Jim Forrest Sr.

Rob-Portrait351I have been actively involved in woodworking for more than 30 years. For that entire time, Forrest table saw blades have been a premier product, and Jim Forrest Sr. was willing to tell you exactly why that was true. To say that he has been a fixture in our small world of woodworking would be like saying that Gibraltar is “a nice bit of rock”.

I remember talking to one of my ad salesmen shortly after he had been to the Forrest factory (to sell Jim some ad pages in the magazine) — all he could talk about was: “Rob, you’ve got to get a couple of these saw blades – they are the best in the business!” And while that may have been true, it was clear to me that Jim had “sold” my sales guy, not the other way around. How did that happen? It was because Jim was one of those rare businessmen, a manufacturer who built the best product he possibly could, and believed in its value to the last fiber of his being.

Sadly, Jim passed away on November 5th at 80 years of age. He will be missed by all of us in the woodworking community. Those of us here at the Journal offer our condolences to his sons James Jr. and Jay, and to their extended family.

While we are convinced that Forrest Manufacturing is in good hands, we miss Jim Sr. and mourn the loss of an industry icon and a true friend of woodworkers everywhere.

Rob Johnstone, Woodworker’s Journal

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