From the NSCC’s overview of the Heritage Carpentry program:
“After learning the basic skills for carpentry, you learn the unique skills required for the more rigorous tasks used in renovations and the preservation of historic buildings – for example, how to use recycled materials and frame a roof without using pre-made trusses. Quality and craftsmanship are the cornerstones of the program.”
When I took Heritage Carpentry at the NSCC, I learned about the historical considerations for working on old houses common to Nova Scotia, and to use the Standards and Guidelines for the Conservation of Historic Places in Canada to research, plan, and execute carpentry projects. Building on previous handicraft experience, I gained confidence with common stationary shop tools, and used them to make my own woodworking projects. I found that I really enjoyed building boxes and concentrating on the more precise and mathematical applications of woodworking.
One very important lesson that I took from the program is to build things to last for a hundred years, not just a few, and to position my work in opposition to the ubiquitous culture of disposable consumer goods.