Not today! I told him I was too busy to help him but if he designed it and determined what materials were needed I would take him to the store and finance the supplies. But that was all I was going to do to help. I admit that I did help "tweek" the design a bit but that was all I would do. He was going to use the hand saw and cut all the pieces (I was not about to allow a 13 yr old to use power tools, plus I figured it would build character), nail, and assemble everything himself. Fortunately for him, as we drove home we saw one of our neighbors in his garage using a table saw for some finish work. After some pleading and a pouty face he had compassion and cut the wood for him. I'm sure that saved him at least 2 hours. Now all he had to do was nail the pieces together.
As I was making dinner I heard whining from the garage. I resisted peeking in on him until after I was nearly done with preparing dinner. When I looked in on him, he was nearly in tears as the wood was splitting and he feared he would have to start over. Frankly, I had the same fear. Gratefully dad came home in time to rescue him. They glued and drilled and did whatever men do in the garage and ended up with a fine looking machine.
I have to admit I am proud of my son for pulling it off. He has a great mind if he would just apply himself...in a timely manner, instead of waiting until last minute. It will be fun to watch him grow up and make mistakes and have many successes.