Traditional Methods
For the past twenty years, I’ve been dabbling around at working wood by hand with tools. I've ended up with sawdust and shavings, mostly. I scrounged an old farrier's forge and anvil to make some carving tools and plane blades and built a european-style workbench, bodger's bench, shaving horse, and enjoy making furniture (chairs, tables, and cabinets) for the house and arbors, pergolas, sheds and play sets for the yard.

Working with hand tools:
  • Country Workshops
    Drew Langsner's books and articles have long been an inspiration for me. His Green Woodworking and Chairmaker's Workshop books have been read numerous times. His gentle spirit and reverence for simple and time-honored methods of working wood with hand tools are evident in his writing. He's a master cooper and chairmaker too. I'd love to visit his homestead in the mountains of North Carolina for one of his classes. In the meantime, I enjoy his monthly newsletters. I highly recommend his travisher blades.

  • Handcraft Woodworks.
    A genuine Welsh bodger, Don Weber has been doing this longer than most. I ran across him in a article on pole lathes a long time ago. He's a blacksmith who can make his own tools, just like the itinerate bodgers of the old days, who went from town to town. Don's work with craftsmen in impoverished Appalachia and most recently in Honduras (through MaderaVerde project) is testimony to his integrity.

  • Green Woodworking
    Jennie (John) Alexander's book Make a Chair From A Tree is one of the best written and illustrated book for self-taught chairmakers such as myself. Out of print, it's available in DVD. This website has many useful articles and plans for end vise pole lathe, shaving horse (bodger's bench), chairmaker's bits, and a nifty plan for a tapered reamer. "Wood is Wonderful!" is Jennie's slogan.

Other sites of interest: