I'm relatively new to woodworking, less than 10 years dorking, but am
starting to see improvements in my skills. Some of the indications
that I am getting better:
1. Actually completing projects instead of lying to myself that I will
get to it later when I get stuck.
2. Doing less measuring and doing more fitting and marking of pieces
3. 'Leaving the line' and then tuning with chisels, files (sorry rasp)
4. Have more than just satin WB polyurethane in the cabinet.
5. Used a hand plane to scribe a piece instead of a belt sander
6. Am starting to become torn between spending $ on better wood
instead of better tools. Used to be, "It will look great in pine if I
just had a 3hp, hydraulic driven, left handed router...", and I'm right
7. Bought a quart of Titebond and poured it into two smaller empty
8. DC has now made the list of "tools I *need*
9. Shop (garage) gets swept and blown out more than twice a year.
10. I might pull out paper before the saw for my next project.
Some areas I still need to work on:
1. Getting that darn pencil to stay behind my ear. This frustrates me
because I think I am not genetically disposed to dorking because the
pencil won't stay there.
2. Using something other than a stanley 99 to sharpen my pencils.
3. Sharpening more than one chisel at a time.
4. Building a real workbench. The old dresser is tough to clamp
things to but the drawers are great for storage.
5. Learning more about staining and finishing.
6. Sweeping and blowing out the shop more than once a month.
7. Using chalk to mark pieces like David Marks does. This doesn't
work for me because the pieces get 'moved out of the way' so many
times, by the time I'm ready for the piece the chalk is rubbed off.
8. Visiting the eye doctor to see if my 'close one eye' method is
really improving my vision.
9. Completing at least 50% of one project before starting on the next
one. This of course excludes sanding & finishing time.
10. Spending more time in the shop and less time reading magazines and
watching Norm, David, and Tommy.