Saturday, March 29, 2014

Lucky you! Pictures from my Southern Tour

Here are the bends from the class that I taught at Warren Wilson College just outside of Asheville, NC. I had Bill Palmer rig up a new steambox that we insulated and it held a nice high heat. We got 12 bends with no issues at all, which is a real achievement in a classroom setting. We were careful to open the door only briefly when retrieving our pieces and monitored the heat level carefully.
My favorite lunchtime retreat was to watch the new piggies running around on the college farm.
The class made balloon backs which might just be my new favorite chair to teach new chairmakers. It has the intense bend and plenty of opportunities to make sweet joinery. The shouldered tenon at the end of the bow is especially fun.

Here is a finished chair. Everyone finished up their chair before 4:30 on the last day and I was definitely proud of the way that they turned out.
They were very uniform too, they could have been a set. That would have suited Seth just fine as he now has the job of guiding a bunch of the students at the college through making a set for the college President. They are shooting high with their program of fine woodworking and I am excited to see where they take it. For the Presidents house, Seth designed the undercarraige that you see below. I like the cigar legs and higher stretchers, I think I'll swipe it.
Of course he was too busy helping the class along to finish his prototype, but you get the idea.
I also met a blacksmith while I was there by the name of Jason Lonon. He helped the college students make their own travishers and inshaves and he dropped by to talk tools with me.
Here is a drawknife that he made based coincidentally on one of my favorite styles.
A while back, I was fiddling with drawknife geometry and came up with one that I really love. I bent the handles a couple of ways to get it just right and now I keep it as a model for good geometry.
When held up to Jasons drawknife, they shared the same geometry, which took us both by surprise. He said that he would sell them for $200. You can contact him through his website at if you are interested in a gorgeous handmade drawknife.

Now I am back home, hoping to get in a boil or two (syrup season ran late this year), but mainly settling into not living out of a suitcase...for a while.

Oh, and last but not least, my Mom took great care of me in Atlanta, isn't she a doll!


Bill Palmer said...

Your mom looks so young Pete. You must be, like 15, right? For anyone reading this, the class at Warren Wilson was a gas!!!! Everyone I talked to couldn't say enough good about what they had learned and how engaging you were Pete. Let's do it again, just give me a while to recover.
All the best, Bill

jaupnort said...

Glad to see your endorsement of the ballon back, one of my if not my favorite among the many Windsors.
The first I saw was one Dave Swayer made for an English Windsor symposium. An English ladder back craftsman was fond of it and purchased it and had it displayed in is home. When my eye caught it I kept looking at it in awe.
After returning home I had to start making one.
When finished my daughter saw it and ordered 8. Order still in process.

Peter Galbert said...

Thanks Bill,
you did a fine job hosting the class, I tip my hat to you! I look forward to coming back, did I mention that since I've been back I've lost my voice? Must be divine intervention

John, I agree, Dave does make a lovely balloon back

Anonymous said...

Peter, glad to see you took care of your Mom by making her those custom kitchen cabinets and a nice dining table!

Jack McAllister said...

Hey Pete, Did you leave a straight tenon on the hoop to facilitate the shaping of the "square" joining of the hoop to the spindle deck? Nice touch for a first chair.

Peter Galbert said...

yep, the shoulder and straight tenon work great together and a subtle flairing of the exit under the seat creates a lock joint, too fun.

Scott B. Garrison said...

Hey Pete,

Scott here from the Highland Class...great chairs. What are the legs? Oak?