This video is the second half of a two part series on the quick, easy, repeatable way to prep rough lumber. In Part One, (view Part One here) instructor and furniture maker Eric Matson demonstrates how he breaks down rough boards , step-by-step, into smaller rough parts. Now, in this final segment, Eric takes us through the last steps of squaring edges and cutting to precise lengths & widths. Along the way we learn tips, tricks, and secrets that help eliminate errors.
If you take away anything from this series, I hope you’ll agree that guaranteeing consistent results only comes with a proven system. Eric shows us his system, the same proven method that Eric says quickly elevates his students’ work to the next level. See if it works for you. (10 Minute Woodworking Video – Part 2 of 2)
Eric Matson is the Director of the Fine Woodworking Program at Rio Grand University. Rio Grande offers a one year certificate program, as well as two year associates and four year college degree programs. Graduates have the skills and knowledge to be productive in custom furniture shops and architectural/cabinet shops. Rio Grande (pronounced rye-oh) is in Southern Ohio.
In a world of filled with commodity wood, there remains a special niche for those lumbermen who deal in the finest grades of timber. The rarities of the wood world (the burls, the figured, the exotic, the delicate grained, the carefully seasoned) are reserved for the most exclusive wood projects and the most discriminating artisans.
Fine-hardwood dealer Rick Hearne travels the world locating these gems of nature. Once found, he ships these logs to his Pennsylvania lumber yard to be flitch-cut on the yard’s massive custom-built sawmill. Whether these trees are recovered from tropical hurricanes in South America, or salvaged from diseased trees that were felled on British estates, Rick always relishes the magic moment when he cuts them open to discover the beauty hidden within. In this video, Rick discusses how he can “read” trees (in this case, the English Wych Elm) in order to anticipate the potential secrets inside each log he purchases. For me, Rick’s enthusiasm for special woods was downright contagious. In this video, you too can experience the thrill of slicing open these massive gems of the forest. (4.5 Minute Woodworking Video)
Rick Hearne is President of Hearne Hardwoods in Oxford, Pennsylvania
Boston-based furniture designer and artisan John Reed Fox knows a great piece of wood when he sees it. It has stunning color and texture. It’s air-dried slowly and peacefully. And boards from the same log flitch are always available to make a perfect grain-matched set. But this is only half the story. John also looks for his choice of “correct” figure and required grain orientation, whether it be plain, rift, or quarter-sawn. Finding boards that meet these criteria requires focused attention.
In this video, get an inside look at how this master furniture maker collaborates with fine-hardwood dealers, Rick and Brian Hearne, to search from among Hearne Hardwood’s 1,000,000 board feet of top-grade hardwoods. The goal for Mr. Fox’s 700 mile buying trip: the perfect set of walnut boards. It’s John’s critical first step in crafting the highest-grade heirloom furniture. Learn the practical steps to how you too can select better wood for your next masterpiece. (5 Minute Woodworking Video)