Saturday, 30 January 2016

Ben and Tim

I try not to work on a Saturday but sometimes you have to put yourself out because not everybody can make it in the week.
A couple of days ago I had a very heavy cold start so that made life a bit hard for today but Tim and Ben were such good company that it made life much easier.
I telephoned and spoke to Ben last night and told him I had a heavy cold and if they wanted to postpone it would not be a problem but the came anyway.
I am pleased they came and the results make it all worthwhile as they both made very respectable bowls as you will see from the following pictures.
Ben and Tim live in west London so it was a bit of a drive for them but hopefully they will think it was worth it.
Ben is only 16 years old and still at secondary school so it is nice to see a youngster taking an interest in turning


  1. I booked this course primarily for my partner’s son, as he received a lathe for Christmas and we all felt he needed a little more help than his school were able to offer. Aside from anything else I wanted to make sure we both knew how to use a lathe safely.

    Given that the address was in Somerset, I was fairly convinced we would be working in a traditional barn, with flagons of cider and a ploughman’s provided at lunch time, but as it turned out, retired Scaffolding Contractor George and his charming wife Susan live in a neat bungalow in a quiet residential street with a selection of large sheds to the rear, one of which contains a whole host of woodturning equipment.
    George turns out to be a huge bloke, with fingers like Cumberland sausages, but don’t be deceived into thinking this is just another ex-tradesman looking to fill his twilight years with a casual hobby.
    He has spent thirteen years honing his craft, and is clearly very dedicated to turning what are some really quite remarkable pieces. As well as being on the Register of Professional Turners and offering this tuition, he hosts the local turning club, regularly appears at craft fairs across the country demonstrating his art, reviews new turning equipment for craft magazines, and has created pieces for public exhibition.
    He packs a lot into a one day session too, and each part of the process of turning a bowl is explained in rigorous detail.
    At one stage he spent 20 minutes demonstrating how to achieve some stunning effects on the surface of the bowl, with a whole host of curious revolving tools coming out of the arsenal, as well as various abrasives, waxes and dyes, and even a blow torch.
    Susan ensured we never far from a good cup of tea, and gave us some first rate homemade soup with warm rolls for lunch.
    By late afternoon we had completed our projects, and I have to say I was quite surprised at the quality of the work we both turned under his supervision.
    I was a jobbing carpenter for over 20 years, so I expected to turn out something fairly respectable, as I’m no stranger to wood and chisels, but I didn’t expect to be quite as pleased with the result as I am. He’s a very likeable chap too, and goes to great lengths to ensure his pupils get as much out of the day as possible.
    If you are looking for an opportunity to try woodturning, then this course is a rare opportunity to learn from an extremely well informed bloke who is as fiercely passionate as any creative artist when it comes to his craft.

  2. Thank you Tim I am pleased you enjoyed your day here.You both did very well and I look forward to seeing you some time in the future.