Hand planes and wireless routers return to Andover Historical | Lifestyles

Leave the 21st Century behind and step back in time to an era before electricity while taking part in a working class at the Andover Historical Society in the nearly 200 year old Amos Blanchard Barn. 

While listening to the hum of a handsaw cutting though air-dried lumber and the sound of a sharp plane shaving curls of wood from a board, pick up a 19th century plane or router and try your hand at traditional woodworking with expert craftsman Stephen Anthony. 

Feel the warmth of the wooden tools and the satisfaction of learning an old “new” skill this spring.

Hand Planes & Wireless Routers is designed to meet the needs of woodworkers, from the novice looking for an introduction to traditional woodworking skills to the advanced craftsman. The small class size and location create a unique learning opportunity. With instruction from Anthony, students can make a basic, introductory project, such as a foot stool or candle box, from pre-milled stock. 

Novices will learn from the instructor and the more advanced students as everyone gets to use the antique tools and machinery.

In 1986, master craftsman John Ross provided an antique tool collection to the Andover Historical Society and started offering woodworking classes. Today, Ross’s student, Steve Anthony, continues to teach these woodworking classes using antique tools with the same sense of respect for tradition that instilled Ross’s classes.

Anthony started wood working by building kit furniture. He learned the basics of assembling the pieces and finishing, but found that these were his least favorite parts of the process. Looking to understand the other steps, things took a radical turn when he joined up with Ross at Andover Historical. There, Anthony was introduced to the joys of hand-tool work, the fundamentals of preparing wood for use, joint layout and cutting, and how to…

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