A place for me to display some of the varied projects that come out of my shop, as well as to "talk" about some of my experiences working with wood.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Christmas Turning

An annual exercise for us is to determine what I am going to make for my wife to give her staff as Christmas presents. They have made it quite clear that something hand made by me is the "preferred" way to go. The challenge every year is to try to one up the previous years, and this year was no different.

Bowls! I could turn bowls for them - yea, "let's" do it...

I needed six bowls more or less similar to avoid the jealously factor, they did not have to be identical but "similar". I chose a couple of pieces of wood I thought I could get six small bowls out of and drew them out.

I rarely map out exactly how a piece will be turned, and this was no exception. The blank was mounted and once it was round I made a plan to finish it. In many cases I am working around voids or inclusions which I want to feature in the turned piece. Start to finish this project took two hours - off the hook for another year!

Just cut away the parts that don't look like bowls.
Turning a foot so I can reverse it into the chuck, here the piece is mounted on a small faceplate.
Cleaning out the interior. I keep the tailstock engaged as long as possible. Just in case...

Cleaning up the foot on the Longworth, a bit of sanding and...

Six bowls, all similar but quite different.


  1. I'm sure the staff looks forward to this each year. Turning is one skill I don't have but learning it would open up some interesting streets to go down.

    1. Hi Ralph,
      The staff had made it clear that the gift needs to be hand made by me to make the cut. Good to see there is an appreciation for this type of work. I originally started out turning to make parts for furniture. That was 4 lathes ago, and while I turn quite a bit for furniture parts; I enjoy turning a piece of firewood into a piece of art as well.

      All the best,