Tuesday, September 9, 2008


We realize that as part of our mission in starting the school there is an implicit goal in helping the Woodworking community around us. We can do this by promoting the art and craft of working with wood and sometimes we need to help more directly. I got this email from John Marckworth this morning. If you can help please do:

"Some of you may know Jerry Smith, cabinetmaker. His shop was recently broken into, and most/all of his portable power tools were taken. He was uninsured for the loss. He will replace the day-to-day equipment out of pocket, but can't hope to get back above water for some time. I know we can all relate to what a blow this is, and how difficult it will be to recover.

Mark Sabella has undertaken, completely on his own initiative, to give Jerry a hand in replacing his Festool Domino. He is asking fellow woodworkers to chip in $20 (no more) towards the replacement cost. We hope you'll consider joining us. Also, please spread the word to our fellow woodworkers.

You can contact Mark at 385-1551, or me at 316-9480."

Monday, September 1, 2008

Success in Smallish Increments

We'd like to thank John Edwards for all the effort he put in to the Woodworking for Kids Program at the School. It was a great start - the kids who came had a great time and we learnt a lot about running a kids program. The major lesson we learned was to step back and let John do it. John has a wonderful way with kids, the patience of an elephant (or is it memory) and, now, a wonderful array of kid scale tools.

John has attracted the attention of the local "Y" (YMCA) and will be running an afterschool woodworking program when he returns from a well earned month in Thailand. Check in back here is a few weeks and we'll have posted a link to John's new website.

John will be back at the school at Halloween as part of the Fort's celebration. We'll have the school open and will invite the kids into make Spiders, Ghouls and other things that go bonk in the night. Just don't let Susan know - or she'll be there with her poker.

We're also hoping to get John back between Christmas to New Years to allow overwrought parents to let the kids come and make sawdust each day.

The Art and Craft of Working with Wood

We've renamed the Free Lecture / Presentation Series to "The Art and Craft of Working with Wood". This new name really reflects what we're trying to do with the series. Some of the presentations share the joy of working with wood for Art or to create homes. The homes can be on the ground, in a tree or on wheels

We need to work on timing a little... Kim Kelzer gave a wonderful presentation of her philosophy and work last week. Little did I know that it was going to be the same evening as Barack Obama's acceptance speech at the DNC when I asked Kim to give the presentation back in May. A small but enthusiastic audience got a whirlwind tour of Kim's life and work. Many thanks Kim!

I'm envious of the speed and intensity of Kim's new work. She certainly challenged me to think about how to work faster. Catch Kim's new work at the Museo in Langley on Whidbey Island from September 6th through 28th.

Next up Jim Tolpin on making a Gypsy Wagon (house on wheels) and then Jake Jacobs on Treehouses.

More details here.

Port Townsend Woodworker's Show - Call for Entries

John and Jim ran the Port Townsend Woodworker's Show from Mid Nineties to the early Oughties but family life got in the way. In 2006 the SplinterGroup formed and resurrected the Show. The new Show (fondly headlined by the Leader as "Woodworker's Show Knot Dead") runs on the first weekend in November with setup occurring on the Friday before. In 2006 we got about 1500 visitors and were in the range of 1800-2000 in 2007.

The show is sponsored by various companies around town which keep the cost of exhibiting in the show to $35 at the basic level. The Premier Exhibitor level is $100 and gives woodworkers the opportunity to have a web page on the SplinterGroup's website and an entry plus picture in the Show brochure.

Entry to the show is on a first come first serve basis. There are a few restrictions on what can be displayed:

  • Work that is new to the show - please don't submit work that has been shown before
  • No work from kits or purchased plans please

The School is a sponsor of the Show and we would like to have some alumni work on display is possible. So if you've attended a course and would like to show some work please let us know and we'll incorporate into our booth. So feel free to email us if you'd like to show your work.

This years show will be held on the 1st & 2nd of November starting at 11:00am both days. The show stays open until 8:00pm on Saturday to coincide with the Port Townsend Art Walk. The show is open until 3:00pm on Sunday.

More details here.

Woodworker's Club Starting in Port Townsend - Next Meeting September 9th at 2:00pm

We're delighted to share the news that a Woodworker's Club is starting up in Port Townsend. Dave Weeding and a bunch of friends have decided to start up the club. We're helping out by hosting one of their September Meeting. In Dave Weeding's words:

"Our next meeting will be on Tuesday September 9 at 2PM. We will meet at the Port Townsend School Of Woodworking at Fort Worden. We'll have a little social time, and discuss current projects. Tim Lawson, who is one of the founders of the school, as well as an instructor, will conduct a mini seminar on router jigs and fixtures."

You can reach Dave at (360) 385 9986 or by email.