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 Joel's Blog at Tools for Working Wood

Guest Blog: An Interesting Story  


I recently received the following email from a customer, Mark Hagy and it's the sort of story that gets better with each sharing. So here it is:


I have just finished building my work bench and next to it, I have a board which contains my four holdfasts which I purchased from you, a rubber hammer to use with the holdfasts, and a variety of dogs that I have either purchased or built. To set the scene, my wife and I live in a small city and rent an apartment in a 4 apartment house. My wood shop is in a single car garage behind the house and it opens onto an alley which cuts the block in half. Across this alley is another rental house with a single mother and two young boys. These two boys can never remember my name, so they simply address me as "Neighbor". Whenever I hear, "Hey Neighbor!!" I know who is calling me.

A few days ago, these two boys called, "Hey Neighbor!!" and asked to come over and spend some time in the shop with me. After checking with their mother, they came running over asking me what they could do to help. I proceeded to ask them if they knew what a holdfast was and, of course, they had no idea what it was. I then picked up your four holdfasts and proceeded to explain to the boys what they were and how they worked. I then showed them where my scrap lumber was and gave them a second hammer. For the next forty five minutes these boys entertained themselves by pounding down on these holdfasts to secure pieces of wood to the bench top, tried unsuccessfully to move the wood that was being held, and then loosened the holdfasts to move the wood and place the holdfasts in another dog hole. The best part was when Mom came over to get the boys, they proceeded to explain to her what the holdfast was and how it worked.

It was a great day and hopefully, through the wonder of your holdfasts, we have at least planted the seed of woodworking in the lives of two boys in the city. Thanks for your part in helping this marvelous experience occur.

Mark Hagy

Tags:Woodworking Tools and Techniques,Misc.
Comments: 3
06/26/2013Brian Eve
Brilliant. Sometimes sacrificing your shop time is a good thing.
06/27/2013Justin Leib
Grinning from ear to ear over here. Good story! The best memories come from discovery. Those boys will have those memories forever. Justin
07/06/2013Elliott Hedges 
It's great how young minds have this natural attraction to hand tools! We have all these crappy plastic toys for my 18month old boy, but what makes him the happiest is when I sit down with him and we go through my tool box together. It's good to let them explore, sure there are sharp things and heavy things and pinchers and such, but it's worth your time to sit there with them and work. Much more fulfilling than the glazed eye look he gets in front of a video....
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The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the blog's author and guests and in no way reflect the views of Tools for Working Wood.
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