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Planing and scraping techniques which are better for your body.. Any Ideas?


Stephen Faulk
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How do you move your body when you use your planes? Have you ever had back pain or hip pain? 

 

I have been keeping my legs stationary and moving my hips very little while planing and I am going to try some new ways of moving my body in an effort to stay relaxed and see if I can stop getting hip pains. I'm thinking about bending my knees more and moving my center much farther back and forth when planing. 

 

I've been using planes for years but recently I have been developing a pain in my right hip after a session of planing. 

 

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Scraping also can be trouble some for my right thumb if I use the scraper by bending it which I sometimes do. 

 

 

Tell me about your scraping planing issues and how you resolved them or changed the way you do things to keep from being injured. I'm looking at using my planes and scrapers everyday for several more years and it's a concern for repetitive use injuries.  Who has had a problem and then developed ways of dealing with these issues? 

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Stephen, I notice that you're still a young feller, at only 50 years old. :)

 

A couple of quick suggestions, and maybe I'll have time to go into them more later:

 

Plan your work routine so there is sufficient recovery time from activities which are strenuous. For instance, I don't do aggressive scraping two days in a row. Too hard on the hands. Nor would I weight train the same body part two days in a row.

 

Learn about environmental factors and exposures, including diet (and allergens), which can tend to be pro-inflammatory, or inflammation mitigating. I realize that this may sound like it's bordering on "alternative medicine", but by learning and experimenting with such things, I've been able to do more for myself than any physician was able to do. Granted, it may be that I just didn't happen to run into the right physicians.

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Stephen, I notice that you're still a young feller, at only 50 years old. :)

 

A couple of quick suggestions, and maybe I'll have time to go into them more later:

 

Plan your work routine so there is sufficient recovery time from activities which are strenuous. For instance, I don't do aggressive scraping two days in a row. Too hard on the hands. Nor would I weight train the same body part two days in a row.

 

Learn about environmental factors and exposures, including diet (and allergens), which can tend to be pro-inflammatory, or inflammation mitigating. I realize that this may sound like it's bordering on "alternative medicine", but by learning and experimenting with such things, I've been able to do more for myself than any physician was able to do. Granted, it may be that I just didn't happen to run into the right physicians.

 

Thanks David,  

 

Young, hmm, not feeling young, hate lifting weights. I do some paddle boarding now out on the ocean feels great. I've been doing instrument making long enough to have become sensitized to ebony and some rosewoods so I am careful about dust and dust extraction from the shop. Diet..I eat pretty well, and not much junk although a pizza now and them would be nice. I eat a lot of small fish and pickled vegetables, not really extravagant. 

 

Last month I powered out thicknessing a few sets of rose wood ribs and backs for guitars, spruce tops and worked on scooping out a cello back in one week. During that week at the end of the day I felt tired and had hurting hands. I will take your advice about varying the routine with scraping. I suppose my body is just getting older and it is changing and it is new to deal with. I'm not usually tired after work, but I am noticing I have pains where I did not have them ten years ago. 

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As a blacksmith working methods become paramount. I generaly try to focus on central power. and try to work with body weight as much as possible. much like a boxer or in karatie. the other thing I will do is to PLAY...with hand holds and postures to find what works the best. much of the time folding a knee will move the body forward. I wonder if the Japaness habit of pulling the planes would be an advantage.

  I agree with David that taking time off strenous work for healing is good , Today I'll take a road trip for a site visit. My shoulders a killing me.

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I'm not getting tired, I'm getting a hitch in my hip joint. I'm taking it up with a medical professional.

Yes, you want to see if there's anything going wrong in there.  Hmmm... that's about the age I was when I noticed a hitch in my hip.  The metal replacement is doing fine.  Don't want to scare you, though.  Rest is good, and I try to do a lot of that.

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Years of turning handles on lathes and mills, and all the related tightening of chucks and vises have given me chronic tendonitis in my hands and elbows,  arthritic hands, and lately sore feet from standing at work for 8 hours.  I showed my doctor my hands; he showed me his; they were worse!  He just swallows pain pills.  I take maybe three otc NSAID's a week.  Luckily my back, knees, and hips rarely bother me.  The pain is worse when I'm sleeping, and first wake up.  Moving around generally makes it better, until later.  I find I use my whole body, not just my hands or arms to do most things; that seems to help.  Thick scrapers rather than thin ones.  Planes, over gouges.  

Weird things like holding the phone or a book in one place for a minute or more can sometimes drive me nuts, and I have to stop, or change hands constantly.   Sometimes my neck and shoulders will get it for a few days for no apparent reason, then my elbows will feel better!  

I don't know what the solution is.  Maybe it's just the thrill of getting older.

Ken

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 I take maybe three otc NSAID's a week.  

One of the added thrills of getting older is finding out the side effects of drugs.  I used to do NSAID's too, for arthritis, until digestive tract damage made itself known.  My doctor said one side effect was the reduction of protective coatings in the digestive tract, and ordered me to stop the regular use of NSAIDs.  Isn't this fun?

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One of the added thrills of getting older is finding out the side effects of drugs.  I used to do NSAID's too, for arthritis, until digestive tract damage made itself known.  My doctor said one side effect was the reduction of protective coatings in the digestive tract, and ordered me to stop the regular use of NSAIDs.  Isn't this fun?

 

Yes, I stopped taking Advil on my own after feeling how my stomach was getting sour and painful. I have not taken advil for several months. It;s not good for your liver to take strong ibuprofen with alcohol. Guess which substance won my full attention: BEER!

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To plane your body, go to a lumber yard and offer yourself up to a thicknessing machine.

For scraping, get a giant spatula and whack it over your scalp until you acquire relief. 

 

 Got a friend with a planer jointer that I can use any time. But it has limits as the fine thicknessing of tops and backs has to be done by hand.

 

Spatula..at the dollar store. 

 

Perhaps you can fashion a cane for an old man? Move along sonny, thats a good fellow make poor Uncle Steve a nice walking stick.  :P

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I suppose the general topic of keeping ourselves healthy in the shop has been brought up.  I don't remember.  But I remember asking if the matter is discussed in the violin making schools.  I think it is one of the most important considerations.  To begin with, since most of us aren't going to get rich, we are going to be working late into life where a little foresight and some good practices might begin to really pay off.

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