OK, forgive me for this one. I’ve been frustrated at not finding a way to link up with something, and so I thought I’d use my blog to ask all of you for suggestions.
I am an amateur wood worker. I’ve never taken any classes or workshops on the subject, but my learning style allows me to learn by reading, and so I’ve read quite a bit on the subject and I regularly look at the articles in Fine Woodworking Magazine. I also have watched a lot of the woodworking how-to shows on television, including “The Woodwright’s Shop” (no power tools) and Norm Abrams “New Yankee Workshop” (all power tools).
Since I live on in one of the housing subdivisions on the Ridgetop, I don’t have a lot of space for a shop. I built in two work benches in my garage, one of which houses a radial arm saw. I have an old chop saw. I have a nice router with a router table. I have a biscuit joiner. I have a belt sander and a finishing sander. And I have a circular saw and a jig saw. And I have a friend who occasionally lets me borrow his surfacing planer and a small joiner/planer that he owns. It’s not a plethora of tools, but it covers most of what I do.
My woodworking projects have mostly been simple furniture. I don’t do any wood turning and I haven’t done any gift items like boxes. I just did my first cutting board this month to replace the bread board that came with the kitchen cabinetry of our house.
This table has been my most ambitious project to date, and the one that I’ve felt best about as well. It’s made up mostly of figured maple from the Olympic Peninsula, with walnut legs.
After doing this project, I decided to try my hand at doing a dining table. It will be of similar design, again using figured maple boards for the top. But this is where my project bogs down. I have three maple boards that are six feet long. One is about 10 inches wide; the other two are more than 15 inches wide. I need a pretty heavy duty piece of woodworking equipment to prepare the edges that will be glued together to make the tabletop.
So here’s my question. Do any of you know of a place where I could get access to a wood shop around here? Olympic College doesn’t have one. I once understood that they had a woodworking shop for Bangor residents, but I don’t have base privileges.
Do any of you know of a local wood workers cooperative? I’ve heard that in some places, a group of woodworkers have gone in together to purchase equipment for a wood shop and then they share the cost and each has use of the shop. But I’ve never heard of something like that around here.
Any help would be appreciated.