How Much Wood Would A Woodchuck Chuck

Depends on the Woodchuck, but if it were at the Asylum, probably a LOT !

The Maker’s Asylum started with a passion for woodworking. The very first project we built was a bunch of wooden worktables for our fledgling makerspace in a tiny, cramped garage in Mumbai 10 years back. The very first tools we brought into our space were wood working tools. Our current residence in Moira, North Goa is a traditional carpenters village.

TL;DR, sawdust runs in our veins, and we love woodworking and carpentry.

And so, over the years, as we moved from one location to another, the one regular feature on our calendar has been woodworking workshops. At our current location in Moira too, we have been pretty regular, averaging about one workshop every month, and quite often more.

Putting the jigsaw pieces together – the group works in unison to build a puzzle

Combining our past experience and user feedback, we have now fine tuned the workshop contents and structure by splitting it in to two separate, but interconnected courses. The 2-day basic course gives an introduction to woodworking and teaches the key basics of this craft, covering workshop safety, the different types of natural and engineered woods, their features, advantages and disadvantages, the use of hand tools, and the course ends with all the participants working together as a team to build a jigsaw puzzle, where each member crafts one piece of the puzzle, and the team has to ensure that all the pieces fit together.

The 6-day advanced course goes beyond the 2-day basic course, introducing a wider range of power tools and techniques and providing the opportunity to complete a much larger, more complex and personal project – such as a chopping board, or an extra-special jewellery box or even a new furniture item. Before they start chopping wood, we ask the wood workers to prototype their personal projects using cardboard and foam, so they get an idea of how much and which types of wood to get, the required hardware, and how to efficiently lay out the cutting plans. Day 3 of the course includes a field trip to local saw mills to buy supplies and visits to a few furniture and local workshops to observe how the traditional craftsmen work. Over the next few days, they go through several training sessions on specific aspects of woodworking and carpentry, along with mentored sessions to help build the personal projects.

We have seen some amazing projects take shape in our wood shop over the years. Check out the gallery below for a few of our favorites

Seats on our woodworking workshops always fill up quickly, so do keep a lookout for announcements if you’ve been bitten by the carpentry bug and would like to join us for an upcoming session.

We just love to share what we have learnt over the years with the community, and at the same time learn from them as well. Looking forward to seeing you at the workshop some time soon !

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