From Wood to Product Through Process

When you look at a piece of woodwork such as the desk illustrated in Fig. 1, you no doubt have an immense appreciation for the fine workmanship, the finish, and the beautiful lines of the piece.

From Wood to Product Through Process
Fig. 1. Here is an example of what an advanced craftsman can make in woodworking. This beautiful mahogany desk with inlaid leather top was made by an advanced woodworking student.

However, you may say to yourself, “That is too complicated for to ever consider building.”

Complex Wood Projects Are Not As Complex as They Seem

Yet, if you just consider the essential elements of this desk, it is as fundamental in its construction as the little footstool in Fig. 2.

Each is a product that resulted from selecting a piece of wood and applying to it certain basic processes to shape, form, assemble, and finish it.

From Wood to Product Through Process
Fig. 2. In contrast to the desk, this simple footstool is typical of what the beginning student or craftsman should attempt as a first project. It involves many of the fundamental processes needed to do all kinds of woodworking.

The desk, of course, involves many more pieces of wood and much more time and effort, but fundamentally it has only a few more applications of basic processes.

All products are the result of applying certain basic woodworking processes to wood.

Wood is the Most Fundamental Material used by Man

If you want to build attracting projects, you must first start with a good, raw material.

A fine piece of furniture or a good project cannot be made from poor wood.

Wood is the most fundamental of all material used by man.

This raw material, used to make the finished product, is supplied in its natural form.

Also, many other manufactured articles, whether they are of metal, plastic, or other substances, are first made of wood.

For example: automobiles, refrigerators, airplanes, and even the telephone were first made from wood in the designing rooms of factories.

What You Can Do With Wood

Wood is interesting in its characteristics.

It is made up of fibers or grain that cut more easily with the grain than across it.

Wood itself is only the raw material.

From the same piece of wood you could build a beautiful tray with a very fine finish–or a platform for your trash can!

The only difference in the products is the differences in the basic processes applied to this raw material.

Three Basic Elements in Construction

Whether or not you end up with an attractive project will depend on the following three elements: the kind of wood you select, the design of the project, and how well you execute the basic processes.

Remember that, if you learn to do these basic processes correctly, you can apply them to any product successfully with desirable results.

If you are beginning your work in wood, select your project wisely and learn to do the processes accurately and correctly.

Once they are learned, greater enjoyment in what you do will be yours and greater success will be attained through the kind of project you will be able to make.

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