I recently signed up for a voc. school course called "woodworking for
profit." Figured it would be a classroom sort of situation, but it
turns out that I've essentially bought 30 hours of shop time for $50
(a hell of a deal, if you ask me!) I've got a couple of projects on
the burner right now, but they are all geared towards my personal
tools, and I'm planning on just continuing them at home.
So, as a happy accident, I need to figure out what I'm going to do
with a fully equipped shop and an instructor (with all his fingers, no
less).... The overall goal is for me to eventually become adept at
general furniture making, focusing mainly on tables and chairs of
various sorts. I'd like to make full use of the opportunity, so does
anyone have any suggestions? I was thinking of building the bent-arm
morris chair in the latest edition of Woodsmith, but the project needs
to to fit into ten 3-hour shop sessions, and I'm wondering if anyone
has made one of these, and if so, is thirty hours long enough for an
intermediate woodworker to do this?
Of course, if there is a challenging piece that will provide a better
learning experience, I'm more than open to suggestions- Steam-bending
or extensive dovetail cutting is out, but pretty much everything else
is fair game.
Thanks in advance for any suggestions!
I think your chair idea would be an excellent use of the situation ... not
necessarily the Morris Chair, but perhaps a straight back, dining table type
Chairs take some special skills and techniques and having someone to help
you, and the equipment necessary to do it with, would put you way ahead of
most working solo out of their own shop.
Another good project would be something with a curved front ... perhaps a
demilune table, with or without a drawer.
Go for it.
Not the Morris chair, eh? Any particular reason why a dining room
chair would be more useful? It would give me a chance to try out
turning some spindles, and see if I like working on a wood lathe.
(I've only used engine lathes and CNC lathes in the past)
I've not seen any plans for these- are they usually coopered and then
veneered, or bent into shape? I agree it would make a slick project
in any case, and I'll definately consider it.
The tables I have in the works in my own shop- I'm doing all
hand-carved cabriole legs, so they may not be the best use of my
limited time there. The wife suggested the headboard, so that one is
still in the running for sure.
It always does! That's why I figured I'd ping you guys before I rush
off to start something before carefully considering the options...
many of which I'm sure have not yet crossed my mind.
On 30 Sep 2004 02:54:29 GMT, firstname.lastname@example.orgEDY (Tom) wrote:
Of course- They have three unisaws (compared to my delta 10" benchtop
on a homemade stand) Four full sized lathes, two 8" jointers, a 24"
surfacer, and three bandsaws, the largest being a Rockwell 20" (I plan
on doing all my resawing as my 9" delta will not handle much!) I've
got a few things they don't (dovetailing tools, cabinet scrapers,
etc.) but overall it's much better stocked than my shop. The most
interesting one is the "wood welder"- that sucker will tack up a joint
to working strength in 5 minutes or less.
On Wed, 29 Sep 2004 20:31:21 -0700, "Gregory McGuire"
Now that would be truely awesome, no doubt about that! If we end up
moving to the coast like the wife wants to, I'll be looking really
hard at that one. Might be a little ambitious for this situation,
Focus on tables and chairs (use this time to make one of an eventual set) of
various sorts to get hands-on assistance with. If you look at small tables
and single chairs, you'll learn the imporatnt techniques from your class
that you'll be able to use in your shop at home to tackle bigger projects.
Michael Latcha - at home in Redford, MI
That is a great deal!
I think that if I had your situation (opportunity), I would go for
chair design/construction - if your instructor is adept
enough that is. Nightstands and such are relatively simple IMHO.
I've been plugging away as one of those "home
enthusiast/woodworker/fix-it-up types" for 15-20 years now and have
often thought that constructing a great looking dining room chair would
show real craftmanship - haven't arrived on my own yet.
I probably need a class!
I know several of the guys in the class take it every year, just
because they like having the access to the tools. :) No doubt there
are plenty of classes around, I just happened to fall into this one
because my wife saw it in the paper, and she seemed to think I should
make money from woodworking, rather than just spending money on tools
and wood (foolish, huh?)
Wed, Sep 29, 2004, 7:58pm (EDT-1) email@example.com (Prometheus)
wants to know:
I recently signed up <snip>
I haven't read all the responses. But, I think what I might do is,
sit down and figure out one or two rather complicated, specific,
projects you'd like to know how to do. Chair, table, whatever. Then
talk with the teacher, and find out which you would (or should,
probably) have time to complete in the time allowed - not the sanding,
finish, etc., just the woodworking part.
Than I think I'd shoot for that. With a set time, you're going to
be more focused, and concentrated, than you'd be at home. Then at home,
you can duplicate it, taking more time to do it.
Way I figure, better to start a 20 hour project, and finish it,
then start a 40 hour project, and not.
On the other hand, if you start something, say a table, get the top
done, learn how to do the legs, and only get one leg done in class, and
run out of time, then you'll know how to do the other three legs at
home. In a case like that, running out of time isn't so important.
We will never have great leaders as long as we mistake education for
intelligence, ambition for ability, and lack of transgression for
On Fri, 1 Oct 2004 20:13:01 -0400, firstname.lastname@example.org (J T)
It's not so much a problem of learning how to lay out or assemble the
parts, it's more a matter of making full use of the superior
facilities while I've got the chance. I'm almost tempted just to buy
a year's supply of lumber and do all my resawing and surfacing while
the doin's good (I've got only a little 9" bandsaw and no planer or
surfacer), but that seems like a least a little bit of a waste.
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