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Shipwright School Blog - The Professionals finish off the Hewing and Sawing

3 April 2014 - Henry Russell is now working with fellow professionals to finish off converting the timber for the Shipwright School frame.

Now we have the professionals in! After two days of apprentices who worked really hard trying to get the hang of axing and hewing we now have 10 professional timber frame carpenters all who are expert in hand conversion.

Henry Russell and fellow professional timber frame carpenters

Henry Russell has been joined by his twin brother John, Joel Hendry, Barbara Czoch, Rebecca Tan, Hamish Glover Wilson, Gabriel Langlands, Kit Goudge, Ant Sawyer, Steve Turner and Howard Lindsay all who work in historic timber framing all over the country. They are working much faster and with great precision and the timber is piling up ready for making into the frames.

Converted jowl posts for the Shipwright School project

Lots of tool sharpening too. They all sharpen their own tools and are very protective of them. They are wonderful to watch and so skilled. The smell of the freshly axed off wood chips is delicious, a slightly orangey smell with a hint of sweetness. We are bagging up the wood chips to keep the site clean and selling them for BBQ chips or firelighting kindle. So far they have bagged up 200 bags so come on down and buy some. They are great for lighting fires at home.

Crowds watch the carpenters at work

We have had quite a crowd to watch today, especially since it has been on BBC TV and it has brought out a number of old shipwrights to come and take a look. I took a call from a lovely man offering us old shipwrights' tools and of course said yes to his kind offer.

Only one more day to go. Let's hope the weather holds - so far it has been good all week and more importantly no cuts or grazes!

- Mary Montagu-Scott


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