Joy of Maintaining the Woodshop

The Woodshop is balancing a couple of issues. 1. We don’t want to invest in efforts that won’t move to the new shop location. 2. We do have that on the project list and it is moving up the cue as we have other projects completed. 3 it will take a lot, a real lot of volunteering. I’ve got a couple folks that work making fixtures and jigs that have committed to participate when we start the effort. Stay tuned, more to come

It will be part of the reorganization of the Woodshop annex area. The whole area will be organized into shadow boards and storage and prep area’s for class and instructors materials.

Any personal storage particularly of supplies is being eliminated


Episode: Sanding Belt

Remember a day or so ago I posted a picture of a new sanding installed.

During work day, I had to loan the space another one. Take a look

Burn rate for $8-10 belts is high. But not as expensive as hook and loop pads with no sand paper

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Is there one of these anywhere near the sander? It would help (a little) to keep the belts from loading up. It should be the first thing anyone does before using the sander. Cleaning sticks are like $10 each.


Yup and nope

There are several of them in the general shop area. Are they close to the sanders? Sometimes yes sometimes no. The thing they won’t help with is people pressing so hard they shred belts.


@jswilson64 Incapable of comprehending fine sarcasm? That really would actually be interesting.

@hon1nbo I’ve never seen a proper shadowboard for tools in MakerSpace. Drawer organization will always be a lost cause, but when hand tools are placed in a high visibility area and can be seen and labeled as missing, they tend to stick around undamaged for a much longer period of time.

Yellow is definitely the color of contrast that makes it possible.

More bandsaw joy

While you might not agree, I think this looks like fantastic kindling. Add enough heat, and it should make a nice little fire. I pulled about 5 or 6 inches of this debris out of the Laguna band saw all stuffed around the blade and held by the adjustable guard that moves up and down to cover the blade. There was a LOT of it and I had never seen stuff like this around bandsaws, so I asked, “Why is this built up in here and how did it get here?”

Here’s the answer I got.

First, it was possible that the blast gates were not opened, so this is another place that wood could build up.

Second, with a lot of hard use, the blade gets covered with resin, and performs like a very dull blade.

Yup, sure enough, a gunky blade. (Please note, this is not the same picture posted regarding cleaning blades with simple green and a 3M type scrungie. What a little simple green can do)

So rather than cut the wood, this blade starts shredding the wood, and stuffing some of it up the blade guard. If a maker didn’t clean it out, the next maker could unwittingly start a fire that could get sucked up the dust ducting if said maker did open blast gates. It appears that this gunk-causing-shredding seems to show up most often after trimming tree trunks and bowl blanks.

After pulling all the shreds out, I cleaned this blade (took about 20 minutes) and the blade beneath was sharp and performed as it should again. It wasn’t necessary to replace the blade for my project, as it was not worn, just really dirty. I have, however, seen these blades pulled off the band saw dirty, and sometimes bent in the process. Simple green won’t fix that. We have to throw it away, when a little scrunging was all it needed.

But it is disappointing when it takes an hour (or more) of repair, replacing, or cleaning before I can get my project underway. If I spend another half hour or so cleaning up/leaving space better than I found it, my work time seems way too short.


Thank you for fixing it and for your explanation, @skeeter.

Would one of our expert turners consider teaching a class on how to properly prepare log blanks? I’ll start a separate thread.

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Would it be possible to have classes digitally recorded and uploaded to the website so that people who need refreshers can have that available? I understand that it isn’t like to solve (some or any) the problems mentioned in this thread, but for some people, it could be helpful and prevent some issues.


Agree 100% that there should be a collection of videos to show proper use of tools + typical machine maintenance before / after cutting.


I love this suggestion of requiring a “newbie” to have a sponsor/mentor to be “in the vicinity” when working on a machine they have just learned on. It would be great to have a list of names/emails to contact people willing to be mentors and I don’t have a problem with paying a mentor to hang out with me until I feel comfortable in what I am doing. If I am learning something useful, I want to learn it completely and safely.


Having been trained on the old dust collection system, a video on the new setup will give me more confidence to tackle emptying it.


Un-gunking the band saw was another thing that wasn’t taught when I took Woodshop Basics.

Medical school students use “see one, do one, teach one” to show they have learned a skill. Until they get each step right they’re not signed off. Or at least used to be - that was like 1999 when I was told that :smiley:

Maybe it’s time for each machine to have a similar sign-off process ?

Videos are great idea. We have made a couple of attempts at starting this process. One was to look at available internet content. It has been less than productive. Next we have had a couple of folks video all of the content of the 1-4 classes then then walk away.

We are looking at efforts to add videos, but it is one more project in a list of many things to do.

Even just a basic video, recorded on a cell phone is better than nothing. I don’t mind helping out with this if needed.

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Episode; A little help from our friends

Here are some new additions to the Woodshop. Jim @bbchops build new RFID stands, 2 of three are done. Should help with cleaning and reduce damage of the boxes. Take a look

Thanks Again Jim.


that is a very nice idea

Episode; A little help from our friends part Duex

Our push sticks had gotten a little ratty. They did what the were supposed to do, keep fingures out of saw blades

So last night Jordan @whyyyyyyyyy milled up a bunch of new ones

Thanks again Jordan!


I would like to create a one page laminated document to be attached to commonly (ab)used tools. I would like to get some input before I create a few. The page would have the following:

Tool Name - Picture
Common Accessories (if any)

Consumable replacement location and instructions

For the Edge Sander it would look something like:

Edge Sander – Picture
Common Accessories - Cleaning Stick
Risks - Pushing too hard will cause the sanding belt to heat up or tear holes in it.
Do - Use the cleaning stick prior to use. Use the middle of the tool.
Don’t - Push too hard. Sand PVC.

Consumables - Replacement belts are located in the drawer. Remove the guards and loosen the tension using XXX tool. Make sure the belt is in located in the middle of the rollers. Tension and replace guards.

If we had one of these for each of the tools that we have the same damage happening over and over again, maybe we can reduce some common errors. For example, the Festool sanders require hook and loop sandpaper, and you can’t push very hard, etc.

I know most people won’t go to the tool wiki for this information, so having it attached to the tool might provide a bit of what not to do. I also realize this isn’t going to stop all abuse. I think it might provide someone with limited knowledge of the tool, to not make a common mistake.



I really like this idea.

I wholeheartedly agree!! One page, laminated, and attached to the tool in plain view. I’d like to add a couple of items to your list: Just below the picture I would add a very brief description of the tool and what it’s best used for (or the most common applications) and a “preflight” check list. On the bandsaw, for example:

Bandsaw - One of the most versatile tools in the shop. The bandsaw can be used for cutting curves, resawing boards into thinner slices, and cutting bowl blanks from logs. It can cut material that is too thick for the table saw and thick wood in general much more safely (no kickback!)

Before you turn on this tool:

  1. Open dust gate
  2. Check to make sure the blade is tensioned properly
  3. Raise or lower the upper blade guide so that it clears your work by about 1"
  4. Think through the quick shutdown procedure for this tool and be prepared in case anything goes wrong with your cut or the tool.

When you are finished:

  1. Brush off the band saw table
  2. Close the dust gate
  3. Put away any accessories you have used.

Common accessories:
-Miter gauge
-Push stick