Aha! A book to sharpen the dullest tool in drawers.
I like the article and post very much, kind of reminds me of my days as an apprentice toolmaker.
Now i'm probably going to tick most y'all off but, yes it's cheating. If you're passing your work of as hand made, old-world, true period piece done with ancient craftsmanship it's cheating. There is also nothing wrong with it.
When i was learning tooling i made all kinds of simple set ups that would help me get my job done. Sure it would take longer for me but i was making less than the guys that could get twice the work done in half the time, some times within a quarter of the time. But i learned.
When i made two or three set ups to accomplish the same work another toolmaker was doing, i'd walk by his dungeon and glance at his set up. Next thing you'd hear from the journeyman would be a bunch of swearing and accusations of cheating and copying his work. I didn't care though, I was learning to be more efficient at my job with better results. Later on i'd gained more responsibility, status and pay i asked the old Germans why they had treated me in such a way. they replied, "We just wanted to make sure you wanted to be a toolmaker, not a shoemaker."
I use machined jigs of my own making, machinery of my own design and tools to make projects easier for me to accomplish. So yes i cheat, and i don't really care if it's cheating or not. I got over what people said about me long ago.
My grandfather used a hand saw and built his furniture. My uncle used woodworking machinery to do the same. I won't spend the dough on new technology to build one-off's. But I would hire out the tedious stuff out to someone else who knows how to use the machinery properly and provides their expertise. After all, I already buy material "to size" for my projects and hire out for hand carving artistry.
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