Monday 30 May 2011

How to create a wide rimmed textured and coloured bowl.

I have been asked to show how I created the colouring and texturing effects on this bowl so I have made another one and will show how I have done it from start to finish.

This is a Sycamore blank that I roughed out a couple of months ago it was quite dry but I have speeded up the drying by using a microwave.

I use a jam chuck to hold the roughed out bowl and complete the underside.
This is the simple jam chuck made from a bit of scrap wood.
I keep a selection of these then there is always one that is about the right size.
 The underside will be shaped and sanded to a finish
An important tip here is to take a little bit off the spigot to make sure that when you turn the piece it will be secure and balanced in the chuck.Also always make sure at this stage that you leave a centre mark you will see why later.
 Here is a pick of what will be the eventual top of the bowl held securely in a jam chuck with some router mat for cushioning.
 I always use a dust extractor and an air fed helmet when sanding.This simple set up is a bit of drain pipe and a stand.
Very easy to move around the shop and position where needed.
 Here we have the bottom sanded to a finish and ready to turn.
 With the bowl now reversed and held in the chuck we are ready to start carving.
I have flattened of the face but not sanded it at this stage as I will be removing the face later.
 The carving is carried out using an Axminster power carver.This seems to get so hot that after a while I have to use a leather glove to hold it.
I asked Axminster if this was normal and they assured me that it was.
I have marked pencil lines just to give me a guide for my carving.
 Here is a pic of the completed carving ready for the first colour.
 The first colour I have applied is a very bright purple.It is important that the first colour is is darker than the top colour and quite bold.
As you can see I have made sure that the carved area is completely covered.
The paint is a good quality car paint in an aerosol.
 To speed up the drying time I have used a hot air gun. Then I have sanded the paint off and finished the face down to 240 grit.I think that is smooth enough and leaves a key for the paint.

Having sanded the paint off the face it is now ready for the final colour.I have chosen Orange because I wanted a nice bright colour and it will go over the purple without spoiling it. 

I have created a V groove either side of the carving with a V tool.This makes the coloured area stand out.
After a final cut on the inside of the bowl with a sharp bowl gouge I used a scraper to get a sandable finish.

 I have power sanded the bowl down to 240 grit as i think this is fine enough when you are going to apply a lacquer
 As I said before I use my air fed helmet when sanding I think this is very important.
 I have applied one coat of Woodoc 20 with a good quality brush but I will apply several more coats later.
 Woodoc products can be obtained from Phil Irons woodturning  http://www.philirons.com/
 This is after one coat and dried with a hot air gun not bad for one coat.

We have nearly finished just a bit of tidying up to do.
This is a simple idea for holding a bowl to finish the spigot and turn it into a foot.It is an idea I pinched from Mark sanger a round of plywood with a faceplate on the back and router mat on the front.
The bowl is trapped between the the ply faceplate and the tailstock to enable you to tidy up the foot.

The bowl is then remover and final tidying up done with a sanding disk in a Jacobs chuck.
A final buffing and a coat of Renaissance wax on the bottom and we are done.The bottom will not be lacquered as I like to keep it as polished wood.

If you have any questions or comments please feel free to leave them on comments below this post.
Thank you for looking I hope you found it interesting.
I will be putting up more info on texturing and colouring shortly so keep watching.

Sunday 29 May 2011

Another order ready to go out tommorow.

These bowls are going to a new outlet in Glastonbury.
I was told they must be colourful and not too much Wood showing.

Friday 20 May 2011

New Gallery opening

Last night my wife Sue and I attended the opening of a new art Gallery in Taunton.
It was all invited guests including the Artists and makers of which I am one.
It was a very pleasant evening witth snacks and drinks .Because I was driving I could only drink one small glass of white wine.
There was quite a few sales and one of the first things to sell was one of my textured and coloured bowls.
Here are some pics I took.

Demonstrating at Yandles.

I have just had it confirmed that I will be one of the demonstrators at Yandles Autumn show on the 9th and 10th of September.
I am particularly pleased because in my opinion this is probably the best woodworking show in the country.
I will look forward to seeing a lot of you there and putting faces to names.

Thursday 19 May 2011

Broken down Nova DVR XP

Yesterday morning I was all ready and raring to go but my Nova had other ideas.
It Just would not run and the display said Not connected.
It is now in bits and with an Electronics expert.
I have Emailed the makers twice and have not had a reply.Teknatool in New Zealand.I am not impressed I can tell you and getting any sense from Record who now supply them is like beating your head against the wall.
I am now making bowls on my trusty old Graduate.
And the bloody misery goes on.
I have sent several Emails to Teknatools and asked for advise and quite honestly there only advise seems to be buy a complete new control system for £400  00 and see if that works.
I have also been trying to get help from Record power.There top man Alan was in my opinion less than helpful but their man Tony tried his best to help by giving me a few tips.
At the end of the day it has all been a very poor service in my opinion.
I have reluctantly had to order the new bits for the £400  00 because they seemed unwilling or unable to give any constructive help.
I bought this Lathe about 6 years ago from Robert Sorby and I have had a lot of good service from it but if I had only had it for a short time I would not be at all happy with the after sales service.
I suppose the only upside is now that Record are the agents a new one would be subject to their 5 year warranty.
I hope when all the bits come and it is put back together it is OK if not I don't know what the answer will be.I will let you know.

I have received the new bits for my Nova and it is all back together and working OK.
It would seem that the only cure for any Nova electrical problem is to replace the whole electrical system exept the motor.
The cost for this lot was £407  00 delivered.
I find it bloody amazing in this day and age when we are supposed to save the worlds recourses that you have to replace the whole gubbins and throw away all of this lot when it is not possible that every component is faulty.
Here is a pic of what I have to throw away.

Also Record boast of giving a 5 year warranty on their product but when I asked Alan Bigg their teck man at Record I was told although these electrical parts are brand new I will only get a two year warranty on them.
Overall I am not impressed with the service from Record .Their top teck man Alan Bigg seemed a sour less than helpful person but Tony in Teck did his best to help me but quite honestly I had the feeling that they did not have a clue what they were talking about.

Tuesday 17 May 2011


Today my student Michael had been turning for a few years but was having problems with tool sharpening and tool use.
He is a retired joiner so was used to using wood but had never been shown the correct way to use woodturning tools.
We had a very enjoyable day and Michael went away with a much better understanding of tool sharpening and tool use.

Michael using the power carver.
Here we have a very nice bowl that Michael made today.

Monday 16 May 2011

A few more Sycamore bowls

Still playing catch up and trying to fulfil orders.
Today i managed to make six bowls in between taking my niece to hospital and getting ready for teaching tomorrow.