On this twelve week course you will spend the first few weeks learning how to handle tools and learning about materials. Timber is a phenomenal material, part of it’s attraction is its warmth, its workability, its variety. But that is the challenge, each tree can have distinctive qualities, ITS NOT LIKE PLASTIC THIS STUFF.
The best, no, the only way to learn about wood is through YOUR HANDS. Through using hand tools at the start of your career to FEEL the material.
You will learn about accuracy, about saws, planes, chisels and many other tools and you will learn to handle the tools confidently.
This course will see you trained to a level where you will be capable to use hand tools (chisels, saws, planes) and marking out tools capable to a level of competence that will amaze you. We teach using a set of projects that we have developed over the years to do this job.
The other side of this is the Biz Course run by Jonathan Walter. This will take you away from the bench for a couple of hours each week, if you want to. Learn aspects of running a business making furniture. Jonathan and his partner Lakshmi were in successful careers as an accountant and design writer before coming to Rowden ten years ago. Now they run Bark Furniture and can help you get your businesses going.
Getting good with those chisels now on to Box Making, This is where we see all the skills coming together. Maybe make two boxes a quick one and a careful one. Sure you can make a box in a week, we expect Three Month Rowden students to do higher quality work than our short course visitors. We demand higher standards of you from the beginning. Hit the standards and move on through the projects to Box making, if you have done what we told you, you’ll go home with a superb french polished fruitwood or sycamore or walnut box
There is no point taking up a career in woodworking without these key hand skills. No amount of machine is ever going to make up for this. The hand tools are your only way of getting to know your material. For example, the specification of Maple may be read in a book but without the information, felt through your hands, gained by the intimate contact of hand working a few boards of Maple you will not understand its true nature. Not knowing exactly how different Maple is from Sycamore. Not knowing why a Maple back chair leg could work and a Sycamore leg could not.