Should you let people borrow your tools? 8 ways to get more out of woodworking.

Should you let people borrow your tools? 8 ways to get more out of woodworking.

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Welcome to our woodworking blog! Today, we’re going to delve into a topic that may spark some debate among woodworking enthusiasts – the question of whether or not you should let people borrow your tools. But before we jump into that, let’s take a moment to reflect on what brings us the most joy in woodworking.

In a recent YouTube video by Steve from Woodworking for Mere Mortals, he asks us to consider what aspects of woodworking give us the greatest sense of fulfillment. Some common responses include the satisfaction of completing a project, the enjoyment of having time to ourselves, and the pleasure of using our hands to create something tangible. Interestingly, something that rarely comes up is the joy derived from purchasing new tools.

Steve challenges the notion that having expensive, high-quality tools automatically makes woodworking more enjoyable. He asserts that the myth of better tools equating to a happier woodworking experience may have been perpetuated by tool companies or a way for us to justify our costly purchases. Instead, Steve suggests that true contentment in woodworking should not be based on acquiring more tools, but rather on finding fulfillment in the process itself.

As hobbyists, we can find numerous ways to enhance our woodworking experience without breaking the bank. Spending money doesn’t always translate into increased happiness, and there are numerous free or low-cost activities that can add to our enjoyment as woodworkers.

Now, let’s dive into the controversial topic – sharing tools. Steve challenges the prevailing belief that tools are sacred and should not be shared with others. He suggests a paradigm shift, encouraging woodworkers to prioritize friendships over material objects. Instead of adhering to the “cool rules” mentality that discourages people from even touching, borrowing, or moving tools, Steve proposes a more inclusive approach. By fostering a culture of sharing and camaraderie in our woodworking communities, we can enhance our joy as woodworkers and enrich our lives in the process.

So, should you let people borrow your tools? We’ll explore this question further, discussing both the benefits and potential concerns, and provide eight ways to get more out of your woodworking journey. Whether you lean towards generosity or preservation, we invite you to ponder this topic and consider the impact it can have on your woodworking experience.

Stay tuned for our upcoming blog post as we delve deeper into the intriguing world of woodworking and explore the concept of sharing tools. In the meantime, don’t forget to check out Steve’s YouTube video and his invaluable guide on getting into woodworking for less than $1000. Happy woodworking!

Below Table of Contents

1. The Joy of Woodworking: Exploring What Truly Matters in this Hobby

The joy of woodworking goes beyond the mere act of working with wood. It lies in the satisfaction of completing a project and the sense of accomplishment that comes with it. As a woodworker, you have the opportunity to create something beautiful and meaningful with your own two hands. This is a source of true joy and fulfillment in the hobby.

One of the unique aspects of woodworking is the time it allows us to spend with ourselves. In a world filled with constant distractions and demands, woodworking offers a space for solitude and introspection. It is during these moments that we can truly connect with our craft and find peace in the process. Woodworking is a way to escape the noise and busyness of everyday life and focus on something that brings us joy.

Contrary to popular belief, the joy of woodworking does not come from the accumulation of tools or the need for expensive equipment. While high-quality tools can certainly enhance our woodworking experience, they are not the sole source of happiness in this hobby. Contentment and joy can be found in the simplest of tools and materials. Woodworking is about creativity, resourcefulness, and the ability to make something out of nothing. It is about using what we have and pushing the limits of our imagination.

2. Affordable Woodworking: Debunking the Myth of Expensive Tools

Woodworking can bring a lot of joy, but it doesn’t have to come with a hefty price tag. You don’t need expensive tools or a massive workshop to get started in this hobby. In fact, many woodworkers find the most joy in the satisfaction of completing a project and the opportunity to create something with their own hands. Buying tools is not the primary source of enjoyment for most woodworkers. While it’s true that good quality tools can enhance the woodworking experience, it’s not necessary to spend a fortune on them. Even with basic tools, you can still create beautiful and functional pieces.

It’s essential to debunk the myth that expensive tools are a prerequisite for enjoying woodworking. This misconception may have been perpetuated by tool companies or our own desire to justify our costly purchases. The truth is, you don’t need the latest and most expensive tools to love woodworking. As the saying goes, “the best tool in your workshop is the one you can afford.” As long as your tools are in good working condition and can produce the results you desire, you can create incredible projects.

Instead of focusing on acquiring expensive tools, it’s more beneficial to focus on contentment with what you have. Woodworking is about the joy of creating and using your hands to bring something to life. The tools you use, whether they are top-of-the-line or not, do not define your skill or passion. You can find satisfaction and happiness in woodworking without constantly chasing after the latest and most expensive tools. In fact, there are countless ways to enhance your woodworking experience without spending a dime. Embrace the simplicity and find joy and fulfillment in the process of working with wood.

3. The Power of Sharing: Why You Should Consider Letting Others Borrow Your Tools

Woodworking is a hobby that brings joy to many, but what exactly is it that gives us the most satisfaction? According to surveys conducted among thousands of woodworkers, completing a project is often the highlight. Others enjoy the solitude and the ability to use their hands to create something tangible. Interestingly, very few people mention buying tools as a source of joy. While some may argue that having high-quality tools enhances the woodworking experience, this belief may have been perpetuated by tool companies or as a means to justify expensive purchases. In reality, the enjoyment of woodworking doesn’t depend on the price tag of your tools.

Chasing contentment based on acquiring material possessions or comparing yourself to others will only lead to dissatisfaction. For example, my current table saw is an improvement over my old one, but it hasn’t made me enjoy woodworking any more than I did back in 2008. There are undoubtedly better saws on the market, but spending a significant amount of money on one won’t necessarily make me a happier woodworker. As a hobbyist, you can enhance your joy of woodworking and improve your life without spending a dime.

One tip that may be met with resistance from some woodworkers is the idea of sharing tools. Many woodworkers consider their tools to be sacred and are hesitant to lend or borrow them. However, this mindset can be exclusive and unfriendly. Instead, let’s shift our perspective and prioritize friendships over possessions. Rather than having a sign in your shop that prohibits touching, borrowing, or even looking at the tools, why not create a welcoming environment where tools can be shared? Sharing tools can foster a sense of community, encourage collaboration, and create a more inclusive woodworking experience.

In conclusion, the power of sharing in woodworking should not be underestimated. While expensive tools may have their advantages, they are not the key to finding joy in this hobby. By focusing on completing projects, using our hands to create, and fostering a sense of community through sharing tools, we can enhance our woodworking experience without breaking the bank. So, let’s set aside the belief that tools are sacred objects and embrace the power of sharing in woodworking.

4. Finding Happiness in Woodworking: Discovering the True Sources of Joy in this Hobby

Woodworking is a hobby that brings immense joy to its practitioners. But have you ever stopped and wondered, what is it about woodworking that gives you the most joy? This question might make you reflect on the true sources of happiness in this craft. After conducting numerous surveys over the years, I have found that the satisfaction of completing a project ranks high among woodworkers. It’s the feeling of accomplishment when you can step back and admire something you created with your own hands.

Another common response I received is that many woodworkers find joy in the time they get to spend alone in their workspaces. Woodworking provides an opportunity for self-reflection, relaxation, and focused concentration. It allows you to detach from the hustle and bustle of daily life and be fully present in the moment. The act of using your hands to create something tangible also brings a sense of fulfillment and joy.

Interestingly, buying tools is not a primary source of joy for most woodworkers. While good quality tools may enhance the woodworking experience, they are not the sole determinant of happiness. In fact, spending exorbitant amounts of money on tools does not guarantee increased satisfaction. As a hobbyist, there are countless ways to find joy in woodworking without emptying your wallet. Sharing tools and fostering a sense of community among fellow woodworkers can bring immense happiness and add depth to your woodworking journey.


Q: What is the focus of the YouTube channel “Woodworking for Mere Mortals”?
A: The channel aims to help beginners get started in woodworking without breaking the bank or needing a large workshop space.

Q: What did the host conduct in the past couple of years?
A: The host conducted several surveys that thousands of people responded to.

Q: What is a common response when people are asked what gives them the most joy in woodworking?
A: The satisfaction of completing a project is a common response, along with enjoying the time to themselves and the act of creating things with their hands.

Q: According to the video, what is not a common source of joy in woodworking?
A: Buying tools is not a common source of joy in woodworking, although some people do enjoy acquiring and collecting tools.

Q: What is the host’s opinion on the belief that having good quality tools makes woodworking better and more enjoyable?
A: The host believes this is a myth, possibly propagated by tool companies, and that he has never had expensive tools but still loves woodworking.

Q: How does the host suggest finding contentment in woodworking?
A: The host suggests not chasing after things that you don’t have or comparing yourself to others, as this will lead to dissatisfaction. He shares that while his current table saw is better than his previous one, his enjoyment of woodworking has not changed significantly.

Q: As a hobbyist woodworker, what are some things that can bring joy without spending money on high-end equipment?
A: The video suggests that there are many things hobbyist woodworkers can do without spending money that can add to their joy, such as sharing their tools and fostering friendships.

Q: What is the host’s opinion on the idea that tools are sacred and not to be shared?
A: The host finds this belief to be exclusive and cranky, and proposes a paradigm shift to prioritize friendships and inclusivity over material possessions.

Q: How does the host suggest changing the “cool rules” in woodworking shops?
A: The host suggests replacing signs that discourage touching, borrowing, or moving tools with signs that encourage sharing and treating tools as tools, not sacred objects.

Final Notes

In conclusion, woodworking is a hobby that brings immense joy to individuals in different ways. The satisfaction of completing a project, the solitude and time for oneself, and the ability to create something with one’s own hands are some of the common joys experienced by woodworkers. However, it is important to note that the joy derived from woodworking does not solely rely on the quality or quantity of tools one possesses.

Contrary to popular belief, having expensive and high-quality tools does not necessarily make woodworking more enjoyable. While professional carpenters may benefit from investing in high-end equipment, as a hobbyist, there are numerous ways to enhance your woodworking experience without breaking the bank. You don’t need to spend a fortune to find contentment in this craft.

One of the misconceptions surrounding woodworking is the reluctance to share tools with others. Many woodworkers treat their tools as sacred objects, forbidding others from even touching or borrowing them. However, fostering a sense of inclusivity and camaraderie among fellow woodworkers can greatly enhance the overall experience. Instead of alienating others with strict rules, why not promote a more inclusive environment where tools can be shared, borrowed, and moved with permission? Building friendships and connections within the woodworking community can greatly enrich your journey as a woodworker.

So, remember that the true essence of woodworking lies in the joy of creation and the community that surrounds it. Focus on honing your skills, embracing creativity, and nurturing relationships with fellow woodworkers. Don’t get caught up in the allure of expensive tools or the idea that they are necessary for a fulfilling woodworking experience. With passion, dedication, and a little resourcefulness, you can create beautiful and meaningful projects without breaking the bank.

Thank you for taking the time to watch this video and read this blog post. I hope it has inspired you to find joy in woodworking and explore new ways to enhance your craft. Happy woodworking!
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If you are a woodworker, letting people borrow your tools can be a great way to help out people in need of projects, while also helping to get the most out of your woodworking skills. There are a few important factors to consider when letting people borrow your tools.

Firstly, it is important to trust the person you are lending your tools to. Make sure to properly vet them before granting them access and consider any recommendations or referrals from trusted friends and colleagues. Once you have established trust, then you can work out an agreement that is mutually beneficial. You may also want to consider where and how the tools will be used.

Secondly, it is also important to keep track of all your tools. This means creating a detailed list of everything that is lent out and tracking it accordingly. Having a system in place to track what goes out and comes back in is essential for keeping your tools in top condition.

Finally, if you are loaning out expensive or hard to replace tools, you may want to consider getting a signed agreement from the borrower outlining the terms and conditions of the loan. This will make it easier to ensure that everyone understands the responsibility of borrowing items, and it also provides valuable documentation in case the items are not returned.

In addition to these factors, there are other ways to maximize the value of woodworking:

1. Practice safety techniques and proper tool use. Woodworking requires precision and safety. Knowing how to handle tools safely and correctly can help prevent accidents and save time.

2. Learn proper finishes. Knowing the right equipment and techniques to apply finishes that will make your projects look great is essential for any woodworker.

3. Keep tools and jigs in good condition. Woodworking tools require regular maintenance to stay in working condition. Keeping your tools clean and in good repair will ensure that they stay as sharp and precise as when they first came out of the box.

4. Invest in quality materials. The quality of the materials you use will play a big role in the success or failure of any woodworking project. Invest in the best materials you can find to ensure the best quality results.

5. Learn the basics. Woodworking is a skill that takes time to learn and master. Make sure to take the time to study and practice the basics of woodworking before taking on complicated projects.

6. Work with experienced woodworkers. Spending time with experienced woodworkers can help to ensure that you are learning from the best and picking up helpful tips to make your projects better.

7. Network with other woodworkers. You can learn a lot from other woodworkers, and having a network of knowledgeable people is beneficial for any woodworker.

8. Find a mentor. Having an experienced woodworker as your mentor can give you an invaluable source of knowledge and guidance when tackling tough projects.

At the end of the day, woodworking is a wonderful craft that can bring immense joy to its practitioners. Taking the proper steps to allow people to borrow your tools, practicing safety and good technique, and investing in quality materials are all ways to make sure you get the most out of your woodworking projects.



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