Hot and Dusty

Rob PortraitRecently, in the print magazine, I waxed poetic over the halcyon experience of summer woodworking. How I loved to open the overhead door of my shop and work well into the sunlit Minnesota evenings (it’s not quite midnight sun up here, but close). And that, while there were some bugs to swat and some drops of sweat to wipe away … it was one of the best times of year to be in the shop.

This endearing dialogue, like most of my well-intentioned efforts, got me into trouble in no time at all. Just today, I received a letter from a reader, along with a newspaper clipping. The front page of the newspaper had a photo of a bank thermometer reading 123-degrees, I assume in the Fahrenheit scale. Our reader’s letter offered observations such as that wax in that climate turned to liquid, electric motors turned not well at all, and woodworkers often turned to swimming pools. Graciously, he admitted that summer woodworking was swell – but only weather permitting. (Perhaps he, too, chose the midnight hour to make sawdust.)

The only comment in my original editorial that seems to have met with near universal approval was the concept of using a leaf blower to dust your shop. I must confess that I learned that trick from television woodworker Scott Phillips … but it sure seems to have struck a chord with our readers.

Happy summer dusting!

Rob Johnstone, Woodworker’s Journal

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