One of the new directions has been doing metal work. Not as an end but as a means. I enjoy making my own tools and I have not been able to do some types of work without some specifically metal working stuff. I picked up a metal lathe a while back and I am waiting on a mill. Not a big one, just a small bench top version.
The other direction has been with some electronics. Specifically motor control and sensors. I have been designing a spindle for my CNC router and figuring out how to make it all fit together. It has really just been a mental exercise. I could do just as well with a little $25 laminate trimmer but it is more about figuring out how things work and how to design things.
What does this have to do with woodworking? Well, one big thing is that I am going to have to make some adjustments in my workshop area to accommodate working in different materials and to organize things in a workable manner. Right now my shop is a mess. I have to get tool storage and work surfaces cleared along with making some decisions about power outlets and such. Since I mainly use hand tools for woodworking, power wasn't that much of a problem. I just have a long extension cord in the shop and move it around whenever I need electric power. That is going to have to change.
I have also bought what is possibly my last major woodworking purchase. I picked up a set of hollows and rounds. Well, technically, they are not exactly hollows and rounds but are close enough. There are six sizes from about 1/8 up to 1.5 inches. I would have made them myself but at around $12 a piece, it really wasn't justifiable to do it myself. I don't believe I could have come close buying the materials at that price. They are the same ones that Japan Woodworker carries from Mujing Fang but I bought them directly from China at a big savings.
This is what they look like:
I didn't get every size they offered but that is ok, It gives me a range of sizes to work with. They have them in 6, 8, 10, 13, 16, 19, 22, 25, and 32mm and the partial set I bought didn't include the 8,16, or 22mm sizes. I can always pick up the missing ones if it is important at Japan Woodworker. No big problem. The only time you have to have a full set is if you are matching an existing profile. If you are making your own, you just design around the sizes you have.