Many people around the world have discovered how rewarding woodworking can be. They are finding out that when you need a piece of furniture or a decorative item for their home designing and fabricating it from scratch allows them to express their creativity and gives them a great deal of satisfaction. Many others would like to participate in this great hobby but do not know what they have to do to get started. We are going to outline the things that you need to think about and do in order to begin. So let’s get started.
Too many people think that they need to go out and invest in a lot of expensive tools and machinery to start woodworking. This is not the case. The sensible thing is to start with a few simple projects that do not involve a large investment in tools or stock in order to determine if you enjoy woodworking.
What you are actually going to need to get started are:
1. Safety Equipment – Three pieces of safety gear you will need are eye and hearing protection along a dust mask to protect your lungs. Remember that you are using tools and machinery that can cause injury so safety is of utmost importance.
2. A Workspace – You will need a workspace that is large enough to move long boards around in. This can be a garage, basement or outdoor patio. You also need a work surface or bench that is level and allows you to clamp things onto it.
3. Basic Tools – You can get started with a hammer, screwdrivers, hardware such as screws and nails, jig saw, circular saw and clamps. You will also need a square to draw perpendicular and straight lines as well as a retractable tape measure.
So What Next?
The next thing that you will need to do is to practice your skills. Woodworking is like anything else in life. The more practice that you have the better you will become. It will also give you an understanding of how to properly use your tools and make you safer. So what should you be practicing?
1. Measuring and Cutting – It is very important that you master this. You need to be able to measure accurately and cut exactly along a line. As your projects become more and more complex this will be all that more important.
2. Templates – You want to understand how to properly use templates and jigs to make cuts exact. If you are making a table with four legs measuring probably will not work for you. Even being off 1/16″ of an inch will create problems. The proper use of templates will assure that all legs are of the same length.
3. Marking your work – This is a good habit to get into from the beginning. Every woodworker has made cuts that rendered a piece of wood useless because the cut was incorrect. You want to mark the top, bottom and sides of a piece to avoid this. Doing this will eliminate unnecessary cost and loss of time.
You’re Ready to Start
Now decide on a project that you would like to build. Once you have made this decision the next thing that you will need is a quality woodworking plan. You want to look for one that provides a tool list and a materials and cut list. It should also have detailed assembly instructions. You can find these in libraries, magazines and online. Have fun.