3/08/2010

Bench Dog

Above: My finishing room a.k.a “clean room” 
has everything I need at my fingertips
When considering the process of turnkeying a bamboo rod from start to finish there are literally hundreds of steps involved. From handling the cane, to turning of the hardware, to final dipping or spraying there is a multitude of specialized tools as well as common shop tools being used. Parts of these processes are highly coveted among rod makers like myself, but my basic setup (as seen in the above photo of my finishing room) is fairly commonplace. You'll find various rooms full of metal lathes, planing forms, various block planes, binders, cane oven, bevelers, bandsaws, and drawers full of hardware, blanks, and turning stock. The list goes on and on.  Honestly I don't purchase equipment anymore. I make all of my equipment short of reels, and waders. I suppose if I was proficient at sewing and gluing Gore-Tex I'd try my hand at making a pair of waders.

Growing up my father had a work bench and it was my favorite place to hang out and watch him work. When he was away at work I'd rummage through his various power tools and hand tools only later to be caught red handed after forgetting to put his router or circular saw away. Then I'd get the smack down! He taught me to put away his tools at an early age, as well as how to properly care for them and respect them. He taught me to be organized and that whatever project you were working on would directly reflect your level of discipline when it came to every aspect of your shop. Being a veteran sailor, and having sailed all over the world, he kept everything very shipshape and I took on those characteristics as a young adult. If you were to see my fathers shop and my shop there probably very similar to this day. Although our tools now are different in many respects.

My father is a Bench Dog and so am I. This is where we find ourselves in our element, and are most happy. If you cannot find my father my mother will say “he's in the barn”, but not necessarily in the dog house. 

~Clint Joseph Bova