apprenticeship Archives - Page 2 of 2 - West Wind Hardwood

Danny’s Apprenticeship Year 3

Did you know Jan is sponsoring Danny Schaftlein – our Milling Manager – for his Joinery apprenticeship?  He has just completed his 3rd year at BCIT and found this year’s general focus to be on production methods, curved millwork, and drafting with AutoCAD.  His personal project was a mirror frame incorporating laminated and solids curved parts.  Can hardly wait to see the finished mirror once the glass is installed.  He has maintained a 95% average over the past 3-years.  We are very proud of him!!

He spent more time home on the weekends this year and became up close and personal with the BC Ferry schedule….or lack thereof 😉  He did say that there were more apprentices representing Victoria this year.  Nice to see.


Victoria High School’s Woodworking and Construction Program

By our customer and Victoria High Teacher, Stewart Wheeler

Victoria High School’s woodworking and construction program starts at the grade 9 level and gives student’s the opportunity to take up to 7 different courses by the time they graduate. In grade 9 students do a simple table -600mm long by 285mm wide by 440mm high out of pine or another inexpensive wood. They will also build a giftbox using a choice of different woods. In grade 10, students will do a detailed display table that introduces a variety of wood joints and techniques – biscuited mitres, mortise and tenon, pocket holes, dados, rabbets, cross laps. They will also be introduced to turning on the wood lathes by producing a simple bowl. The last required project is a box of their selection out of a “Box by Box” book from Lee Valley which has a range of boxes that vary in difficulty.

In grade 11 students further  develop their skils by building a bow front pine table with a dovetailed drawer. Also in grade 11 students are introduced to house construction through small framing projects and client projects such as sheds or playhouses. n grade 12 students can specialize by taking courses in Furniture Construction – student choice projects, Cabinet Construction – (Tall Clock Project), and Residential House Construction – formwork and framing.

Students who choose 4 or more courses over their grade 10-12 years are offered the opportunity to sign up for the Career Preparation Carpentry/Joinery Program where they receive further funding for specialized projects and the opportunity to do work experience out in the community with various companies.

Students who excel in the Career Preparation Program are offered the opportunity to do their first year apprenticeship technical training in either Carpentry or Cabinetmaking/Joinery up at Camosun College during their final high school year.The tuition is covered by the district and students will by registered as apprentices through the ITA – Industry Training Authority.

For more information please contact Stewart Wheeler at

Danny’s Apprenticeship

A Journey into Journeymanship.

Do you know what a Joiner is? A Joiner will layout, machine, assemble, install and finish products that are fabricated from wood, plastics and other materials. Many of these processes will combine conventional techniques with automated (CNC/CAD/CAM) procedures.
As an example, joiners work in these areas:

  • Architectural Woodwork (Millwork)
  • Cabinets
  • Commercial furnishings
  • Residential furnishings
  • Yacht interiors
  • Specialty items

To become a certified journeyperson, you need to complete four years of apprenticeship training. Apprenticeship is a time-proven method of acquiring skills in the trade by combining technical in-school instruction with practical on-the-job training. Apprenticeship training is the best method for passing along trade skills from one generation to the next.
From the mouth of Danny:

“I’m looking forward to learning something new and spending time in the big city!”

Beyond acing his exams to date, Danny’s taken time to explore the Sloquet hot springs.  Here are his thoughts:

I wanted to go to a real hot spring, something in nature rather than pumped into a swimming pool!  I sure got what I wanted.  It took my around 4 hours to get there; 3 hours of that was on a rough road, and I mean really rough.   There was a lot of climbing with loose rock; so steep I had to use first gear, but still couldn’t go slow enough because it was so rocky.  Of course, the forester can handle it! I only scrapped the bottom a few times…lol…there were some deep washout as well. The drive was awesome, some nice views of Harrison lake and the mountains nearby

To temporarily replace Danny’s 6- week stay in Vancouver for his BCIT training, we welcome Sarah Von Drasek’s return.  Sarah will assist in our milling department.  Stop by and say ‘hello’ to an old friend..