|Review by yrob||posted 08-23-2011 04:20 AM||4148 views||1 time favorited||16 comments|
Last weekend, I had the pleasure to take woodworking classes with Roy Underhill of the Woodwrigth’s shop fame. Two full days of classes taking place at his school in Pittsboro, NC. when you step into this charming little town, you are transported back a century. The main street features antique shops, art shops, music shops, the “old soda shoppe” and of course Roy’s school. He has a front window on the street. In there, 10 nice german benches are setup for students.
The classes starts around 9am and last until needed to finish (suppositely 5pm but on the sunday class, we finished at 7:30pm). There is a lunch break in between but otherwise, its pretty intense.
Roy is a wonderful person. He is as full of life and laughter as he is in his show. He is really like that, its not a facade for TV. In his shows, you sometimes get the impression he is a bit sloppy because he rushes to do it in 24 minutes (its done in one take..). Well, when you work with the master, that is a totally different story. He has an incredible understanding of the tools, and the behavior of various woods.
For example, when cutting a tenon, he might just split the wood if its amenable to that rather than saw with a tenon saw. Then finish off with a paring chisel and its perfect…
The dovetail class had us do a through dovetail, a half blind and a mortise and tenon (see the pics of my attempts).
I knew how to cut dovetails before but the point of the class was to learn something new. How he does it. So I did it his way and learned quite a few things not to mention had a lot of fun.
Lastly, one of his associates has an antique tool store in the second floor of the school.
A smattering of hundreds of wooden planes, chisels, saws, etc… This alone is worth going there. It beats ebay any day and his prices are very good (better than ebay). Not only that, you can take the tool downstairs and test it if you are taking a class. If you like it, you buy it..
I strongly recommend anybody who is into hand tools to take a class with him. you will not regret it.