NTC’s Wood Program Offering Rare Opportunity for Public Access
Northcentral Technical College’s Wood Technology Center is offering a rare opportunity for the general public to work in a state-of-the-art facility, under the direction of a renowned craftsman.
Tom Gallenberg will lead a mini-course on designing and constructing a custom dining room chair beginning Thursday at 6 p.m. in the center, located on the grounds of the technical college’s Antigo campus.
“We hope that this will be the start of more to come,” Travis Allen, wood technology center instructor, said. “This gives the general public an opportunity to use the facility.”
After the initial hour program, the course will continued on Oct. 23, 6 to 9 p.m.; Oct. 25, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Oct. 30, 6 to 9 p.m.; Nov. 1, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and conclude Nov. 6, 6 to 8 p.m. Cost is $250.
Taught by Tom Gallenberg of White Lake, a leading furniture design expert, the course will take participants step-by-step through the process of planning, designing a building a Stickley-style custom chair.
“For me, it is interesting to share my skills, especially with a product that is difficult to do,” Gallenberg said. “Chairs are mysterious for woodworkers, but using the tools available here, students can build a pretty elaborate piece.”
Allen explained that the class is the first of a three-part series.
“Students completing the entire series will leave with a dinette set that they have built themselves,” Allen said.
The instructors said that the wood technology center is an ideal location, because of the level of sophisticated equipment available to students.
“It’s optimal to a great degree,” Gallenberg said, adding there’s even equipment available that he would like in his own shop. “It’s a nice set-up for a small shop.”
Gallenberg has taught several adult education classes in the past.
“It’s a matter of sharing the knowledge,” he said. “I learned mainly on my own and it’s difficult. It’s better to have someone who can take you through the process step-by-step.”
The craftsman said that he enjoys the interaction with students.
“It’s interesting to share my skills,” he said. “I get some gratification helping other people who are interested. It’s fun and it’s what I love to do.”
Gallenenberg is a master craftsman with a broad portfolio of commissions, ranging from custom furniture, cabinetry, doors and lighting, working in both domestic and exotic woods. His designs have earned him back-to-back “Best in Show” awards in 2009 and 2010 at the Milwaukee Fine Furniture Show.