“The Anarchist’s Workbench” is covered under a Creative Commons license that allows you to use the information any way you wish for non-commercial purposes.
I am thrilled to see people take advantage of this license. Here are two (no, three) good examples that also help the woodworking community at large.
‘The Anarchist’s Workbench’ Audiobook
Ray Deftereos of the Hand Tool Book Review podcast did a remarkable thing. He recorded an audiobook of the entire work. Every chapter. You can download and listen to them for free here at SoundCloud.
I am most appreciative of Ray’s work because this helps reach people who don’t learn as well via the written word, or those who have imparied eyesight, or parents are so busy with their families that reading a book takes a back seat to diapers and homework.
Ray does a great job in general in reviewing books on handwork. And he’s not all afraid to cut a book to ribbons when it deserves it. Check out his podcast and subscribe here.
3D Model of the Workbench
Jeremiah Dillashaw of Sojourner Works has made a great 3D model of the bench you can download. It’s a .3dm file he made in Rhino, which will open in Fusion and other programs. You can read more about the file here and download it (for free, of course).
If you know of other resources that use the book and might help others, please let us know. Oh, I almost forgot. The most Banjo-tastic Mattias Hallin is documenting the bench’s construction process on his blog here. He’s doing it all by hand, so it should be fun.
— Christopher Schwarz
While this year has brought a lot of suffering and uncertainty, there have been some bright spots. At the top of that list: I was asked for the first time to speak at Colonial Williamsburg’s “Working Wood in the 18th Century” conference, which runs from Jan. 14-17, 2021.
The event is, of course, virtual this year because of the pandemic. But it won’t be like a thrown-together Zoom meeting with your co-workers.
I’ll be on-site in Williamsburg with the other presenters putting together a program that blends live woodworking with pre-filmed segments that you can watch over and over on your devices. The production values will be excellent – this is Williamsburg after all.
The topic of the conference this year is “Back to Work: Functional Furniture for Home and Shop.”
I’ll be presenting on two topics: Woodworking with low Roman-style workbenches and staked shop furniture. My plan is to build a Sheffield-style work stool (shown above) during the conference. And do it on a Roman bench.
In addition to the impressive cabinetmakers and joiners from Williamsburg, Bob Van Dyke and Mike Mascelli will be demonstrating the construction of a worktable for needlecraft. There will be lots of roundtable discussions and insights into how Black woodworkers, women and people suffering enslavement contributed to the material culture of the day. Here is the impressive agenda.
Oh, one more thing. I have been asked to give the keynote for the “banquet.” (It’s BYOMeat this year, and clothing is optional.) My presentation is going to be a film I’ve been working on for a couple months about woodworking in an inner-city shop.
Why would you do that? Because it will make you a better designer and builder. While many of us find inspiration in nature, being surrounded by excellent architecture (new and old) can change your woodworking life. It has changed mine.
I hope you can join us. Registration information is here.
— Christopher Schwarz