Woodworking is fun and rewarding pastime, but if you’re starting to lose your vision you may think it’s out of your reach. However, if you want to continue or take up this hobby, there are several resources that can help you.

Many mid-sized and large communities have Woodworkers’ Clubs. Some are focused on sharing information and techniques, while others are more social. These can be informative and enjoyable depending on the willingness of the members to describe their projects and techniques. They can be located by consulting directory assistance.

Some state and private rehabilitation centers, state schools for the blind, and veteran’s administration rehabilitation centers offer training for blind and visually impaired persons that use a woodworking shop as a teaching laboratory. Start your search for these organizations at the Directory of Services.

You can find many of the tools that you need for woodworking at your local hardware store. However, for measuring tasks, you will need tools that are modified for people with vision loss. Start your search for these tools at the Helpful Products page.

Woodworking Reference Books

The following books on woodworking are available through the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped at the Library of Congress, a program that provides books on cassettes for free for eligible persons. To make it easy to find and request the books, you’ll find author, title, and call number below.

  • Robertson, J. Craig. The Kids’ Building Workshop: Fifteen Woodworking Projects for Kids and Parents to Build Together. RC060805
  • Tolpin, Jim. Jim Tolpin’s Woodworking Wit and Wisdom: Thirty Years of Lessons from the Trade RC060151
  • Peters, Rick. Woodworker’s Hand Tools: An Essential Guide. RC055981
  • Butz, Richard. How to Carve Wood: A Book of Projects and Techniques. RC050740

Other Resources

Woodworking for the Blind, Inc. provides monthly CD recordings of woodworking publications exclusively for the use of blind and visually impaired woodworkers. Voice recordings of all of the articles and features in leading woodworking periodicals like Fine Woodworking, Woodwork, Woodsmith, Woodworking, and American Woodworker are available as CDs in MP3 file format shortly after each magazine’s current issue hits the stands.

Woodworking for the Blind also occasionally offers recordings of full-length books on woodworking. If you are interested in any of these resources, please email the group at woodworkingfortheblind@comcast.net.