Engineering is my life.
Ever since I can remember I have been tinkering with computers, pulling apart electronics and figuring out what makes things tick. My love of engineering has led me to where I am today; a project engineer who gets paid to help design and build printing machinery and I can say with some smug satisfaction that I am one of the few people in the world who enjoy their job.
Machines are fundamentally simple when you break them down to their individual components and knowing how something works can give great satisfaction. There is also apparently a hidden beauty within any machine which comes from its design, fabrication and assembly. I guess this comes from the belief that the skills and talent needed to bring something from concept to contraption must compare to the skills an artist uses to make raw materials into works of art.
However I have rarely been able to see this beauty that some engineers find in machinery especially with the mass produced junk that’s out there. Generally I see machines as cold and sterile when they are mass produced and imagine while the design process could have been a creative masterpiece, the end product has been assembled my mindless drones on a production line.
What makes a machine beautiful to me is when you can clearly see love and thought has not only gone into the design but also the physical creation. Being made from a natural substance such as stone or wood and not taking the easy option adds even more to this beauty and perhaps takes us away from modern life and back to nature a little.
Which brings me to wood…
Wood is one of the oldest materials used by man for thousands of years and yet we are still learning about the amazing things that can be done with it today. From homes and furniture to musical instruments and weapons it truly is a massive part of the world we live in and no matter what new tech comes along there is always a place for wood and always new ideas on how to use it.
As an engineer I’m fascinated by the properties of wood, its strength, its many uses and its atheistic qualities. I want to push it to its very limits as a material and create many wonderful things but first I must learn some of the skills to do so.
This blog is an attempt to document my misadventures in woodworking as an engineer. I think I explain all this better in this video however:
I’m also a father of a lovely little girl called Ellie and am trying to install my love of making upon her as she grows up. You can follow my attempts on my other blog here at www.madmakerdad.co.uk