Following our first “Foundations” course, this second installment in our Apprenticeship series introduces pre-industrial table construction. With this build, Joshua Klein, editor of Mortise & Tenon Magazine, demonstrates the skills and conveys the mindset to approach any table build without elaborate plans or expensive (and dangerous) machines.
Because most period tables share the same guts, Klein teaches the way you’d learn in a real apprenticeship setting—you learn the table’s form. Rather than drawing plans for every single commission, period artisans typically approached each piece the same. To them, a table was a table—all the rest is decoration. The table built in this course has almost all the variations you will encounter in your own build.
Because we’re determined to teach the efficiencies and tolerances of pre-industrial woodworking, we believe seeing it in the context of a build is important. It’s one thing to tell you not to worry about tear-out but it’s another to show you exactly how much is acceptable.
This video is about working efficiently with simple tools to achieve real results. It is a powerful feeling to build furniture with only a few hand planes and saws. We want you to experience this and believe anyone can do it.