John worked last week helping to prepare for the woodworking show. Much to do still, but we’ve made much progress and we are about ready to load up the gear. Though we work hard, apprenticing is not at all about physical work only. So many aspects of woodworking and training have fallen by the wayside simply because those who should be training younger artisans no longer have the working knowledge and skills they need to train others. Part of John’s training includes drawing and writing. These are essential communication skills every craftsman needs to connect with customers and staff members and fellow artisans working together. Drawing conveys meaning to others and also expresses whether you actually know what your customer is looking for. John has started a journal of his work day. He is allowed an hour each day to enter the previous day’s work, which should include perspective sketches and accurate, detailed drawings, writings and so on.

Another part of his training is a thorough knowledge of his hand tools and related equipment. Though I have tools John can use, there is nothing like owning your own and an important part of John’s apprenticeship is to be able to function in all areas of hand tool use. I have learned so much about the craftsman’s ways by inspecting their tools. It’s here that i learned about tooth rake, set and sizing and shaping teeth forty years ago. I have found great advantage in restoring old tools too and when I found another old saw at the flea market last weekend I immediately thought of John, my young apprentice. This saw is an ideal restoration project  to train him in saw sharpening and restoration. Over the next few days and into the show this weekend he will be restoring it into a functioning saw for his tool kit. He already has a set of the Aldi chisels I mentioned in an earlier post so let’s grow with John as he assembles his personal tool collection, makes his bench, his tool box and his training projects. It’s hard to say how many people I have apprenticed through the years and they have all followed a similar path.

 

 

  • Paul Sellers on I Rely on Two or Three Plain PlanesPersonally, I would not use a #3 because the camber on a number four already works perfectly well and protrudes according to what you set it anyway which of course can match a #3 w…
  • Peter Susán on I Rely on Two or Three Plain PlanesI can rarely see a comment, that if somebody uses a #3 as a scrub, but I do and I realized that the 3 is just the same length than my #4, but with a narrower blade. On that blade w…
  • mt on A Note About WoodTom, I feel your pain. The South West [TX] isn't doing any better. Paid $7.50 each for some 8' SYP 2x4's. Gets much higher and my next "just throwing something together quick" proj…
  • John on Prepping Wood III@Andrew, you want to regard how a tree grows - well not palms - but just about every other plant we call a "tree". Conifers and hardwoods are essentially a sequence of cones, each…
  • Andy Hastings on A Note About WoodAnother problem here in Northern California we have is the lack of air-dryed or even wet/green hardwoods. All I can find are slabs from small sawers sawn to 8/4. Nice stock for liv…
  • Andy Hastings on A Note About WoodHere in California we too are experiencing huge price increases. The industry has taken the bait and blames it on the virus. First they said they cut production as they thought the…
  • Dick Sargent on Why Shrink?This was required to try and maintain the proper balance of the prop.