Pro Woodworking Tips.com
Professional or Amatuer Woodworker
Going Professional or Remaining an Amatuer
Woodworker...Today I had a lunch meeting with a designer and her client. Prior to our meeting,
the designer steered her to this website, to get a feel for our work. During the conversation, I was asked several
times by the client, " why would I build this web site"? How will I make any money from it? What is the purpose to
going through, what is obviously a large amount of work, in addition to the work load I'm already dealing with.
Aren't I giving away all my "secrets", and shooting myself in the foot? Suppose
the people who read it start competing with me? Won't that be bad for business. My friend, the late Bob
Caughie's biggest fear in his late sixties, was that he would pass away before he got the chance to teach his
trade to someone else. He knew the knowledge he gained throughout his life was valuable, and it took a full
lifetime to learn, would be gone forever.
While I have no intentions of dying anytime soon, I enjoy passing along what I've learned in the
woodworking craft, simply because it fascinates me, and it's a passion. It's kind of like, "wow, look what I
found". And maybe if I live long enough to forget how to do it, I can refer to this site also, since I have it
At first she wondered why the designer had sent her to the site in the first place, since she has
no intentions of building her own furniture. One of the things she didn't ask me was, do I know what I'm doing?
Or won't I do it for less money. She had obviously spent a great deal of time on this site, and had developed a
list of questions, based on what she learned here. She and the designer had also visited a job site we were just
finishing. Her comments went something along the lines of, " are these the guys who are building my cabinets.
Are they the same guys who made that web site? She was quite relieved to find out that yes we were the same
guys, in both cases.
What would surprise her is the fact that I am not truly a "trained professional cabinet or
furniture maker". I did not apprentice in ths business. In fact, I served an apprenticeship in the plumbing
business. It wasn't until about seven years ago that we made a jump from a General Contracting business to cabinet
making, on a full time basis. We still do general contracting, but not in the same scale we were. Prior to that, it
was a hobby.
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