May 2009


President's corner

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President's Corner

Fellow Members ---

On the last Saturday in April many of our members participated in the National Rebuilding Day working on a mobile home park in Daly City in and a project at a childcare center in Burlingame. About 20 BAWA members showed up and used their woodworking construction skills to improve the facilities in these locations. At both locations the projects took longer than expected. In the case of the childcare center I know we had a few members stay until 7.00pm (after starting at 8.00am!)

It is a great tribute to our members that they are prepared to give up so much of their time to help the community with these kinds of projects. It is also fortunate that there are people who have the craft skills to do this type of work. Manufacturing of machines and household equipment etc can be done in a far a way land where the costs are cheaper. But when it comes to fitting new panels to walls that are not necessarily straight or making cabinets that have to fit the kitchen it needs local skilled work.

One of our goals in BAWA is to encourage the learning of woodworking skills. In a recent issue of Fine Woodworking they quoted a survey that asked people how they got started in woodworking. 28% replied it was from a relative and 24% replied from Secondary school shop classes. We need to continue to encourage people to take up woodworking.

It has never really been easier. There are now many stores in the Bay area that specialize in selling woodworking tools and providing basic skills classes (Woodcraft, The Sawdust Shop, Rockler and more). I think, due to modern manufacturing techniques, basic tools are probably cheaper in real terms than they have ever been. (The beginner does not have to purchase from the Lie-Nielsen catalog). Starting projects can be anything from toys to garage shelves. It does not mater how simple they may appear to be; to the person who makes them as their first woodworking project they are a great achievement.

Why not make a conscientious effort to try and encourage someone you know to take up woodwork?

Frank Ramsay or 408-823-2382