Port Townsend School of Woodworking
Preserving the Tradition

Staked Furniture


Staked Furniture

Levels 1,2


In 2019 we’re introducing a series of classes that will challenge the aspiring and established furniture makers to explore new creative directions and, for many, novel materials or contemporary ways of using materials.

Join us in welcoming, Brendan Bernhardt Gaffney, woodworker, teacher and writer based in Covington, Ky. He’s teaching a week-long class in chairmaking in the “staked” style.

Brendan has worn the hats of toolmaker, teacher, writer and furnituremaker, building everything from ancient rulers, geometer’s tools, gallery furniture and greenwood chairs, with his work published in Popular Woodworking and Mortise and Tenon magazines.

Currently, he is researching and building vernacular chair designs from around the world, teaching toolmaking and woodworking and writing a biography of James Krenov to be published by Lost Art Press in 2020.

Class Description

In this five-day class, students will build a staked saw bench and a staked chair using a handtool oriented tool set. The chair is a new design, which can be made with three, four or five legs based on the student’s preference (five legs is shown in the photograph and furnishes the most practice and learning opportunities!). This class will revolve around the classic chairmaking skills, taught in a way comfortable for woodworkers of all abilities and backgrounds.

The process will start with a pile of wood, from which the students will make the slab seat, legs, spindles and crest of the chair. Along the way, we’ll cover sharpening, rounding and octagonalizing legs and rungs, drilling and reaming compound angles, conical tenon joinery, finishing and a lot more. Students will leave with an ability to create any number of simple chair designs using the skills acquired in the class, and a unique piece of furniture.

Tool List

Students are required to bring;

Veritas 1/2" Tapered Tenon Cutter (item 05J61.0 on Lee Valley, link here: http://www.leevalley.com/us/wood/page.aspx?p=54835&cat=1,180,42288,54835)

Veritas Large Standard Reamer (item 05J62.01 on Lee Valley, link here: http://www.leevalley.com/us/wood/page.aspx?p=54864&cat=1,180,42240,53317,54864)

Brace with two or three jaws (i.e. not Spofford type) (please note that the school has a limited number of braces available)

1/2” auger bit


This class is open to all. You do not need to have woodworking experience. Please bring the required tools.

Class Information and Registration

Class runs from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday.
This class takes place in Building #315 at Fort Worden. Map
Please read our What to Expect page for general information about the school.
Please also read our Registration Policy.

Class size: 10
Cost: $785
Materials Charge: $170

When you click on the Register link you will be able to register for the class or, if the class is full, sign up for the wait list.