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Saturday, November 14, 2009

A short history putting me to where I'm at now.

I've always had an interest in woodwork, but unfortunately had too many other interests and thus am getting a late start into it. Over the years I've had and enjoyed many hobbies, and most have come and gone, but my interest in creating things for myself has never died. I'm avid do-it-yourselfer anyway and have generally done everything myself from home maintenance and room remodeling, to working on my own cars, motorcycle and mowers. I even ran my own wiring in the house I live in and the garage that houses my shop, and my day job has me working in computer support where I've held several positions over the past 20+ years with my employer.

Through the past couple decades I've collected various woodworking hand and power tools, incrementally expanding my growing list of equipment with each remodel project or cool idea that's come my way. Through it all I figured by the time I retire I would be in a great position to pass the time making stuff in the shop I've gradually built. One of the more recent pieces I've added is an old 1954 Shopsmith that was a basket-case I purchased in a garage sale for $50. I spent the winter of 2004 rebuilding that unit with a mix of new parts from the manufacturer and used parts, mostly found on eBay. Once done, it was back in like-new condition with an investment of about 1/4 the cost of everything purchased new. This gave me several functions in one package to expand on what I was already able to do via the dedicated equipment for sawing and drilling that I already had on hand.
In Feb. 2007 I turned 50 and that milestone caused me to make some commitments to get things in my life in order for my 2nd half-century. I started that year committing to loosing 65lbs of weight and getting my blood pressure down (which was getting on the high side) through changing eating habits and starting to exercise. This could turn into another story, but suffice it to say a year later I had exceed my goals and lost a total of 80 lbs, dropping from a high of 270 down to under 190. With the health in order I turned to next big mess in my life, which was my finances. I made a commitment to stop using credit, paying cash for everything and getting out of debt before 60, with a goal of doing so by 55. After selling off a lot of excess "stuff" over the past year to pay things down, I'm now entering the next phase of my plan: using my DIY talents and woodworking to go the next step and turn this long time interest and hobby into something that's not only self-supporting, but hopefully profitable.

That puts me to where I am today. My first venture in to increasing earnings through woodworking has been several small projects and pens that I can easily list and sell online and start getting feel for what I'm doing as I turn this pastime I love into something a bit more. It's an area that's new to me and I've got a lot to learn, but every journey has to begin somewhere, and this is my beginning.

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A Comparison

A Comparison
Various Pen styles and their comparitive sizes