I can't decide if the best part of teaching my daughter how to use a new tool is knowing she's doing it right, or the sheer enjoyment of the experience.
Several months ago I talked about how my daughter wanted a miter saw, and of how much the thought scared me. As I opined back then, since she was eventually going to get one anyway, the best course of action would be for me to buy her one and personally teach her how to use it. Judging by your comments at the time, you agreed.
Well, that's exactly what I did.
I'm visiting my daughter now and surprised her by bringing her a new miter saw. We took it out of the box yesterday, set it up out on her deck and I ran through a drill of how to use it, safety considerations, and some tips and tricks I'd picked up over the years. Then came the part that was 98 percent terrifying and 2 percent exciting - or maybe that's the other way around, as I get those two confused a lot - some hands-on practice using it.
She produced several lengths of scrap from a recent project she'd done and we proceeded to create a small mountain of cutoffs as we trimmed, mitered and beveled the daylights out of it.
In the end she quickly grasped the mechanics of the saw and we used it enough for her to become comfortable with it. She's thrilled to add the saw to her growing arsenal of equipment, and is already thinking of projects to use it for. Meanwhile, I can rest a bit easier knowing that I've given her the best instruction I can on it.
Sure, I'll still worry about it, but isn't that what Dads are supposed to do?