| Morris Dovey wrote:
| > Yes, I've seen that the metalworking tools do tend to be tougher.
| > a bit slower to accept the "lower standards" part, though.
| > Metalworkers and woodworkers, in spite of a sizable body of common
| > methods and tooling, are actually working to solve very different
| > problems arising from working on materials with _very_ different
| > properties.
| My reference point for 'lower standards' is just based on the number
| decimal places in the print tolerances. It goes no further.
Yuppers (I understood.) The "number of decimal places" consideration
in woodworking depends a lot on the work being done. For some kinds of
work, it goes away almost completely; and for other kinds of work,
it's still very much there (although tolerances beyond ten-thousandths
seem to be meaningless because of wood's "mushiness").
Originally, I'd thought that three decimal places were overkill - but
as I began exploring some of the joints (that seem to be) only
possible with CNC equipment, I discovered the need for a fourth
decimal place and ended up building a machine that'd deliver it.
Designing and building that machine (mostly from wood) was one of the
most interesting learning experiences I've ever had.
| I do not intend to imply sloppy workmanship in either case. Both
| require an intimate understanding of the materials in order to get
| best results from the available tools. I've cut titanium to never,
| tolerances (millionths). I probably spent about 6 months of 10 hour
| too focused to smile or stop for lunch. At the end of those six
| there probably wasn't anybody on the planet who knew more about
| the last drop of performance from a P&W Horizon IV. WIth 100%
| of all dims on all parts, I had one failure in 10,000 parts. No
| we had made an extra 100.
A good brag! I can recognize that even though I can't even begin to
imagine what it'd take to achieve that kind of accuracy. I've worked
on projects involving those kinds of tolerances, but the tools were
electron beam and optics; and involved only a single surface. I'm
impressed just to hear that those kinds of results are possible with
| Now I wrestle with getting a wiping varnish finish right without
| buffing. I can come close (close enough to buff & bluff) ... but I'm
| there yet.
| I'll get it, though.
Of course - AFAICT it's a matter of practice and experience. Producing
a fine finish isn't one of my skills. Most of what I make is either
left unfinished or covered with Latex, so it hasn't been much of an
issue for me. None of which keeps me from admiring beautiful work when
I see it.
| Morris ... I know some folks come here from a machinist background
| figure they have some sort of bragging rights. And they do.
| In a machine shop.
| But not in a wood shop.
Too quick. Anyone, who produces anything that's useful or beautiful
gets bragging rights as far as I'm concerned - and I silently award
major bonus points for original creative efforts and clearly superior
traditional work. Everyone seems to have a slightly different
perspective on what's "good", which keeps things interesting. I
suppose that's just another way of saying: "Everybody's an art
critic." My personal joke (on myself) is that as an artist, I'm a
| SOME of what I learned as a machinist transfers. In fact, I think I
| might have a leg up on some when it comes to machine setup. (Work
| is a different animal.) I know how to draw things. I know how to
| angles and points on an angle. I still have a 12" and 6" caliper and
| set a sine bar to set an angle. From time to time, these skills and
| tools come in useful (actually I get a lot of use from the
| But I'm not an accomplished woodworker yet.
I suspect that a lot transfers. As for being an "accomplished"
woodworker, I've discovered that no matter how far one travels, the
horizon stays out of reach. I've done things beyond what I ever dreamt
I could - but I doubt that I'll ever be able to think of myself as an
DeSoto, Iowa USA