Exit wound

In training as a Peace Corps volunteer we had a Moldovan doctor who liked to intersperse pictures from his field days as a military doctor in his presentations. Including pictures of recent  amputations and exit wounds. Given his soviet bearing, I never asked why.

I’m making a workbench, and this was the fruit of my labor chopping, hacking really, mortises yesterday. More exit wound than mortise.


Clearly, chopping a mortise through a knot that size is dumb. But, I had to move my original mortise because of another mistake and really am too lazy to remake the entire leg. There is a long discussion of practice and not rushing into work in there, but I’ll keep that for myself.

So, I knew the knot was a bad idea, and as soon as I chopped into it realised the full breadth of just how bad . Didn’t stop me, though. For whatever reason, I powered through. Which wasn’t bright. Ended up having to come at it mostly from behind, as the leg is laminated and the other board was knot free.

The hard part about experience is all the stupid shit you (I) do along the way to getting there.

Part of me wants to ditch the leg entirely and make another so I have clean mortises. But, it might be a good reminder in the future to practice, warm up and go slow.

This arrived yesterday, too. Made me happy after that knot.


Had no idea what a beast this vise is until my wife, who carried it home from the DPO, told me to go get it from the car.

3 thoughts on “Exit wound

  1. Greg Merritt April 28, 2015 / 9:52 pm

    I think it’s human nature. No matter how many people tell us its a bad idea, we have to do it at least once before we believe it. LOL
    As long as the leg is structurally sound, use it. Its a workbench. It does not need to be pretty.


    • TIWilson April 29, 2015 / 9:44 am

      Pretty, no. Structurally sound, maybe. When I got started with this i was worrying about how pretty it would be. Then I looked at my current bench. Stray saw cuts, chisel marks, dirt, etc. Stopped worrying about pretty.


      • Greg Merritt April 29, 2015 / 10:21 am

        We all do it. When I built my bench I stressed over how it looked. Then continued to baby it for the first few months. Once I realized that it was effecting how I worked I changed my attitude and began treating it like shop appliance instead of furniture.

        Liked by 1 person

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