NASHVILLE, TN – Woodworking equipment manufacturer JET has sponsored a fully equipped woodshop at Fort Houston, a Nashville public access workshop for custom furniture makers, artisans and wood work enthusiasts.
The full-service, 1,100 square foot woodshop, outfitted with 24 woodworking machines and ongoing technical support, represents a $35,000 investment by JET, says Joan Duvall, JET's director of product management.
“Working directly with young, creative woodworkers, experienced artisans and enthusiasts also helps us maintain a fresh perspective on end-users’ needs and preferences,” said Duvall duing a press tour of the center today. The equipment placement coincides with JET's repositioning of the equipment brand as machinery for serious woodworkers, including those entering the field. JET's new motto is "Stand behind your work."
JET at Fort Houston
• 12 in. table saw
Fort Houston, located in a former cabinetmaking operation, features a 10,000 square foot workspace open to members, who have access to the woodshop, mechanical shop and print shop, as well as desk space and storage.
Fort Houston is structured similarly to public work centers such as Makerspace in San Diego and and TechShop located in multiple cities. The locations act as incubators for small woodworking and other artisanal manufacturing start-ups.
Membership rates start at $75 per month and include discounts on classes and other perks. Fort Houston co-founder Daniel Heering, who along with partner Matt Childress runs Wildcard Design custom furniture in the center, said Fort Houston now has 42 members, following its move into the current location - a former cabinetmaking shop. Among them is Mike Jones, who operates Mastodon Jones furniture; Nate Akey, who runs 5 String Furniture; and Jonathan Malphrus, who operates Steric Design and is overall woodshop manager. Malphrus coordinates the shared use of the JET machinery equipped shop.
JET’s partnership with Fort Houston has enhanced woodshop safety, with training and proper tool operation built into the membership and class curricula.
“Each potential woodworker must take a woodshop orientation course," Duvall notes. "The proper operational procedures for each tool are addressed, as well. If needed, we also provide one-on-one assistance to woodworkers throughout the course of their projects.”
Fort Houston offers several woodshop classes taught by staff and partnering instructors. (Classes on subjects such as 3D modeling, printing and a boot camp for creative entrepreneurs are also offered to both members and non-members.) Current offerings include:
• Wood Shop Orientation
• Introduction to Rough Milling
• Cutting Board
• Mortise and Tenon Joinery
• Butterfly Keys
• Understanding the Band Saw
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