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Making the Siska Bookcase
Making the Siska Bookcase

Making the Siska Bookcase

Skill level: beginner and intermediate Instructor: Gary Rogowski 5-day workshop August 26–30, 2024

Dates & Location

Aug 26, 2024, 9:00 AM – Aug 30, 2024, 4:00 PM

Wendell Castle Workshop, 18 Maple St, Scottsville, NY 14546, USA

Class description

A small bookcase build is a great project for the beginner or intermediate woodworker because it can serve different needs while teaching a variety of skills. A case this size can hold books, magazines, glassware, or art. It can also provide a builder with a lovely opportunity for careful joinery, shaping, and inlay. Join us for this exploration of form and details as we construct the Siska bookcase.

We will learn several methods in class for carcase construction that are solid and decorative. Discover stopped mortise and tenon joints and how to make a mortising template to rout through as well as hand tool mortising. We will use wedged tenons to help lock these joints in place. Once our joinery is complete and before glue-up we will shape our end boards, first seeing how to make a simple template to try out some different forms. Then we will learn panel shaping methods using the band saw, spoke shave, and rasp. Spoke shave and chisel textures of a surface will also be demonstrated. Prior to glue-up we will also learn how to carve and shape through tenon joints using careful chisel work. Details make the difference!

Glue-up is always exciting but this happens next with helping hands nearby. After glue-up we will see how to cut and fit a tapered sliding dovetail joint for our shelf using a simple technique with the router, router table, and a thin shim. Learn about 3 different methods for attaching a back to a case. All of these techniques will allow you to build any size case, so they are incredibly useful to know.

From there we will learn inlay techniques that are beautiful, striking, and endlessly variable. Straight line and curved inlay patterns will be demonstrated. Learn how a simple sharp chisel can be your best carving tool for raised inlay patterns. Wood and metal inlay will be used to make this simple piece stand out in any room.

Student Tool List:

  • Hearing and eye protection
  • Note taking supplies (notebook and pen or pencil)
  • Measuring and marking tools: tape measure, 6" rule, square*, marking knife*, marking gauge, pencils
  • Cutting tools: chisels*, block plane*, shoulder plane, smoothing plane, scraper*, spokeshave*
  • Sharpening supplies: 12”x12” plate glass, at least 1/4" thick, to be used with silicon carbide sandpaper or sharpening stones 1000, 4000, 8000, rubber mat or stone holder that can be clamped to the bench.
  • Water bottle (optional but recommended)

*Starred items are provided at each bench, but you are welcome to bring your own. We have a curved bottom spokeshave. You may want to bring a straight bottom spokeshave. Also, we have a low angle jack plane at each bench that could be used instead of a smoothing plane.

Please call Ken Page (interim director) at 302-690-6122 (9-4 weekdays) if you have questions about what to bring.

Course fee: $965

Material fee: $75

Gary Rogowski bio

Register now

  • One seat

    +$26.00 service fee



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