14 international students
Course participants will learn the traditional way of building a house, in a timber framing and full scribe log building practical educational course, using only hand tools. Students will also learn about the historical and cultural context of log-building in Latvia.
The class will be split into two groups of 7 students, working on the log building and timber frame respectively. After 5 days, the groups will swap from one build to the other. As such, over 10 days, (5 days one group of 7 students will work on the log house building and other group of 7 students will work on the timber frame building. After 5 days the groups will exchange and will work another 5 days. So in 10 days) each student will learn basics of traditional full scribe log house building with wind-locked, dovetail notches and traditional timber framing joinery.
Students will learn to lay out timber joinery using the traditional Square Rule, and French scribe method; cut mortise and tenon joints using hand tools; assemble (fixing with white oak pegs) and raise the frame. We will divide our course schedule between the morning-daytime hands-on learning of woodworking skills as we cut our frame and logs, and the evening free sessions, where we will view slides and discuss a variety of topics relating to timber frame design and construction, log building, lifestyle and enjoying being together. As well as live acoustic music on the barn stage some special evenings.
All the woodwork will be carried out with traditional hand tools alone (axes, chisels, hand saws, augers, beam drills, drawknives, planes and e.t.c.) – both those made by The Northmen Guild and also old, restored hand tools. This event will happen in a huge timber framed barn, on the grounds of the beautiful old manor of Ratnieki (http://www.ratnieki.lv/eng/) where all students will work under one roof. All students will be living in the nearby manor house itself, eating local food and enjoying the rural countryside and nature of Latvia while learning the craft from the Northmen guild's Master Carpenters.