Chris Schwarz's Blog

David Charlesworth Returns to Teaching

After being clobbered by bacterial pneumonia in 2011, woodworker, Popular Woodworking Magazine author and teacher David Charlesworth is again teaching classes on tool tuning, dovetailing and drawer making at his school in Devon, England.

Charlesworth was struck ill while teaching at the Dictum workshops in Germany, was hospitalized and later returned to England to complete his recovery. Charlesworth’s grave illness resulted in an outpouring of support by the woodworking community, an effort that was led by fellow woodworker and teacher Rob Cosman.

“Rob did such a good job of telling everyone how ill I was, that I am now faced with the opposite problem of informing you all, how well I am,” David wrote on his blog. “Time, clean living and no smoking, are doing their stuff. I am well on the way back to full strength. A huge thank you to everyone for the astonishing amount of support I received. It was overwhelming and greatly appreciated.”

David will begin teaching classes again in April with a tool tuning course, and spots are still available. He has 10 additional classes planned through the summer of 2012. You can read the full schedule and sign up for classes on his site via this link.

David is one of the most influential thinkers in the craft today – his methodical approach to unraveling tricky woodworking problems has changed the way thousands of us (including myself) work. Before I ever met David, his books were a guiding light for me as a hand tool user. His greatest gift is his ability to set aside traditional techniques and solve a problem – such as sharpening – with a streamlined process that is quick, predictable, repeatable and understandable.

His illness last fall, which forced him to drop out of Woodworking in America, was a reminder of how fragile we all are. If you’ve ever wanted to take a class with David (or any other particular woodworker), don’t put it off.

And welcome back, David! You were missed.

— Christopher Schwarz

ShopWoodworking carries many of David’s outstanding DVDs, including my personal favorites:

Hand Tool Techniques Part I: Plane Sharpening
Precision Shooting Simplified
Precision Preparation of Chisels for Accurate Joinery

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