Mastering the Basics of Square Rule Timber Framing

Rocky Mountain Workshops Presents:

Mastering the Basics of Square Rule Timber Framing
Skip Dewhirst, Chris Kates, and Chris Drake

This unique workshop offers students a solid introduction to basic timber framing using the "Square Rule" technique. Developed in America in the early 1800s, the "Square Rule" approach to timber framing is an elegant system that allows framers to accurately layout traditional mortise and tenon joinery on roughsawn, imperfect timbers. In this workshop we begin with a stack a roughsawn timbers and end with the celebratory raising of a complete, finely crafted frame. The workshop frame is purposely designed as a teaching tool and, as such, incorporates a wide variety of pegged mortise and tenon joinery. Hand tools (chisels, axes, adzes, handsaws, spokeshaves, handplanes) will be our tools of choice, not power tools, as we believe this to be the most effective and enjoyable way to get new framers started.


Topics covered will include:

  • Timber framing fundamentals-the layout and cutting of mortise and tenon joints
  • Accurate layout on roughsawn timbers using the Square Rule technique
  • Proper use of hand tools to cut joinery
  • Tool sharpening

Evening sessions will feature slideshows by the instructors, discussion on basic engineering and design, and ample time for questions and answers.

Minimum enrollment for this workshop, 14 students. Register early!

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