"I spent some 29 years almost exclusively using the left side of my head designing computer software. As I approached retirement (we call it being retarded) in 2000, it seemed to be time to exercise the right side a little."
To read the full article on Bill Kandler and see images of his projects, click "read more" below for the full article
I spent some 29 years almost exclusively using the left side of my head designing computer software. As I approached retirement (we call it being retarded) in 2000, it seemed to be time to exercise the right side a little. I thought back upon things I had done that had been fun as a way of figuring out how to occupy my newfound time and previously idle brain parts. Woodworking came to mind as I remembered that I started out my adult life by making all of my own furniture. The work included a couch, chair, footstool, lamp table, lamp, coffee table, three-piece chest-of-drawers set, and two nightstands.
In the process, I learned a lot about how the various shop tools worked and techniques needed, how to make my own veneer, and how not to use it.
The lamp, my only lathe project, stood out as the most fun. So I searched around and bought a lathe. When I got it set up, I started reading the instruction book. It's one of the rare times I've done that sort of thing. When I came to the section on segmented bowls, my interest was aroused. I made a small project and was hooked.
I designed my early projects using a simple CAD program to draw out the rings and bowl profiles. I made beautiful drawings with dimension lines all over the place. My first dozen projects were designed this way. But these drawings were too complex and I made too many mistakes in cutting the segments. I went out looking for software to help me do the design work.
Well, all I found in my search were a couple of ring calculators and that just didn't cut it for me. I wanted a tool that handled the entire project.
Since I developed software throughout my professional career, I launched on a task to create my own tool. It's the good old "Not Invented Here" syndrome. It worked well for me, and I decided to see if it would work well for others. Now I've learned how to sell software on the Internet, helped more than a few newbies get into segmented objects, and have more than 330 users across ten different countries. It's been fun.
As my desires for new designs develop, so develops the program. What started out as a fairly simple tool has matured into a tool where I can develop both simple and rather complex designs with equal ease.
I've just started project 26 and it's beginning to get a little crowded in our living room. A sofa table I designed a couple of years ago is my temporary display case. My wife has started a campaign to get the top of it cleared off so she can display something.
I've started selling some of the pieces and it gives me real satisfaction to see the pieces spark up someone else's table or room and it's a way to deal with my space problems. I recently donated one item for an auction presented by a local charity and was pleasantly surprised by the price it garnered
If this is enough to raise your interest, you can find out a whole lot more at my site where I sell my software (of course), display some of my work, and the work of others who use the program. I also offer tips on how to approach segmented objects. The site URL is http://www.segmentedturning.com/.