Collapsible castles

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Project by Joel Tille posted 08-16-2007 04:40 AM 9485 views 9 times favorited 24 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hey, I’m Jordan Tille, the son of Joel and Susan. I’ll list some highlights from the Humboldt Independent’s article about my castles.

I had started my castle making a couple years ago when I saw a seminar in Des Moines about bandsaws and how you could cut these castles from a band saw. Doug Hicks was the instructor, he’s been doing these to raise money for charities for about twenty years. I was curious and looked at them after the show and had said it would be something I would like to try someday.

Well that “someday” came very quickly when one morning my dad wakes me up and asks me if I remember anything from that seminar. I do my best to state everything I can remember and by the time I was done we were in the garage and there sat a brand new bandsaw he had bought just for me.

We get it set up and I try my hand at it on a blank piece of scrap and first thing that happened was the piece fell out and wouldn’t stay. My dad and I laughed as I remembered I had forgotten to set the table at an angle. After adjusting it I tried again and behold, I had my first successful cut. After that I made my first and second castle. After a while it was just another hobby but then I ran into a problem at school. I wasn’t going to be able to play the same instrument I had for the previous year so I decided I was going to sell castles to raise money for my own instrument.

I have purchased an instrument with my money but it was not what I had first set out to buy. I am equally happy with what I did buy. Instead of a contra alto clarinet, I purchased a beautiful black lacquer tenor saxophone with brass keying and mother of pearl fingerings.

List of the instruments I currently play:
Tenor Sax, Alto Sax, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Contra Alto Clarinet, Acoustic Guitar, Bass Drum (marching band), and I am reading a lesson book on how to play the Banjo.

Thanks for viewing my post on one of my projects and I hope to be adding more in the future.

Jordan Tille

-- Joel Tille

24 comments so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4909 days

#1 posted 08-16-2007 04:44 AM

I love those castles!

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Gary's profile


1468 posts in 5244 days

#2 posted 08-16-2007 05:09 AM

That’s exactly right: I love those castles!
That is soooo uncanny; last night was our monthly WW club meeting and one of the guys from the club made a few for Show ‘N Tell. I’d never seen ‘em before then.
He told the same story of the fundraising.
Thanks for sharing.


-- Gary, Florida

View cajunpen's profile


14578 posts in 4986 days

#3 posted 08-16-2007 05:23 AM

Nice Castles Joel and Congratulations on setting a goal, working hard to achieve it and sticking it through to finally make the dream a reality. Good for you and I am impressed with your woodworking and musical talents. Sounds like you have some wonderful parents that are teaching you good values.

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased."

View cheller's profile


254 posts in 5029 days

#4 posted 08-16-2007 05:27 AM

The castles are absolutely beautiful – nice work. And that sax is also a gorgeous specimen.

-- Chelle

View scottb's profile


3648 posts in 5247 days

#5 posted 08-16-2007 06:21 AM

I’ve seen some simpler ones than the ones you’ve made. Very cool indeed.

-- I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it. - Van Gogh -- --

View Buckskin's profile


486 posts in 4908 days

#6 posted 08-16-2007 06:42 AM


View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 5081 days

#7 posted 08-16-2007 01:35 PM

WONDERFUL story!! (and Dad woke you up with a surprise – brought tears to my eyes).
Sounds like you had a really good time with your first try. It will be a great story to tell your children and grandchildren as you get them hooked on woodworking :)

Your sax is gorgeous and must be extra special because of the work that went into the purchase process.

Bravo re: your exploration of musical instruments. Are you going to be following a music career path?
My daughter teaches high school music and her time at university (music major) was a fascinating journey for her.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View mjpierson's profile


86 posts in 4913 days

#8 posted 08-16-2007 01:53 PM

I just watch that same seminar on their podcast. The castles are neat! Great story too!

-- Mike - Columbus, Ohio

View Joel Tille's profile

Joel Tille

213 posts in 5165 days

#9 posted 08-16-2007 02:27 PM

Jordan is keeps himself fairly busy. He does find time for video games.

During the summer months he helps a lady with her daycare during the day. When she first opened our two boys were her first and they both have transitioned from being taken care of to helping with her business, Jordan the youngest is now 16.

He also works at a local steak house usually one or two nights a week plus every Friday and Saturday (except on football nights when he is marching) , get there early or you can wait over an hour for a seat. He cuts and breads all appetizers; their appetizers are made fresh every day, except cheese balls. Love it when he makes them at home especially sliced green peppers.

Jordan does play in marching band, concert band and musicals.

Debbie – The last couple of years Jordan has had two paths he is considering, music teacher at the middle school level or opening his own restaurant. He makes fabulous cinnamon rolls also (from scratch). The recipe is from my folks, they used it when they had a small cafe in our town years ago. He will be a junior this year and he is taking a band leadership class this summer, they (not sure teacher or fellow students) told him he could get a higher leader score if he brought cinnamon rolls for class. lol The rolls make it to school at least twice a year.

Thanks for the comments for Jordan, when he gets done with marching practice today we pull the blog up again.

-- Joel Tille

View Bob Babcock's profile

Bob Babcock

1809 posts in 5006 days

#10 posted 08-16-2007 02:37 PM

In this day and age it is so gratifying to see a young man that works hard for the things he wants. Great castles, great story, great parents, great young man…....Thanks for starting my day with a smile.

-- Bob

View Lip's profile


158 posts in 4970 days

#11 posted 08-16-2007 02:43 PM

Great stuff Jordan … I’ve made the castles as well … but my wife won’t let me touch a thing in the kitchen … so you’ve got my beat hands down!

The weekend before my little brother came out this summer … I saw Doug do these over on their podcast … figured it was the perfect project for him to do in the shop … not too complicated … and he could stuff a bunch of them in his suit case for souvenirs … only I forgot the first rule of teaching … always practice first before you teach someone else. We got all set up and he was all excited … cut out the first castle … flipped it over and … whapppp … all the pieces came falling out … couldn’t figure out what was wrong cause I had tilted the table like he said … so I gather all the pieces up off the floor … put them back together … and stand there scratching my head for a minute … when my brother flips it over upside down and what do ya know … we were turning the castles the wrong way so instead of being popup castles … they were popdown caves!!! He just looked at me like I was an idiot … what can I say, I get that alot! lol

-- Lip's Dysfuncational Firewood Farm, South Bend, IN

View Joel Tille's profile

Joel Tille

213 posts in 5165 days

#12 posted 08-16-2007 03:43 PM

OK Lip – wait until I quit laughing, when Jordan first started this I was messing around in the garage making one. I would cut the pieces, move them off to the side make another cut. I reassembled it, extended it and one section containing other pieces fell to the ground. I had cut one of the loops from the wrong direction. I think I got the same look from Jordan that you did from you brother. So much for being the intelligent one.

-- Joel Tille

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 5081 days

#13 posted 08-16-2007 07:03 PM

lol too funny.

restaurant vs musician. Why does he have to choose? He can perform while people eat :)

There is a great restaurant in PEI (Canada) called Vittles and Fiddles. (or is it Fiddles and Vittles).. Anyway, not only did they have fiddle music going on, but people could go up to the piano and play if they wanted to and they taught the diners how to play the spoons and there was a mini concert every hour! We had a grand time.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 4883 days

#14 posted 08-17-2007 12:13 PM

Well done, young man. don’t quit

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View mot's profile


4928 posts in 4957 days

#15 posted 08-17-2007 05:55 PM

Those castles are just awesome!

-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

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