I just recently came back from a 6-day class teaching the JA chair at Pete Galbert’s shop in Rollinsford, N.H. Assisted again by Charlie Ryland – it went swimmingly. And of course, the teacher learns as much as anyone, maybe more. So now I am itching to make some more chairs – but can’t get to them just yet.
There were 8 students whaling away at some red oak and a little bit of ash – splitting & shaving for a couple of days, then boring mortises & shaving tenons. All the chairs went together fine and were really well-done. The slats in particular went off without a hitch. Always a relief.
I told “iron man” Russ he was my favorite student because he used the brace & bit – most others used a cordless electric drill. (actually used the brace & bit too – but I still called Russ Iron Man.)
Pete’s shop is in a huge mill in Rollinsford, right on the NH/Maine border. Upstairs is a semi-new tenant, but an old friend – Dan Faia. We took an early lunch break to go see Dan’s new setup there – he’ll be in the mill full-time starting later this spring, offering small classes and even one-on-one instruction.
For decades, Dan has been teaching at Nort Bennet Street School in Boston – and running the furniture program there for a long time. Now he’s going to be closer to home and avoiding all that traffic that he endured so long. His shop in the mill is spectacular –
Everywhere you look is inspiration.
We spent a bit of time learning about this chair he’s been building as a Fine Woodworking video – they’re just about done shooting it I think. It looks like Dan just waves his hand and there’s a walnut chair…
So if you are looking for first-class instruction in fine furniture work, take a trip to Dan’s shop – here’s his website, etc
https://danielfaia.com/ and https://www.instagram.com/danfaiawoodcarver/
One thought on “recent JA chair class”
Boston Queen Annes are deceptively complex, but nowhere near as impossible as Philadelphia Queen Annes. The six I got from Godfrey were made by McCarthy up near Alan Miller and arrived white and rough. They needed all kinds of shimming and shaving. In the intervening thirty years, they’ve had one busted crest, one busted seat rail, and a bunch of bops ad even a dog chew. Noe of which was from me using them. Now they’re here and I’m tidying them up and making new slip seats.