Old 07-13-10, 04:17 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 22

Hi everyone!

I'm new here. I wasn't sure where to post this since there are so many different forums here, so I hope I found the most appropriate place and you guys could help me.

I'm really interested in learning how to build things (mechanical/electrical/carpentry), but have no idea where to start and I was hoping someone here could suggest a book or online guide or something. I'm really interested in this but unfortunately my life path forced me to completely avoid working with my hands. So please could you recommend a real beginner place to start to gain the basic knowledge so I could later advance to bigger things. I would really love to be the fix everything around the house type of guy.

Thanks and much appreciate all the help!
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Old 07-13-10, 06:35 PM
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Welcome to the forums! You have arrived. Pick a forum, do a search that interests you and dig in. There is a host of other diyer's and many professionals who have done the same thing you have, and are willing to help. Ask questions. (but not more than once)
Books would depend on the specialty you are looking for. There is no "catch all" book where you can learn it all. Banging your fingers is the best teacher. OJT, if you will.
What sort of tools have you accumulated over the years? We can help spend your money, too. We love steering you to the right tools. Just be aware, it is an addiction for which there is no cure and no end.
Old 07-13-10, 07:23 PM
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One of the most recommended electrical books here is "Wiring Simplified" which can be found at most big box stores. It is, more or less, how I got pointed toward the electrical trade.

I pretty much build/break/fix everything around here. I learn as I go as Chandler said On the Job Training. I have gotten to the point where there is nothing I can not do or fix. That is unless I break it beyond repair.
Old 07-14-10, 09:43 AM
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The books at the big box stores will help get you going in the right direction. One I have called Home Improvements 1-2-3 from HD will help point you in the right direction on many projects. None can solve every problem, but can help get you started. Then you learn as you go.
Old 07-14-10, 09:52 AM
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One thing to be aware of....
Many of the recommendations for written guides that have been mentioned are geared for the US. I noticed in your profile (though it doesn't show on your post) that you are in Canada...there may be different specs for many projects around the home....especially construction and electrical. Also many materials mentioned here and other sites may not be suitable or even available to you. Of course there will probably be acceptable alternatives...

Just do your research, proceed slowly, and ask local sources and you should be fine.
Old 07-14-10, 10:15 AM
Join Date: May 2010
Location: South Florida
Posts: 376
Books and online guides are helpful but donít substitute for doing stuff ďhands-onĒ. After browsing some books, try to identify what skills seems most appealing to you, as well as a project suitable for a beginner so that youíre not overwhelmed or frustrated. Unfortunately, some people start with something to difficult, and give-up thinking they arenít wired to work w/ their hands when project selection was the problem.

I was fortunate to have started out early in my career as a helper, and then moved to an apprentice by working with numerous skilled craftsmen. I learned far more from them and by doing as compared to the study books.

Signing up for something like Habitat for Humanity Canada allows you to work beside some people who have much to offer while doing something good for others and your community. I found technical schools to be helpful also . . . some offered through local schools at night are dirt cheap, and allow you to use power tools you probably donít possess.
Old 07-14-10, 10:39 AM
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Good point by Rob....

Habitat is a great way to learn the basics and even a little more (tool use, safety, etc). The Pro's that volunteer there do it to help and are almost always willing to explain a bit how things are done and why. Just watching someone who knows what they are doing can be helpful. Much better than trying to ask as they are working at a job for pay.
Old 07-15-10, 05:46 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 22
Thank you very much for the suggestions, habitat for humanity sounds like a great way to get started actually!

as for what tools I have accumulated....uhhh... none?
I am only 24 though, so I still have time to accumulate my handyman helpers.

Thanks again, I'm dying to get started

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