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Trying to Start Something

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  • Trying to Start Something

    Did you walk through a craft show and admire the beautiful intarsia display?
    Did you stumble across the shelves of scroll sawing books in the library?
    While enjoying your favorite flavour of Starbucks coffee did notice the eye catching cover of Scroll Saw Workshop magazine?
    When growing up, did you know someone who did it?
    Did you just need a hobby to get away from the daily grind?
    Was it a transitional activity to take you between sport to hobby, or work to retirement?

    Yes, that's right - this morning I am full of questions.

    Trying to start something, whether it is a new career, new hobby or sport takes incentive. So, as you have your coffee, take a moment to let us know what influenced you into beginning your scroll sawing adventure.

  • #2
    A friend and I went to the woodworking show in Indianapolis, years ago. We stopped and watched this guy cutting on a scroll saw and my friend said he could never do that, so I bought one, that was about 20 years ago. I just got hooked on it.

    Delta P-20 & Q-3

    I wondered why the baseball was getting bigger. Then it hit me!


    • #3
      Having been making marquetry pictures with a knife for a number of years, I heard that cutting the veneers on a scrollsaw made the process much quicker. So I bought a scrollsaw and found that although it didn't help the marquetry, it did give me a lot of fun in its own right. I now do much more scrolling than marquetry.

      What got you into scrolling, Toni?

      There is no opinion, however absurd, which men will not readily embrace as soon as they can be brought to the conviction that it is readily adopted.
      (Schopenhauer, Die Kunst Recht zu Behalten)


      • #4
        Hmnnn I got a job working as an editor of a carving magazine---and a scrolling magazine. I figured that I better acquaint myself with scrolling if I was going to write about I picked up John Nelson's book and never looked back! Now I've completed more scrolling projects than I ever did with carving projects...that's not to say that I don't carve anymore, but since carving takes longer, I get distracted and end up not finishing the carving projects as fast!



        • #5
          Gill, I first used a scrollsaw back in college when making architectural models. I would spend countless hours with an exacto knife and balsa wood and foam board making the walls and structure.

          I came across the scrollsaw and realized I could do some serious work quickly and leave more time to ah, well, party if I had the models done faster. So through trial and error, I made my way through college with the saw and ended up working in that department with my first job in an architectural office.

          After changing firms, my job description changed and I got back into sawing for recreation, took some courses on it and haven't stopped since. Much prefer the work I do now to the models.


          • #6
            A friend of mine showed me some work that her father had done with a scroll saw. It was an End of the trail, which happens to be one of my favorite scenes. I knew right away that it was something that I wanted to try. I had my first saw within a couple of weeks and haven't quit learning since.



            • #7
              Hey, I'm almost 65 and really can't remember why I bought a scroll saw As a wood shop student in middle school, our first project was to square all sides of a piece of 2x6. At the end of the semester, while other kids were making bowls and spoons, I was still trying to square that piece of wood. So much for my desire to become a wood worker. Heck, I was from Chicago and in the 50's almost everything was built from brick anyway.

              Cut to age 64 and retired. What the heck, let's try something new. And so a star was born. I have been able to bring out the creative side I never knew that I had and couldn't believe I was doing it with WOOD. I'm on three free pattern sites and also have a ball modifying some of the patterns and seeing the fruits of my labor come out in WOOD. I am obsessed....

              Now what was your question again?



              • #8
                Like Bob, I started out as a carver.....only I started back in the late '70's (that's 1970's Mr. Mullins). I started doing working decoys and progressed to decorative decoys and then songbirds. Somewhere along the line I decided to do miniature carousel horses. I was in the Woodcraft store one day and saw a Delta 16 inch scroll saw on sale. It looked just perfect for cutting the miniature horse blanks so I bought it. Also bought a couple pattern books. I carved a couple more horses and then decided I'd do a fretwork pattern on the saw (just to see what it was like). Never went back to carving and upgraded from the Delta to a DeWalt after three years. I still have the Delta and am giving it to a friend today. He's been making some pretty crude looking clocks with the limited array of tools he has so I'm gonna "enable" him. LOL!!
                If it don't fit, don't force it....get a bigger hammer!!


                • #9
                  I started with hammering nails into a block of scrap in Dad's workshop when I was 6 years old. (Caught more fingers than nails back then...sometimes still do.)

                  I remember getting Maple and Persimmon laminated Golf head blocks. And taking hand shapers to them to make golf clubs.

                  In 7th grade my school woodshop experience started. By 9th grade I had won the School's woodworking award and the coveted Henry Munch award. (A past industrial arts teacher)

                  In 10th grade (high School for us). They told me I had to start in the Beginners class in woodshop... all 10th graders did. Well, forget that! I took Electronics and drafting instead. Did all my woodworking at home.

                  Became a Member of the National Wood Carver's Museum... until they went out of business...or closed the doors...or whatever happened to them.

                  Skipping some years, I find my son's in a Christian School who does not have any industrial arts. So, I decided that I would teach them as much as I can over the next few years. Thus, the scroll saw has become essential, since it is the safest power tool. And I don't really agree with making them learn first hand sawing... it just waste wood, time, energy.

                  Anyway, since I lost some feeling and strength in my left hand and have trouble whittling/carving. I found the scrollsaw to be an outlet for that type of creativity.

                  Thus, how I came into scrolling.


                  • #10
                    I actually got a sroll saw for luthery. I have a really small shop area and it seemed like a tool that could do a lot of different jobs in a small space. It turned out to be overmatched for some things (it will very slowly cut a neck blank out of maple) but I decided to try a few specific projects and picked up a magazine. I still bounce between a few different pursuits, but scolling is one of the top few. I especially enjoy segmentation work.


                    • #11
                      Well hope you have a hour to read when I started-- this will take a while -- in 83 I was a rancher with time on my hands when I wasn't working cows, mending fences, training horses-- so I got into wood carving and wood burning- got darn good at it and the bank loaned me enough money to open my shop up as a newly single mom of 2 small boys --got diganosed with MS in 85 and closed the shop --now in 93 - I was taken back to having nothing to do since they wouldn't let me work anymore---I opened up my shop again with the help of a diferent husband that kept me in all the finacial-physical-moral support I needed- and a lot that I didn't need- won 1st place at the commercial exibit at the 4 states fair which caused my shop to explode into more work than I could possably do alone and my health suffered because of it -- hence major heart attack and the start of copd-- sooooooo closed doors again-- in 99 I was diganosed with cancer and here I sit with nothing I could physically do --again---i became single in 2000 and as the determanation to get well in spite of everyone I got the funny feeling I needed to make money --sooo last year my oldest son and I decided I d start making bird feeders and bird houses and squirrel feeders agaain - always a good business before so why not now-- then I had a squirell feeder I wanted to do some fancythings to like I use to -- pawn shop here I come to by a old Central Machine scroll saw for $34 that got me hooked on scrolling-- and since then I have been scrolling like mad --doing reaal good until I got mysself over worked at Christmas time with orders and now I am back to doing as my want to wants to let me--When I started this up last year I was in a wheelchair on oxygen and limited to a light lifting -- don't plan on stopping now but I don't scroll as much as I did-- hope to get my strength back soon and let er rip again but I doubt I will get as busy as I have allowed myself in the past- a person can only work so many hours a day and breath so much sawdust-- now I do take naps often --lol--- Hey you asked and I tried to avoid answering but I just couldn't resist anymore...


                      • #12
                        My wife does craft shows and I often go with her, on one of the shows there was a vendor that had scroll art of the 50 states and some southwest designs. I bought a cutout of "End of the trail". I had limited exposure to woodworking but I borrowed an old craftsman from my brother-in-law and loved it. I bought a deta of my own and am really enjoying it, I learn new things all the time and even got good enough this past Christmas to make some ornaments to give away.
                        Delta P-20


                        • #13
                          Well, I gotta in this sorta backwards. When my health first started getting a little poor, my son and I were looking for something we could do together, and we started playing this online game called Everquest. I played quite a bit while he was gone and was looking for something to do ingame that wouldn't make me get way ahead of him, and so I started doing tradeskills, which is kind of like pixelated arts and crafts, for those of you who are not gamers, such as tailoring, armor, baking, etc. After I spent hundreds of hours in the game becoming a grandmaster of all skills, it finally occurred to me that if I spent half that much time in real life on a hobby I'd have something pretty nice to show for it that wasn't pixels!

                          I used to do a lot of quilting, crocheting, sewing, embroidery, and that kind of thing, so I wanted something different from what we think of as traditional women's hobbies. I sorted through various possibilities such as stained glass and pottery, but scrolling looked like the most fun and the most variable hobby of all (I mean, how much stained glass can you really use in your house? On the other hand, you can make almost anything out of wood.)

                          I was working through John Nelson's workbook again yesterday and I made the cat--it's like lesson 2, I think. My son snatched it out of my hand and said, "Now make me another one, facing the other way--I have just the spot for this." I'm only halfway through the book and I have my first order, yippee!


                          • #14
                            I never even knew what a scroll saw was until I was 23 years old. I then managed a full service gas station. You know the type we washed your windows, checked your oil we did a little bit of everything. Ihad a gentleman that drove the tank wagon that made crafts with a scroll saw and he used to go to craft shows all the time.He had been a P.O.W. in WWII. He gave me several of the things that he made. He always tried to get me ot come to his house an try it. You know how it is when your 23 you go a couple of times then you go back to your real life. Anyway I moved onto a differarent job. got married, moved. Then A couple of years ago he passed away. ( I'm back I had to go blow my nose and wipe the tears out of my eyes.) Now we are in the year 2004. I have an outstanding wife two great kids a new house and a new garage. My father-in-law is into wood working and he had a scrollsaw that was older than the hills. I told my wife that I would like to buy one to make small things. My first saw was a $50 dremel from my wifes Uncle. I used it hard for 6 months and it died.Last May I went to the RBI scratch and dent sale. I bought one with a 5 year warrenty for 700 dollars. I make at least one new project every week. MY wife keeps adding to the list all the time. I am now 40 years old and think about all of the things that I could have learned from a great guy 17 years ago. My 11 year old son has started showing intrest in using it. Every time he does I think about Bernie and step aside,smile, and guide.
                            When you hit rock bottom the only answer is to look up


                            • #15
                              Having been woodworking since I was 12, and primarily furniture I've always been fascinated with Victorian era furniture and clocks. A lot of my custom work is anitique reproductions but I always stayed away from the Victorian stuff due to the fretwork. I almost always had a scrollsaw in my shop but used it for heart cutouts and the like. Never saw it as a stand-alone tool. One of my woodworking magazines had a pattern of a colorful fish puzzle, and I tried doing it. I still have the first one that didn't fit together and took me 4 days to do. I found out that the table wasn't square, and tried a second time and I was hooked. Now I don't have to shy away from Victorian stuff. I've finally started doing some Victorian style clocks. Needless to say, I love the intricate fretwork of that era and it's still what I look for in patterns, although there aren't many new ones coming out of that style.

                              Scrollsaw Patterns Online
                              Making holes in wood with an EX-30, Craftsman 16" VS, Dremel 1680 and 1671


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