September 2009 NEWSLETTER

Class Schedule Update
Fall and winter tutorials are limited to 4 students. Drew Langsner is the instructor. Tutorial tuition includes materials, a private room, our famous meals prepared by Louise Langsner, and use of specialized tools. Enrollment can be by phone (828 656 2280) or e-mail. The deposit is $350 with the balance due 4 weeks before each session begins. Other details, including our cancellation policy, are on the Country Workshops web site.

Fall Tutorials (limited to 4 students)
October 19-23: Rustic Windsor Chairmaking  (Drew Langsner)  - 1 opening
November 2-6: Windsor Chairmaking (Drew Langsner) - Full
November 16-20: Ladderback Chairmaking (Drew Langsner) - Full

Winter 2010 Tutorials
January 11-15: Ladderback Chairmaking - Make a “mule ear” side chair.
January 25-30*: American Windsor Chairmaking - Make a bow-back side chair.
February 8-12: Carving Bowls and Spoons - The Scandinavian tradition. - Full
February 22-26: Rustic Windsor Chairmaking - Low-back or high-back.
March 8-12: Hearth Chair - This is Drew’s design for an all wood loafing chair. - 1 opening
March 22-26: Carving Bowls and Spoons - The Scandinavian tradition.

*Note: Our Winter 2010 American Windsor Tutorial has been extended to 6 full days. We have learned that you need the extra class day for this particularly challenging project.


Toolmaking for Woodworkers; the full gang. Top row: Phil Fuentes (Greensboro, NC), Gene Faasse (Easley, SC), Elmore Holmes (Memphis, TN), Dan Mirkes (Minneapolis, MN), Alan Liby (Oak Ridge, TN), Erik Buchakian (Narrowsburg, NY), John Kraus (Marshall, NC) Hans Karlsson (Motala, Sweden), Bill Rohrs (Ingleside, IL), Mike Cooper (High Point, NC). Bottom row: Drew Langsner, David Freeman (Chapel Hill, NC), Allen Parkes (Bloomington, IN). Photo by Martha Kelly.

As with many enterprises, Country Workshops has been seriously affected by the down economy. Never-the-less, we had a great summer. Interestingly, 3 classes basically filled up, 2 classes were cancelled (with zero enrollment) and the bowl and spoon carving class only had 3 students. (Nice for them!) Because of the cancelled classes we had time to build a sheltered deck at our small pond, something that Drew had been wanting to do for years. Our summer intern, Dan Mirkes, was an excellent helper for any task that came along, and a great host when we had class and visitors. We were unable to locate suitable giant, straight oak logs to make shingles for our addition roof, so this was done with painted metal roofing. Our long time friend Dan Mayner helped with this project.

More pictures from our Summer Journal ...

Drew applies a finish to a serving ladle.

On-Line Tutorial
Part 3: Finishing for Food
by Drew Langsner

The conclusion of Drew’s mega article on spoon carving is in the Sept/Oct issue of “Living Woods” magazine. You can now read the entire article on our web site. Click here for Finishing for Food.

Also online now:  Part 1- June 2009 Newsletter. Part 2 – July 2009 Newsletter.

If you’re interested in subscribing to “Living Woods” you can take this link:


Over the past 20 years our line of Hans Karlsson tools has grown to over 30 items. Our data base requires a sequential number as each new tool comes along. The result is a hodge podge that lacks user friendly logic. So, finally, Drew has come up with a new number system that hopefully will make tool selection and tracking easier. The old HK- XX numbers will be replaced with H-XXX numbers.

We have also added 3 new gouges from Hans Karlsson. H-103 was selected as an intermediate straight paring gouge sized between H-102 (old HK-04) and H-104 (old HK-14). At the same time we discontinued the old HK-05 which was seldom ordered. For the bent paring gouges we came up with our new H-112. (Drew's current favorite paring gouge.) This one fits in somewhere between H-111 (old HK-06) and H-113 (old HK-07). We also added a new, large double hooped striking gouge H-134 with a shallower sweep than the H-133 (old HK-10). This gouge, and the very large H-135 and H-136 gouges are made especially for Country Workshops. During this transition the dual sets of numbers are rather confusing. Hopefully everyone will get used to these new numbers and find them to be an improvement.

Click here to see all of our Hans Karlsson tools arranged in the new numbering system.


We are often asked about our recommendation for a bowl carver’s Starter Set. This selection of 3 gouges and an adze will get anyone going with high quality tools. Purchased individually the combined price is $595.00. Save $60.00 when you purchase the Starter Set.

For beginners help and tips refer to our on-line Bowl Carving Tutorial. The sale price may be adjusted when our next print catalog is published. The sale ends January 1, 2010.

The Starter Set consists of:

H-133 40 mm 55 sweep double hoop striking gouge
H-112 35 mm 90 sweep bent paring gouge
H-123 45 mm 150 sweep dog leg bottoming gouge
H-163 60 mm (2-1/4”) hollowing adze with 20” bent handle*
SH-05 Leather adze guard
H-191 Bowl Carver’s Starter Set $535.00
Plus s&h (depends on your zip code)
* If you substitute H-162 (the short handle adze) $510.00


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To contact us by:
E-mail: click here
Web site: click here
Phone: 828 656 2280 (9 AM to 6 PM, eastern time, any day)
Address: 990 Black Pine Ridge Rd.; Marshall, North Carolina 28753