Freebird interiors - Alastair Johnson

UKworkshop.co.uk

Help Support UKworkshop.co.uk:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.

Wilson joinery

Established Member
Joined
25 Feb 2022
Messages
154
Reaction score
28
Location
Durham
Hi everyone

I’m just wondering if any of you have paid for the online “apprenticeship” that Alastair offers and wondering what you thought of it? It’s £150 for non members or £90 if you subscribe to his channel. He seems like a good guy and I really like his YouTube videos but it’s often difficult to see how they do things in detail and that’s the bit I really need to focus on. To me £90/£150 seems like a reasonable price if I pick up some useful knowledge along the way but equally if there’s not much over and above what’s in his usual YouTube videos then it’s not worth paying for.

I’ve tried knocking on doors and asking around locally if there’s any opportunities to get on the job experience with joiners in the area but no luck so far so I’m looking into this offering from Alastair instead.

Anyone else got any other ideas?

Cheers
Pete
 
What is your current skill level, if looking at beginner then in my opinion you need more hands on with someone just like I found with welding, very easy to pick up bad habbits and do it the hard way. Some subjects do fall into the distant learning category such as many academic subjects but where hand skills are concerned it is not as easy. For videos there are many but not all are showing safe practices so unless known tread carefully.
 
Last edited:
I can't comment on what is offered by Freebird Interiors however up until a few years back I would have scoffed at the idea of a remote/online apprenticeship for a art/craft/manual skill. What changed my mind is my wife paid for an online 'apprenticeship' making macarons, she was a good baker but was never satisfied with the outcome when baking these items. The online course offered, videos and written material, and trial bakes where she submitted photos and received feedback on the results. She also had access to communication (written and video call) where she could discuss areas she wanted to improve. Over 8ish weeks her abilities and the results improvement were incredible, she finished entirely satisfied with the cost (£100ish).
 
From what I gather, he does built in wardrobes and stuff so not exactly a joinery apprentiship.
If you want to do that specific stuff and have no experience then it might offer fairly decent value and may save you from costly mistakes. As far as value for money goes for £150 you could get about half a day of professional time so as long as its more than that its ok.

I do think you could learn it all for free but you need to know what to search for specifically on youtube. Peter Millard has a lot on MDF bashing.

I would say that for £150 you could buy a few good books that would serve you well, the NVQ / City and Guilds carpentry and joinery books should cover most things, R. Bayliss`s 3 books on carpentry and joinery are excellent and of course the classic Furniture making by Joyce.

In the end there is only one way to learn and that is by actually building some stuff.
It is a problem getting experience and apprenciships etc. partly because of the liability placed upon the employer, all safety stuff must be up to standard, insurance, etc, etc. Half my workshop machinery would have to be replaced if I had an employee or apprentice in there which would cost many thousands.
I was talking to a builder the other day who says he has the opposing issue, he can`t get an apprentice who actually understands that you need to work hard for more than 3 days in a row.


Ollie
 
I can see its useful for specific issues related to how he completes his work. he's actually really thorough in his approach but it's not the only way to make built in wardrobes. his way of doing this is a little bland as he's trying to be big league so to speak. one confidant bloke with a helper could make much more "creative" stuff. but his thing is to reduce options and make it so staff can continue to make even if he's not there. I think his "apprenticeship" may be popular because he comes over as a nice guy. paul sellars apprenticeships are a different story!
 
To me £90/£150 seems like a reasonable price if I pick up some useful knowledge along the way
What is it you are looking to pick up on ? presume from your title you are a practicing joiner.

I get the impression it would be more about the tools and materials he uses with some tips on construction methods which from what I have seen on his channel are KD fittings, pocket screws and confirmat screws, and a CNC machine, hardly an "apprenticeship" but you would get a Sketchup drawing which is cool, if you can use, or access it.

You would do as well to target your questions to the knowledgeable forum members on here, which if the thread stayed on track, could help others as well

The only caveat I would make about building /selling fitted furniture, at this time, would be to refer back to this thread by @BrandonB which has gone dormant! Fitted furniture
 
Last edited:
Thanks for all of the replies so far.

One of the details I’ve wondered about is how you would go about scribing a stand alone (or hang alone!) wall hung cabinet where the bottom and two sides of the carcass all need to be scribed due to a very uneven wall. As obviously when you scribe one of the sides for example, this would then knock the whole structure out of kilter. Or is it best just to use scribed filler pieces on both sides and the bottom and leave the carcass itself alone.

Cheers
Pete
 
Thanks for that ttrees it’s sometimes difficult to find British woodworkers on YouTube so I’m looking forward to taking a look at his stuff. And also William that’s sounds really good too, do you mind letting me know which books they are?

Many thanks again all
 
Sorry about the text i sent you lots of spelling mistakes. It's because i'm speaking to the phone . Can you contact me to arrange postage of these books if you need them thank you.
 
PXL_20230913_085856779.MP.jpg
 
Thanks for that ttrees it’s sometimes difficult to find British woodworkers on YouTube so I’m looking forward to taking a look at his stuff. And also William that’s sounds really good too, do you mind letting me know which books they are?

Many thanks again all
 

Attachments

  • PXL_20230913_085856779.MP.jpg
    PXL_20230913_085856779.MP.jpg
    7.6 MB · Views: 0
  • PXL_20230913_085852211.jpg
    PXL_20230913_085852211.jpg
    2.7 MB · Views: 0
  • PXL_20230913_085843123.MP.jpg
    PXL_20230913_085843123.MP.jpg
    5.6 MB · Views: 0
I’ve followed Alastair for years on YouTube and for a long while was also part of his paid subscribers on “buymeacoffee”.
This was a couple of years ago but back then the info he provided was excellent. The key benefit was time, the detail he goes to means you get plans and info which remove all the wasted time of “what do I do in this situation” and “what screws do I use, what hinges do I need, how do I paint that, how do I measure this” and so on and so on.

His system has been perfected for years too, so he’s made it efficient which for me as a dad of 3 is as important as the rest !

Best wishes
 
Thanks for that ttrees it’s sometimes difficult to find British woodworkers on YouTube so I’m looking forward to taking a look at his stuff. And also William that’s sounds really good too, do you mind letting me know which books they are?

Many thanks again all
Where are based mate? Might help to know as i or someone else could help!

As for the course. I personally learnt a lot from just watching his first 2 YouTube tutorials on sketchup! He has a good way of explaining stuff IMO.

Matt
 

Latest posts

Back
Top