A Note About Workshops

We hope the national and local workshops will provide just the kind of experiences you need to build your woodworking skills. All workshops are a wonderful benefit of being an RWS member, and all require RWS membership.

Please note that lunch will not be provided at any of the local workshops, national workshops include lunch (unless specified).

To register just select the “Add to cart” button for the workshop you want.

Bob Van Dyke: National Lecture and Workshop

Bob Van Dyke PictureAfter 18 years as an award-winning chef in French restaurants Bob left the business to begin a career in woodworking and teaching. Furniture making had provided an outlet to the pressures of the restaurant business until 1993 when he started the Harris Enterprise School of Fine Woodworking. In seven years of operation the school gained national exposure and recognition.

In 2000 he formed a business partnership to open the Manchester, CT Woodcraft store and the Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking. The school was an instant success and the demand for classes was so great that a second shop was built to allow two classes to run simultaneously. He continually strives to expand his skills and knowledge by working on a variety of commission furniture pieces and new projects for upcoming classes. He has been featured in Fine Woodworking Magazine and Woodshop News.

Bob’s approach to teaching centers on the belief that people learn “by doing rather than by watching”. Successful contemporary furniture making also depends on utilizing a sensible combination of machine woodworking and handwork. Bob’s classes feature hands-on woodworking projects that require mastery of a combination of hand tools and machines.


Bob Van Dyke Lecture: St. John Fisher College (Room 100 in the Wegmans School of Nursing instead of 125 Basil) - Friday April 27, 2018 @ 07:45 PM

On Friday’s presentation, Bob will talk about his work and experiences as woodworker.


Bob Van Dyke Workshop

Instructor: Bob Van Dyke

Date/Time: Saturday April 28, 2018 from 09:00 AM to 04:00 PM

Is Lunch Included?: Yes

Location: Bruce Alles's Shop, 1939 Bennett Road, Victor, NY, 14564

Cost: $ 50 (must be RWS member)

Class size: 25 people

$50.00Add to cart

The Basics of Using Veneers to Create Outrageous Patterns!

If you have ever done any re-sawing then you know how cool a book matched panel can be. When you incorporate veneers into your work the possibilities for creating spectacular patterns are almost endless! Bookmatching is the simple one- but what about radial matching or parquet?  A sunburst veneer panel from crotch walnut can be breathtaking! And they are a lot of fun to make. This demonstration will center on using veneers to create different patterns along with basic techniques for working with the veneers – Flattening them, buying & storing them and how to work with them to create tight, almost invisible seams. We will go into the basic tools & supplies needed along with discussing the various adhesives and ways to clamp up the veneered panel. This demonstration might be just what you need to bring your woodworking to the next level.

Oops – That was not really a part of the Plan … Fixing Woodworking Mistakes with Bob Van Dyke

Have you ever had that sinking feeling when you realize you put an offset tenon on the wrong side? Or broke off a twin tenon? How about a hinge morticed in the wrong place? Or just a badly cut dovetail? Beginners are not the only ones who make mistakes– but it is the pros who have figured out how to get out of a tight spot without having to start from the beginning. Woodworking is really just problem solving and in this demo, Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking director, Bob Van Dyke will demonstrate ways to fix simple common mistakes like fixing a hole that might have be drilled by mistake through the face of a board or fixing a loose tenon or a “gappy” dovetail – Those are some simple fixes but we will then go on to explore some techniques to save some parts that most woodworkers might write off and start over again. Obviously a big part of any repair strategy is to know when something can be fixed – and fixed well – and when to cut your losses and start fresh. This is something that we will discuss and show in a series of practical examples and demonstrations. Hopefully this valuable demonstration will get you thinking hard the next time you encounter an “unexpected design opportunity”