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I'm going to Kentucky for Woodworking in America!

wwinamerica.jpgSo a couple of weeks ago I posted my anticipation and worries about getting registered for the Woodworking In America (WIA) conference in Berea, KY. June 30th came and I checked the site early and there was nothing. I kept checking all day and finally it stopped coming up telling me that they were doing maintenance and about to launch. Then real life and my real job got in the way and I had to go visit some clients. I got home after my meetings around 6 PM and wouldn’t you know it, the site launched minutes after I left for my meetings! Regardless, nothing much was missed and I was able to register. There were 3 seminars that I wanted to sign up for that were full, but as worked my way down the list I saw that 2 of those were repeated later in the weekend and I was able to get into those.

Here is my agenda:

Agenda For : Shannon Rogers

Friday, November 14, 2008

8:00 AM – 9:15 AM 3. Chair Design
No matter what style of chair you’re making, there some basic design tenets you need to follow – if you want your chair to be comfortable. In this seminar, Brian Boggs will reveal the design secrets that make his chairs not only works of art, but also incredibly comfortable to sit in. And, they’re all tenets you can easily incorporate into your style of charimaking.

9:45 AM – 12:00 PM 5. Dovetailing: Pins vs. Tails
One of the longest-lasting debates in the craft is whether you should cut your pins first or your tails first when dovetailing. In this unique seminar, one master from each discipline will walk through the joint step-by-step, so you can see the advantages and disadvantages of each approach as they cut a sample set of dovetails.

1:30 PM – 3:45 PM 10. Advanced Dovetailing
Once you’ve mastered through-dovetails you can take your skills to the next level by learning half-blind and secret mitered dovetail joints. In this seminar you’ll learn the step-by-step processes for laying out, cutting and assembling these useful casework joints.

4:15 PM – 5:30 PM 14. Understand Western Saw

Handsaws and backsaws are the backbone of a hand-tool shop. But what saws do you need to build furniture (and which saws do you not need)? In this seminar, you’ll learn how all Western saws are classified. About how the different configurations of pitch, rake and fleam combine to change the way a saw cuts.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

8:00 AM – 9:15 AM 20. Hands-On Clinic: Saw Sharpening

Sharpening saws is a skill that is best learned by watching someone do it and then giving it a try yourself. This hands-on clinic features a professional saw sharpener who will walk through the process of filing and setting a rip and crosscut saw. Then you’ll be able to get your hands on the files and give it a try yourself.

9:45 AM – 12:00 PM 22. Sharpening Curved Edges

So many handplanes tools work better if you sharpen the cutter so it has a very slight curve across its edge. But when and how to put this camber on your cutter is a point of confusion and contention. This seminar shows you the wide variety of ways to make curves on your cutting edges, from dedicated diamond stones and simple finger pressure to jigs and other home-brewed methods.

1:30 PM – 3:45 PM 27. Mortise and Tenon: Three Solid Methods

Many woodworkers struggle with cutting mortises and tenons by hand – probably because there are so many different methods and so much conflicting advice. In this seminar we explore some of the historical methods for making this venerable joint so you can understand the advantages and disadvantages of each.

4:15 PM – 5:30 PM 32. Hands-On Clinic: Old-School Chisel Use

Learn to use your chisels in ways that haven’t been explored or explained much during the last 200 years. Your chisels can be used as tools for making freehand grooves and a surprising number of other tasks.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

9:00 AM – 10:15 AM 36. Hands-On Clinic: Bench Plane

With the assistance of the hands-on clinic staff, learn to set up and use the three bench planes that are fundamental to all hand work: the fore plane, the jointer plane and the smoothing plane. Different historical strategies will be discussed and explored so you can make the right decision for your shop.

10:45 AM – 12:00 PM 38. Furniture Design

Two passionate practitioners of furniture design present their perspectives as they compare and contrast their approaches to one of the most perplexing aspects of the craft.

Pretty action packed eh? This event is organized with 4 seminars going on at the same time so the biggest impression coming away from this monster list of events is,

“How do I clone myself by mid November???”

Come on people! Woodworker are some of the most inventive people I know. Someone has to come up with a cloning process out there!

Maybe if I cross my thickness planer with my dust collector set on blow the spinning cutter head will churn the air into a vortex thereby creating a vacuum strong enough to distort space time, (cue creepy mad scientist music) collapsing matter around it into a quasar dense ball that will radiate at the precise wavelength to trigger a pharomone release from my medula. Once that quasar collapses to a singularity then the resulting Hawkings energy might combine with those pharomones to produce a simulcrum of myself. One capable of attending a class and then downloading those experiences to me later…

…then again the chips and dust blown out of the collector will probably just make a mess and get me in trouble with my wife.

I guess I will just have to rely on the rest of you going to this event to share what you learned. So here is my charge to all of you out there in the blogosphere: go to WIA, learn all you can (not the same thing I learned though, that’s inefficient), drink a beer, and share with your brethren in the craft.

I think it goes without saying, but I will say it anyway. Thank you to the fine folks at Popular Woodworking and Woodworking Magazine for organizing this incredible event. Thanks especially to Chris Schwarz because this smacks of your meddling!

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