New Year, New Skills?

New year’s resolutions come and go, and that doesn’t mean setting goals for the year ahead is a bad idea, but why not set a goal that will continue to give back? Many of us feel comfortable with many aspects of our progress in the woodworking world, and that’s as it should be as we continue to learn and progress. But even accomplished woodworkers have areas that are still to be investigated, explored and learned.

Popular Woodworking Magazine
‘s editors also have skills they’d like to learn or improve during 2011. Editor Christopher Schwarz says, “My turning skills have never kept up with my other woodworking skills. I can turn a few legs, but it’s always a struggle. And faceplate turning is still something I’ve not tried. My goal for the year is to turn some traditional treenware for our family — plates, goblets and the like. I’ve got the lathe and the tools, now I just need some time and training.”

Glen Huey would like to take his carving skills to a new level, “I’ve always been fascinated by larger birds. I enjoy predator birds, but think some of the duck species are extremely intriguing and beautiful. Sometime during 2011 I would like to carve a great-looking duck decoy.”


I’ve recently moved into new shop space that is smaller than what I’m used to. Even though I’ve happily spent much of my life as a power-tool woodworker, I think my space is better suited to more hand-tool woodworking than power woodworking. And to be honest, I’m a little tired of the dust and noise. So I’ve decided that my hand tool skills could be a lot better.

Whether it’s learning to be a better tool sharpener, turner, pyrographer, or carver, it’s never too late to pick up a new skill. This might just be the year for you, too! We’re pleased to offer a library of choices to cover almost any new skill at shopwoodworking.com. Happy New Year!

– David Thiel

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