kageryu

Beginner Needing Advice

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Hi Guys,

Like many, I've had an interest in woodworking for quite some time, but I did not think about getting into the hobby until I saw a few videos on line of people making cutting boards.  I've been pricing out a few new cutting boards and the idea of being able to make my own fascinate me.  My favorite how-to video is the one done by the Wood Whisperer.  So, I would like to try my hand at making one.  I have very little experience, but I don't mind diving in and seeing what happens.  I currently have a 12'' Dewalt chop saw and a 10'' table saw (not a great table saw. It is a portable Ridgid I bought off of Craig's list a few years ago.  It probably needs a new blade.)

So, my first question is what other tools do I need to begin a project like this?  I know I will need some sort of plane but right now I'm not willing to drop the cash for a power one.  My head is spinning a little with all of the different types of planes.  From watching the video, I will also need an orbital sander and a few scrapers.  Any advice on what to buy and where would be most appreciated.

My next question is about a work table.  Right now I don't have one.  I've found some nice DIY table plans online, but I'm hesitant to start a large project like that without a little more experience.  I did find this table on Amazon that looked promising.  "Windsor Design Workbench with 4 Drawers" What do you think?

Thanks for taking the time to read my thread.

-phil

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I got into woodworking the exact same way you are now. You will need some clamps, at least 3 and 5 would be better.  You will need a random orbit sander, some sandpaper of different grades, and some tightbond 3 wood glue. And that's it. If you want you can also but a number 4 or 5 plane but it's not necessary.  If you like making the cutting board you can always but more advanced tooling down the road. Welcome aboard!

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Fine woodworking has a video series for making a decent workbench at their "startwoodworking" webpage. It's nothing pretty, but it works.

If you build it and put edging around the mdf, make the vice jaws flush with the edging.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Depends on how big of a cuttingboard for how sturdy of clamp. But 1/2" pipe clamps will be pretty cheap, can be virtually any length (determined by how much pipe you buy) and will do the job. If you are making a small board some "F" frame clamps will do you fine, if making a larger board you may need something more study. For simplicity sake I would go with either 1/2 or 3/4" pipe clamps depending on what you can buy easily. As for which orbital sander. If you have a vacuum you plan to hook up to the orbit sander I really don't have a suggestion, any will do fine. If you don't plan to use a vacuum then use the Ridgid orbit sander available at home depot. It does a really good job for a sander with no vacuum for dust collection. 

You don't need a work bench for your first project. I made mine on a concrete floor.

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Half inch pipes deflect more easily and the cost difference is not great. I would encourage three quarter instead if you buy pipe. 

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Harbor Freight's clamps work well for that type of project  The "F" type.  Many have begun building small projects on top of a washing machine, or freezer!  A couple saw horses and some plywood, will work till you figure out if this is your kind of hobby... One word of caution though... If you find you like working with wood and the machinery that goes with woodworking.. prepare to stay broke, because you'll always want "more" !   Any sander will do the work you need as a start.   Check C-list for folks getting their garages empty, always make sure the tool works before you hand over any money, and take someone with you! You don't know the seller, so protect your butt!

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All good recommendations. If you do get into woodworking, be prepared to forego any future vacations, lengthy conversations with the wife, gardening, golf, etc., as this s#*t's  addicting and expensive, not intending to bust your bubble! Good luck and welcome to a fantastic forum!

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I would second what K Cooper said ;)  I'm only in just over a year into this and you're right, it's addicting.  One thing I'd recommend on the clamps if not already mentioned is getting parallel clamps when you can afford them.  I found they work so much better when clamping up cutting boards.

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Definitely get a new saw blade and some blade cleaner.  I had your same table saw for about 5 years and did a lot with it.  The only blade I used when I made my first cutting board was a Freud narrow kerf  80 tooth blade.  Home depot.  I probably wasn't the best choice but it is what I had back then.  A good blade for the money.

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On 4/10/2016 at 9:06 PM, PWRFULZ3R0 said:

Fine woodworking has a video series for making a decent workbench at their "startwoodworking" webpage. It's nothing pretty, but it works.

If you build it and put edging around the mdf, make the vice jaws flush with the edging.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

This looks like a great first project.  The only major tool I don't have is a router.  Would anyone have recommendations on beginner routers?  I was looking a a Dewalt DWP611PK, but it only accepts 1/4 inch bits.  Is that something I should worry about right now?

I'm not sure if there is a local place to get good hardwood for cutting boards.  Are there any preferred online sites?  I would be looking for 8/4 hard maple and 8/4 purple heart for my first board.

 

-phil

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1 hour ago, kageryu said:

This looks like a great first project.  The only major tool I don't have is a router.  Would anyone have recommendations on beginner routers?  I was looking a a Dewalt DWP611PK, but it only accepts 1/4 inch bits.  Is that something I should worry about right now?

I'm not sure if there is a local place to get good hardwood for cutting boards.  Are there any preferred online sites?  I would be looking for 8/4 hard maple and 8/4 purple heart for my first board.

 

-phil

If you're going to invest in a router, one that accepts 1/2" bits is a much wiser investment.  The Bosch 1617 is a very nice tool. I had one for awhile. Sold it to a friend. It's nice piece. Not terribly expensive either.   

Where do you live? Most cities will have a hardwood dealer.  Saves on shipping costs.  With a Table saw, some clamps and glue, you should be able to get going with some cutting boards.  I too recommend going with 3/4" pipe clamps if you go that route. 1/2" clamps and pipe are not much cheaper but are considerably less strong. 

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I live in South New Jersey, about 15 minutes away from Philly.  There could very well be some dealers near me, especially in PA near Philly.  I did plan on picking up a few Bessey Parallel clamps.  The 24'' ones seemed long enough to do a cutting board and I think I can get them at the local Home Depot.

I'm almost sure I need a new blade for the table saw and was looking at one of the combination blades (Forrest Woodworker II and Freud Fusion.)  Until I started researching, I didn't even know that certain blades are better at ripping and some are better at cross cutting.

I'll probably pick up all of the stuff I need slowly.  Maybe the router and a sander first so I can build the table.  I'm hoping I can hit one of the Bessey sales for the clamps and then pick up the blade.

 

-p

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The Forest blade is really good and I rarely change it out.

Keep your eyes out for the sales on the clamps but, they just don't go on sale very often.

This can be a very expensive hobby!  It takes a long time to build up some of the shops you see here.

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HI Phil welcome to the forum. Woodworking can be an expensive hobby as you will always "need" that next tool. I agree with the advice that you have been given so far.

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1 hour ago, kageryu said:

I live in South New Jersey, about 15 minutes away from Philly.  There could very well be some dealers near me, especially in PA near Philly.  I did plan on picking up a few Bessey Parallel clamps.  The 24'' ones seemed long enough to do a cutting board and I think I can get them at the local Home Depot.

I'm almost sure I need a new blade for the table saw and was looking at one of the combination blades (Forrest Woodworker II and Freud Fusion.)  Until I started researching, I didn't even know that certain blades are better at ripping and some are better at cross cutting.

I'll probably pick up all of the stuff I need slowly.  Maybe the router and a sander first so I can build the table.  I'm hoping I can hit one of the Bessey sales for the clamps and then pick up the blade.

 

-p

I was in your boat too about 12 months ago. I'm still a noob but I can't even recognize that dude, for one, he thought he was poor - now he knows better because poor is a direct correlation of the number and quality of tools you have.

Table saw blade - I found out there were different ones for different cuts and immediately became concerned. But when the Wood Whisperer said that he mainly uses a combo blade for everything, I figured.. well good enough for him, good enough for me. So then it was brand, ultimately I decided that the Freud would provide a quality that is high enough that I'd not notice the difference and be a little cheaper. Some people swear that the Freud is better than the Forest blade. I have no idea. So I got that. It has been great for me.

Also, I know that something I picked up recently that I really wish I had gotten on day one - the Wixey digital angle gauge. Check the reviews sub-forum for the thread on it. Knowing your blade is square removes a ton of variables. Same with knowing it's parallel to the miter slot and your fence is parallel to the slot as well.

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I have the Bosch 1617 and it's great.  Just a word of caution, while a router is not the most dangerous tool by any stretch, it is quite possibly the most likely to give you a brown-pants moment if you don't do your homework before using it.  When I first started I had no idea that you were supposed to route in a particular direction.  I ran the router in the wrong direction, took a large chunk of wood out of my work piece, nearly had a heart attack and was afraid to go near a router for a good long while afterwards.

Not to sound preachy, but whenever you buy a new tool, make sure you know how to use it safely.  Spending a few hours learning before using is a small price to pay.

That being said, enjoy!  Woodworking is great, as long as your kids are ok with paying their own way through college. 

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