Recap of the 2013 Southeast Timber Framers Guild Meetup

During the weekend of November 2, I co-hosted a regional the 2013 Southeast Timber Framers Guild Meetup with Stephen Morrison from Moresun Woodworking.  It is the third one that we have had the privilege to host and I came away with some great insights and new knowledge.

2013 Southeast Timber Framers Guild Meetup

We started to gather around 9:00 at the MoreSun shop, meeting new friends and greeting old ones.  About 50 folks gathered for the festivities.

We kicked things off at 10:30 with a presentation on architectural photography with Eric Morley, from Carolina TimberWorks.  Having taken photography classes in high school through college and even having a darkroom for a time in my folks’ basement, it brought back a lot of great memories and reminded me of lessons learned.  He covered the gear you need, the basics of using the camera on manual mode, and followed it up with developing the images on the computer using Adobe Light Room.  My big take away from his talk was to get out there and start taking more pictures of my work and spend time developing them well.  I am looking forward to a condensed version at the next guild conference…wink, wink Eric.

2013 Southeast Timber Framers Guild Meetup - Joint Testing

After that everyone devoured 30 pizzas and a great salad from our local pizza place Humble Pie. We milled around and chatted with each other. These and other breaks in-between presentations have always yielded great conversations and some of the best memories of the day for everyone.  The regional meetings are certainly a more intimate setting than the larger guild conference for catching up with folks, in my opinion. I look forward to the next years meet up hosted by one of this year’s sponsor’s, Reinhart at Sauter Timber.

2013 Southeast Timber Framers Guild Meetup - Small Session

After lunch, everyone broke out into several presentations depending on their interests.  Will McSwain, from MoreSun Woodworking gave a presentation on French developed drawings, helping folks figure out the complexities of compound drawings using pencil and paper.  Jordan Finch, from the American College of Building Arts, demonstrated scribe layout techniques for those twisty timbers that are out there.  There was also a breakout session for the business owners to talk about the industry and what is working for them right now in their businesses.

After that and another break, Gabel Holder, from Holder Brother Timber Frames, and Ben Loveland, from MoreSun Woodworking, gave everyone some great quick tips that they have gathered in their quivers during their careers.

2013 Southeast Timber Framers Guild Meetup - Heavy Joint TestingSo let me ask a question…What do you get when you hook up a joint to a forklift and the other to a gauge and a Dodge 3500 and try to rip the joint apart and measure the results??  The answer is some good clean fun and some education.  Joe Miller and Mack Magee from Fire Tower Engineered Timber  traveled a great distance to come and help us with this event and it was certainly one of the highlights of the Meet Up.  Words are lost in describing this event, but don’t worry, I have captured it in the video below.

We also had Brian Phillips with Productions Unlimited come with his testing rig and we tested several TimberLinx connections which are in the video below.  While joints, as well as some straps and carabiners were torn apart, it was certainly interesting to see how these connections failed.

After all that fun, everyone was hungry and thirsty.  FrasierWood Industries sponsored the event by providing all the beverages for the dinner and the evening, and we brought in some great barbecue from a local fellow for everyone to dive into.  After all had had their fill, some folks headed home for the evening and the rest continued to talk, throw axes and light up the bonfire for some warmth and more conversations.

We were able to host the event, feed everyone, and provide free t-shirts for for all only because of the gracious support from our sponsors.  It was not hard to get companies and individuals to donate money to make this a free event.  In a small return of gratitude, I would personally like to thank…

… for helping make this event a great success.

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