Chair Stories: The Hardwood Forest

I first heard it today, as I was turning legs for a set of four Loop Back side chairs. The lathe is all you hear when it’s running. Yet each time I turned it off, the sound was closer. Finally, I looked up from my lathe. There the beast was, along the back side of my property line, eating trees like so many match-sticks. A mechanical tree harvester.

As a kid in the woods, I’d seen them before. It mesmerized me: two huge arms grabbing a tall oak in a bear hug. The huge circular saw cuts the tree, then carries it around vertically like some oversized Christmas Tree on a Macy’s float. Read more ›

Posted in Chair Stories

Octagonal Tables/Continuous Arm Class

My new DVD is out!  I love building these little tables – they have many of the fun aspects of building a chair, but they can be made in a weekend.  Well, maybe two weekends, a month apart.  Here’s a tour of my shop that the crew filmed while they were here: Read more ›

Posted in Chairmaking Tools and Supplies, Classes, Craft Films

Storing Green Wood

Photo by Josh Farnsworth

You’ve got your hands on some green wood.  How do you store it?

If your winter stays below 40 or 50 degrees, take your time, it will probably keep fresh till spring. However, with several recent warm winters, rot seems to be becoming a year round event here in the Carolina Piedmont. Read more ›

Posted in How-To

Casting Bells

This video has nothing to do with woodworking and it is in German, yet it is one of the most memorable craft videos I have ever watched.

Casting giant church bells. It starts with hand building 8′ tall molds made of brick and layers of mortar, fiber and metal.  Really there’s two molds for each bell, a positive mold and a negative mold.  The molds are only used once.  Molds for a dozen bells are constructed in the bottom of a  huge pit in the shop floor, then the pit is filled with sand.  Read more ›

Posted in Craft Films

Octagonal Legs

A couple months ago I filmed an Octagonal Side Table DVD and a Milk Painting DVD with Popular Woodworking. They should be out sometime this summer. Here’s a photo of the table:


To film a DVD you need lots of parts at various stages, so I made a pile of bent octagonal legs one morning:

10:03AM Read more ›

Posted in Classes, How-To

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