An Introduction to Green Woodworking


‘Greenwood is designing sustainable development for the world.’

Green Woodworking is a craft of carpentry which works unseasoned timber into finished items. Greenwood reduces the use of power tools in a wood working project. Work can be done outdoors.

The stock is riven from a freshly felled oak.

Unseasoned wood is wood which is preserved to maintain high moisture content. Timber is kiln dried down to 12% moisture content.  Unseasoned wood is preserved by storing wood in a water-filled trough. This wood cuts easily as compared to the wood that has lost its moisture, and as the wood gets dry, t becomes tough to cut.Green wood is easy to shape with hand tools.


With a passage of time, moisture leaves the wood which in result shrinks it,w hich is a benefit for Green woodworker to ensure tight joints in their woodwork.For effective shrinkage,one-half joint can be over dried leaving the encapsulating components green. Green woodworking technique involves splitting and working with the grain,it causes minimum distortion of wood during shrinkage.The techniques of green wood working include building boats, houses, and expressive arts.

Recommended tools of trade: 

  1. Bosch Ra1181 Router table
  2. Dewalt Thickness Planer

There is a lot of waste when a sawmill is used to reduce log into boards.The riving waste obtained can be easily converted to fuel, but saw dust is difficult to convert into fuel.The Greenwood is easy to plain, but the surface finish is not good.It’s tricky to aim for appropriate moisture content, due to change in seasons.

Bodging is a green woodworking occupation. In this occupation, Chair components are made in woods and exported to workshops where chairs were assembled by furniture makers.

‘Green Wood’ is a project which was run for years in Honduras and Peru.

The organization trains people living in tropical forests techniques of chairmaking and other green working projects.This project aims to achieve sustainable development using Green wood.They apply small scale

woodworking technologies and creative marketing to support forest management and sustainable development in the area.

A basic tool kit for Green woodworking would consist of following tools-

  • A froe
  • A side axe
  • A draw knife
  • A set of turning chisels
  • Spooning knives

Cherry, Birch, and sycamore are good for small carved items such as spoons. Oak is good for outdoor work because it is durable.

Green woodworking is an activity which connects our whole mind and body. It is mentally relaxing and an experience not unlike meditation.