The trade of carpentry involves the shaping, cutting, and installation of various building materials, such as timber bridges, concrete forms, and buildings. Traditionally, Carpenters worked with natural wood, but today they can also use other types of materials. In addition to this, they sometimes handle finer trades such as furniture building and cabinetmaking.
In the US, almost all carpenters are male. In 1999, it was the fourth most dominant occupation in the country, with about 98.5% of them being men. In 2006, there were over 1.5 million positions in the country that were related to this profession. These individuals are typically the first people to work on a project, and they are typically the last to leave. During the 19th century, carpenters were known to frame post-and-beam buildings.
This trade is typically taught through an apprenticeship program, which typically lasts for four years. Carpenters can then successfully complete the competency test in various countries, such as the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and South Africa. In some places, the skill can also be acquired through work experience.
The word “carpenter” is the English rendering of the French word carpentier, which is derived from the Latin “artifex,” “maker” of a carriage. The Scots and Middle English word “builder” was also derived from the Old English “wright,” which can be used in various compound forms, such as boatwright or wheelwright.
In the UK, the word carpentry is commonly used to describe the skills involved in the first fixing of timber items, such as roofs, floors, and timber framed buildings. This process usually takes place before the plastering is carried out.
After plastering is completed, the second fix is usually done. This includes the installation of various building components, such as windows, doors, and skirting boards. While this type of work is commonly referred to as carpentry, the manufacture and pre-finished of these items is often regarded as joinery. Another type of carpentry is the construction of concrete forms, such as the walls and ceilings of buildings.
In the UK, the term timber formwork, which is used for making timber structures that are structurally sound and are made from poured or in-place concrete, is called “shuttering.” In the US, the term “carpentry” is often used to refer to a type of work that is heavier and stronger than that of a carpenter. However, the term “joiner” is less common.
The terms “housewright” and “bar barn right” were previously used by carpenters who utilized traditional methods and materials. Form carpenters are individuals who construct concrete forms.