Classes at Marc Adams School of Woodworking

Thomas Stangeland at the mortising machineThe Marc Adams School of Woodworking is conveniently located just 12 miles south of Indianapolis and is one of the largest hands-on woodworking schools in the world with nearly 20,000 square feet of space and getting ready to grow. The school has three large bench rooms, two huge tool rooms, a wonderful multimedia/cafeteria room, and an outbuilding for special classes. The facility features wireless internet service so bring your own laptop.

At each instructor’s bench there are two 36" wide-screen televisions with two zoom cameras to put you closer to the action. There is a specially designed sound system available for those who have a hard time hearing during class lectures. Each student has his or her own custom-made Lie-Nielsen workbench, a stool to sit on, and a rubber mat to make standing on concrete a little easier on the knees and back. Students gain the most in an environment conducive to learning.

There are plenty of power tools and even more hand tools to aid in the learning process. Each tool room offers plenty of workspace, along with a variety of well-maintained equipment. There are 10 SawStop table saws; 15 band saws; 11 planers; 9 jointers; 21 ONEWAY lathes; 8 drill presses; 25 scroll saws; 12 power miter saws; 2 shapers; 7 large router tables; 3 large panel sanders; 10 oscillating drum sanders; 9 mortising machines; 5 large vacuum presses; 1 large metal milling machine; 5 Delray down draft tables, 63 master workbenches; 3 edge and 15 disc sanders; plus more than 900 clamps and all the hand tools you could imagine. There are four clean bathrooms (two of which are wheelchair-accessible) and a utility room with special safety equipment. The buildings are air-conditioned but during the summer students should plan on dressing comfortably. Please note that the facility will not be open on Sunday afternoons. Plan on arriving on Monday morning by 7:45 am. And by the way, did I mention the school has an ice cream machine?


The shop is located just 12 miles south of Indianapolis and is only 27 miles from the Indianapolis International Airport. From Indianapolis take I-65 south to the Whiteland exit (exit mile marker 95). Turn left (east) on Whiteland Road and drive 2.2 miles. The shop is on the left hand (north) side of the road. Heading north from Louisville take I-65 to the Whiteland exit (exit mile marker 95). Turn right (east) on Whiteland Road and drive 2 miles. The shop is on the left hand (north) side of the road. The building is brown and the sign says: “MARC ADAMS SCHOOL OF WOODWORKING, THE LARGEST WOODWORKING SCHOOL IN NORTH AMERICA.”

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A Typical Week at MASW

MASW is a very busy place with lots of activities during the week. Class instruction and use of power equipment goes from 8:00 a.m. to around 6:00 p.m. each weekday. After 6:00 p.m., when the power equipment goes off, students are more than welcome to stay and work, socialize, or do research in the school's library. Each class is required to review safety before power equipment can be used, but after the safety session, power equipment will officially be on, and students will have full access to all the machinery covered in the safety review.

During the week, students will have multiple opportunities take breaks and enjoy some camaraderie. The first will be on Tuesday evening when the instructors show slides of their work. This event will start around 5:30 p.m. and will offer a dinner for anyone who wishes to attend. The second will be to take a class photo. It is highly advisable for students to plan some time during the week to visit the other workshops. There is always something else going on, and it is okay to pop in and see what folks are learning in the other workshops. For full week workshops, the final cleanup will take place on Friday afternoon around 3:00 p.m., and students should be on their way home around 4:00 p.m.