May 2007 Newsletter

April 10th and one of the demonstrations we had been looking forward to.

Tobias Kaye was with us for the day and he started off by telling us what he proposed to do and the tools he would be using. His first project was to turn a pair of matching soup bowls. For this he would use London plane because it has a very tight grain and you wont get soup dripping through the bottom before you are half way through! Two blanks which had been cut out on the bandsaw looking like a couple of very thick table tennis bats had been marked out very carefully with a centre line and glued together with the markings precisely in line using holt melt glue. A small block was glued to either end for the centres to run in. Without these the two components would be forced apart and go into orbit. To turn the outside Tobias selected a bowl gouge but before starting he gave a short lecture on the type of grind he prefers and the tools he likes. He favours the Hamlet Master flute or Henry Taylor Super flute and soon began to show us why. All through the day Tobias was stopping to show us the effects of the correct use of having the bevel rubbing and what could happen if its not. He turned the outside to a sphere, leaving a flat on each side that would become the base of the bowls. The handles were turned at the same time, taking care not to go too close to the glued join or the handle would be too thin. Imagine the handle snapping when your bowl is full!! Now was the time to split them apart and mount one half on to a face plate using holt melt glue ready for hollowing them out. Hollowing out I don’t need to describe but shaping the top of the handle was a very delicate operation. One slight dig in and whoops!! no handle.

We broke off at eleven o’clock so that Tobias could judge the entries for this month and also spend some time discussing design. He likes forms to blend in rather go in to a shoulder and then follow through. He chose Howard Overton’s walnut bowl as the turning of the month and Smith Adams burr lidded bowl for the highly commended certificate.

Before lunch he started on his second project. This was to make a natural edged “oyster box” from a piece of yew. First the log was put between centres and a spigot was formed at either end for chucking later. Then using a parting tool the log was cut in two. First the base was hollowed out and then faced off leaving a shoulder for the lid to fit on to.

A tip on scrapers here. When creating a burr on the cutting edge, the softer the wood the bigger the burr should be.

The base was removed from the chuck at this stage and the top mounted. As with the base the lid was hollowed to the same shape and depth and a recess was turned to take the lid. This needs to be a tight fit so that the outside can be shaped and the recess formed to create the oyster image, taking care not to go too deep and turn the shoulder away. No shoulder, no box!! Keeping the pieces together it was reversed in the chuck so that the outside of the lid could be finished and polished. The two halves were then separated and with the base, carefully held in the chuck by the shoulder that the lid fits on, was finished and polished.

These days Tobias specializes in a range of musical insstruments. The one in the gallery is plucked rather like a harp, giving off a similar sound

That was it for April. Our next meeting is on the 12th May and Chris Eagles will be our demonstrator for the day.

Also don’t forget that we have a stand at Farmers World at the end of the month and there is still time to donate all of those unwanted masterpieces to the sales table so that we can con lots of people to part with their money for Demelza House. We need prizes for the tombola as well.

That’s all from me. See you all on the 12th.