Testimonials and Comments
Testimonial, April 2012
I just wanted to say thanks again for a great 2-day course on dovetails. Ever since I spoke to you by phone a couple years ago, I've wanted to take one of your courses. And you did not disappoint. There was no doubt that you're a master craftsman - but teaching is an entirely different skill. You have a tremendous talent for connecting with people and making them eager to learn - and an equally great talent for being able to describe what you do in ways that people can easily understand.
I've proudly showed off my dovetails to family and friends - and I can't wait to get back at it. Thanks so much for the lessons and the inspiration. I enjoyed every minute of it. I hope our paths cross again.
Testimonial, April 2012
"As you are aware my daughter has bought a dovetail and a cross cut saw from you for my 65 Birthday. My daughter has given me the dovetail saw and my wife the crosscut saw. They arrived last week and I have tried them out.
I have been woodworking as a hobby since I was about 20. During this time I have cut lots of dovetails but unable to fit them together straight from the saw. I have cut 8 dovetail joints in poplar for 2 drawers for a sewing cabinet I am making for my wife. All 8 joints have gone together perfectly from the saw, without using a chisel for final fitting. I am thrilled with their performance, they are a dream to use. They cut exactly where you want them to cut, effortlessly.
Thank you for signing the boxes, it was good of you and I have something I will cherish the rest of my days, I'm delighted.
I am really enjoying your hand tool workshop series, it's great."
Testimonial, February 2012
"A good coach helps you improve. A great coach brings thing out in you that you never knew you had.
Rob Cosman is a great coach."
- Laurence Lance
Testimonial, November 2010
“In my 18 years as a university Professor, I have seldom met a better teacher. In less than two days, I went from never have held a dovetail saw to creating half-blind dovetails with confidence. Rob Cosman's ability to share his knowledge is extraordinary.”
- Herbert Maschner, PhD
Testimonial, October 2010
"I attended the dovetail class you taught in Greenville October the 29th and 30th and was extremely impressed with the level of instruction. I have your dovetail DVD and Hand-Cut Dovetails Shop Copy Manual which I had viewed and read prior to attending the class, both of which are a good investment. I also have your dovetail saw which is the tool that is the key to making quality dovetails. I am a machinist by trade and have learned that if you want to do anything quality it starts with the tools you use to do the job. Your dovetail saw is a top quality tool and worth every dollar you charge for it. With that said I want to go back to my opening statement and touch on the level of instruction you give to your students. Prior to attending your class I made two attempts at home to cut through dovetails both with frustrating results. With your instruction my 5th attempt showed enough promise that I began to feel confident about acquiring the skill necessary to cut really good dovetails by hand. Toward the end of the class you asked us to cut one final through dovetail, this would be the 8th dovetail I had cut in my life. When I had it completed knew you had taught me to make a dovetail joint that I would be proud to show to anyone. I want to thank you for sharing your knowledge and coaching me to attain the skills necessary to make quality hand cut dovetails."
- Ed Looney
Testimonial, January 2010
"I took Rob Cosman's woodworking class to gain hands on experience and instruction in sharpening and working with handtools. Rob is a talented artisan with a teaching approach that encourages and builds self-confidence. This was an excellent workshop experience."
- Richard Joslin, MD
Testimonial, October 2008
"I got a chance to watch the DVD and really liked it. Well done! I have a pretty good collection of instructional DVDs and this one ranks with the best.
The solo performance setup is much better than working against a foil in your first DVD's. The flow of information was better and easier to follow without distraction. Because of the subject matter (ie: sharpening - which ranks right up there with watching paint dry ) the action level is a little slow but you pulled it off fairly well. I've had difficulty instructing students in sharpening, even with stuff like carving tools which you can amaze onlookers by shaving with. A scraper is hard to shock people with. I loved the use on finish; excellent attention getter I can hardly wait to try on my favorite finish, shellac."
- Larry R.
Testimonial, September 2008
"A couple comments about your DVDs:
- They are the best instructional DVDs I have ever purchased for woodworking.
- The camera work is equal to the best. Well synchronized to the narrative part and perfect angle shots to compliment what is being said.
- Your teaching reaches an appropriate level of detail. Too many instructional products fail to drill down to the nitty-gritty as you do.
- You present as if you were in my shop and giving me one-on-one lessons.
- I prefer the format where you teach by yourself versus having another person dialoging with you. That way you are speaking to me, not the other person (as in your basic dovetail DVD).
- You demonstrate a non-boastful style, one unencumbered with an out-of-control ego. Few successful folks understand the power of true humility.
Thanks for a great job.
- Jeff W.
Testimonial, August 2007
"I went to a week long course and worked hard ( I am an amateur woodworker) Even after I returned from the intensive course, I still struggled to cut through dovetails. I then employed the techniques on your DVD. My very first through dovetail was near perfect. When I saw your website on the first DVD, I then had to order three more."
-Andrew T. C.
Testimonial September 2008
"I have your "Hand Planing and Sharpening" and "Rough to Ready" Dvds and found them a tremendous help, thank you for all the hard work that went into them."
- Tony F.
Testimonial August 2008
"I’m a long time fan. I have most of your DVD’s. My dovetails are starting to come along. I got the sawing down. However I’m having trouble trying to chop out the tails and pins. I’m using ¾ inch aspen for practice and the chisels keep crushing the fibers.
I’m using both Blue Spruce chisels and Lei Nielsen chisels all sharpened on a Tormak and Norton water stones. I tried 25 degree grinds up to 35 degrees. I’m hoping you might be able to clue me in what I might be doing wrong. I’m doing relief cuts before chop the line.
I have thoroughly enjoyed you DVD’s. Actually you got me in to hand tools and I’m enjoying the process."
Testimonial, August 2008
"I've been following your teaching for years. I bought your first video when it came out and have purchased all those that followed. As a matter of fact, this order replaces the VHS tapes I already own. I LOVE your book. People may erroneously believe this to be just a duplication of the videos in book form. It is so much more than that. The very detailed photos and explanatory text make this a valuable companion to the videos. The care taken in producing this book is consistent with the impeccability shown in your woodworking craftsmanship."
- Rick H.
Testimonial July 2008
"I already own copies of both your dovetail videos on VHS and believe your approach and instruction on this topic to be the finest available. I own all your DVDs so I can testify that the quality of production of the videos gets better with each new release. Please keep producing DVDs!"
- Rick H.
Testimonial June 2008
"Excellent, thanks for your help. I got it sharpened last night and it works much better now. Thank-you for all the instructional videos and appearances you do to help people like me who want to take their wood projects to the next level."
Testimonial February 2007
"Your latest DVD about box making is very good. In it you say that getting a true round nose bit is difficult and I would agree as I have just found out. What make of bits have you found to be OK?
All the best and hope to meet you in the UK some day, keep the good work up."
Testimonial December 2006
"I have your most of your DVD’s and I have learned something from each one. I often will watch some segments (dovetails mostly) over and over again trying to get the lights to come on. Your layout technique with the dividers has me reaching for the light switch so I’m just about there.
I look forward to getting the Hand cut Mortise and Tenon DVD as well as your new one on Box Making."
- Michael R.
Testimonial November 2006
"I've just finished watching your drawer-making DVD for the third time. It might seem funny to you that someone would watch your DVDs multiple times, but there is so much information to absorb, and I've got a four-month-old at home -- so sometimes when he needs me to hold him, I sit and bounce him while watching your DVDs --- it's a great thing to do when it's not possible to go out to the workshop. Perhaps when he's older we'll discover that he absorbed all kinds of techniques like dovetailing!
Thanks again for making these DVDs -- full of really useful techniques for working effectively with hand tools."
- Andrew H.
Testimonial November 2006
"I recently purchased your dovetail videos from Lie-Nielsen along with a set of their socket chisels. I have watched the first video a couple of times and have begun to practice your techniques, and with pretty good success. Thanks for your good advice – I’m having a lot of fun with it and I’m looking forward to applying it to the construction of a couple of big toy boxes for my nephews."
Testimonial September 2006
"I would just like to thank you for the masterclass on Monday morning at the festival of the tree at westonbirt arboretum, Gloucestershire, England. I found you very inspiring, and watching you cut those dovetails, and the way that you conducted the masterclass was very professional. I was the guy that is a professional woodworker sat in the front row.
I have never hand cut dovetails as accurate as yourself, but after seeing how you did it, then I now have the confidence to succeed where before I have failed. After watching you demonstrate the tite-mark marking gauge, I bought one on Monday and have used it a lot since. It really is a top notch tool.
I wanted to thank you personally on Monday, but you were always busy showing people how to cut beautiful dovetails.
Many thanks and I wish you well for now and the future."
- Alan P.
Testimonial August 2006
"Just wanted to write and let you know how much I have enjoyed your videos about dovetailing. I studied furniture designing and making in England for a while and learned many of the techniques that you teach in your videos but there is a certain clarity in your demonstrations and explanations that helps me to focus. Just wanted to say thank you."
- Nick B.
Testimonial March 2006
"I picked up the mortise and tenon video at the Toronto show. I know I've told how impressed I was with the drawer making video and think this one's just as informative and entertaining. I'm sure I'll go back to it as often as I do all the others. It's great to be able to review how the pros go at something just by inserting a disk.
It's happened a number of times now that I've gotten one of your videos and placed a tool order as a result of what I've seen on it. It's been invaluable to me to see what tools the real craftsmen use for any given procedure. In fact, I think that almost all of my Lie-Nielsen tool purchase decisions have come out of the videos, and seeing what you use, along with your advice from time to time, has meant that I have yet to order a single L-N tool that turned out to be something that I didn't want, use or wasn't right for what I do.
So keep 'em coming. Good job on the video. I haven't had a chance to order the mortise and tenon tools we talked about on the phone last week. I'll get to that today."
- Michael P.
"Hello rob I know you are terrible with names but mine is Steve G. and I attended your dovetail class at Westonbirt last Saturday. I just want to thankyou for your time, patience and all round expertise. Before I attended your class I had maybe cut 3 dovetails following your articles in F & C magazine, they weren't too bad but it was the lack of precision with the saw that let me down (too much chiselling). But a few things clicked into place and I now feel confident enough to be able to attempt a piece of work which involves dovetails. I am now going to save some money to attend one of your courses in Canada. Thank you very much."
- Steve G.
"Thanks to Mike and the gang for a great showing at Westbirton and please pass on special thanks to Alex for persuading me to join the Rob Cosman Workshop. It was excellent (not a term I use freely).
It was so good that I wish I could attend each of the other two days! Next time Rob holds a workshop in UK at one of your events, I want to be there.
The Festival of the Tree was fascinating although, frankly, I would not have bothered with the 3 hour round trip had you guys not been there. From now on, Rob Cosman's presence would make a compelling reason for me to travel even further. On the Workshop I found I was the "local" – Tom had come from the Wirral, Chris from Cornwall and Ewan from far north (although still England rather than his native Scotland)."
"Just a note to say how much I enjoyed the Training the Hand course in Calgary recently.
It was really intensive, we covered a lot of material and were challenged every step of the way. I have definitely received the foundation to take my woodworking to the next level. I've already seen a big improvement.
I'm already making plans to take the box making course next summer."
- Ian M.
"Just a quick note that is a bit overdue. I want to thank you for a great week. You have organized the week to provide a natural progression through the learning process that enabled each of us to experience success each time we tried a new concept. I have been a "self taught" woodworker for years and the quality of my work improved exponentially after just one week learning from you. We learned to tune and use our hand tools to prepare rough stock and your clear process for cutting dovetails allows for good looking, tight fitting joints each time I attempt them. I would highly recommend your workshop to anyone who really wants to take their woodworking hobby to another level!
Thanks for a great week - I hope to join you for another week next summer!"
- Ron P.
"Thanks for the rapid reply! Working on my dovetails . . . thanks for all your great instructional material."
Subject: great DVD ...Mastering the DT Saw
"This is probably your best DVD to date."
- Bill H.
"I just wanted to send you a note to say how much my students are enjoying those videos. I watched two of them already. The kids really can connect with you since they met you that day at Hunting HIlls. I think you missed your calling too Rob, you are very gifted at communicating with people both old and young. I am so glad I met you and are able to connect with you through the courses. I will certainly take what I learn and pass it on to my students. My kids can already see my learning curve towards hand tools and I intend to incorporate that knowledge into my classes as soon as I can."
"Few weeks ago, I wrote to you asking why in the Handcut Dovetail DVD you did not mention anything about the dovetail joints rake/angle. Well, well! After viewing the DVD a few times, I realized that I was wrong. In the DVD, you do talk about dovetail joints rake/angle. Having said that, I would like to add that both DVD's (Mastering the Dovetail Saw & Handcut Dovetails Joints) were very helpful to me. Thank you and Happy New Year!!!"
- Jacques C.
"I just finished watching the Mastering the Dovetail Saw DVD. I must say, it was one of the best of the series. I found the instruction very useful and to the point. The close-ups and lighting were also very good. I checked out the preview of the box making DVD. It looks interesting. I remember you talking about the hidden joint at the Sheridan Training the Hand workshop. I will have to get it when you have it finished. Making boxes is good practice."
"Well, it’s been 20 months since I’ve talked to you and last year I was able to crank out 5 projects using your techniques from your CDs. I think you drawer fitting CD is excellent. Well, the DT CD’s are excellent too……I’m ready for more of your stuff!"
- Roy W.
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