This year’s Woodworking in America conference features 44 different classes taught by world-class instructors with lots of opportunity for you to get dusty, sweaty and skilled.
The conference is Oct. 1-3 at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center in Covington, Ky. For those of you unaware of the wacky geography in the Cincinnati, Ohio, area, here’s a map that explains it. The conference is right across the river from downtown Cincinnati with lots of walkable hotel, dining, museum and shopping options for you and your family.
We’ve hired a full slate of instructors who will be running classes during the three day conference, and we’ve planned some interesting side trips and events (which I’ll be writing about in an upcoming post). Here are some of the people who will be teaching during this gluttonous weekend of woodworking.
Roy Underhill, host of “The Woodwright’s Shop,” will be teaching lots of hand-tool skills: sharpening saws, cutting dovetails, using bowsaws, learning about chisels and on and on. Underhill also will be delivering the keynote address this year at the banquet. He’s cooking up a special program that involves our next instructor.
Frank Klausz, owner of Frank’s Cabinet Shop. Klausz is a certified master craftsman from Hungary with a wide range of hand and machine skills he’s honed as a professional cabinetmaker. Klausz is teaching a variety of hand dovetailing classes, plus classes on how not to overcut your line with a chisel, designing dovetails for strength and how to mortise by hand.
Michael Fortune, a renowned studio furniture maker, will be teaching classes on contemporary furniture design, inlay and how to tune up your band saw to an extremely high level for resawing, joinery and the like. This is Fortune’s first year teaching at Woodworking in America and we’re thrilled he’s accepted our invitation.
Marc Adams, the founder of the Marc Adams School of Woodworking, will be teaching a variety of hand and power skills. Adams will be showing off his particular and highly successful methods for sharpening and using chisels and scrapers , methods that have transformed how many people approach these tools. Plus, he’ll be demonstrating the use of Japanese saws for precision joinery and debunking many of the myths about routers.
Ron Herman, owner of Antiquity Builders, will be running a continuous one-man hand-tool show at Woodworking in America. He’ll be showing you how to sharpen your saws, choose the right chisel, understand auger bits and a whole heck of a lot more. Herman made some huge waves at last year’s conference. And this year he’s back to shake up things again.
Don Williams, a world-renowned furniture conservator, finish expert and master of boullework, will be running a special one-afternoon session on boullework. This is an incredible opportunity to learn how metal and wood can merge with astonishing results.
Don Weber of Handcraft Woodworks will be back at Woodworking in America to spin tales of the coppice, demonstrate the treadle lathe and show off his chairmaking skills , he specializes in making beautiful Welsh Stick Chairs.
Jim Tolpin of the Port Townsend School of Woodworking will be teaching about stock preparation with handplanes, plus how to refine your drawknife skills. Tolpin is one of our favorite authors and a great instructor to boot.
George R. Walker the author of our “Design Matters” column, will be teaching a number of sessions on furniture design that you won’t want to miss. Walker’s no-nonsense approach to design has opened a lot of woodworkers’ eyes during the last couple years. No matter what style of furniture you build, Walker’s advice on whole-number ratios can help you.
And, of course, the staff of Popular Woodworking Magazine will be teaching a full slate of classes as well. Executive Editor Robert W. Lang will be teaching lots of classes in basic and advanced SketchUp (and Arts & Crafts joinery). Senior Editor Glen D. Huey will be running the power-tool component of the event and will be showing off his impressive router and table saw skills. And I’ll be teaching lots of hand-tool classes, from grinding to honing to handplanes, to hand routers and joinery planes.
The classes are a hybrid of a lecture and hands-on session. The instructors will teach for 45 minutes, then be available for an hour after the lecture for hands-on practice or questions. We’ll have benches and wood available so you can dive right in.
The classes are just one aspect of the Woodworking in America conference; there’s also an incredible Marketplace area (more than 40 vendors have signed up) and extracurricular events. I’ll be covering those aspects of the conference in short order.
Registration opens in early May at WoodworkinginAmerica.com. Attendance is limited, especially for some of the extracurricular events, so be sure to register early if you plan to attend. Not only will you be able to get into the events you want, you’ll get a better price, too. For those who register early, we’re reducing the price to $335 for the conference , the same price as the first WIA in Berea, Ky. We’ll have more information on registration in the coming weeks.
In the meantime, download this 19-page list of all the classes we’ll be running and make sure that weekend in October is clear.
– Christopher Schwarz