Back to basics - Woodshop News

Back to basics


Technology has been creeping into how we do business for a long time now. Obviously, CNC machines have taken on an increasing role in cutting, milling, shaping, carving, etc. And hand-held tools like routers and sanders are a lot smarter than they used to be.

But as we become more and more dependent on these technologies, we need to keep in contact with the basic skills and not forget that there are simpler and often more reliable ways to accomplish tasks.

It’s good to have some basic processes to fall back on. There’s lots of ways to get those parts cut as long as you remember how we did it in “the old days”.

And, as retro as it might seem, we still have phones to use when our email or messaging is being wonky. It might even be enjoyable to have an actual conversation once in a while …

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Basic skills

In my junior high shop class, the instructor insisted that we begin by planing the edge of a board. The edge had to be straight and square. I spent most of the semester trying to accomplish this.