The College of the Redwoods Fine Woodworking Program here in Fort Bragg offers several classes each Summer. This year’s offerings include Dan Stalzer’s “Making a Greenwood Chair.” Dan’s a great teacher who very generously taught me how to sharpen a drawknife for the The Perfect Edge. He’s been teaching chair-making classes like this for years and they always get rave reviews. While you’re taking Dan’s class, there’s plenty to do for the rest of the family. We have breathtaking redwood forests, uncrowded beaches, whales (seasonally), tidepools, fishing, diving (abalone!) and even the world famous Skunk Train. The class has only a few spaces left so don’t dawdle.
Here’s the blurb from the college website:
limited to 16 students
Due to the ease with which freshly fallen wood can be worked with hand tools, green woodworking is an ages old process. Members of this class will be principally using 16th and 17th century British Isles techniques transported by early immigrants to New England and Appalachia
Participants will be involved in the process of making an Appalachian style ladder back chair frame using traditional hand tool techniques and a limited amount of machine work. Students will receive hands- on instruction in splitting native green tanoak (Litho- carpus densiflorus) logs, shaping parts on a shaving horse with a draw knife and spokeshave, fitting joinery, and steam bending. The exchange of selected green wood parts for previously dried elements will allow each student to leave the workshop with a complete chair frame. Hemp webbing will be supplied for seat weaving at home, a process which will be demonstrated on the sixth day.
Dan learned ladder back chair making from Drew Langsner and John Alexander. He studied for two years at the College of the Redwoods Fine Woodworking Program graduating in 1988 and 1989.