Encinitas, CA, US

Recent comments

Re: California Considers Tougher Safety Standards for Tablesaws

Sawzall316, Collusion on the part of the TS manufacturers to deny you or anyone else the right to have a saw stop safety device is rediculous. Racketeering? Yeah OK then. Their "unified front" of not offering the SS technology is nothing more than fundamental economics, not a targeted conspiracy.

It's very simple. The market needs cost effective machines! People do not have vast quantities of disposable income to throw around. Here in America we think everything comes cheap so we all want a Ferrari for the cost of a Chevy. Sorry pal, it just doesn't work that way. The cost of manufacturing for a totally redesigned product line has to be passed back to the consumer. It's more than expensive to retool, create a new manufacturing process and line, remanufacture all new parts and train personnel to assemble and service the product. Then there's marketing, distribution and support to name just a few more money sucking black holes. Potentially tens of millions of dollars that would take years to recover. But hey, this should be no impact right.

It's a big impact. Unlike Saw Stop that has only one line to cover, existing companies will not only have to retool to a whole new technology but dump the existing line while continuing to support and maintain all the existing products as well. Here's a reality check. That could very much spell disaster for a large number of manufacturers. Let's just say this was likely not in the business plan. You think you're stressed at the gas pump? Add a million dollars a week to that, then talk about it.

let's not overlook the next obvious crusade. Now the door is open for the safety police to demand that variations of this be added to every tool with a moving cutter. Kiss about 60% of the manufacturers goodbye along with their jobs they used to bring to the table.

This is just a little deeper than you want, you want, you want conspiracy theories. The decision could have profound imapct. So Mr Sawzall, as much as you believe that it's the role of government to make all your decisions for you and protect you from any potential harm, some of us just don't share that point of view.

Re: California Considers Tougher Safety Standards for Tablesaws

Sawzall316, you and a noticably small group of others seem so entrenched in your opinion that the government absolutely must mandate this technology. I'm try to figure out why you're so anxious to keep opening this door. Private use Tablesaws are in fact by definition Private. They are not a wide spread public danger that I can see. What's the real problem in your eyes with allowing the end user to make the personal choice? Why not let the market determine what the masses want rather than having an opinionated minority making decisions for the vast majority yet again?

In a FREE market, if people want it they'll buy it. Why exactly do we need the government to once again jump in and save us from ourselves? I want to know who is going to save us from our government. You might look around the world today think about the cost of government protection. If I'm going to give up another freedom of choice, I'd like to have a good reason for it. Since I'm not comprehending the urgent public peril here, maybe you could articulate your reasoning so I can fully understand the basis for your fear.

Re: California Considers Tougher Safety Standards for Tablesaws

I bought my first car in 1968, a brand new Shelby Cobra GT KR500 Mustang fully loaded and paid $4650.00. That's not a joke and boy are those days gone. Just wait until the feds get their fat fingers fully into all our woodworking machines. Immagine Kia making our equipment because by the time they get done mandating all the added garbage, no one will be able to afford a Delta, let alone be able to use it. A basic Kia saw costing $10,000.00 to purchase and a router weighing 40 pounds with all the safety junk. HEY!! Has anyone thought of small machine air bags? New industy idea; certified mechanics with the proper equipment for blade changes. I can see the check brake light telling me it's time for the mandatory blade brake replacement and the saw won't run until the service is completed and reset. What about a special tool and an $80.00 charge to reset the idiot light. Oh and for the city, if someone disables the safety. Let's put a hefty fine attached to that one. Second offense,,, JAIL!!! In California it will likely end up as a biennial cartridge safety inspection to renew my license to use the saw. Cha Ching there's another hundred or so every couple of years. That's only half a joke. If you live here, you know the slope we're on and slippery doesn't even come close. Come on, what works for cars can easily be applied to these machines.

Seriously, if every machine you own was required to have not only blade brakes, but get ready for brakes on every cutter in the shop, where does it end? Don't forget that for every machine there are a hundren politicians with a platform. What about any other supporting technology required to make all woodworking tools idiot proof? My goodness our shops are a treasure trove of political opportunities um, excuse me dangerous hazards. Here's the real deal, many of us wouldn't have a shop at all. Any more than I can't afford to buy a new Shelby today, I couldn't afford to equip a home shop with what it would cost for all that mandated junk. How will we ever survive with out it?

Yeah I know, it's all just rediculous isn't it. The question is, what part?

Re: California Considers Tougher Safety Standards for Tablesaws

I live in California and I and as far as I'm concerned I'm fed up. We have the biggest bunch of pin heads running this state bankrupt. Here's another guy jumping on an obvious band wagon trying to make a name for himself by enacting more legislation that we'll all have to foot the bill to administer. What is wrong with people? Are we so unable to take care of ourselves that we're anxious to open the door for govenment to invade us even deeper. I don't need anyone to tell me how to use a saw. I'm 59 and use my tools correctly I'm not worried. I certainly don't need some idiot in Sacramento who doesn't know a tablesaw from a chisel how to use my tools or spend my money. This pandering moron doesn't have a clue what I need. Let the market determine what people want. The technology is available if you want it. If you're worried, buy it. Don't tell me I have to buy it if I don't want or need it. What I have in my garage is my business and the state of California take a leap. So Mr. Williams (D), Get out of my house and leave us alone.

Re: The Story Behind the Government's Pending Tablesaw Ruling

I completely agree that table saws as well as many household goods can and should be made as safe as is possible. I am however so sick and tired of the idea that people are compete idiots that cannot take responsibility for their own actions and that the government should foce safety measure down our throats. I'm 58 years old and to hear people talk today, I should have never survived childhood. I rode my bike without a helmet. I didn't wear knee pads. Good grief there was no one around to tell me to put my seat belt on. It was cruel to raise a child with such disregard for personal safety. Today some politician somewhere is lookng for the next issue on which to hang his hat and build a career. What the heck, we're all making so much money we can afford whatever the mess up.

Re: Is mass customization good for custom artistry?

rant - Because CustomMade is a major advertiser in FWW.

Re: CPSC Drafting New Tablesaw Regulations

The tablesaw is not the relevant point. Some guys seem to think this is about the quality of their Sawstop. Uh, missed the point son. One idiot that says these devices should be mandated for routers and every power tool. Well, what can you say to that besides not much? Obviously this is not about a tablesaw or offering a safety system. The real story is about the self respect we show in ourselves to own our personal actions.

One school of thought is that the Feds, in their infinite wisdom should take full responsibility for our choices. Has anyone considered placing guidelines or limits as to how far that could be taken? Oh, hey I trust the Feds to be reasonable, don't you?

The other train of thought is that we should take personal responsibility for our individual choices and actions. Hmm, a novel idea in today's culture but I'm in that camp along with most on this blog I'm sure.

Every time we tell government that it's ok and invited to invade our personal (responsibilities), we inch one step closer to losing everything we've ever fought for. In some sense what we have fought for IS the RIGHT to use less than perfect devices if we CHOOSE to, AND the responsibility to own the impact of our actions as well. I know that there are guys in here that will just not get that. They think choice is about what we want. For those that might not understand, choice is about what we are willing to take responsibility for. When we give up responsibility we are giving up choice and that is freedom. Where along the line did we lose that concept? I wonder in what age group that concept will not be clear.

So here's the real deal. My tablesaw is not going to jump out of my garage and dismember my next door neighbor. It's not using public roadways and will not harm anyone who does not approach it. It's an inanimate object that I do not need to be protected from. I will regulate and take full responsibility for my personal useage of it, as I have for many years. In fairness, if we're talking about a commercial environment where workers are mandated to use the tool, then let OSHA deal with it. That is their purpose in life after all. Do you want OSHA in your garage? I don't. Do you want to fund that rediculous endeavor? We couldn't if we tried. Is that really a far fetched concept? Nope

So great, offer the safety feature and if I choose to purchase it,, Fine. If not, it's my choice and the Feds have no business in my house. Get Out, Stay Out, collect your taxes and leave us the H alone. I think the Feds have bigger fish to fry anyway. End of story. [grin]

Re: CPSC Drafting New Tablesaw Regulations

The Sawstop has an override which turns the feature off to prevent unintended tripping when cutting green wood. As with blade guards and other devices which make a saw less convenient, I wonder how many people will just leave the feature off rather than keep switching back and forth anyway?
A healthy respect for the blade in motion goes a long way toward preventing accidents. It would be interesting to see what happens to the accident ratio when the fear factor is removed and the safety feature is accidentally left off.

I guess we'll need to legislate redundant safety features to insure the previous safety features remain safe and in place. We need an oversight committee to mandate personal saw safety procedural training and periodic saw inspection. Load your saw in the car every two years and take it to the local Federal inspection station for a mandatory safety check. Of course we'll need a monitoring device to log the hours of operation with the feature left off and the saw will need to be internet connected so this information can be sent to the Bureau of Saw Safety. There should positively be a corresponding fine for using the saw in an unsafe mode. Hey, it's not about revenue, it's for your protection. Let's not forget tablesaw licensing, requiring an IQ test and a mandatory three month training program as a condition of purchase. Oh and a two week cool off period before taking delivery just to let you consider whether or not you really need such a dangerous device in your home. Do you have kids? Well just in case all tablesaws need an electronic locking system with retina scan biometrics. After all a small child might find a key or witness a code being entered, curious little buggers that they are. Ah the table saw of the future. Hey in California where I live, give an inch and some bonehead that's never seen an evil tablesaw would likely come up with all of it.

Legislation is a joke. Best intentions are ALWAYS taken to extremes and rarely serve anyone but the legislators that have to justify their existance. Protecting people from themselves is an industry of its own. After all, You are not capable of making rational decisions as to whether or not you need an expensive feature. YOU need to be told. How did we ever manage to survive without legislators?

Oh and as for remembering when people complained about seatbelts, I remember when a sub compact economy car didn't cost $30,000.00.

Re: Father's Day Must-Have Woodworking Gifts

Loxmyth - the beam issue is surprisingly expensive. I just replaced a couple of load bearing walls in my 2 story home with 10" steel Ibeams 22' long tucked into the ceiling on my first floor. In steel, beams are remarkably inexpensive, only about $300.00 each here locally and that's in California where everything is over priced. The beams are supported by a doug fir 4x6 on each end bolted to the beam and the footing. The joist hangers are shot into the beams with a ramset which took all of an hour for both. The engineering and permits were cheap as well. Check craigs list for an engineer. Lots of guys out of work right now. Even engineers are offering deals and most will handle your permit submission as part of the service. I paid two thousand for engineering, two full sets of architecturals and permits for the entire home remodel including electrical, lighting, plumbing and all the title 24 stuff to keep the city and state in business. The biggest issue was moving these heavy buggers up into place. An A/C jack on each end took care of that. With only an 18' span and only one beam, the whole thing will likely cost you less than $1500.00 and your colums are history. Just a thought. C Ya

Re: Top-Notch Tools for Less: WoodRiver's New V3 Block Planes

Really, if you look at the actual difference in price of a new wood river block plane and a Lee valley Veritas, come on we're not talking about breaking the bank. Fifty dollars is not going to kill most woodworkers. That's a couple boxes of sandpaper and a can of decent finish. I have several Veritas planes and every one of them performs perfectly from the box. I have a couple of Lie Nielsons as well but the veritas perform every bit as well and I just like the way they feel in my hand. The price difference between wood river and Veritas in some of the larger planes may be more significant but in any case, you'll spend more an a nice piece of figured hardwood than the difference between any of them anyway. A perfect tool is a pleasure to work with and a lifetime investment. Wouldn't you rather spend your time working with wood than wasting hours or days trying to make a second rate tool perform like the best?

Re: A Lean, Mean Sanding Machine: Festool's New Combination ROS/Detail Sander

Actually Mouppe, most of the Festool bashing I've read comes from Festool owners like myself. I don't own a festool Sander, but neither my Kapex or my Domino are particularly exceptional in quality. I have a Bosch 6" sander which annoys the heck out of me every time I use it. The disk grab will rip the thing out of your hand if you're not hanging on tight, especially if it's connected to a shop vac. I've been considering the Festool 6" RO but have been so disappointed in my previous Festool purchases, I've pretty much disregarded it as a choice. I know this, I won't ever buy another Festool product without personally trying it first. Not many dealers are set up to demo the products, at least not in this area.

As an actual owner, the name Festool does not overly excite me. I'm not saying they're bad tools. They are in fact good tools. They are however, seriously price inflated for what they are. You're right, price does not equal value. Just because a tool is triple the cost of other fine tools, does not mean it's the best in quality or function. In the end, I suppose as long as people are willing to drop the bucks, it works for Festool.

Re: A Lean, Mean Sanding Machine: Festool's New Combination ROS/Detail Sander

Dean2 - I happen to agree. I have a Festool Kapex and a dominoe Joiner and frankly they are rediculously over priced. The dominoe, while it is a good idea and a useful tool is lacking in registration lines and diffucult to adjust with any accuracy. The casting is pretty cheesy for what should be a precision tool. It's very poorly documented from the factory. I find myself learning more about the tool from Youtube than from the manufacturer. Festool should provide a better instruction for the price they command. The registration guides which are depicted as metal in their instructions have been replaced with plastic. They give you spare guides, probably because they know they will soon break and need replacement.

The kapex, does have some nice features but it's mostly plastic as well. Out of the box it neeeded subsatntial tweaking to get it set up correctly. Not to mention, you're stuck with a proprietary blade hole size which inreases the cost of useage substantially. I bought it because at the time, it was the only slide saw that could be placed against a wall. For the hefty price tag equaling two of any other quality slide saw, this sucker should be made of titanium. It's not!

Festool is OK stuff but not great stuff. I don't feel they are a good value at all. They've built a reputation as being the most expensive in every category simply by price fixing. You don't always get what you pay for. I'm not a bargain basement buyer by any means. I've spent a great deal of money on quality tools and for the most part I'm pleased with my purchases. Lie Nielson for example is well worth the price. Festool is not. Just my opinion.

Re: Watch the preview of Tommy Mac's new woodworking show

Looks like a good show with potential. While everyone seems to focus on Norm's nail gun approach and I'm not knocking it by the way, I truly miss the David Marks Woodworks program. With less copying old designs, his unique creative designs and clean lines consistantly inspired me with new techniques and ideas. I'm hoping this show leans more in that direction of original design in fine woodworking. David, if you're following this blog, Thank You.

Re: Are CNC machines ready for Fine Woodworking?

I suppose the purist might say true talent is all in the hand but is it really? Unique and captivating design comes from the heart, mind, eye and soul of an artist. Some have the talent and some not so much but a computer can't create. It's just one more tool in the arsenal.

On the other hand, to me knocking CNC is like saying if Bach played a synthesizer rather than an organ he could not be considered a composer. A mind such as Sam Maloof's still reflected pure artistic talent which ever group of instruments or tools he chose to utilize toward an end result. Whether or not he used a spoke shave or a router to round a curve is irrelevant. Would anyone here dare to judge? The end result was pure emotion. Hmm, for that matter, much of his latter work was created not personally but by his assistants under his supervision. His design, the hands of others, so what's the real difference? As long as one possesses adequate fundamental woodworking knowledge and employs solid construction principles in the design, the computer is no less of a tool than any other in the hands of an imaginative mind?

On a final note, let’s not forget that there are many highly artistic and talented people which for one reason or another may be impaired and less able to use hand tools. At 57 my own arthritis sometimes reminds me I'm not twenty any more. I've always been a future child of sorts. In my mind, technology opens new opportunities. Bring it on.

Re: Setting up shop: Which machine first? And why.

As much as I agree that a planer is a very important tool, most woodworkers will agree that beginning with straight, flat and properly dimensioned material is crucial to achieving a quality end result. A (thickness) planer is not terribly useful if you do not have a flat reference side to plane from. Running twisted or cupped material through the planer will result in a twisted or cupped piece that is quite uniform in thickness. Woodworking begins and ends with the cut. If the cut is not perfect the piece won't fit properly. Just a few of those and your project comes out,,, well let's just say less than what you imagined in your mind's eye. How many of those have we turned out over the years? Flat surfaces result in straight, clean and SAFE cuts. Any way you look at it, the simple fact is that irregular reference sides result in irregular cuts. It is also extremely dangerous do run cupped or twisted material through a table saw. Binding and kickback is not a fun experience.

For the purpose of this discussion, my thought is that any way you look at it, your first machine is actually three machines, jointer, planer, table saw. This to me is the foundation of every project. With the big three, virtually any commercially available material can be properly dimensioned. Any one without the other presents issues which need to be overcome and will likely minimize the resulting quality of the final project. After 50 years of making sawdust my words to the beginner are, start your shop off the right way and love what you do. Cut corners and spend most of your time trying to work around the mistake. If you need to save money, find good used machines rather than new, expensive ones. In these times there are plenty of deals to be found.
Just one guy's opinion.

Re: UPDATE: Book Giveaway: Encyclopedia of Woodworking by Alan and Gill Bridgewater

I'll never turn down a chance to add to my library. Who knows where the next idea will come from? As much as the fundamentals may remain the same, regional influences often bring new and exciting creative inspiration. Add me to the mix and thanks for the opportunity.

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