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Training the Hand Workshop: Frequently Asked Questions

Do I Need Canadian Money?  For non-Canadians coming to the course we highly recommend bringing a credit and/or an ATM/debit card.  Most Canadian businesses take US dollars although they don't give you the best exchange rates.  Credit cards and debit cards generally get good exchange rates, and everyone takes them. For non-Canadians we also recommend arriving to the workshop with some Canadian money in your pocket.  We recommend exchanging about $50 at the airport before arriving to the workshop.

Is There Any Pre-Workshop Study I Can Do? The most important woodworking skill for a hand tool woodworker is learning to correctly sharpen your tools.  If you cannot sharpen your tools you cannot do hand tool woodworking.  This is the very first skill you will learn in the class and it will be reinforced every day.  To improve how quickly you learn to properly sharpen please watch Rob's YouTube video titled "Top 5 Hand Plane Issues."  This 15-minute video explains Rob’s sharpening method at times 1:22 - 9:00, but I recommend watching the whole video as he gives you lots of tips on using hand planes that you will need during the course.  Watch the sharpening part a couple of times until you are familiar with the basic sharpening steps.  Here is the link to the video:

What Clothes Should I Wear in the Workshop?. We always get a couple of questions about what clothes to wear during the class.  The answer is comfortable.  Rob will be in shorts (he does not own long pants!), T-shirt, and a woodworking apron.  The assistant instructors will wear similar clothing. (You DON'T NEED an apron. If you don't have one, don't go buy one.)