The Editors Mailbox

The Editors Mailbox

A good letter for holiday reading

comments (0) December 11th, 2009 in blogs

AsaC AsaC, Contributor
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Bill Venrick sent in this photo of a shopmade base he built for his Ryobi tablesaw, based on a FWW article he found in a Taunton Press book.  - CLICK TO ENLARGE

Bill Venrick sent in this photo of a shopmade base he built for his Ryobi tablesaw, based on a FWW article he found in a Taunton Press book. 

I recently received this e-mail from a longtime reader, and it stayed with me. Being able to create Fine Woodworking magazine is humbling and inspiring, but some days, I must admit, I get caught up in the sales figures and spreadsheets. Letters like this remind me what it's all about:

"Just a long overdue note to tell you how much I have appreciated Fine Woodworking through the years. Most recently I finally got around to using an idea from the book "The Small Wood Shop" (a collection of FWW articles), specifically, an article by Jim Boesel. I have a photo I would be glad to send you showing an adapted version of the mobile base shown on pg. 79. I rigged it for the outer sides of my Ryobi saw cabinet. I am tickled to death with it because it works MUCH BETTER than the clumsy 4" wheels Ryobi recommended to mount on one end of the cabinet. I doubt if this message system will allow me to include a photo so I would be honored if you request it by e-mail.

I bought your book in Dec 1994 so you can see I hang onto stuff!  I am 77 years old and in addition to caring for my wife who had a stroke 18 months ago I still squeeze in time to 'mess around' in my woodshop. My wife is making good recovery for her age but at our age we know the possibilities are not great for complete recovery but we are content with whatever we can achieve!

Wishing you the best, William Venrick, Lancaster, Ohio."

His last phrase stuck with me--"we are content with whatever we can achieve." I didn't expect to get the recipe for happiness--gratitude--in a Letter to the Editor!

After I took a moment to think about William, and my own family, I e-mailed him to say thanks, to wish him and his wife the best, and ask to see that mobile base. Within the hour, he e-mailed me back 4 photos of his rig and a detailed description of how it goes together. Another great thing about woodworkers is how ready they are to share knowledge.

During this holiday season, I want to say thanks to all the readers who take the time to send us letters and e-mails. They are not all as happy with us as William is, of course, but each letter represents a real person taking the time to reach out to a bunch of other real folks (editors) about a craft and a magazine that is dear to us all.  Happy holidays, merry christmas, happy hannukah, all the best to you and yours.

posted in: blogs, workshop

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