Traditional Woodworking Tours #1: Bill Anderson - Chapel Hill, North Carolina

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Blog entry by WoodAndShop posted 04-30-2014 02:01 PM 4799 reads 0 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Traditional Woodworking Tours series Part 2: Wayne Henderson Guitars - Rugby, Virginia »

By Joshua Farnsworth (Writer at

In the above Video I share my recent visit to the amazing workshop of Bill Anderson, owner of Edwards Mountain Woodworks in Chatham county, North Carolina (near Chapel Hill). View the original full blog entry here.

Bill teaches joinery and plane making at Roy Underhill’s Woodwright’s School in nearby Pittsboro, NC. He also teaches at other well-known locations, including the John C. Campbell Folk School.

Bill makes marvelous historical furniture and owns more molding planes than I’ve ever seen in one location.

Molding planes have become my passion, so a visit to his shop was better than a trip to Disneyland.

Bill told me that he picked up many of his tools when he worked in England years ago. He reminisced about the perplexed faces of customs officers when they inspected his suitcases.

Bill does, however, have a good excuse for having so many tools. Wait a minute, does he really need an excuse? Anyway, he justifies having so many tools because of all the classes he teaches. It really helps for each student to have access to quality woodworking hand tools.

I asked Bill if he has used all of his planes. Without a moment’s hesitation he replied, “of course not.” I instantly felt better about all the old tools that I’ve purchased, but haven’t yet used.

Bill and I spent several days filming video for our upcoming DVD about how to make a 18th century wooden jointer plane. We loaded my truck up with so many gorgeous hand tools for the molding plane class that he invited me to stay for the next day. I felt a great temptation to just keep on driving back to Virginia…but fortunately for Bill, I resisted that urge.

You can view a small sample of Bill’s amazing furniture here. If you’re interested in reaching Bill for custom historical furniture, you can call or email him here.

Want to be notified when our 18th Century Jointer Plane DVD is released for sale? Click here to be added to our list.

-- Joshua Farnsworth - Free Traditional Hand Tool Woodworking Tutorials:

11 comments so far

View walden's profile


1552 posts in 3035 days

#1 posted 04-30-2014 02:58 PM

Amazing shop! I got a chance to take a class at the Woodwright’s Shop with Bill and Roy. Great guys and great teachers.

-- "I am hiring a realtor if and when the day comes a lion is on my roof."

View woodchuckerNJ's profile


1454 posts in 2646 days

#2 posted 04-30-2014 03:12 PM

Damn, that’s a nice shop. Love all the moulding planes, and tools. The shop atmosphere seems very nice and old time.

Very cool.


-- Jeff NJ

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 3879 days

#3 posted 04-30-2014 03:44 PM

This is a very interesting post. Thanks.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Ken90712's profile


17973 posts in 4201 days

#4 posted 04-30-2014 03:46 PM

Well that was enjoyable, thx for posting… Man that is alot of planes!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View ToddJB's profile


8727 posts in 3143 days

#5 posted 04-30-2014 04:10 PM

Josh, seems like a wonderful place to be. I didn’t see a cot for an apprentice, though.

Totally unrelated – I have access to tons of old ceder fencing that I’ll be using for shop tills and I really like your paint job on your saw till. Do you have any info on the process you used in painting it?

-- I came - I sawed - I over-built

View WoodAndShop's profile


149 posts in 2521 days

#6 posted 04-30-2014 04:43 PM

Thanks everyone! Bill is a genuinely great friend, and certainly has an amazing shop. I lust over his tool collection…especially the molding planes. On Sunday I’ll be posting another workshop: legendary guitar luthier Wayne Henderson, so subscribe to my blog.

-- Joshua Farnsworth - Free Traditional Hand Tool Woodworking Tutorials:

View WoodAndShop's profile


149 posts in 2521 days

#7 posted 04-30-2014 04:45 PM

ToddJB: regarding my saw till, I used blue milk paint as the base. Then added a layer of boiled linseed oil on top. After several days you can also finish it off with thinned shellac (I didn’t do this on my saw till though).

-- Joshua Farnsworth - Free Traditional Hand Tool Woodworking Tutorials:

View ToddJB's profile


8727 posts in 3143 days

#8 posted 04-30-2014 05:04 PM

Awesome. Thanks.

-- I came - I sawed - I over-built

View doordude's profile


1085 posts in 3995 days

#9 posted 05-01-2014 05:30 AM

A Big thanks to Bill for allowing all to visit his shop. If Bill never bought or cut a piece of wood to dry; I’m confident, he’ll be making planes until he dies!

View RussInMichigan's profile


600 posts in 3793 days

#10 posted 05-01-2014 03:36 PM

What a beautiful workshop. I can only imagine the joy of being that surrounds that place.

View TLM80209's profile


2 posts in 2495 days

#11 posted 05-12-2014 03:31 PM

Wow. Thanks Bill.

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