To help support his mother and siblings, carpenter and retired farmer Wang Dewen first learned how to build and fix wood items when he was nine years old. Now in his 60s, his skills are at the heart of popular videos created by his son on the YouTube channel Grandpa Amu.
In the video above, Wang Dewen creates a ‘millennium Lu Ban stool’ from one piece of wood. The methodical joinery requires no nails, screws, or other components.
‘Grandpa Amu’ is often compared to Lu Ban, a legendary structural engineer, inventor, and carpenter from Chinese history. The YouTuber demonstrates versions of this practiced woodworking technique on the channel. He also makes toys and food in the family’s videos. From the South China Morning Post:
The videos were first shared on Chinese content platforms Toutiao and Xigua Video, where Gong Shi Dao, as the programme is known in China, is followed by 2.25 million people…
Below, Wang Dewen creates a taller stool for his grandson. As with the other videos, he transforms a single block of wood with guiding lines, a few other simple tools, patience, and his years of experience.
With a few curved edges, this method of joinery can also lock into a refined-looking tea table:
Watch these woodworking videos next:
• Bending sliced wood like a slinky
• The art of Japanese marquetry
• Traditional Swedish Woodworking (1923)
• The San Francisco Fire Department’s Ladder Shop
• Making a wooden lampshade from a tree stump