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Forum topic by Chris Wright posted 07-15-2014 06:28 PM 899 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Chris Wright

540 posts in 2940 days


07-15-2014 06:28 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

My family and I are planning to move to Maine (either the Brewer/Bangor or Belfast area) and I’m currently working on a business plan for a loan to start a shop when we get there. My plan is a shop that makes wood bodied hand planes as well as turned objects and furniture for sale. I was also looking at opening my shop to community use, provide classes as well as a place for people who don’t have a shop to come and work. Does anyone know of any place like this in Maine and if it might be a good or bad idea?

Thanks,
Chris

-- "At its best, life is completely unpredictable." - Christopher Walken


4 replies so far

View TheWoodenOyster's profile

TheWoodenOyster

1275 posts in 1394 days


#1 posted 07-15-2014 09:31 PM

Lie Nielsen. You could contact them for tips and help. I bet they’re pretty nice folks, they make nice tools at least.

-- The Wood Is Your Oyster

View Loren's profile

Loren

8294 posts in 3107 days


#2 posted 07-15-2014 10:07 PM

There are a lot of furniture makers up in Maine. I think
David Masury and Chris Becksvoort are Maine residents. I’m
sure the long cold winters are great for indoor productivity.

A lot of people stay up there in the warm months and
I wouldn’t be surprised if some of those folks would like
to have shop access to grow their hobby knowledge.

There are forests up there too so access to green wood
may be something you can arrange for chairmaking,
snowshoes and things like that.

There’s a woman in LA who rents out bench space in
her furniture shop. Offthesaw.com – you might give
her a call.

There’s some amount of wealth moving through Maine
in the warmer months, so consider products that can
sell to that market… some affluent people owning 2 or
more homes, acquiring and furnishing second homes,
etc.

View jdh122's profile

jdh122

879 posts in 2277 days


#3 posted 07-15-2014 11:48 PM

I just finished a 1 week relief carving course in Rockport ME (with Mary May – it was really a great course) at the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship, about 2 miles down the road from Lie Nielsen. You could get in touch with them (http://www.woodschool.org). They offer a lot of 1-2 week courses in the summer and longer general courses through the winter, plus offer fellowships where young craftspeople get to use their facilities. Peter Korn is kind of in charge of it.
Doesn’t mean your idea is a bad one, but between them and LN there is a pretty significant woodworking presence in the state. As Loren mentioned there’s quite a lot of money flowing through the southern part of the state.

-- Jeremy, in the Acadian forests

View zeebro's profile

zeebro

9 posts in 1084 days


#4 posted 10-20-2014 02:10 PM

Hi Chris, I’ve lived here in Maine my whole life. I do custom pine, picnic tables and birdhouses etc. on the side. Have you made it here yet? If you have, welcome. And if you have I’m sure you could safely surmise that the State of Maine has more serious and skilled woodworkers, per capita, than any other State in the nation. I like the sounds of your ideas. There’s some people down in Portland doing something similar “Running with scissors” in the Bayside district. I have a modest shop that faces the Androscoggin River in downtown Lewiston, on the weekends it turns into a impromtu “community woodshop” where I give away scrap wood, nails, $3 HF Hammers and give little wood tutorials to the kids in the ‘hood. Money isn’t even secondary here in Maine. This is the way life should be. Love to hear how you are doing and wish you the best.

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