Too much to ask for one decent project?


jimbofoxman
 Share

Recommended Posts

Is it too much to ask to have one decent project?  Not some coasters, clipboard or simple frame.  A cabinet, a dovetail  cornered shelf, etc.

Took a week off on a small project cause all I was doing is getting pissed.  Came down, run some test pieces......all milled at the same time as the "good" pieces.  Looks decent.  Run the "good pieces".  WTH?  Went up stairs and had lunch, but really don't want to be down here.

How many centuries did it take for you to produce something good.  I'm this close to lighting a match and walking away.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Maybe if you posted some pictures of the problem the folks here could offer up some help.  There are a number of things that can cause frustration in the shop.  Tools that aren't tuned up correctly can be the most common point of frustration.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I find that if I don’t enter the shop with a clear list of what I am going to work on and complete (ensuring that those things can easily be done in the time I have), I am much more likely to rush something or do something out of order and get frustrated. If I find myself getting to that point, I pack up and leave the shop. Nothing good comes out of pushing on at that point. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well we'll deal with the Leigh D4 another time.  I'd just assume throwing that in the trash.....but I borrowed it from a buddy.  Why on a test run I got tight through dovetails and then on the good pieces I had gaps, tearout (new bit) and a step on the side between say the horizontal and vertical.  I could see getting in a rush and not getting it pushed against the stops.  The loose fingers is perplexing.  But I am done with that for now, spent way to many days testing.  I'm not sold on that contraption and I'm not setup to cut them myself.........yet.  Although I question if they will ever be right too.

So the thing that made me not want to come down for over a week was a sliding dovetail for the middle shelf.  Test run on the contrasting woods look pretty good to me (could be a touch better I suppose).  But then to get the other photo........what the heck?   I think the Router Table and Fence are square.  Material to me was square.  Did I rush, god I didn't think I did.  Thought I had good pressure towards the fence and down to the table.  The only difference with the test piece and the final piece was the length.  Say 12" long test and 35" long final.

Just frustrating that you think you got things all dialed in and then bam.

Photo Jan 26, 12 14 54 PM.jpg

Photo Jan 26, 2 57 15 PM.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It looks to me like you adjusted the height of the bit between pieces.  I cut the slot first.  Do not adjust the bit at all.  Then on scrap pieces (the exact thickness of the real piece) start cutting and fitting the tails.  When you get the fit correct, cut the tails on the real piece.

 

Keep making small projects, you will improve your skills and the big projects will come

 

Good Luck  DW

Link to comment
Share on other sites

28 minutes ago, Dylder said:

It looks to me like you adjusted the height of the bit between pieces.  I cut the slot first.  Do not adjust the bit at all.  Then on scrap pieces (the exact thickness of the real piece) start cutting and fitting the tails.  When you get the fit correct, cut the tails on the real piece.

Ok, the contrasting one was a trial run just to make sure I had the technique down.  Two different setups. 

Here is one with the same setup and the non-contrasting one.   Damn tear out.............but fortunately it is on the back side.  Routed the grooves first, then went to the router table and snuck on the width.  Only thing I can think of is with it being a long piece I rocked it some how.

Photo Jan 26, 4 58 51 PM.jpg

Edited by jimbofoxman
added photo
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On the pin board, use either something sacrificial behind it to stop the tear out or use a board wider than you need and rip it to size after cutting the tail to remove the tear out.  Make sure everything is clean of dust and chips to help eliminate the rocking.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, Tpt life said:

Are your scrap and final pieces EXACTLY the same thickness? They appear to not be. It is important to try to batch your test pieces through all of the same prep steps. 

Too true.  Also, blanks must be well milled and true.  This is particularly true when you use machined reference surfaces on jigs and so forth.  And deviation is translated to the mating pieces. 

Not using exact test pieces is also an error folks will make when finishing.  They will test the finish on some random scrap of wood that has not been surface prepared the way the keeper piece has been prepared.  This sort of test piece is pretty useless.

Another couple of helpers for this sort of joinery is to use a stopped sliding DT.  If you don't exit, you can't blow out.

59dea8cd000f2_DebVanityOrg(4).jpg.8704229f0e1525a6ee45ccc3813f29a5.jpg

For sliding DT's that you want to show, make the blanks a little extra wide and trim the show edge with a hand plane or even the tablesaw.

sliding-DT-2.jpg.778c0cdc1e8e2b21a1cfd16df37f9535.jpg

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If something frustrating doesn't happen in the shop every time I go out there I figure I didn't do anything! There are always things that go well, things that are just OK and things that are "omg how am I gonna fix THAT?" 

Be patient, work slowly, make sure everything is the way it should be before cutting, and yeah, always test pièces or prototypes before actual execution on expensive material. 

You'll get there man! :) 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...
On 1/26/2019 at 7:35 PM, Chip Sawdust said:

If something frustrating doesn't happen in the shop every time I go out there I figure I didn't do anything! There are always things that go well, things that are just OK and things that are "omg how am I gonna fix THAT?" 

Be patient, work slowly, make sure everything is the way it should be before cutting, and yeah, always test pièces or prototypes before actual execution on expensive material. 

You'll get there man! :) 

I am off to buy another $65 sheet of maple ply.    Because of space issues I had to cut off the end of some ply before running it.  Marked, clamped down straight edge, put tape down to help tearout and proceeded to cut with factoring in the offset of the circular saw.  NO PROBLEM........I can still make it work, although the grain orientation will be off on two drawers but I could save it, and most people wouldn't see it with stuff in them.  Cutlist gave the new layout.  Proceeded to cut and **** I messed up again.  Not sure how I did it yet......but I resisted throwing things thru the wall and lightning a match.

I'm going to end up with no money, no retirement and a house that cost me $500k and will only sell for $170-180k because 3/4 of the time I have to do it all over again.

Told my Woodworking/Photography buddy last night I wasn't having fun anymore.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yep, just step back & take a breath. When I get frustrated because of a mistake I tend to get mad, plow ahead, and make more mistakes.

After you've had a suitable break, go back to it & force yourself to slow down, measure everything one more time, think through each step one more time. Even if you only go half as fast it's still better than full speed ahead & damn the mistakes.  "The hurryer I go, the behinder I get".

I constantly struggle with getting into this rut & feel your pain.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Half of my projects start out the way you describe.

slow down, take your time with each step.

practice EVERTHING first, whether it's clamping, cutting, whatever.

I have been there, and I swear that when you complete one task well, it gets better as you move through the project.

Hang in there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I make mistakes that need to be replaced, I set the "bad" part aside and save it for making a new or smaller version of the same thing.  I still have a couple handles for boxes that I miscalculated the length.  I finished the woodworking part of them and have them saved for when I make something similar to the original but just a tad smaller.  Could also rework parts of the handles if necessary.

I only become frustrated when the mistake creates waste.  Otherwise it's a learning experience and I'm not willing to let it ruin my day.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

  • Who's Online   4 Members, 0 Anonymous, 157 Guests (See full list)

  • Forum Statistics

    29.8k
    Total Topics
    405.1k
    Total Posts
  • Member Statistics

    22498
    Total Members
    3644
    Most Online
    ekatz
    Newest Member
    ekatz
    Joined