Carpentry is one of the world’s oldest professions. Civilizations have used wood for homes, buildings, furniture, monuments, death rituals, mine shafts, ships, storage barrels, toys…you get the point! It’s quite obvious; we need carpenters in our lives.
There are many facets to woodworking, and a number of different specialty skills. In our own company we have 3 different divisions that each specialize in something different and employ a variety of carpenters with different fields of expertise.
Many carpenters work for a general contractor or with a large firm. These tradesmen typically work on construction projects and undertake framing or rough work. This scope of work begins in the initial phases of a project, and includes framing, building concrete forms, or laying plywood. Flooring, dry wall, or some type of finish work eventually covers any rough work. These types of carpenters are usually called “Framers”.
Most of the carpenters here at BS&R are classified primarily in this group. Also known as a “Joiner, this type of carpenter does all types of detailed carpentry. According to Wikipedia, “Finish carpentry can involve cabinetry, furniture making, fine woodworking, joinery, and other carpentry where exact joints and minimal margins of error are important.” You can think of it this way: anything that is rough work isn’t being seen, finish work is everything that will be, and therefore it needs to be perfect & meet aesthetic standards.
Cabinetmakers / Trim Carpenters:
These types of carpenters are, quite obviously, ones who build cabinets and specialize in molding and trim and deal with fine and detailed work. The first builds things like cupboards, dressers, or other furniture designed for storage and the latter deals with door and window mantels and other types of ornamental work.
Antique Restoration / Reproduction:
This type of service involves carpenters to have knowledge in traditional methods and techniques. Parquetry, joinery, inlay and French polish are all aspects a carpenter would have to know to do this type of project. Some people would call these types of carpenters “finish carpenters” but we think it goes so much further than that. You have to be a true artist with attention to detail in order to properly restore antique furniture.
If you are looking to hire a carpenter make sure they are knowledgeable in the scope of work you need completed. Word of mouth references are particularly helpful in this circumstance. If you need a specialist carpenter, seek out the ones that can share their portfolio of work completed. All prideful carpenters have images of their best work.