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A membership-based facility where you can gain access to the tools, space, and assistance to learn or improve your woodworking skills.
A membership-based facility where you can gain access to the tools, space, and assistance to learn or improve your woodworking skills.
A membership-based facility where you can gain access to the tools, space, and assistance to learn or improve your woodworking skills.
42 backers pledged $13,500 to help bring this project to life.

About

$13,500

42

Making is not a thing of the past. Indeed, we as human beings have an inherent need to craft things with our hands. For some people, that means that we have a need to create things out of wood.

We feel that there are plenty of others out there just like us. People who want to learn to become fine woodworkers, people who are looking for the space and tools they need to get started, and those who are not even sure where to start, but just know that they have a need that they must fulfill.

So, we came up with The Workshop. 

It isn't a wholly novel concept, similar operations have sprung up around the country, catering to the need to create and build that so many of us are seeking. Some are focused on metal, some on Maker Bots, some on cars or motorcycles. For us, we are initially focused on making things with wood.

What makes our concept so likely to succeed is the critical mass that we have here in Fredericksburg, Virginia. We have thousands of woodworkers, and we have a vibrant arts and maker community - but we have no community woodshop.

So, we have decided to come together to create this new local business. 

Each of us have different skills that we can bring to bear to ensure the success of our venture. We have business experience, and understand what is necessary for the success of a fledgling venture such as ours. We have many decades of woodworking experience amongst us. We also all have a commitment to giving people the opportunity to make things.

The concept is pretty simple: It is like a gym membership for woodworking.

We will have a membership based woodworking shop. People can pay a monthly membership fee to access the shop, sign up for classes to enhance their skills, and purchase basic shop consumables like high-end lumber, finishes, fasteners, sandpaper, etc...

Who We Are

Tim Eggers - With 18 years as a woodworker, Tim brings a lot of skill and experience to the 'table' (indeed, he makes fine unique tables). He has made a name for himself locally as a high-end maker of furniture and clocks. His works are functional art, using quality wood and a mix of traditional hand tools and modern machinery to craft unique and beautiful objects. 

Tim Eggers - Cherry Table
Tim Eggers - Cherry Table

Tim is also one of the founders of the Fredericksburg Area Woodworker's Guild - an informal monthly gathering of 80 or so local and regional woodworkers looking to supplement their skills and meet other woodworkers.

Fredericksburg Area Woodworker's Guild meeting
Fredericksburg Area Woodworker's Guild meeting

Tim also brings his skills and knowledge in business as an insurance sales and service agent. His connections within both the local community and insurance business will be very helpful in ensuring the success of our venture.

 David M. Keene - David has been woodworking intently for only a few years, but is very much immersed in the craft - also making unique live-edge items with both traditional hand tools and modern machinery. David has always considered himself a maker and creator. He loves to tinker: electronics, cars, computers, tools - and now wood. He is also a fine artist in oils, mostly of western themes and sporting dogs.

Live Edge Walnut Table - David Keene
Live Edge Walnut Table - David Keene

David brings his skill in technology and marketing to the table, as well as his passion for woodworking and business.

Bill Scheff - Bill has been making things with wood his entire life, and spent many years passing along the skills necessary to safely make things in a workshop to his middle-school students. Bill also has a passion for the finest quality lumber, and culls through vast amounts of domestic and exotic lumber to find only the very best.

Bill's knowledge and experience in instruction and lumber are incredibly valuable assets, and Bill will be making use of those skills by running The Workshop's lumber department and continuing to pass along his highly specialized skills as a fine woodworker.

Rance Rupp - Rance has been making things with power tools his entire life. His father influenced him from an early age, and since that time he has developed into a seasoned woodworker - and has spent more than 7 years passing his skills along to other woodworkers as a professional woodworking instructor. He has developed and honed courses to reinforce safety, and develop key woodworking skills for his students. The courses that he has taught and created are designed to ensure that his students develop their skills and knowledge while producing interesting and unique projects - and introducing them to interesting ideas and technology (such as Computer Aided Design for woodworkers, and CNC).

Rance is also one of the founders of The Fredericksburg Area Woodworker's Guild - and often gives presentations on specific skill mastery and tips for improving Guild Members' skill-set. His skills and experience as an instructor are important to ensuring that The Workshop will be able to offer a comprehensive syllabus of woodworking courses. ᐧ

...and many other talented woodworkers with decades of experience in both the business and art of working with wood, but also in instruction, lumber milling - and many other skills besides.

So, where does our business stand? 

We've been acquiring the necessary equipment, lumber, and plans for some time now, and only recently have we also acquired a location. 

Equipment

We already have obtained some high-end woodworking equipment - Powermatic, Jet, and Bridgewood equipment - all that any serious woodworker would covet for their own shop. 

Powermatic Bandsaw
Powermatic Bandsaw
Powermatic Equipment
Powermatic Equipment
SawStop 3HP Professional Cabinet Saw
SawStop 3HP Professional Cabinet Saw

Here is a partial listing of equipment that we already have acquired for use at The Workshop:

  • SawStop 3HP Professional Cabinet Saw
  • Powermatic 5HP Cabinet Saw (PM2000) w/ 50 inch fence 
  • Powermatic 15” Bandsaw PM-1500 
  • Powermatic 12” Jointer (Model 1285) 
  • Powermatic 8” Jointer 2HP 
  • Powermatic 15” Planer 3HP 
  • Powermatic Drill Press PM-2800B 
  • Powermatic Cabinet Belt/Disc Sander 31A 
  • Powermatic Dust Collector PM1900TX-CK3 
  • Powermatic Model 66 3HP Cabinet Saw w/ autofeeder
  • Older Robland Combination machine
  • Jet 3HP Cabinet Saw w/ 50 inch fence 
  • Jet 14-inch 1.5HP Bandsaw 
  • Jet Midi Lathe
  • Bridgewood Shaper
  • Bridgewood 8” Jointer
  • Bridgewood 20" planer
  • Delta full-size lathe
  • Delta 15 inch Planer 
  • Delta Drill Press 
  • Delta Cabinet Belt/Disk Sander 
  • Delta 3HP 2-canister Dust Collector 
  • Delta 7HP Cyclone Dust Collector
  • 4 x JDS 2000 Air Filtration Units 
  • Too many to list hand tools
20-inch Bridgewood Planer
20-inch Bridgewood Planer
Powermatic Equipment at The Workshop
Powermatic Equipment at The Workshop

We'll surely need more equipment, and we'll also need to tune and clean up some of the equipment that we already have.

Exotic & Domestic Hardwood Lumber

We also have an astonishing stock of hand-picked exotic and domestic lumber, including slabs and dimensional boards. 

Some of our Exotic Hardwoods
Some of our Exotic Hardwoods

The Location

We also have leased a 12,000 square foot facility on the edge of Fredericksburg City, right off Route 3 (a major thoroughfare).

The Workshop's Leased Space
The Workshop's Leased Space

The space is clean, and in good repair, with no leaks or other issues, ample parking, and more power than we'll ever need. The building itself is located just off a major thoroughfare with high visibility signage, is zoned for industrial use, and has loading bay doors for facilitating easy loading and unloading of lumber or woodworking projects.

Some of our lumber and equipment in the new space
Some of our lumber and equipment in the new space

We are beginning our build now, and every dollar that you contribute will help us complete the project - and bring the ability to make things back to thousands of woodworkers and non-woodworkers alike.

Risks and challenges

The risks this venture faces are practical, financial and regulatory.

Safety is very important. We will require regular safety classes - but there is still the risk of injury when working with table saws and jointers. A serious injury could put us out of business. That said, we have taken extensive precautions with an in-depth safety course, safety contract, and a comprehensive liability and accident insurance policy.

We also face the risk of not being able to get enough members to join. Maintaining, staffing, equipping, and powering a shop is not cheap. Everything from keeping blades sharp to replacing HEPA filters will not be without expense - and we'll need enough of a membership base to sustain us from month to month. Mitigating this risk is revenue from both classes and lumber sales.

Finally, we face regulatory risks associated with running a shop of this sort. We have worked, and continue to work, closely with city officials to ensure that we are working within the proper building codes and zoning requirements, and the location that we have secured meets the requirements necessary, though we will be required to build fire-rated walls - which will increase our build-out costs. We have already received zoning approval and are now waiting for input from the City Building Inspector on our application.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    The Workshop 3" embroidered patch.

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Receive a hardwood cutting or cheese board made from a mix of domestic and exotic hardwoods. Boards will be approx. 9x14 inches.

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Fundamentals of Woodworking class, taught at the Workshop. This class will teach you the basic skills and safe practices so that you can begin your trek to become a fine woodworker.

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Award our Introduction to Woodworking class to a student!

    This reward will essentially be a scholarship that will be awarded to a young woodworker.

    We are working with local high school and post-secondary vocational teachers to identify students that have an interest - and would benefit - from our basic introductory woodworking class.

    This class will be taught at the Workshop. This class will teach a budding woodworker the basic skills and safe practices so that they can begin their trek to become a woodworker.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    Custom tailored canvas Workshop apron, made in Fredericksburg, VA.

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    Three Months of membership to The Workshop. This includes access to high quality woodworking tools and facilities - as well as safety training.

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $800 or more About $800

    Build a Table class with fine furniture maker and Workshop Founding Partner Tim Eggers. You will learn the skills you need and construct a quality table that you will take home when it is completed. You will need to select and purchase your materials separately for this course.

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    Founding Membership to The Workshop. This would allow you regular shop access for 2 years, first dibs on classes and equipment access, and invitations to special Workshop events. This will also come with a custom The Workshop apron, embroidered with your name and status as a Founding Member.

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    Pledge $2,100 or more About $2,100

    This level includes:
    Founding Membership to The Workshop ($2,000 reward).
    Custom The Workshop apron, embroidered with your name and status as a Founding Member ($200 reward).
    Fundamentals of Woodworking of Woodworking class ($150 reward).

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Funding period

- (60 days)