For the last 20 plus years, I’ve had an old Shopsmith (Model ER, serial number R67374) in my shop. I may have used it a couple of times when I first got it, but for the most part, it has sat in my shop against a wall, covered with miscellaneous stuff, basically serving as a shelf. Two days ago my wife noticed the Shopsmith and asked me what it was.
Now, she has had to walk by this thing every day throughout our whole married life…
I explained what it could be used for, and I shared with her its history. This tool belonged to one of my neighbors, Mr. Allen. As a child (I think I was about 10), I was fascinated by his woodworking skills, especially since he had only one arm. He had lost his arm as a soldier in WWII. My Dad was also fascinated by woodworking: he had taken shop in high school and made this wonderful tilt top table which still finds use in our home.
My Dad and Mr. Allen shared many woodworking experiences. When Mr. Allen passed away, he left his Shopsmith to my Dad. When my Dad passed away, I inherited the Shopsmith.
So my wife asked if we could move the Shopsmith into the dining room next to the antique Stanley workbench. I ran to the bathroom to grab some Qtips and check my ears for ear wax interference. But she repeated the same request! I know my wife loves to talk to our cats, but I suspected that she had finally lost her mind. After the idea settled down, I bought into the project. The move would free up shop space for more tools!
I called two of my grandchildren into service. We muscled the Shopsmith into the house and finally got it into place.
I must admit that it creates a whole new ambiance in the dining room! I will never question my wife’s mental condition again!
Remember the Old NCIS episode The Namesake? The one where Gibbs finds a Shopsmith (and a Congressional Medal of Honor) in a pawn shop? For a refresher of that episode look here.