Skip to content
Loading Events

« All Events

Intro to Japanese Joinery – Live Online

Aug 15, 2020 - Aug 16, 2020 | 9:00 am - 12:00 pm $130 – $160
Marked piece of wood used for joints in Japanese Joinery

Close-up of japanese joinery techniquejoint made using japanese joinery at Florida School of WoodworkJapanese joinery tools on woodworking table


Dylan Iwakuni

Dylan Iwakuni, Japanese joinery instructor


Ari Shiguchi  with Dylan Iwakuni

Live & On-Line

Japan has a long history of building structures using the abundance of wood found throughout the land.  The wood was cut into unique and complex joints, allowing the wood to join with each other, without the help of metal hardware and in many cases no glue. These joineries have been refined over time and are still used being used to this day.

This is a singular opportunity to learn from a Japanse craftsman, from the comfort of your home or workshop.

Learn along with other woodworkers as you participate in this live video conference class taught by Dylan Iwakuni while you chat with your classmates from around the nation and world in real-time.  There is a lot of interaction, and you’ll get to watch and engage with Dylan as he leads you through the process of cutting these Japanese joints using only handtools.  Dylan will be leading this from his temporary workshop in Germany, as he has not yet been able to return to Japan.

The class is split into manageable sections of approximately two hours online followed by work periods where you will work at your own pace.

During this class, we will go over traditional joinery called Ari Shiguchi in Japanese. This is a type of dovetail joinery, used when connecting materials in a T-shape. In Japanese carpentry, you will see it commonly used in the floor sills and beams. This joinery can be used in furniture as well. The techniques learned here can be applied to other joineries and will help improve your precision. We will be working entirely with hand tools. Using only hand tools mean no awful noise or excessive dust, and doesnt require a big workshop or space.

You will learn to:

  • Mark accurate lines.
  • Use the saw and chisel to remove the bulk of the material efficiently.
  • Use the chisel to pare the wood accurately and aim for half the line.
  • Compress the wood to get a very tight fit.

Open from beginners wanting to make their first Japanese joinery to those looking to step up their joinery making skills.

Tools & Materials Needed: 

Sashigane Carpenter
Sharp pencil to mark the lines.
24mm chisel back flat/edge sharp or a similar size chisel back flat/edge sharp
Refer to this video on sharpening a Japanese chisel

Hammer for striking the chisel (A Genno, Japanese double-sided hammer is the best)
Saw for finer work. Around 210mm or 8 inches in length. A Ryoba Saw is a good option.
Spray bottle filled with water.
1 clamp to clamp the jig on top of the material on the table
1 piece of wood for the jig, t must have at least two sides made flat and 90 degrees.  Measurements 30mm thick at least 50mm wide and 150mm long

Other tools which are good to have:
Smaller squares and try squares.
Other chisel sizes.
A paring chisel.

Learn more about the tools here.  Tool Resources

NOTE: You do not necessarily all have to use Japanese tools. Western tool equivalent will work as well.  However, please note my experience with western tools is very limited, meaning I may not be able to answer questions regarding western tools and their uses or techniques.


Open from beginners wanting to make their first Japanese joinery to those looking to step up their joinery making skills.


We’ll have a “Tech Check” call a few days before the start of the class for you to verify your connection and get familiar with Zoom if you need to.

You’ll also be invited to join our private Facebook group where you can chat, post questions, and get advice outside of class hours.  Come and join the quarantine team!

Finally, will we record each day, so that you can refer back to it as you work through your assigned tasks and homework.

Class Schedule & Times

The class is broken up into sections over two days. Plan on attending all of them all, just like you would in real-time.

Aug 15th, 9 am – 11 am
Aug 15th 1pm – 2:30pm
Aug 16th 10am – 12pm

All times are shown in EST  Eastern Standard Time, United States


1 piece of wood milled flat and square approximately 50mm x 50mm x250mm or 2″x 2″ x 10″ The ends cut square.

The wood for your joints can be any material as long as it’s easy to work with, avoid ones with knots or cracks

Need Materials?  There is an option to have just the lumber for the class mailed to you below.


The numbers below include tickets for this event already in your cart. Clicking "Get Tickets" will allow you to edit any existing attendee information as well as change ticket quantities.
Tickets are no longer available

Designed using Unos Premium. Powered by WordPress.

No products in the cart.

Become a Better Woodworker!

Join below for Woodworking Tips and New Class Notifications.