Category: Sports and Outdoors

My story with carving and why i chose to learn it

3-4 years ago, I noticed that my office job was driving me crazy and made up my mind to get a hobby to relax my mind. But the hobby had to be something done outdoors, like hunting or fishing. Except for, I love animals and couldn never kill them for fun. In case you haven’t noticed, I really hated being in the office for the whole day, so I didn’t want to pick up hobbies like watching football or playing video games. They were too passive for my taste. I couldn’t think of anything else, and as I was just about to give up on my mission, my friend said he got to watching Youtube DIY tutorials in which a guy built great furniture with only handful of tools and some wood. That got me intrigued, so I asked for a link and watched the video. I loved it, and devoured the whole channel, which had more than hundred videos, in about a week. I spent all my free time watching it during that week. And finally, I made up my mind to get started in woodworking. But making decisions wasn’t going to be as easy as I had hoped.

I had to pick which tools to buy. I always try to buy the best products  available, even if that means paying the premium. Because I understand that cheap tools will fail soon and they’ll cost you more than best mini circular saw. But at the same time, I didn’t want to pay more than hundred bucks for a tool that I wasn’t sure if I would need, or knew how to use.  After a lot of thought and considering both sides, I decided on hand tools. But not just hand saw and stuff like that – I decided to pick up ancient art of carving. I’ve always been fascinated by carving and its effects on art, so this seemed like a perfect idea. I would work on improving my carving skills and eventually, move on to buying real tools and starting making real furniture as the guy in the video did. And I figured that with the skill of carving at my sleeve, I could complete much harder and advanced projects than I would by just using the circular saw.

And 3 years later, I don’t regret my decision, not even in the slightest form. After just about two months of trial and failure, my carving skills were pretty good and after about six months, I moved on to building real furniture. First project I did was a sofa, and that sofa is still in my living room today.  Thanks for reading my story and leave the comment if it inspired you. If this post has any reactions at all, I might publish further posts and various tutorials about getting started in woodworking.

Are hand saws worth the investment?

A lot of beginners romanticize the idea of buying hand tools and exclusively using them on their woodworking projects, without any use of power tools at all. I know this, because I’ve seen many beginners do this, and i made this mistake myself as well.  The truth is that using hand saw or other hand tools seems like a good idea but when you practically apply it, it just doesn’t work. Learning curve is much steeper, and it can sometimes take years to master a hand tool and complete even simple project using it. Not having the built-in measuring and accuracy features that power tools have can also be a struggle. To use hand tool properly, you’ll need tons of additional measuring accessories just to get straight cut. I’m not saying that it can’t be done, it’s just very hard for someone as lazy as me to spend that much energy on simple things that power tools can solve. If you’re hand tool purist, who doesn’t like using technology for some reason, then I’d say go for it. But otherwise, if you’re regular human looking for the most efficient tool to do the job, I’d advise to stay away from hand tools and use table saw or good worm drive saw instead.

A lot of people realize how unefficient these tools are only after spending hundreds of dollars on  them. And that’s another myth I should tackle : the price. Unlike common belief, I must say that hand tools aren’t cheap, not even close. Let’s take circular saw as a comparison. You can buy good dewalt circular saw for about hundred bucks or slightly more. And it can do ton of things much faster and more efficiently than any hand tool out there. Now compare that to hand saw, which can take even few days and still not be as good as the circular saw. And they’re not that cheap either. Buying hand saws, which are expensive by themselves, isn’t even enough. It needs additional measuring tools and some other stuff, which can cost two or three times more than how much you would’ve spent if you just stuck with regular tools.  If you’re very tight on a budget, you can consider getting used dewalt tools, or check out tools from cheaper brands like Ryobi. I’ve never had Ryobi circular saw myself, but people say that despite it’s price, it’s pretty good and even though it’s not as tough as dewalt tools are, it can last at least year or two. And for the price, I think that’s awesome. When a product costs half of what other, higher quality product costs, you shouldn’t expect it to be as awesome, but instead be thankful that option of buying something like Ryobi circular saw is available to you.