Our summer has been incredibly busy with custom milling orders. Just look at all the cool pieces we got to create for our happy customers.
(Top) Yellow cedar live edge table top
(Clockwise from left) Walnut countertop with curved live edge | Western maple live edge maple mantles | Yellow cedar tabletop | Black walnut countertop to Whistler | Red Oak stair treads and nosings | Eastern Maple Butcher Block to Salt Spring Island | Black Walnut and Maple live edge countertop | Eastern maple butcher block countertop with sink cut out.
Stair Treads, Posts and Dowels
White Oak butcher block stair treads (left) Red Oak stair treads (right)
Don’t Ask! Just let it be known there is another project in the stew pot. Fairly major and all encompassing. Furniture is required for this project; the flavour is West Coast. Jan’s choice of wood is Pacific Yew. I know it’s one of my favourites.
Jan had forgotten the toxicity of yew wood and felt it was extremely important to remind our readers of the care required. The dust attacked his respiratory system. I would liken it to a severe asthma attack; wheezing, shortness in breath, mucus build-up, and headaches.
The leaves and seed are toxic. Sheep and cattle have died as a result of eating these; humans also. The toxin which causes the problem is taxine, and it is present in the wood. Yew is used widely by turners, and goodness knows how many yew vessels are used for fruit, or eating and drinking from.
Silva Bay Shipyard School – July 2016 – Photo by Jan Nielsen Not so open any longer; the school has closed its doors and is the home to local businesses.
A True Renaissance Man
After completing a four-year boatbuilding apprenticeship that started in 1980, Tony Grove honed his skills as a shipwright, specializing in wooden boat restoration/construction, boat interiors building and custom furniture design. This led him to instructing at the Silva Bay Shipyard School on Gabriola Island BC. Tony taught traditional Boatbuilding plus a course (the first of its kind) that he designed on Ship Cabinetry/Joinery. Tony eventually became the school’s head instructor; leaving the school in 2005 to spend time with his family, working for himself as a custom woodworker, boatbuilder, artist, writer and teacher. A true renaissance man!
With the Silva Bay Shipyard School closed, the circle has come full round with The Grove Woodworking School tucked amongst the trees on beautiful Gabriola Island, B.C. Courses and Workshops focus on woodworking skills and techniques for the marine environment, with all skills being transferableto general woodworking. A few non-marine programs will be offered as well. Course material is designed principally for novices; those for advanced learners will be noted.
Paul Harder is a bronze sculptor with a charming countryside studio located in Deep Cove. Paul has a passion for creating west coast wildlife and marine creatures.
One of his specialties is the design and fabrication of custom-made coffee and dining room tables that incorporate bronze, glass and wood. Working with Jan and West Wind Hardwood the most recent example of one of Paul`s creations is the Octopus Burl Table shown here. This table started with an old burl collected by the client several years ago. Jan and his team restored and milled the burl and Paul created the supporting structure using three giant bronze octopus tentacles. The table has a glass inset with a smaller feature octopus suspended from the underside of the table. This is a one of kind piece and definitely a conversation starter that now lives on Piers Island.