $4 each today, and a 16 oz bottle of soda was also $4. They were decent size hot dogs, but still way too much to charge for them. Fried chicken with French fries was the alternative, but I didn't check the price for it since I avoid fried food.
Outside the entrance to the show was a Woodmizer demo, but he only had four 12" logs to cut, so he would only make a single cut if he thought someone in the crowd might be willing to buy, so not much sawdust being made there. Inside was 3 aisles of vendors plus a few larger vendor booths across the back. 6 or 7 class room type setups were off to the left side of the vendor area, and one along the back wall. Two woodworking clubs had booths and were doing demos and "getting started in woodworking" type classes. Carter had a pretty good size booth and demonstration/class area for band saw demos. Triton was well represented with two locations. I ended up buying Triton's oscillating spindle/belt sander to replace the Ryobi oscillating spindle sander that I've been fighting with ever since I bought it. I also bought a few pieces of thin craft wood. Grace Tool had a nice display of a variety of tools and supplies similar to what has been offered by Peachtree Woodworking in prior shows. They were doing well, since Peachtree wasn't at this show. Sawstop and an imported sliding table saw were the only large tools at the show.
One booth selling Scrollnado, Drillnado, etc had a Powermatic floor standing drill press there, but it was for demonstrating their Drillnado. They have a new ....nado dust collector for band saws and had one there to demo, but they had no stock of it to sell. I liked the demo of it, but couldn't buy one at the show, so I decided to wait to order one later. It uses a small piece of magnetic rubber with a blade slot in it that attaches to the underside of the band saw table, and a special magnetically attached vacuum fitting that was connected to a Dust Deputy and a shop vac with what looked like 1" spiral flex hose. It seemed to do a very good job of collecting the saw dust, but it won't likely work well if you ever do any ferrous metal cutting on your band saw.
If I learn anything new at the show tomorrow, I'll add it here.
Central North Carolina