thumb Pekovich Tea Chest 1 640 Winter 2021/ Spring 2022 Class Schedule available.  Click here for more information.

Schedule of Classes -  Winter - 2021/ Spring- 2022

 

Dedicated to promoting excellence in craftsmanship and in developing superior hand and machine woodworking skills. Workshops are designed to satisfy beginner, intermediate, and advanced woodworkers in a relaxed, hands-on format.
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Fundamentals of Furniture-Making
with Bob Van Dyke & Tim Spratlin

 

 

This is a series of hands on furniture-making classes that should be taken in succession, as each project builds on skills learned in the previous classes.

Woodworking I is NOT a required prerequisite for any other classes contained in this schedule.

 
   

Woodworking I

Walnut Jewelry Box

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A hands-on course that covers the basic concepts of woodworking and furniture making, this eight-session (or 4 day) class is a combination of demonstrations and hands-on practice. General shop safety (with particular concentration on using the tablesaw) is emphasized.  Students will utilize the skills, techniques, and tools (both machine and hand tools) being taught in the class in the making of a walnut box for storing jewelry or a variety of other personal items. Skills learned will provide a strong foundation for subsequent furniture-making classes. Class size is limited to 9 students.  Tuition: $495.00 plus materials ($59.00)

 

Section 120421A: Saturday & Sunday, December 4 & 5 & Janaury 8 & 9,  9:30AM—5:00PM

           Note: This class was originally scheduled for November 20 & 21 and December 4 & 5

Section 011222A: Wednesday evenings, January 12 - March 2, 6:00pm - 9:30pm

Section 012422A: Monday evenings, January 24 - March 14, 6:00pm - 9:30pm

Section 031222A: Saturday & Sunday, March 12, 13, 19 & 20,  9:30AM—5:00PM

(Note: Tim Spratlin is the instructor for these classes)

(This class is a required prerequisite for other classes in the "Fundamentals of Furniture-making" series (Woodworking II & III) and has always proven worthwhile to beginner and advanced students alike. IT IS NOT A PREREQUISITE FOR ANY OTHER CLASSES ON THE SCHEDULE)

General tool list  (will open in a new window)  

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Woodworking II

Shaker Hall Table

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An eight-session class that is a continuation of Woodworking I. This class utilizes a combination of hand tools and power tools in the construction of a valuable piece of furniture. Techniques you learn in the previous class are put to extensive use as you are introduced to more advanced techniques and skills. Mortise-and-tenon joints, grain matching, and using handplanes are a few of the new skills you will learn while making a cherry hall table. Class size is limited, Woodworking I is a prerequisite. Tuition: $495.00 plus materials ($225.00).

Section 032822A: Monday evenings, March 28 - May 23, 6:00PM—9:30PM

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Fundamentals of Cabinet Making

Introduction to Cabinet Making with Tim Spratlin

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This class concentrates on the techniques used in cabinet making rather than those used in furniture making. Tim Spratlin is a professional cabinetmaker who brings with him years of labor saving tricks and techniques which students will find invaluable when completing their own projects at home. A medium sized painted plywood bookshelf is the project for this class and features techniques such as cutting plywood panels to size, using solid wood edging, making and applying a molding, making a mitered base, using a Kreg jig and working with a router. The design of the bookcase features a plinth base, adjustable shelves and decorative moldings. This class is designed for beginner and intermediate woodworkers who are interested in learning techniques they can use in numerous home improvement projects. The bookcase utilizes common portable power tools that most homeowners would have or might be considering purchasing. This class will provide you with the foundation skills needed for more advanced projects such as kitchen cabinets, storage cabinets, entertainment centers, counter tops and more.  Sign up today. Space is limited. Tuition: $365.00 plus materials (TBD)

Section 031622A: Wednesday Evenings, March 16 - April 13, 6:00PM - 9:30 pm

Section 040922A: Saturday & Sunday, April 9 & 10, 9:30AM - 5:00PM

General Tool list   (will open in a new window)

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Making Raised Panel Doors with Tim Spratlin

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The raised panel door is a basic part of most furniture carcase construction, but is also used extensively in cabinet making. Tim will guide students thru the finer points of making raised panel doors. Proper sizing of the door to fit into an opening along with sizing the floating panel to allow for seasonal expansion and contraction are an essential part of the class. Students will use the router table and a set of “cope & stick” bits to make the stiles and rails. Students will use vertical & horizontal raised panel bits to form the panel. Each student will make a door they can then use as a model in their own workshops. Tuition: $145.00 plus materials

 

 Section 042422B: Sunday, April 24, 9:30am—4:30pm

 

 No special tools are required for this class

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Beginning Woodturning with Rick Angus

073 turned_round_edge_bowlThis six evening class is designed for the beginning (or frustrated) woodturner and features extensive hands-on practice each night. Woodturning is a skill that requires some basic instruction and lots of practice. Students are turning on their own lathe most of each night of the class. Class starts with basic spindle and includes a few simple projects like a mallet and spinning tops. We then move on to face plate turning which includes some cherry and mahogany bowls and plates. Along the way we spend time learning about tool sharpening and general information about lathes, tools, chucks and various jigs used in woodturning. This is a great way to safely get into woodturning and gives you a good foundation for other more advanced turning classes and projects.  Tuition: $345.00 plus materials ($49.00)

 

Section 011222B: Wednesday evenings,  January 12—February 16, 6:00pm - 9:30pm

Section 051822B: Wednesday evenings,  May 18—June 22, 6:00pm - 9:30pm

 

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Rick Angus small bowl 640One Day Woodturning with Rick Angus

Have you been intrigued with the idea of learning to turn a bowl but are not ready to commit to a 6 week class?. This one day class will get you hooked on turning– Guaranteed! Students will learn some of the basics of woodturning and will come away with a finished shallow cherry bowl and the new found knowledge to turn more. Who knows– you might even jump in head first and find a whole new passion!!

Sharp tools are essential so we will be spending a little time at the grinder learning about sharpening bowl gouges and scrapers. Techniques for sanding and finishing bowls will also be covered. This is a great class –even if you have turned a number of bowls already or have never even thought of turning a bowl. Sign up today. Space is limited to the number of lathes we have (8)!

Tuition: $145.00 plus materials ($26.00).

Section 020522B: Saturday, February 5, 9:30am - 5:00pm

Section 043022B: Saturday, April 30, 9:30am - 5:00pm

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Basic Woodturning Weekend with Rick Angus

 

Rick Angus small bowl 640Many people have asked for a beginning turning class to be offered in a weekend format. This class will cover much of the same material as the six-night class but because of time constraints we will not be able to cover as much material in as much depth. The class will cover spindle turning, bowl turning and basic lathe use, safety and sharpening. Students will have the opportunity to make a number of spindle and faceplate projects during the weekend including a mallet, a bowl and a small plate or platter.  This is a great introduction to the fascinating craft of woodturning. Tuition: $365.00 (plus materials: $32.00)

 

Section 121121B: Saturday & Sunday, December 11 & 12,  9:30am– 5:00pm

Section 031222B: Saturday & Sunday, March 12 & 13,  9:30am– 5:00pm

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Turning Plates & Platters with Rick Angus

Rick Angus Platters 2021 800Wooden plates & platters are great projects to expand your bowl making skills and are a great way to use up off cuts from other projects that are not using thick stock. The design opportunities for plates focuses on creating an attractive rim that looks elegant yet holds food on the plate and allows an easy grip for removing the plate from a table with one hand. 

As thin as they are we will analyze how the shallow “bowl” portion in the center accommodates the relationship between the rim (that you see mostly from the top) and a wide foot (seen mostly from the bottom).  The key to this analysis is the side view and we use some examples of plates cut through the middle to expose the profile of the plate. 

Students review all bowl-making techniques using deep gouges and scrapers within this thin-bowl design constraint. 

The class focuses on designing and creating details on the rim and foot of the plate– and– having a good time of course!! Sign up today– space is limited. Tuition: $ 345.00 plus materials

Section 030222B: Wednesday evenings, March 2—April 6, 6:00pm—9:30pm

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Turn a Solid Wood Goblet with Rick Angus

Rick Angus Goblet 2021 800A goblet can be an elegant project to advance your skills.  The outside is shaped using classic spindle turning technique but the inside of the bowl requires hollowing that utilizes an end-grain scraping technique which leaves a remarkably smooth surface.  Thin walls of the bowl are created by shaping the outside after completing the inside. 

We begin with a refresher on spindle turning technique and will use this to create a cylinder with a tenon.  Rough shaping of the bowl is spindle turning but the bowl of the goblet is done with a variety of scraping techniques.  The bowl shape is finalized with the spindle gouge and we then shape the stem and add small decorative beads and coves.  An undercutting parting cut finishes all but a very small stub on the bottom of the foot which is carved or danded off later. 

Join Rick for this exciting new class which will fire up your turning skills and have a great time in the process! Space is limited.

Tuition: $365.00 plus materials

Section 040222B: Saturday & Sunday, April 2 & 3, 9:30am—5:00pm

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Turn a Bowl from a Log with Rick Angus

Rick Angus Bowl 640

Turning "green" wood offers turners opportunities that don't exist when using kiln-dried lumber. You are not limited by stock lumber sizes or species. The wood is actually easier to turn and it is usually free!! BUT- there are some special techniques that must be used to prepare it for turning and to preserve the piece as it dries.  We will be using the "Twice-Turned" technique wherein an oversized bowl is turned from green wood that requires a few months to dry before finishing.  Students will be given a dried rough bowl, previously turned by the instructor and this piece will be turned to completion, dry and ready to finish.    Come spend the weekend with Rick Angus and increase your woodturning experience. Students will turn a series of bowls during this exciting hands-on class. Some turning experience is required. Students are encouraged to bring in some examples of their previous work for discussion. Tuition: $365.00 (plus materials)

      Section 052122B:  Saturday & Sunday,  May 21 & 22,   9:30am - 5:00pm

 

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Introduction to Segmented Turning with David Heim

David Heim Segmented Vase 800In this style of turning, small wedge-shaped pieces of wood are glued into rings which are then glued to larger pieces of a different color or texture to form a blank ready for turning a bowl or other vessel. The size and shape of these parts can be just about anything your imagination comes up with. Likewise, any number of different woods can be used for contrast or to form a complex, multicolored pattern.

In this class students will learn the process of forming the turning blank and will cut and glue the segments precisely, with a minimum of sanding and trimming. We will explore strategies for clamping the rings during glue-up and investigate how variations in the glued-up blank affect the final pattern in the finished vessel.David Heim Segmented woodturnig assembly 800

This is sure to be a fun and rewarding class. Participants should have some turning experience.

Tuition $365.00 plus materials

Section 031922B: Saturday & Sunday, March 19 & 20, 2022, 9:30am – 5:00pm

Note: This class was previously scheduled for Novemebr 6 & 7, 2021

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Learn to Turn Natural-Edge (Bark-Rim) Bowls with Rick Angus

Rick Angus Natural Edge 640

Turning natural edge bowls from wet local hardwoods can be great fun– and the material is free (if you own a chain saw and have access to recently cut down trees….!) In this weekend class students will receive a refresher in the fundamental gouge and scraper cutting techniques, learn how to visualize the “bowl inside the wood”, mount and turn the sections of fresh logs between centers to form the outside of the bowl before re-mounting the blank in a chuck to form the inside of the bowl– all the while taking care to maintain the fragile bark edge on the rim of the bowl.

 

Blanks of wood will be mounted between centers and the “bowl inside the wood” will be before cutting so you control the grain pattern and bark rim position in the finished bowl. We focus on developing an eye for making a pleasing shape while incorporating the bark of the tree as the rim of the bowl. We touch-up your graceful bevel-guided cutting technique thus helping you to form the smooth curves of the bowl.   This bowl requires a steady hand as cutting the rim is interrupted--you cut a bit of the high part of the rim then skip to the high part of the other side. We focus on careful aim to get a graceful curve through this interrupted cut.   We shape the outside of the bowl, remount the blank in a chuck and cut the inside.   At home, the bowls will dry and can easily be sanded with a round sanding pad in a drill. This class does require some prior experience with woodturning. Sign up today– class size is limited to 8.

Tuition: $425.00 plus materials ($35.00)

Section 021922B: Saturday, Sunday and Monday, February 19 - 21,  9:30am—5:00pm

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STRICTLY BOWLS - A Woodturning Class with Rick Angus

 

Rick Angus Bowl 640Many students have asked for a class that offers the opportunity to turn bowls and only bowls. Students will have the opportunity to turn a shallow bowl, a deeper bowl, and time permitting- a third bowl or a plate (think very shallow bowl…). Participants will learn to make jigs and fixtures that will be useful in finishing the bottom of any bowl. We will get into the use of a four jaw chuck as well as alternative ways to hold the work on the lathe without using a commercially made chuck. Sharp tools are essential so we will be spending time at the grinder learning about sharpening bowl gouges and scrapers. Techniques for sanding and finishing bowls will also be covered. This is a great class whether you have turned a number of bowls already or have never even thought of turning a bowl. Sign up today. Space is limited to 9!

Tuition: $345.00 plus materials.

Section 031522B: Monday & Wednesday evenings, April 18 - May 4, 6:00pm - 9:30pm ( Class meets two nights per week)

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Professional Furniture Finishing Techniques

Wood Finishing Weekend – The Basics of Color and Topcoats with Mike Mascelli

MIke Mascelli HeadShot webThis two day class is tailored especially for woodworkers who are uneasy about the finishing process and wish to master the basic knowledge and techniques that will enable professional finishing results using easily available materials. The class is a mixture of lecture, demonstration, and has an emphasis on hands on activities that all students will complete using both sample panels and actual small project pieces.

In the color world, students will learn the critical differences between pigment colors and dye colors and gain an understanding of how to decode the often confusing information found on the many cans and bottles of colorants. With this knowledge we will use both dyes and pigments in a classic finishing schedule including glazing and toning, and practice some simple steps to achieve rich colors, vibrant grain popping, and also to match existing colors. Students will also complete some basic furniture repair techniques using epoxy, colored waxes and both oil and acrylic colors to match missing or damaged grain.

In the world of topcoats, students will learn how to categorize virtually all finishes into one of five basic families, and how to successfully use products from each family by brush, pad and spray.   Students will practice using the proper brushes for each type of finish, including shellac, oil based and water based, and also learn some basic spray techniques using commonly available aerosol products to achieve professional quality results.  

In addition Mike will demonstrate the basics of rubbing out a finish to a perfect sheen and feel, and also show some basic special effect techniques such as creating “age” with common asphaltum, otherwise known as roofing tar !

 Sign up today– space is limited.

Tuition $365.00 plus materials ($30.00)

Section 030522B: Saturday & Sunday, March 5 & 6, 9:30am – 5:00pm

 

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Five Week Furniture Making Intensive

Five Week Intensive Furniture Making with Bob Van Dyke

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Over the years I have done hundreds of classes which feature projects that teach particular skills. The problem with these project classes is that the logistics of the class prevent us from spending sufficient time on any given new skill to really understand and gain any kind of proficiency in it. In this 5 week (4 days per week) class there is no project– Just skills, technique and practice. With no project to distract us we are able to spend days rather than hours to insure learning of basic– and not so basic—furniture making skills and techniques.  When I changed the format of this class to no project, just skills- I really believe it has become one of the best classes I have offered in years. Everyone really learns a lot and has a great time!

Plan on spending two to three days on the basic milling process– a strong foundation is essential to more advanced techniques. Instead of learning just enough to get through dovetailing a drawer, plan on spending at least three full days– maybe four, on dovetails. With these new hand skills, cutting a dovetail by hand turns out to be a pretty simple affair which you will be able to do! FYI- You will be cutting a set of dovetails every day of this class.

Machine set ups? I already know how to set up the machine– so in this class I will not set anything up– You will do that– after my demo and explanation of course. You will learn what it takes to flatten a tabletop– by machine and by hand, and glue up a tabletop– using one clamp and a handplane.

We will get into planning a project, basic wood technology, buying lumber, tool sharpening, cutting joints -by machine and by hand, along with basic finishing techniques .

Ornamentation is a big part of fine furniture so plan on spending a some time working with veneers, inlay and making decorative bandings. It is always good to get a second viewpoint so I have arranged for some guest instructors to spend a day or two with us. Mike Mascelli will be here to do a day of hands on finishing techniques and hopefully Mike Pekovich will be able to stop by to introduce you to the Japanese technique of Kumiko along with his take on the finsihing process.

Plan on expanding your ideas on furniture making and design- and plan on taking a few field trips to inspect some of the finest furniture made in Connecticut- entirely by hand!

Proficiency in handtools is essential in any high end furniture making and we will spend a lot of our time on just that– plan on spending at least two or three days-  just on working with handplanes– and at least another whole day just on sharpening.

Because the handtools you are using are so critical to your success I am strongly recommending ( I repeat- STRONGLY RECOMMENDING!) you purchase the tapered dovetail saw from Lie Nielsen Toolworks. My experience shows that this is one of the best dovetail saws on the market at a very fair price (mention that you are taking the class at CVSW to recieve the 10% student discount). Cheaper saws will just frustrate you and after using mine you will probably just end up buying it anyway!

We will emphasize the proper and safe use of common woodshop machinery such as the table saw, jointer, thickness planer, router and bandsaw. The school has a full complement of ready to use high end hand tools and power tools which you are welcome to use. These tools also will give you some experience and guidance in picking out your own tools which you will eventually need to acquire.

This class is designed for the serious student who has both the time and the desire to commit to a comprehensive course of study. It is NOT designed for beginners but rather someone who has done a bit of woodworking and is now ready to get serious and really learn some skills. Basic skills with the tablesaw, jointer and thickness planer are required!! You should have spent at least 20 or more hours on the tablesaw to qualify for this class. If you are a beginner then you should sign up for the Fundamentals of Furniture Making, Intro to Cabinetmaking or the Woodworking I class. If you have any questions then please contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

This is an opportunity you do not want to miss. Tuition: $2000.00 plus materials ($100.00)number 4_small

Section 022822A: Monday - Thursday, February 28 - March 31, 8:30am - 4:30pm

 

 General tool list (will open in a new window)

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Speciality & Weekend Classes

Learn the Craft of Windsor Chairmaking– Build this Perch Stool with David Douyard     

Dave Douyard perch stool 800This 3- day class will take you through the process of building a "Perch Stool", a variation of a Windsor style chair. Utilizing hand tools, this project introduces you to many of the techniques used to make a more complicated Windsor style stool, beginning with lumber selection, hand shaping, working with compound angles and all the way through to final assembly.

This class will introduce you to the basic handtools used in any green woodworking project including drawknife, spokeshave, reamer, adze, scorp and scrapers. We will be laying out and drilling compound angles along with utilizing moisture content and grain orientation to make strong, long lasting chair joints. We will also be using traditional hide glue for assembly. Join us in this unique class and get a taste of green woodworking and Windsor chair making. Due to the logistics of the class all turned parts will be provided but the turning of those parts will be demonstrated by Dave. You should expect to go home with a completed (or nearly completed!) great looking stool.  Sign up today. Space is limited to 8 students. Tuition: $425.00 plus materials ($95.00)

Section 032522B: Friday, Saturday & Sunday, March 25 - 27, 9:30am—5:00PM

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An Introduction to Japanese Tools and Techniques with Andrew Hunter

Andrew Hunter 4Many western woodworkers have discovered the pleasure of using Japanese saws, but Japan’s remarkable culture of woodworking has even more to offer. In this weekend class, professional furniture maker, Andrew Hunter, will go beyond the pull saw and introduce students to a greater perspective of Japanese woodworking. Topics covered will include Japanese saws, chisels, planes, sharpening stones and layout. He will show students how to buy, tune, and use these tools as well as how to incorporate traditional Japanese woodworking techniques into your own shop.

Students are encouraged to bring their own Japanese tools to class. Andrew can offer feedback and assistance on getting them to work more efficiently. If you don’t have your own collection of Japanese tools (yet), no worries. Andrew will have many of his own tools on hand for students to use, as well as a selection of moderately priced tools for sale.Andrew Hunter 6

With over 20 years of experience working with Japanese tools, Andrew has a wealth of knowledge to draw from and as a self taught woodworker, he offers a unique perspective to Americans just discovering Japanese woodworking. His work demonstrates that by understanding the fundamental principles behind the tools, any woodworker can learn to use them efficiently and you don’t have to travel to Japan to do it! Sign up today and expand your woodworking horizons! Tuition: $365.00 plus materials

Andrew Hunter 1

Section 121821B: Saturday & Sunday, December 18 & 19, 9:30am - 5:00pm

general tool list (will open in a new window)

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Unique & Creative Surfaces with Tim Coleman

 

Coleman Carved Table 640Join nationally known furniture maker, Tim Coleman for this fascinating look into various techniques to create visually exciting textures and patterns to furniture surfaces. In this class with Tim students will explore two primary techniques to embellish surfaces with patterns and texture using a few simple tools and a scroll saw. 

Steel stamps are commonly used to emboss leather, but they can also be used on wood.  In this two day class you will learn how to use a V carving tool to make pattern outlines, and steel stamps to create texture. Try out traditional letter and number stamps and also learn to make your own shapes and symbols from steel rod stock. Stamping is easy to learn and allows you to work quickly and spontaneously. You will also learn techniques to add color to the patterns to make them really stand out. Coleman Starbox detail 640

In the second part of the class you will learn how to cut shapes and patterns piercing through thick veneer pieces and then prepare them to laminate onto a contrasting layer of wood or veneer. You will get practice on the scroll saw and, most important, you will learn techniques for gluing down the cut pieces to achieve a clean result with very little glue squeeze out. It’s surprising how much depth can be achieved with material as thin as 1/16th inch, and effects can range from subtle to wild depending on wood and pattern selection. Tim Coleman works out of his shop in Shelbourne, Massachusetts and produces some truly unique and striking custom furniture for clients. In this class you can come with your own pattern ideas or look into Tim’s catalogue of ideas for inspiration. Whatever you do you will be sure to bring away some new skills and ideas that you can apply to your next projects. Sign up today- Space is limited.Coleman Possibilities640

Tuition $365.00 plus materials ($31.00 tax $1.97)

Section 012222A: Saturday & Sunday, January 22 & 23, 9:30am—5:00pm

Previously scheduled for December 11 & 12

Coleman Stencil Table 640

Figuring Out Moldings with Chuck Bender

Chuck Bender Chapin pediment molding 800Sometimes you look at a molding on a piece of furniture and you wonder– How could I possibly make that with the tools I have? You would be surprised how many different complex molding profiles are within your grasp using just a router table, stock router bits and a table saw.

Moldings make an otherwise ordinary piece of furniture special.  With a little creativity, you can make the exact shape and size molding you need and want.

In this two-day class, Chuck Bender walks you through a series of progressively more elaborate moldings using stock router bits and standard woodworking power tools. This is a hands on class. You will be making some molding profiles that you can then bring home to duplicate in your own shops. Don’t miss this unique and informative class. Chuck Bender is a superb furniture maker, runs his own furniture making school in PA and is the 2022 SAPFM cartouche award recipient. Sign up today.

Tuition: $365.00 plus materials

Section 030522A: Saturday & Sunday, March 5 & 6, 9:30am—5:00pm

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Cabinet Wood Identification with Randy Wilkinson- Its not as simple as it seems!

Randy Wilkinson Ash sassafras 800 Did you ever look at a piece of wood and wonder what wood it is? And why it looks the way it does? Were you ever confused about which wood it is: mahogany or walnut, cherry or poplar, especially if you are looking at an antique that has an aged finish on it? Distinguishing mahogany from walnut may be easy in the unfinished state, but it is not that straight forward when looking at an aged surface.

This two-day hands-on workshop will explore all these topics and more. It is designed specifically for curators, collectors, antique dealers, appraisers, and woodworkers.  The goal of this workshop is to familiarize the student with the physical properties of wood and recognize species specific wood cell structures of nineteen different species. It will also discuss the social, political and economic factors that led to the trade in some of our most cherished woods. Case studies will be introduced to show the importance of identifying wood correctly. Not knowing what species of wood you are looking at is sometimes more important than knowing what it is. 

On Saturday, basic wood anatomy will be introduced, including grain, figure, fundamental differences between softwoods and hardwoods, and more. The student will learn to identify common hardwoods that are used in antique furniture using a 10x loupe.

On Sunday, the class will be held at the Webb Dean Stevens house in Wethersfield (about 10 minutes from CVSW). Sunday’s class will run from 11:00am – 4:00pm. Students will get a rare opportunity not only to see one of the finest collections of American furniture, but also to identify woods used in a selection of great objects in an intensive and hands-on inspection.  

No experience is necessary. Tuition $365.00, plus materials which includes a hardwood sample kit, 10x loupe, The “Wood ID Bible”- Identifying Wood by Bruce Hoadley and admission to WDS. Class size is limited to 8 students. Sign up today!

Section 022622A: Saturday & Sunday, February 26 & 27, 9:30am-5:00pm

Wood Identification

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Introduction to the Art of Kumiko with Mike Pekovich

Mike Pekovich twin Kumiko boxes 2 2021 800Are you looking to spice up your work in a novel way? Then you need to sharpen your chisels and try your hand at kumiko. This Japanese latticework technique is traditionally found on shoji screens but is making its way into contemporary furniture and boxes. The elegant geometric patterns of kumiko begin with a simple half-lap grid. From there each square is filled out with small, precisely beveled parts until the pattern emerges.

In this 3-day weekend class you'll start by building a pair of mitered boxes, where you'll learn how to work safely and accurately with small parts at the tablesaw. After that, you'll learn to make two different traditional kumiko patterns that you can use to top off the boxes. Most students come away with two completed boxes at the end of class (just in case you still need to check off some holiday gifts!).

Sign up today! Space is limited

Tuition: $495.00 Plus materials ($80.00)

Section 121721A: Friday – Sunday, December 17 – 19, 9:30am – 5:00pm  

General tool list  (will open in a new window)  

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Basics of Furniture Design with Mike Pekovich

Pekovich furniture Design

Have you wanted to try your hand at designing furniture, but were afraid to take the plunge? Learn the fundamentals of furniture design that will get you headed in the right direction. In this hands-on class you'll learn the basics of furniture design with tips on sketching ideas and translating those ideas into reality through scale and full-size mock ups and perspective drawings. Join Mike Pekovich as he brings his years of experience as a furniture maker and art director at Fine Woodworking magazine to this fun and informative two-day class. You'll learn how to look to the past for inspiration as well as develop your own unique style, how to size furniture effectively and how to add your own personality into your work. Sign up and unleash your creativity! Tuition: $365.00 materials included

Section 032622A: Saturday & Sunday, March 26 & 27, 9:30am—5:00pm

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Learn the Traditional art of Seat Weaving with Sue Muldoon

thumb Sue Muldoon NewEnglandPorchWeave 800Explore the art of seatweaving in this new two-day hands on class. Contrary to popular belief, it is not a “dying art”! Bringing old or new chairs to a sittable state can be achieved with a variety of different weaves and that is what this class is all about.

We will begin with some history of cane, rush, wicker and a wide assortment of seating styles. On your first day, you will choose to weave a small stool using either fiber rush or porch weave. Learning these two techniques opens the doors to many variations using the same weave technique but moving on to different materials of your choice. Imagine all the “sad chairs” that you pass by that could be revived or family heirlooms to be restored or new chairs woven.

On the second day, you will learn the traditional 7-step hand-woven cane

(also called lace cane) on your own chair, or you may choose from a selection in Sue’s inventory for a small fee. Chairs should be in a finished state, as caning is the last step to a complete project.

 Caning kits with cane, awl, booklet and wooden pegs will be available. We will need measurements of your chair 2 weeks prior to class to assure the correct size of cane.

No experience is necessary. You will have your hands in water for soaking cane, fiber and reed.

Sue Muldoon is a seatweaver (among other things) and owns Redux For You, repairing chairs and memories . She has taught over a hundred students in 2019 and looking forward to sharing her skills.  thumb Sue Muldoon chair 800

Tuition: $365.00 plus materials

Section 120421B:  Saturday & Sunday, December 4 & 5, 9:30am - 5:00pm

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Make a Craftsman Style Blanket Chest with Bob Van Dyke & Tim Spratlin


 

037 blanket chestThis advanced workshop held over two 3-day weekends features a handsome frame and panel blanket chest with tiger maple panels and a cherry frame. It is based on a design by John McAlevey, a well-known custom furniture maker and author living in Maine. The chest was featured on the cover of Fine Woodworking Magazine a number of years ago. The project entails extensive through mortise and tenons, raised panels, chamfered legs, a number of curved parts and frame and panel construction. The techniques used in its construction are basic to many larger furniture pieces.   Participants need to have taken at least the Woodworking I & II classes or the  equivalent experience. Tuition: $945.00 (plus materials - $393.00).

Section 011522A:    Saturday - Monday  January 15 - 17 & Friday - Sunday, February 4 - 6, 9:30am - 5:00pm

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Handplane Weekend with Bob Van Dyke

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Handplanes can be one of the most useful and rewarding tools in the workshop – or they can be one of the most frustrating! Learn how to effectively use handplanes in your work with Ct. Valley School of Woodworking director, Bob Van Dyke. Which handplane is right for a particular job? What should you look for when buying a new or a flea market plane? How are they “tuned up”? And most importantly- how are they sharpened? These are just a few of the questions that will be answered in this exciting two-day class. We will also go thru many of the basic (and not so basic) types of handplanes- starting with the Stanley bench-planes and going on to compass planes, shoulder planes and combination planes like the Stanley #45 & #55. Because sharpening is such a basic part of using a handplane we will also make sharpening "projection jigs" for each person during class. This is a simple device that ensures the same sharpening angle each time you sharpen.

The first day will be spent getting your plane sharpened and tuned up  so you can start practicing using it on the second day. Techniques such as smoothing a surface, beveling a table edge, planing a curved surface, shooting edge joints, making spring joints, using shooting boards, fitting mortise and tenons and planing end grain will all be demonstrated and practiced. Don’t miss this unique and informative class. Space is limited. You should bring at least one plane to this class- preferably an older Stanley #4. Bob collects planes for sale that are perfect for this class- and they are great users once they have been tuned up. Check with him about these. (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) Bringing a Lie-Nielsen or a Lee Valley plane is fine- but you will not learn anything about tuning up those planes as they come to you already tuned up extremely well. Tuition: $365.00 plus materials ($19.00)

Section 012922A: Saturday & Sunday, January 29 & 30, 9:30am - 5:00pm

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The next step in Basic Upholstery with Mike Mascelli

A Fully Upholstered Side Chair

Mike Mascelli Upholstered chair weeklong 640This class has been specially created for students who want to learn the basics of upholstery while taking home a rewarding and challenging project.  If you are new to upholstery or have taken some of Mike's classes before- you will get more out of this class than you thought possible The class will present and build on skills including the installation of webbing and edge roll and the layering of upholstery foam and Dacron.  In addition, students will utilize zig zag springs ("ziggers") to create a very comfortable seat, and then complete a fully hand sewn outside back using blind stitches, for a finished professional look.

Each class day will feature a short Powerpoint presentation highlighting aspects of the upholstery trade, and demonstrations of all the key skills, including springing, webbing, hand sewing, cutting and installing foam, and a one on one lesson with each student, in the proper techniques for measuring and cutting show cover material.

Each student will be provided with a bare side chair frame (in cherry), and all the necessary materials to completely upholster it, other than the show cover.  Students will be required to bring at least 2 yds (standard 54” material) of their own show cover material to complete the project.  Email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have any specific questions about this. Leather show covers are NOT appropriate for this class. Students are encouraged to bring their own tools, but loaner tools will be available for all students who may need them.

For those of you who have taken Mike’s beginning class- you know how complete, organized, knowledgeable and passionate he is. You are guaranteed to learn more than you ever expected- and have a great time in the process! Don’t wait around- this class will fill up and it is strictly limited to 8 students.

Tuition: $365.00 plus materials

Section 062522A: Saturday & Sunday, June 25 & 26, 9:30am – 5:00pm

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All-in-one Dovetail Station with Mike Pekovich

Mike Pekovich Dovetail station three 800Come for the weekend and build a small version of what is affectionately known as a "bat house" at CVSW (where did that name come from???). If you have cut dovetails at the school you've probably used one to rout the waste between the pins on the dovetails. While that task alone makes it worthwhile to make one, it can also handle just about every other work holding dovetail task you can think of. From holding the stock upright for sawing to securely holding the stock for chopping, this fixture will help make the job easier. If you're lacking a work bench you can just clamp it to a table and you're ready to go. From marking and sawing, to routing and chopping, the dovetail station has you covered. We'll spend the first day making it and the second day learning how to put it to use to cut dovetails better than any you have ever thought you could do. Sign up today. Space is limited.

Tuition: $365.00 plus materials

Section 042322A: Saturday & Sunday, April 23 & 24, 9:30am – 5:00pm 

Mike Pekovich Dovetail station two 800Mike Pekovich Dovetail station one 800

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SketchUp Success for Woodworkers with David Heim

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This class is for people who are serious about woodworking and want to learn how to use the SketchUp 3D design program to save time and money in the shop. With SketchUp, you preview the actual construction of a piece and generate absolutely accurate plans, patterns, and templates. The class is built around four rules for success for using the program to its best advantage. You bring a Windows or Mac laptop loaded with the free version of SketchUp. We spend the morning on exercises that introduce the important SketchUp tools and get you accustomed to working in a 3D space on the computer. In the afternoon, you see how the rules for success work by designing a piece of furniture. You'll also learn how to create measured drawings and a cutlist. Go to www.sketchup.com/download/all to download the free version, called SketchUp Make 2017. Please don’t use a web-based version, called SketchUp Free.

David Heim is the author of SketchUp Success for Woodworkers and the instructor for the new SketchUp for Woodworkers web site. When he’s not teaching, he’s using the program to generate models of famous furniture.

Tuition: $145.00. materials are included

Section  050722B:  Saturday , May 5,  9:30am - 5:00pm

 

 

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Saw Sharpening 101 with Matt Cianci

Matt setting saw

This class is an introduction for woodworkers interested in learning how to sharpen their own handsaws and backsaws. The curriculum will cover jointing, filing teeth to uniform size and gullet depth, setting, and final sharpening. Topics discussed in depth will include the geometric and functional distinction between rip and crosscut teeth and how fleam and rake are combined to maximize the function of cutting along or across wood fibers. Proper file selection, filing technique, and saw vise requirements will also be discussed. No prior knowledge of saw sharpening is required. The class will be hands on with each student learning to sharpen a rip and crosscut saw.  Students are encouraged to bring one or two saws only. These saws must be in decent shape. This is a sharpening class- not a saw rehab class!  

Matt Cianci is a professional saw doctor. His website and blog are at  http://thesawwright.com  Sign up today- This is always a fun class! Tuition: $145.00 plus materials ($20 paid directly to instructor)

Section 042322B:  Saturday, April 23, 9:30am - 5:00pm

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The Amazing World of Carving with Mary May

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Come join us in learning the age old art of the carving wood in this 3-day beginning carving class with Nationally known woodcarver Mary May. In a relaxed hands on format, Mary will get you started with the very basics of relief carving - how to hold tools and make basic carving cuts, how to figure out grain direction, carving safety (don't point the tools towards your  body parts!), and how to sharpen tools to a razor sharp edge. Throughout the long weekend, Mary will walk you through the step-by-step process of both shallow and deep relief carving of floral designs and show you as many carving tips and tricks as she can jam into three days of hands on carving practice and instruction. It's going to be a lot of fun, so don't miss out! Mary is one of the premier carvers in this country and her classes are always great! Space is limited. Sign up today. Tuition $525.00 including materials                                                              

Section 040122A: Friday, Saturday & Sunday, April 1—3, 9:00am—5:00pm

 

pdfTool_list_Mary_May_Fundamentals_Carving_for_Furniture.pdfMary May begin carving 2 640

The above set can be purchased here: http://www.chippingaway.com/shop/handwoodcarving-tools-accessories/mary-may-carving-tool-sets/mary-may-beginner-woodcarver-set/

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Week-long Classes

Take some time for yourself!

Spend a week with some of this country's best woodworking instructors.

Lunch break is approximately one hour. A refrigerator is available as well as local restaurants and convenience stores. Lodging assistance is available should you need it.

Fundamentals of Furniture-Making with Bob Van Dyke and Tim Spratlin

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This popular six-day intensive hands-on class is an opportunity to concentrate on the basics of woodworking and furniture making. Each student will make a Shaker style cherry hall table, which is a perfect vehicle to practice the machine and hand-tool techniques that we teach in the class. Subjects covered include basic shop safety, machine use (with particular emphasis on the tablesaw, jointer and planer), using handplanes, card scrapers and chisels effectively to surface and hand-fit the mortice and tenon joints, handtool sharpening, making tapered legs and grain matching and gluing up a top. 

This is not an appropriate class for absolute beginners. Some experience is suggested. This class provides a strong foundation for more advanced furniture projects. Tuition: $945.00 plus materials ($225.00 plus tax)

Section 010322A: Monday - Saturday, January 3 - 8, 9:00am - 5:00pm

 

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The Joy of Woodcarving – Spend a Week with Mary May

Mary May 640

What better way to spend a week than to put a woodcarving gouge in your hand, create something beautiful- and have fun! Mary May, a well-known professional woodcarver and instructor from South Carolina, will walk you through the carving process using a variety of relief carving projects. This class will focus on carving for furniture– fans, shells and urns– and then will transition to a variety of drapery and linenfold, and finally– the week will finish up with a Philadelphia style Ball & Claw foot

This beginning carving class will cover a lot of information for those who want to carve decorative details in furniture. She will begin with the basics of how to use carving gouges, tool safety, grain direction, and tool sharpening. She will then walk you through the step-by-step process of carving a traditional fan, a variety of drapery and linenfold, and finally,  the Philadelphia style Ball and Claw foot.

Throughout the week Mary will also demonstrate a variety of tricks and techniques on how to efficiently use the gouges, how to make difficult carving cuts, how to sharpen tools to a razor sharp edge,

This is a perfect class for both beginners and experienced carvers. Beginning carvers can learn the basics from Mary, while experienced carvers will have a whole week to pick Mary’s brain, clarify the questions they may have been struggling with over the years and practice the skills she will be showing you. This is a great opportunity to learn both the basics and the advanced techniques under the guidance of one of our country’s best carvers and instructors.

Sign up today- This is a week that you will not want to miss! Tuition: $895.00 plus materials ($28.00 plus tax)

Section 062722A: Monday - Friday, June 27—July 1, 9:00am – 5:00pm


Mary May Acanthus 640

 Mary may floral 640   Mary May leaves 640

 

pdfTool_list_Mary_May_carving_for_furnituremakers_weeklong_2019.pdf

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Making Tablesaw Jigs & Fixtures with Bob Van Dyke

VanDyke L fenceThe idea of making jigs and fixtures for the tablesaw is always one that creates a lot of debate. Some people insist that they are not worth it and “just do it by hand” while other people love coming up with intricate fixtures that do a specific job really well. Bob’s approach is somewhere in the middle- will the jig be useful enough to be used over & over again and is it better than one that can be easily purchased? This class is Not a beginning tablesaw class. Participants must have some working experience with Tablesaws & routers. Note: because of the design of the jigs for the table saw you must have a table saw with a Biessemeyer type fence. Bench top, "Job site"  saws and the old Delta Unisaw fence will not work with these jigs. Please specify tablesaw you have when registering for this class. If you have any questions please contact Bob Van Dyke directly at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In this hands-on class participants will make several different jigs & fixtures for their tablesaw, all of which will become staple tools in their shop.

We will start out the week making a cross-cut sled. The accuracy and extra support this important fixture brings will almost completely replace your tablesaw’ s stock miter gauge. Armed with the knowledge to make the sled you will probably go home and make more- for cutting dados, wide panels and specialized tasks.

The next jig to be made will be a tenoning jig- but this is not just any tenoning jig. This jig is designed for accuracy and versatility. Mass is what it is all about. The mass of this jig means no vibration which translates into complete accuracy. The jig can also be fine tuned to fit your tablesaw’s rip fence exactly. The size of the jig means that you can easily clamp large assemblies to it (think breadboard end table top). Used in conjunction with two rip blades and a precisely made spacer, accurate tenons are a snap.

The next two jigs were developed by Bob and are two of the most valuable tablesaw add on jigs you can imagine! How many times have you clamped a sacrificial scrap of plywood to the fence to cut a rabbet and then had to move the clamps because they were in the way of the cut? And- have you ever heard of pattern cutting on the tablesaw? The fixture we will make is an ingenious and easily used base to fit over the existing tablesaw fence and allows you to quickly bolt on any number of specialty fences- certainly the most valuable being an easily adjusted and versatile “L” fence.

The next two jigs are pretty simple- but really valuable! A taper jig designed by Steve Latta will make tapers a breeze- and cutting tails on the tablesaw with a dovetail sled lets you cut perfectly straight tails, exactly perpendicular to the face of the board- at any angle and whatever spacing you want. Your dovetails just got a whole lot better!

Any extra time during the class will be devoted to making a series of small fixtures for the tablesaw: drop stops, sliding stops and zero clearence inserts. Throughout the 5 days we will take time to demonstrate the many techniques possible with these tablesaw jigs & fixtures. 

This is a class designed for people with solid experience on the tablesaw who can appreciate the value & importance of the jigs & fixtures you will be making.

Be warned- you will go home with a full vehicle!!

Tuition: $845.00 plus materials ($159.00)

Section 021922A: Saturday - Wednesday, February 19 - 23, 9:00am - 5:00pm

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Class Images

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Testimonials

Bob,

Just a quick note to say how much I appreciated and benefitted from the recent 5 week intensive. I hope you get as much satisfaction in teaching it as we received knowledge from the class. I didn’t return with a trinket, a box or a table … but I did return with a better understanding of workmanship and the process to get there. That was exactly what I was looking for.

The dovetails continue to improve (someday they’ll meet my standards), the L-fence is already on the saw and you gave me sufficient challenges to keep me busy for some time.

I hope our paths cross again.

Best,

Butch

5/21/2021

Bob,

Thanks for the last five weeks. This was one of the best learning experiences I have ever had. Thanks for your patience and I look forward to taking more courses in the future. Meanwhile, this summer, I'll keep practicing dovetails and I'll look forward to seeing you at the open house. 

Myles