March 2009 Newsletter

We opened the February meeting with an Extraordinary General Meeting with a view to finding someone to take on the role of Events Organiser. Disappointingly we had no takers on the day, in fact most people present looked anywhere but the front to avoid getting the evil eye from the Committee!! However, you will see on the notice board on the back of this newsletter that Pat Hughes phoned Bert and volunteered his services. Something he was taught never to do when he was in the army!!! Thanks Pat.

By 10.30 Tony was able to get on with his demonstration for the day and started by giving a bit of an insight into how he got into turning on a professional basis. We know him as a club member who likes to turn BIG vases and hollow forms.
His other interest is in working on old and listed buildings and as an example of what he gets asked to make he turned a finial for a porch or maybe for where a four hip roof comes together. The finished item would be covered with lead sheeting and so the shape has to allow it to be moulded to it without too many wrinkles. Tony has done some of this work himself so he knows what is required by the craftsman.

Next he started on what would become one of his hollow forms and for which he has developed some special tools to make a big job simpler. We have all seen his tool rest and his long bar tools but he has also made some long tools using the spoon end of a round and an oval ladle to which he has fixed velcro that will hold his sanding cloth. Safer than shoving your arm inside to smooth off the rough bits!! Another safety feature that Tony adopts is to recess the drive centre into the end of the log so that if it does start to slip it canít allow the log to come flying off the lathe. With an uneven log as the one he used today he looks at the overall shape, knobs Ďní all, and assesses what he will inevitably lose and marks his centres accordingly for the revolving tail centre and the drive centre. He set it up and switched on his brand new hasnít used it before lathe, yep, first outing for this baby and set it at a low speed (cos anything could happen) and it was all remarkably in balance. Using a large roughing gouge, it looked to be about 2Ē, he took gentle cuts to start forming the outer shape and kept his speed slow and cuts light until it began to take on a more even shape that allowed him to increase the speed and size of cut. He reached a point where he turned a spigot to fit the four jaw chuck and reversed it so that the end he had decided at the start would be the neck was now at the tailstock end. More shaping was done to the outside before he removed the revolving centre and fitted a drill chuck and bored out a 30mm hole with a saw tooth bit. This gives him a start for his hollowing tool. Hollowing can cause the log to move in the chuck so Tony devised a support using a small scissor lift to which he had fitted a couple of rollers that were adjustable in or out to fit the neck of the vase. The log he was using was still very wet so he stopped while it was still quite thick and would leave it for a few months before finishing it.

To demonstrate the hollowing out Tony had brought another similar piece in that was ready for further work which he set up and almost completed. At this point we could see the value of supporting the neck to counteract the sideways pressure of the hollowing tool. It was a really interesting day and went on until 4.30 pm before we started packing up. Some pictures of his work are in the gallery.

We had three new members join us today and they are :- Keith Leonard John Ahearn and Norman Elson

Our next meeting is on Saturday 14th March and Stuart King will be our demonstrator for the day. Stuartís skills are many and varied. He specialises in wet turning very thin, I believe almost translucent, vessels as well as decorative work. He is also a skilled pole lathe turner which he will probably talk about but I donít know that he carts one around with him!! Sounds like we are in for another interesting day.
See you all on the 14th.


Notice board

Events Organiser
I am pleased to announce that Pat Hughes has stepped into the breach and volunteered to take on the task of Events Organiser. The Committee welcome him with open arms and with his skills and ideas we know that Pat will be a valuable member of the team.

Trip to Yandles 4th April 2009

Will all members and their guests who are going on the trip to Yandles in April please pay their money to Paul Hunt or Bert Lanham at or before the next meeting. You can send a cheque to Bert if you think you may not be able to attend the March meeting. Just to remind you, the cost is £10 for members and £18 for guests or members of other clubs.