Sunday, December 28, 2008

Visiting Jeff Fleisher

In October, I took a class in Woodworking Fundamentals at the Leesburg, Virginia, Woodcraft store. The teacher for the two-day class was Jeff Fleisher, a master woodworker who lives an hour away from me in New Market, Virginia. Jeff does business under the name of Jeff’s Wood Designs. Since the class, Jeff and I have corresponded periodically about woodworking issues. Recently, he invited me to visit his shop and yesterday I did so.

First, he gave me a tour of his home to see many of the wonderful pieces he has built, some of which are shown on his web site. In addition to doing fine woodworking, he has embellished much of his work with outstanding chip carving, which makes the pieces truly unique and beautiful.

Then we headed out to his woodshop in a detached garage, to see where he works and examine his current project, a desk he’s been commissioned to build. He’s posted photos of his progress on the web. We walked around the shop and talked about each of his tools and jigs. Following that he gave me advice about things I should think about adding to my own shop, including Practical Design Solutions and Strategies (Taunton), the Wixey Digital Protractor, a basic set of chisels and waterstones for sharpening them, and the GRR-Ripper System for holding down work on the table saw and router. Fortunately for my budget, the latter three are currently on sale.

We spent a couple hours of animated woodworking talk and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. He has a standing invitation to visit my woodshop when he’s in the area.

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