Woodworking as a hobby -- is it dying out?
#30
  Re: Woodworking as a hobby -- is it dying out? by bhh (Our woodworking club...)
Judging by the number of YouTube channels showing woodworking by younger folks, I'd say no!
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#31
  Re: RE: Woodworking as a hobby -- is it dying out? by srv52761 (I think many of us s...)
(12-03-2019, 03:27 AM)srv52761 Wrote: I offered my son the hand-rubbed finished walnut cradle  that I had made with meticulously turned individual spindles and all our kids used as infants for my first grandchild.  My daughter-in-law said it really didn’t fit in with the motif of the planned nursery, but she supposed if she gave it a couple of coats of paint maybe it would be ok.

This made me laugh, thanks as I needed one!  I watched this same behavior with three nieces and their first born.  I love how a nursery has to have a "motif" when in a year or two all the stuff will be put in the attic (or if from Ikea, thrown out) until the next baby (or two) arrives, then the parents are much less concerned about motif and more about getting enough sleep....  I guess its the "nesting" thing run amuck....
Credo Elvem ipsum etiam vivere
Non impediti ratione cogitationis
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#32
  Re: Woodworking as a hobby -- is it dying out? by bhh (Our woodworking club...)
Some very good observations in this thread, many of which are encouraging.  My overall perception is that all hobbies ebb & flow as styles, interests and technology changes our culture.  I've seen a resurgence in interest in blacksmithing around here over the past 10-15 years.  It isn't huge numbers, but enough to be noticed.  I suppose there was a time when everyone presumed that was a dying art, as well.

I agree that there is a growing makers movement in this country.  They might not be interested in making the same things their fathers and grandfathers made, but the interest in working with their hands is there.  As for club membership, I agree that this is a generational thing.  Younger people don't join clubs.  I belong to a scroll saw club.  All but a couple of the original, founding members have passed away.  The remainder are well into their 80's and even 90's and are unable to participate anymore.  Our membership peaked about 5-6 years ago and has dropped a good bit since then.  It's become mostly a social thing now and younger folks have other ways of interacting socially that don't include hanging out with a bunch of Boomers.  However, there still seems to be enough interest in scrolling that several companies have introduced new saw models in the past few years.
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#33
  Re: RE: Woodworking as a hobby -- is it dying out? by Bill Wilson (Some very good obser...)
(12-03-2019, 12:20 PM)Bill Wilson Wrote: Some very good observations in this thread, many of which are encouraging.  My overall perception is that all hobbies ebb & flow as styles, interests and technology changes our culture.  I've seen a resurgence in interest in blacksmithing around here over the past 10-15 years.  It isn't huge numbers, but enough to be noticed.  I suppose there was a time when everyone presumed that was a dying art, as well.

I agree that there is a growing makers movement in this country.  They might not be interested in making the same things their fathers and grandfathers made, but the interest in working with their hands is there.  As for club membership, I agree that this is a generational thing.  Younger people don't join clubs.  I belong to a scroll saw club.  All but a couple of the original, founding members have passed away.  The remainder are well into their 80's and even 90's and are unable to participate anymore.  Our membership peaked about 5-6 years ago and has dropped a good bit since then.  It's become mostly a social thing now and younger folks have other ways of interacting socially that don't include hanging out with a bunch of Boomers.  However, there still seems to be enough interest in scrolling that several companies have introduced new saw models in the past few years.

Funny this whole "makers movement" label.. There was a big "makers faire" in my town recently - very cool stuff, lots of 3D printing and robotics and hand-craft work.. The only sign of woodworking was a guy showing turned pens and some cutting boards.. I'm an engineer and a woodworker and despite spending most of my waking hours "making things" I'd be laughed at if I called myself a "maker" because, I guess, 3D printing and streaming my efforts on YouTube aren't part of my process.
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#34
  Re: Woodworking as a hobby -- is it dying out? by bhh (Our woodworking club...)
I see some things impacting hobbies in general and WW specifically. 

Hobbies entail struggling through computers, TV's and little gizmos that light up faces on the streets (cringe) and sidewalks. But not all people can play like that. 

Most now work two jobs; and meeting spouses and friends is a brief dance. Hence, Ikea, Wally, and Wayfair(?) are people's goto for cheap trash furniture that changes style and interest as soon as the old falls apart. Maybe, sooner. It's a tacky world and the easier it is to change the tack on the box, the better.

I grew up with dead people furniture which expanded to include parental units' stuff because it all is durable. Now, there is too much, we have live at home children unable (or, unwilling) to inherit ridiculous debt for a house and apartment that would relieve us of some, if not all, the extra furnishings. So, Deseret and for-profit charities save the current usable trash and bust up the durable to send to the landfill. The old good stuff doesn't have enough bolts, random wheels, mdf finish, or the correct size--as noted in above comments.

If you take the disposable logic a bit further, you will see that few can afford decent furniture or even understands what it looks like. We are to busy saving for the next washer-dryer that will replace or fall onto the current debt we have on the set now acting up. Besides, the new Teflon fry pan being advertised will work magic on your breakfast fajita that the old scabbed one can't. 

How long have I heard the same pan-song? 50 years?

Finally, and shortly, it's not cool or profitable to advertise chisels, table saws, or even recycled and managed (extinct) wood on major media, where our personalities are formed. Welcome to the wooden boat, free-model airplane, and make your own nuclear bomb hobbies. You are a terrorist if you do those things. It's more profitable to sell you the junky computer that falls out of favor when the iPhone is upgraded next month, and every month thereafter. 

Smirk Smirk Smirk Smirk Smirk
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#35
  Re: RE: Woodworking as a hobby -- is it dying out? by hbmcc (I see some things im...)
(12-03-2019, 04:00 PM)hbmcc Wrote: I see some things impacting hobbies in general and WW specifically. 

Hobbies entail struggling through computers, TV's and little gizmos that light up faces on the streets (cringe) and sidewalks. But not all people can play like that. 

Most now work two jobs; and meeting spouses and friends is a brief dance. Hence, Ikea, Wally, and Wayfair(?) are people's goto for cheap trash furniture that changes style and interest as soon as the old falls apart. Maybe, sooner. It's a tacky world and the easier it is to change the tack on the box, the better.

I grew up with dead people furniture which expanded to include parental units' stuff because it all is durable. Now, there is too much, we have live at home children unable (or, unwilling) to inherit ridiculous debt for a house and apartment that would relieve us of some, if not all, the extra furnishings. So, Deseret and for-profit charities save the current usable trash and bust up the durable to send to the landfill. The old good stuff doesn't have enough bolts, random wheels, mdf finish, or the correct size--as noted in above comments.

If you take the disposable logic a bit further, you will see that few can afford decent furniture or even understands what it looks like. We are to busy saving for the next washer-dryer that will replace or fall onto the current debt we have on the set now acting up. Besides, the new Teflon fry pan being advertised will work magic on your breakfast fajita that the old scabbed one can't. 

How long have I heard the same pan-song? 50 years?

Finally, and shortly, it's not cool or profitable to advertise chisels, table saws, or even recycled and managed (extinct) wood on major media, where our personalities are formed. Welcome to the wooden boat, free-model airplane, and make your own nuclear bomb hobbies. You are a terrorist if you do those things. It's more profitable to sell you the junky computer that falls out of favor when the iPhone is upgraded next month, and every month thereafter. 

Smirk Smirk Smirk Smirk Smirk

Gee, don't be so positive! Laugh
Credo Elvem ipsum etiam vivere
Non impediti ratione cogitationis
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#36
  Re: RE: Woodworking as a hobby -- is it dying out? by Admiral ([quote='hbmcc' pid='...)
I think it's dying just like the trades are. Pretty soon you will see a mass shortage of plumbers, electricians, carpenters and machinists.  If you think a plumber is expensive now, just wait another 10-20 years. Hopefully the Mike Rowe and TOH initiative will help.

High schools have removed woodworking, electronics and other votech classes. The parents of today's high schoolers for the most part can't do much either so who is supposed to teach them.

I am in my upper 50's and grew up on this farm. I can do carpentry, electrical, plumbing, welding, mechanical work, all taught to me by my dad. I went to college for electronics as well. I can fix might near anything and darn proud of it! I wish I had a son to pass it on too.
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#37
  Re: Woodworking as a hobby -- is it dying out? by bhh (Our woodworking club...)
IMHO, youtube and forums have replaced clubs. In that sense there is more interest. Woodnet served to answer many a question when I got really into WW 14 years ago. I have to admit, sometimes I feel like I should tell people I'm not a woodworker, I just watch and talk about it on the internet. Watching a project be built is cathartic sometimes if I don't have time to get to the shop.

That said, I'm 43 and see very few of my younger contemporaries getting into it. I have helped a few here and there in my shop do a project.Taught one to turn pens. Helped another with a dining table. Helped another with a small mahogany desk. Hoping to get them more excited but it doesn't really pan out so far. 

Recently a friend from high school contacted me on facebook, super excited about WW. I gave him a bunch of advice and he just started selling stuff at a craft fair. It was nice to see the enthusiam.
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#38
  Re: Woodworking as a hobby -- is it dying out? by bhh (Our woodworking club...)
(12-02-2019, 05:12 PM)bhh Wrote: Our woodworking club has had a gradual decline in membership.  A lot of the older members have died or gotten out of the business, so to speak, due to health or moving to retirement homes.

Are GenX, GenY, Millenials, whatever to call the post-baby-boomer generations not getting into woodworking so much any more?   The club tends to be old white guys in flannel shirts and we're wondering what to do to boost our membership and interest.  

I did a workshop at a local high school's "science club" a couple of years ago.   The advisor said they could do robotics, lasers and integrated circuits, but not sure they could measure and cut a board.   This turned out to be true as I had them make a 5 piece and one dowel tool tote glued and nailed together.  One kid, on his way out said it was perfect -- his iPad fit in there just right.  My Jr. High "shop class" sparked my interest that rekindled after high school, college, and finally out on my own with wife in an apartment with walkway and basement storage where I did some work with saw, square, drill, plane and hammer.   It grew from there.

bhh - please enable Private Messaging
I would like to reach out to you via PM and compare notes on our Woodworking Clubs and how we are attempting to attract new members.

Thanks,

Bill
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