March 17, 2013

Mostly a success

My recent attempt to create something different with my wood lathe was a partial success.

The holder worked as planned but it is way way too much wood for my small high speed tool to remove.

In reality it will do exactly what I designed it for. My plan was to use it to trim the small ends of my negative space designs uniformly and it will do that and lots more BUT it will not aid me in the actual fabrication of the negative space design pieces I enjoy making.

Here are a few photo’s of the results of this experiment. Took way too long and was way toooo hard on my high speed tool. If you look closely at the right hand side of the first photo you can see my high tech method of tilting the fixture. I use washers in some of my other router accessories to adjust height.

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Here are two shots of the piece, closer to completion. I dyed it blue after dying the grooves black but still have to decide just how I am going to finish it.



So, back to the drawing board where I need to come up with an attachment that will allow me mount a router and move it:

1. Toward and away from the head stock in small increments, possibly with a hand wheel or screw.

2. Vertically up or down and then be able to lock it at whatever elevation I decide on.

3. Allow me to angle the router toward or away from vertical

4. Allow for easy rotation while cutting with very little play. This may have to be accomplished again with a hand wheel or screw.

5. Provide adjustable stops to enable me to either start or stop where I want on the piece I’m working on.


March 3, 2013

Life can be a beach

I was walking my favourite local beach last week and noticed a rather large ‘root ball’ when I went to examine it I found that someone had beaten me to it and had taken most of the larger sections that would be good to burn BUT then had left the very best sections for turning, close to the root ball. It has been raining her so much that I had just about forgotten about it but when the sun came out yesterday I decide to load my trusty Husky chain saw into my suburban and go see if what was left was in fact any good to turn. I believe it is some sort of Maple but am not entirely certain. The curlies are quite white or light and it gave off a slightly sour almost farm like smell as I roughed out the blanks. It has been a while since I had the pleasure of turning really green wood and I gotta admit it really is fun.

Read wood gloat. Here is what I was able to cut yesterday from the remaining sections. Sorry I didn’t get any photo’s of the root ball on the beach  . . .

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I brought it home and today I rough turned the majority of what I had gathered.

I decide to to a semi controlled experiment with the bowl blanks. After roughing them to about 10 percent thickness to diameter.

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This is all that will eventually be put in the burn pile.


I cut 9 bowl blanks, one hollow form blank and a few chucks that can be used for spindles.


I also wound up with lots of cur lies.

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I rough turned them all between centres using a 3/4″ bowl gouge and a round carbide cutter.

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Here is what I did the day after I harvested them:

1. I placed one in a paper bag with wet shaving and will keep it in my heated shop

2. I waxed one and placed it in a paper bag which I will keep in my heated shop

3. I waxed one and stored it outside under the cover of my deck, up off the ground

4. I waxed one and placed it in a paper bag under the cover of my deck, up off the ground

5. I boiled one for two hours and will place it in a paper bag in my heated shop

6. I boiled on for two hours and will wax it and place it in a paper bag in my heater shop

7. I placed on in an ice cream bucket filled with DNA.

I put the rest of the haul in my deep freezer and plan to rough out a couple more, one I will try to dry gradually in a micro wave oven and another I plan to boil for 2 hours and then place under the cover of my deck up off the ground.

I started working on them today at about 08:30 and was finished and playing hockey with my grandsons by 1:30.

Over the next four months I will check on them and report what happens and see if my non-sientific experiment provides any clues as to what works and what doesn’t work as far a getting them dry enough to finish turn.

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