Earlier this year I went into a long and enthusiastic description of how I like to do my summer woodworking with both of my garage/shop doors wide open. Those of us in the North Country just can’t get enough of the outside experience once the frost has left the ground.
Until, that is until the bugs come out.
Now, I don’t want to be accused of lying, but those of you who have been to Minnesota during July and August will be forced to back me up & we have the largest, meanest, and most plentiful mosquitoes known to humankind. Just the other day my bird dog was pointing them for my son who was killing them with a tennis racquet. (Hey, I said they were big!) So now you can understand how dangerous it would be to start flailing around with the “great Northern salute” in the middle of your workshop. Particularly if you have a power tool running or a sharp object in your hand.
But at long last help has arrived in the form of insect repellent apparel. BUZZ OFF insect shield has developed a process to treat clothing and turn it into bug repellent shirts, pants, hats & well, you name it. I recently got to try some of their product, and I have to say it worked really well. I talked recently with Richard Lane, president of the company, and he said that the effectiveness of the product increases as you add garments. So if you wear sox, shorts, a hat and a short sleeve shirt, you’ll be fine in most environments. If you are up in Minnesota, a set of pants and a long sleeve should be added to the mix.
So, while you might not regularly think of clothing as a “woodworking tool,” let me tell you that I’m not heading to my shop with out my BUZZ OFF apparel. (Not for a couple of months anyway & then I’ll be wearing my long-handles.)
You can find clothing featuring the insect repellent treatment (which will last through 25 wash cycles or more) at Orvis.com, Bass Pro.com and soon a leading catalog clothing company.
Whether you are building a fence or a deck, or just working in your garage shop like I do, I suggest you try keeping the bugs at bay without the spray.