When I was building this sawbench, I was listening to the Pretenders catalog and wondering why so many people seem obsessed with Instagram-style woodworking photos and shop-fixtures built from precious woods. “But not me baby I’m too precious / fuck off.” The original sawbench design I riffed on for this was made of cherry. I’ve got plenty of it in the shop, but I just couldn’t bring myself to use it for this. I used $16 worth of home-center fir. I suspect it will work just as well, and I have no need to be precious about it.
I’d like to try to figure out some coherent way of talking about tools without being too precious about it; so many people in woodworking are tool collectors. It’s the same in photography, I suppose — herd together a dozen photographers (in the old days at least) and at least six of them would be camera collectors as well. Collecting and using get lumped together too easily, and with that there’s a drive to make everything into a precious object. I just can’t go there with workbenches and tool boxes. It just seems silly to me, though wouldn’t deny others the pleasure.