The D4 is the driving force for this post.
The D4 was one of those purchases that came as a result of watching The New Yankee Workshop. Watching Norm cut beautiful dovetails with ease definitely had an affect on me.
It was a huge shock when I saw the price of the D4. However, for some reason, I knew I had to have it. So I saved up the cash I needed to get it. After all, at the time, I knew of no other way to cut dovetails, and I knew I wanted to cut them.
So even to this day, many years later, I have to use this jig. Not because I love using it, but because I feel so much guilt over not using it.
As a result, I try to incorporate dovetails into just about every project, just to get my money’s worth.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the results I get with the jig. Take a look at the banner photo at the top of the main page of this blog. Those dovetails were made with the D4.
So, I have this conflict inside of me that wants to experience the romanticism of hand cutting dovetails, but I’m afraid if I do that, I’ll fall too much in love with it and never go back to the D4.
I have other tools that don’t get used as much as I had intended when I bought them. Some of them only come out once in a while, and when they do, they perform their task well. Ok, maybe not that sign making jig from MLCS.
It’s the expensive items I guess that give me the motivational guilt to use them. I don’t like to use biscuits often in my projects, but I feel I need to at some point to justify buying the biggest bad boy on the market. Every woodworking mag gave it the highest reviews, so naturally I had to go for the high end of the biscuit joiner market. Now I can’t not use it.
Usually I work it into table projects as locations on aprons to attach buttons to secure the top. I tried to use biscuits for joinery once. Never again. They just couldn’t hold up to the stress put on the joint. Granted I used them to attach the legs to a post for a baseball tee, but the batter was only 2 years old. Unless my older son is the next Hank Aaron, I think I will leave them out of joinery.
I could provide an itemized list of tools purchased over the years that have their own guilt, but I think you get the point.
Going forward, a full analysis will be used to select tools. Perhaps someday I will just get over it and label myself a sucker. Or maybe sell something to fund the tools I really need to perform happy guilt free woodworking.