More on Roubo’s Winding Sticks

A lit of things I hadn’t thought about and very clever. Thanks Bob and thank you Roubo.

Logan Cabinet Shoppe

When the name Andre Roubo is mentioned, most people’s first thoughts are of a massive workbench.  However, when you delve into the myriad of plates that were published as part of Roubo’s series of volumes on the many different facets of woodcraft, you will immediately realize that these books are about so much more than a workbench.

Plate 14 from Roubo's Volume on Furniture Making Plate 14 from Roubo’s Volume on Furniture Making

My first introduction to Roubo came a little over a decade or so ago, just a few years after I sold most of my power tools and machines.  At the time I was engrossed in Moxon and Nicholson, but I was looking for more than what those two books were providing.  Somehow, during an internet search of old books on woodworking, I came across a bunch of PDFs of plates from an old French woodworking book.  I couldn’t read French, so I couldn’t understand any of the…

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‘If I finish it will be wrong’ syndrome

It’s been a while since I’ve been out to my workbench (more on that in a different entry).  I went out to dust off my tools and straighten up in preparation for what i hope would be an imminent return to working at it.  What I discovered was a few projects in various states of completion.  It’s then that I self-diagnosed a serious complex – with no respects to the DSM I call it ‘if I finish it will be wrong’ syndrome.

I figure it must be a corollary condition to perfectionism.  I peer over the stacked and leaned bits of a shaker table.  All the pieces aside from the drawer are at least roughed dimensioned.  The top is glued up, flattened, and basically ready to be put in place.  Aye and there’s the rub.  It’s not perfect.  It’s a little smaller than I intended – due to that perfectionism thing.  Every time I look at it I see imperfection so there it sits.

The there’s the Dutch chest.  The sides and bottom are ready to be dovetailed.  I cut the dovetails on the first side – my first dovetails ever.  But – yes you guessed it – they weren’t perfect.  I cut them fine – so I believe – but when I went to chisel out the waste I was a bit aggressive.  So it was set aside as I pondered whether to cut them off and try again.  What exactly is the record for the shortest dutch chest anyway?

So there you have it – my neuroses laid bare.  I know the cure – just do it.  If you see completed projects here in the future you’ll know that I conquered them.  If you see me advertising firewood here (or the worlds shortest Dutch chest) then you’ll know I still have work to do on it.

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