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

Schedule of Classes -  Spring - Summer- 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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Step Into Woodworking
In Person, Hands on Projects for the Complete Beginner with Bob Van Dyke & Tim Spratlin

Do you have projects around the house that keep getting put off because you lack the confidence- or the skill, to use tools properly and safely? Or maybe you have wanted to learn about woodworking and just want to get started the “right” way. .

This new series of hands-on classes is designed to use simple, readily available power and handtools utilizing lumber that can be gotten at most home centers. These classes will not be using stationary machines like the tablesaw, bandsaw, Jointer or Thickness planer.

Students will begin the series by making a small stylish bench that would be useful in almost any room. This fun and useful project will give you the knowledge and confidence to tackle other more complex challenges.

These classes are designed for the absolute (or nearly absolute!) beginner who wants to get into woodworking as a hobby- or someone who just wants to build some simple projects without having a shop at home. Other planned projects in this series include a small wall mounted bookshelf, a Shaker peg rack with shelves and a small storage box that could be used just about anywhere. After that-Who knows? The sky is the limit!

Step One:   A Simple Stylish Bench

Bob Van Dyke simple bench RED 800The focus of this class is on safety and on using tools that don’t cost a fortune and are readily available just about anywhere.

We will discuss which basic tools you will need, simple measuring and marking techniques, how to size parts accurately with a chop saw, how to make a decorative cut out at the base of the legs using a jig saw and a router and using the router table to form the joint between the stretchers and the legs. We will explore strategies used to bevel the top- both with hand tools and power tools. Along the way we will talk about using cut nails as an option for some of the joinery, using a router to shape parts and to form a decorative bead and how to apply traditional milk paint- a finish that will complement the project nicely and one you will find yourself using on any number of other projects .

 The inspiration for the design of this bench comes from Kentucky Furniture Maker, Daniel Chaffin

Sign up today. Class size is limited to 8 students.

Tuition: $425.00 plus materials

Section 052022A: Friday, Saturday & Sunday, May 20 – 22,                      9:30 am – 5:00pm

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

 

 

These classes are designed for students who have some woodworking experience already and want to take the plunge into finer solid wood furniture making. They are also appropriate for people who have been working with wood already and are interested in expanding their knowledge and experience. These classes are based on traditional furniture making techniques and will utilize all the major woodworking stationary machines, ie. Tablesaw, bandsaw, jointer, thickness planer, router & router table. As in any traditional woodworking, we will also be combining extensive handtool use with the machines

 

Fundamentals of Furniture Making series is NOT a required prerequisite for any other classes contained in this schedule.

 
   

Furniture Making I

Beginning Furnituremaking: Walnut Jewelry Box

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A hands-on course that covers the basic concepts of woodworking and furniture making. Start building the foundation which is necessary to learning the processes and techniques of making solid wood furniture. This eight-session (or 2 weekend) class is a combination of demonstrations and hands-on practice. General shop safety is emphasized as students learn and practice the process of milling solid hardwoods and the importance of the three stationary tools that form the backbone of any modern furniture making shop- the tablesaw, the jointer and the thickness planer. In addition to learning the safe & effective use of these mainstays, students will also begin to develop their skills with certain handtools and start to appreciate how they complement and finish the job begun with the major shop power tools.  The project in this class is a solid walnut jewelry box which utilizes all the basic tools & skills needed to begin making other furniture projects. Equipped with these basics, students can begin their rewarding journey to taking on more challenging projects in other classes and in their own shops. This class is the required prerequisite for Furniture Making II. Class size is limited to 8 students.  Tuition: $495.00 plus materials ($59.00)

Section 042022A: Wednesday evenings, April 20 – June 15, 6:00pm – 9:30pm  (No class May 11)                                                                         

 

(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 (Furnituremaking 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)

 

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Furnituremaking II

Furniture Making II: Shaker Hall Table

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An eight-session (or two weekend) class that is a continuation of the Furniture making I class. This class concentrates on basic table construction while giving participants more experience using the main shop power tools- tablesaw, jointer and thickness planer. The introduction of handplanes as a surfacing and milling tool along with mastering a card scraper (you will receive one as part of your materials fee) gives you new confidence and new skills which you will use extensively in the construction of this classic Shaker style cherry hall table. New skills introduced in this class include cutting and fitting traditional mortice & tenon joinery, making tapered legs, learning the aesthetic considerations for making an attractive table top along with strategies to ensure successful glue ups in any furniture project. Class size is limited, Furniture Making I is a prerequisite. Tuition: $495.00 plus materials ($225.00).

 

Look for new fall 2022 dates soon

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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

Call 860.647.0303 to sign up for any class on this website

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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 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 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 061122B: Saturday & Sunday, June 11 & 12,  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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The Taming of the Skew with Rick Angus

Rick Angus Skew 800Become one with your skew! It’s the only tool we will use during this class.

Chisels likely were the original turning tools and they are today’s go-to tools for leaving a super smooth finish on spindle work. Their versatility includes not only a planing cuts that leave a super smooth surfaces but rolling beads in tight places, making shallow coves, end-grain cuts and making notches for starting tight coves with a detail gouge. Its also a great roughing gouge!

Spend a day understanding the variety of chisel profiles available to the modern turner and the benefits of each shape.

Sign up today– space is limited.

Tuition: $145.00 plus materials (TBD).

Section 050122B: Sunday, May 1, 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 041822B: 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)

new fall 2022 date coming soon

 

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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: $2800.00 plus materials ($100.00)number 4_small

Look for new dates : Spring 2023 8:30am - 4:30pm

 Call 860.647.0303 to sign up for any class on this website

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Speciality & Weekend Classes

Classical Chinese Furniture– The Roots of Western Furniture– with Andrew Hunter

Andrew Hunter Chinese Furniture 1The Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) was a bright point in China's long history, where arts and culture reached a pinnacle of taste and style.   The furniture that came out of this era is some of the finest the world has ever known. Yet, to many, in the West traditional Chinese furniture is relatively unknown. Graceful designs, superlative material and fine craftsmanship are defining elements of this style. 

 Professional Furniture maker and educator, Andrew Hunter will spend the day discussing the history of furniture making in China with an emphasis on what made Ming style or Classical Chinese furniture so special.   This lecture-based class will begin with an introduction to furniture making in China and the history that led to it's refinement. We will also investigate the influence classical Chinese furniture has had on modern furniture designs from Queen Anne to Mid-century modern.  And of course, we will examine the intricate joinery that held it together for all these years!  So join us for this unique opportunity to learn something new. Tuition: $145.00 Materials are included

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

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Andrew Hunter Chinese joints 5
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Making Raised Panel Doors with Tim Spratlin

 

Tim Spratlin raised panel doorThe 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

 

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 No special tools are required for this class

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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 

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

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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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SketchUp Success for Woodworkers with David Heim

sketch up

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 7,  9:30am - 5:00pm

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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.

Build a Pennsylvania Spice Box with Steve Latta

Steve Latta Simple spice box 640Spice boxes, or chests, were popular among the Quakers of the Delaware Valley during the late seventeenth and throughout the eighteenth centuries, remaining fashionable in Pennsylvania long after falling out of style elsewhere. The boxes, whose interiors were fitted with banks of small drawers, were often displayed in the public rooms of homes, functioning as both a repository for small valuables, such as spices and silver items, and as a symbol of the family's prosperity. The cases were most often made of walnut, with inlays consisting of combinations of maple, boxwood, holly, cherry, walnut burl, locust, and red cedar set into the surface for contrast.

We are pleased to welcome back nationally known furniture maker, author and instructor, Steve Latta, whose Pennsylvania Spice Box article was  published in Fine Woodworking magazine (issue # 196). In this unique seven day class, we will cover all of the necessary steps to complete a box similar to the one pictured here. It may be small in size, a mere 21 inches in height, but it has all the complexity of a full chest-of-drawers, complete with a dovetailed case and drawers, partitions, molding and bracket feet. We will devote a portion of the class to exploring the techniques Steve uses to accomplish the intricate inlay work that is so characteristic of these great American treasures. The project’s level of detail lends itself to careful work at home in your own shop- at your own pace, therefore; you should not expect to finish the whole project during your time in class. Rest assured you will finish all the machine work and at least most of the assembly. This is a great project with one of the best teachers in the country. You will learn new skills and techniques that you can use in any number of larger and more challenging projects.

Sign up today as space is limited. Tuition: $995.00 plus materials

Section 061822A: Saturday- Friday, June 18 - 24, 9:00am – 5:00pm 

(Note: This class was replaces the previously scheduled “Build a Classic Wall Cabinet with Steve Latta)   

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

041_shaker_hall_table.jpg

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 060622A: Monday - Saturday, June 6 - 11, 9:00am - 5:00pm

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Build a Shaker Style Chimney Cupboard with Mike Pekovich

Mike pekovich chimney detail2 800In this 6-day class, we’ll explore the fundamentals of traditional furniture construction as we make a classic Shaker chimney cupboard. The design features a trio of drawers that separate the upper and lower doors allowing the class to tackle both dovetailed drawer construction as well as making and hanging frame-and-panel doors. The case anatomy is a good example of how basic joinery techniques can be combined to create a sturdy, versatile way to build. Mike is a frequent instructor hare at CVSW and is the editor and art director for Fine Woodworking Magazine. His furniture making techniques are a blend of effective machine use with skillful handtool techniques. This is a great project to learn some great furnituremaking skills and have a great time in the process! Sign up today.

Tuition: $945.00 plus materials

Section 050922A: Monday – Saturday, May 9 – 14, 9:00am – 5:30pm  

    Call 860.647.0303 to sign up for any class on this website Mike Pekovich chimney cupboard open 800

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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

Call 860.647.0303 to sign up for any class on this website


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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Build a Chippendale Style Connecticut Side Chair with Chuck Bender

Chuck Bender Norwich chair 2022 800Trapezoidal-seat chairs remain some of the most challenging woodworking projects because they employ so many different disciplines. Most Chippendale chairs involve tremendous carving skills in addition to profoundly-honed joinery skills. This side chair by 18th century Norwich cabinetmaker Felix Huntington is simple yet elegant and is an excellent choice for intermediate and advanced woodworkers alike. There is enough to challenge any woodworker without being overwhelming. It’s nearly perfect for a woodworker’s first chair. As an added bonus- Chuck is offering an option to make a different style back splat- You may prefer the “interlaced” version rather than the “owl eyes”- it will involve a little more carving.

We will begin the week with a trip to Hartford’s Wadsworth Athenaeum to study the original chair. From this you can get a good sense of the actual chair and what is involved in its construction.  You’ll learn how to accurately measure an existing piece of furniture and how to transform that information into working drawings and patterns. The class then moves into constructing the back, carving the crest and other elements, and finishes with forming and fitting the angled joinery. Depending on the speed of the class you may get the majority of the work done in class but don’t expect to go home with a finished chair! Chuck Bender has been making high end period furniture for well over 40 years and is the 2021 Recipient of the Society of American Period Furniture makers Cartouche Award. He runs his own school- The Acanthus Workshop in Pennsylvania.

Sign up today- Space is limited. Tuition: $945.00 plus materials 

Section 071122A: Monday – Saturday, July 11 – 16, 9:00am – 5:00pm 

 Call 860.647.0303 to sign up for any class on this websiteChuck Bender chippendale chair interlace splat 800

General tool list  (will open in a new window)  

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Build a Fan Back Windsor Chair with Dave Douyard

Dave Douyard Fan Back 800This six-day class takes you through the process of building a Windsor Fan Back chair from start to finish. It will cover every aspect of making a Windsor style chair, beginning with lumber selection, chairmaking tools, hand shaping parts, working with compound angles, all the way through final assembly. Plan on building this chair primarily with hand tools. Due to the logistics of the class all turned parts will be provided.

High points of the class include:

  • Use hand tools: drawknife, spokeshave, reamer, adz, scorp and scraper
  • Steam-bending
  • Layout and drill compound angles
  • Use of tapered mortise and tenon joints
  • Use moisture content and grain orientation to make a long-lasting joint
  • Assembly using hide glue

Tuition: $945.00 plus materials

Section 072522A: Monday—Saturday, July 25—30, 9:00am—5:00pm

Call 860.647.0303 to sign up for any class on this website

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Traditional Japanese Woodworking Techniques & Tools with    Andrew Hunter

Andrew Hunter 1In this weeklong class professional furniture maker Andrew Hunter will introduce students to the wonders of traditional Japanese woodworking.  From tuning up a new plane to cutting an intricate scarf joint, participants will gain hands on experience with skills that can be applied to any shop whether you use Japanese tools or western style tools.

We will begin with an indepth examination of Japanese saws, planes and chisels.  Through demonstrations and exercises students will learn setting up, sharpening and using each tool to their fullest capacity. If you are primarily experienced with western tools– don’t worry– The amount of information that is directly applicable to western style handtools and techniques is amazing!

    Andrew Hunter Scarf joint 800

The materials fee for the class includes a brand new, high quality 54mm Japanese plane. Andrew will work with students through each step of the process in setting up their new planes from out of the box to full working order.  What seems like a simple tool, a blade and a block of wood, the Japanese plane (Kanna) is actually a very complex instrument with many subtle qualities. This makes the Kanna Andrew’s favorite tool!  Watch out, he might even make you participate in a friendly planing contest with the rest of the class.

We’ll finish up the week by putting our tools to work laying out and cutting a kanawa-tsugi.  This intricate scarf joint is a perfect exercise for getting started with Japanese joinery.  Students will learn how to use centerlines and story sticks to make simple work of complex layouts and how to most efficiently use their hand tools to work to these lines.

Students are encouraged to bring their own Japanese tools to class. Andrew will offer feedback and assistance on getting them tuned and set up to work more efficiently. If you don’t have your own collection of Japanese tools (yet), no worries, bring what you have.  Andrew will also have a selection tools for students to try out. The basic set of tools suggested will be posted on the school website. Sign up today– This is a unique opportunity to learn some great skills! Tuition $845.00 plus materials

Section 071822A: Monday—Friday, July 18—22, 9:00am—5:00pm  

 

Call 860.647.0303 to sign up for any class on this websiteAndrew Hunter 4

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Build a Traditional Cabinetmaker's Workbench with Bob Van Dyke & Tim Spratlin

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In this fast paced class students will have the opportunity to build the traditional cabinetmaker’s workbench they have dreamed about! Let’s face it- the benches we build in the school during the year are great (especially for the price!) but nothing beats working on a traditional workbench constructed entirely of 8/4 and 12/4 rock maple. A flat top, wide enough to accommodate most work, wooden bench dogs to hold the work in conjunction with the end vise, a sturdy shoulder vise, a tool tray to keep the smaller tools you are working with in one place (and off the floor!) and about 300 pounds of dead weight all make this bench a pleasure to work on. The massive trestle base joined with wedged mortice and tenons - knocks down for easier (relatively!) moving (We have fit these into mini vans easily). We use the Lie Nielsen tail vise and Chain drive shoulder vise hardware. It is hands down the best we have ever seen. The bench is 7' long and 26" wide and weighs about 300 pounds.   This is a great project to further your woodworking skills and is a bench you will treasure for years and pass on to future generations.  Sign up today- space is limited- and be ready to work hard- you will go home with a finished workbench (minus an actual finish if you decide to add that)! Tuition: $995.00.00 plus materials (materials are approximately $1795.00- includes all Lie Nielsen Vise hardware and our own wooden benchdogs- unfortunately- Covid-19 has dramatically increased some of the material costs for this class)

Unfortunately this class is postponed. Supply issues have forced us to postpone until we can be sure of obtaining the required materials.

Hopefully we can reschedule the class later in 2022

 

(Note: The bench we make in class does not include the drawers pictured here)

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Make an Arts & Crafts Style Morris Chair with Bob Van Dyke & Tim Spratlin

Morris ChairThe Morris chair is the epitome of Craftsman style furniture and the design we have selected offers many of the typical design features of this well-known chair. Through mortise & tenon joints, a reclining back and angled arm rests are only a few of the highlights of this unique (and comfortable!) piece of furniture. This challenging project will be done in your choice of cherry or walnut and will definitely exercise all the woodworking skills you have learned up till now. Because of the complexity of this project it is probable that the project will not be entirely completed in the 6 days of class time– but rest assured, all machining and major processes will be complete and final sanding and possibly some glue ups should be all that will be left to finish the chair in your own shops. The upholstery work for the chair is not part of the class. We can recommend upholsterers who have done nice work in the past. Participants need to have some prior woodworking experience. This is NOT a beginner's class! Tuition: $945.00 plus materials

Section 082222A : Monday - Saturday, August 22 - 27, 9:00am - 5:00pm

 

Call 860.647.0303 to sign up for any class on this website

General tool list  (will open in a new window)

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Build a White Oak Writing Desk with Mike Pekovich

Mike Pekovich A and C Desk 800Working from home seems to have caught on in the last year or so. Because of that, work space in many homes is at a premium. Just about any home can benefit from a nice little desk that can be tucked away when not in use and it compliments just about any room style. This light and lively desk does away with the banks of drawers in a traditional desk and instead provides a wide open base highlighted by subtly tapered legs and through mortise-and-tenon construction. The desk is topped with a small box of drawers perfectly sized for pens and pencils, bills, chargers and thumb drives, as well as space for a nice set of stationary. You will learn some great furniture making techniques and spend a week doing what you love. The desk is approximately  37" long X 23" deep X 29" high.  Mike is the editor & Art Director for Fine Woodworking Magazine and has recently published his second book Foundations of Woodworking, Taunton Press. Join Mike Pekovich in this six-day class and come away with a nice addition to your home along with some great skills! Tuition: $945.00 plus materials.

Section 081522A: Monday – Saturday, August 15 – 20, 9:00am – 5:00pm

Call 860.647.0303 to sign up for any class on this website

General tool list  (will open in a new window)  

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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