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Lost interest ???

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  • Lost interest ???

    I have a superbly equipped workshop built up over the last 50 years, I just seem to have lost all interest, haven't switched a machine on for 3 months at least. Thinking about getting rid of it all to save my wife a problem in the future.
    Anyone else been through a stage in life like this ? David

  • #2
    Unless all of your machines are from harbor freight and your aggravation level has reached 11, this could be something worth talking to your doctor about. If you have other new interests that are all consuming (golf or a cute new neighbor), I would not worry about it, but if not, this could be a sign of depression or other medical problem. Have you possible watched too much election coverage on cable and are slipping into a coma?


    • #3
      There was a thread here a while back that seemed to demonstrate that as a group, guys like us can tend to be a bit A.D.D. by nature. I have found that this runs in streaks for me (even my ADD is subject to variability ) and sometimes some time away from it all gets you interested in getting back. Often its a project that requires you to use the tools for some other repair or whatever...which then leads to a re-interest. I found that I spent less time in the shop this past winter than in the two years prior.

      It might be that some other aspect of the hobby is worth pursuing for you now, just to bring in some variety. They say that one key to avoiding depression is to always give yourself something to look forward to. You must be a bit older if you have been building your shop for 50 years. Perhaps you could lend your expertise to a high school with a machine shop by volunteering. I know Lew Hartswick from this group does that. It might get you exposure to others with a similar interest and give you a different reason for doing something you have enjoyed for years for other reasons.

      Speaking of which...not to borrow check yourself to see if you show any other signs of depression. One sign is a loss of interest in things that always held your interest....but its just one sign, and not necessarily meaningful taken by itself.

      Paul Carpenter
      Mapleton, IL


      • #4
        Come to all if us sooner or later David. I've slacked off a lot since my stroke. there's so much that requires balance refinements that I don't posess anymore. I've been distributing heirloom tools to the younger gerneration foor the last couple of years along with a brief provinance (this square belonged to your great uncle, Lyle. He stole it from a CCC camp...). the lathe and the mill and all the supporting equipment goes to the nephew with the most interest and the rest of my estate goes to my nieces and other nephew.

        I figure on winnowing down the collection gradually to some point where I keep the stuff I'm still getting use from apart from the machine tools. When the inevitable happens, I have a living will and of course the last will and testiment. I figure the final clean-up is the chore of the younger generation. I cleaned up after a dozen of my elders passed so it works out.

        I didn't find it a dreadful chore to work this out. We had a meeting the last time the family was together and settled a lot of this without a hassle. But then my family is pretty harmonious. If you anticipate strife, you better parcel out the goods your wife won't wish to deal with in specific terms. In the meantime sell/give your stuff piecemeal to the enthusiastic and the deserving.


        • #5
          Careful what you advise Forrest he'll be getting begging letters from John very shortlyAlistair
          Please excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease


          • #6
            Originally posted by Forrest Addy
            I've been distributing heirloom tools to the younger gerneration foor the last couple of years along with a brief provinance (this square belonged to your great uncle, Lyle. He stole it from a CCC camp...)..
            It sure hasnt effected your sense of humor Forest, ROFLMAO! Keep pushin on bro


            • #7
              I would take Mickey D's advice to heart... could be something going on that could need a bit of medical attention.....

              But hopefully its a new hobby or something, gotta keep the mind sharp and active..

              Plus you have many, many years invested to the hobby, could be time to move on to something else that would make some use of your hard earned tools and shop.......


              • #8
                Lost Interest

                I lost my wife and best friend of 48 years Jan 3 of this year and I
                pretty much have been in a fog since then myself.
                I can relate to your feelings, I do go out in the shop daily but not a whole lot has been accomplished.


                • #9
                  My grown sons care nothing for my workshop but I keep hoping for a grandchild one day to come along and show an interest. The boys aren't even married yet so I may be barking up an empty tree. I hate collecting a piece of machinery without being able to use it so I might be better off selling it at some point.


                  • #10
                    YES!!! My doctor had me on Citalopram--20 mg per day, for Anxiety, and I had no interest in doing anything in the shop. I quit taking it about 3 weeks ago and now I feel great--started working again in the shop a bit every day and am making parts again for the Ugly Loco.


                    • #11
                      Don`t feel too bad . I went for 3 years once after my best friend died . Did not even open the door and look in . Just started a hot air engine after a one year slump. sure does feel good to build something. so don't despair just yet . give it some more time.
                      Every Mans Work Is A Portrait of Him Self


                      • #12
                        Kinda been there.

                        Always loved building and making things, turned the fun hobby into a job, the job was itself a great deal of fun for several years, and funded more and better tools.

                        Then the job turned into a job, and it started being less and less fun, and more and more like drudgery. I got pissed off several times and came damn close to telling everyone to f**k off and die on any number of occasions. Work fell off because I couldn't deliver anymore, so I didn't even have enough work, that I hated anyway, to pay the bills. Strongly considered bagging it and getting a real job.

                        Slogged through, in part through sheer bloody-mindedness and in part because I know damn good and well I'm a poor employee, found some side hobbies that got my mind off the hobby-job, eventually got largely caught up, some of the pressure eased up, and now I'm back to enjoying it again...

                        ... Kind of. I have to admit the old thrill isn't there anymore, but then again, I haven't had anything truly interesting come by the shop in a good long while. Much of it's been make-work and short-run production that gets boring after about the third repetition.

                        But, in the last year, I've also bought quite a few fresh tools. A 10" shaper, drill grinder, Atlas horizontal mill, some valve and tool grinders, a blacksmithing setup... more recently I picked up a 16" shaper and a Nichols horizontal mill, and I'm still looking for a surface grinder and horizontal bandsaw.

                        Most of those machines I don't, to be perfectly honest, really need, but working on and setting up the tools themselves has become something of a sub-hobby, that for the moment I'm still very much enjoying.

                        A few will probably get sold back off to make room for new ones (the Atlas is going away, if anyone's interested, since I'll be getting the much heavier Nichols) and I suspect that in the next year or two or so, I'll probably find even more I'll have to try and find room for.

                        Where was I going with this? Oh, yeah. Don't fret. Don't pressure yourself, espoecially if it's not a day-job shop. If it's just a hobby shop, lock it up for a while and don't worry about it. Find something else to do for a while, even if it's just flying kites on the beach.

                        You'll either find yourself drawn back, or perhaps eventually realize you don't need the tools anymore. But 'til that time, don't worry about it.

                        Doc's Machine. (Probably not what you expect.)


                        • #13
                          I can relate to this too. I guess at least you know you're in good company.
                          I've been doing this for a long time and for the past few months I've been considering selling off all the bigger stuff and just keeping a couple smaller machines so I can still "hobby" with it. It's a hard decision because I've gradually acquired what may be the best-tooled lathe and mill I could ever hope for and many other machines and stuff and it would be extremely difficult and time consuming to do it all again if I regretted it and changed my mind at some point. But for no more than I use it anymore I can't shake the feeling that I sure could use the space and the extra cash.

                          Note that I have a long history battling mild, persistent depression but have learned to deal with it effectively (pretty much) and can usually tell whether I'm in the middle of the "depression talking" or genuine, rational feelings. I've determined that I'm thinking reasonably about liquidating this stuff, but man it's hard to think of doing so after spending so much time & effort getting the stuff together. I'm going to give it some more time before leaping one way or the other.

                          For what it's worth, my advice would be to make some arrangements for the disposition of your shop so the "problem in the future" for your wife is softened somewhat, just because that's a good idea anyway, whether you're 90 or 20. When that time comes, dealing with your shop tools will just be another detail and will be a relatively small thing compared with dealing with the loss of your presence. Three months isn't such a long time, especially coming out of the winter season, so I'd be inclined to tell you to give it some more time before getting rid of it all, but that's hard to judge from just a one-paragraph (or a hundred pages for that matter) description and you know better than anyone else of course.

                          Well this wasn't worth much, but as I said, at least you know you aren't alone.
                          Last edited by tyrone shewlaces; 05-05-2008, 10:38 PM.


                          • #14
                            Hi everyone,

                            Just offering a perspective from the other side of things.

                            My Great-Grandfather was a Diesel Mech. in the early 1900s. I don't know much about him due to history lost with time. I do know that when he passed all of his tools (that his coworkers didn't grab) went to my Grandfather (son-in-law). He was (retired) an accountant by trade, and saw no intrest in the stuff. But for whatever reason keept everything. My father (Electrical Engineer) took some intrest in basic car maintance, but not much else.

                            Now here I am more then half a century after Great-Grandfather passed (whom I never met) I use many of his tools, automotive speciality stuff in particular, I even recently brought home his old welder my grandfather was going to finally throw away (couldn't let that happen). Even use his camber/caster tools still!

                            So I guess I am saying you never do know. There is a lot of family heritage in those old tools, and I do feel a bit of a connection when using such tools. Have you ever wondered who used tools before you? I have, and am proud to say they have stayed in the family.

                            Don't sell anything, pass on the heritage. Someone may just walk a similiar path in the future.



                            • #15
                              Depression might the problem as others have said.I never gave it a second thought until I found myself in it,scared me.

                              Not having time to do the things I wanted to only made it worse and stress at work didn't help either.Then I got some good advice from some one who had been through the same thing.

                              I had to realise that all I could handle was all I could do,I wasn't Superman and could never be so it was best to quit trying.Let others carry their share of the load and live life a piece at a time as I could handle it.And occasionaly make time for things I wanted to do,we only come around once in life,so we had better make the best of it.

                              Haven't been depressed since.
                              I just need one more tool,just one!