Monday, 19 August 2019

Wide rimmed Bowl WIP for Will Stewart

I am not saying this is the best way or the only way it is the way I do it.

This is a Spalted Sycamore blank I roughed out probably a year ago.It would have been partly air dried but not dry enough to finish.

 This blank has quite a large spigot because when it was roughed out  I would probably have done a batch of about 50 or more and with the bigger spigot I could turn it safely at a very high speed therefore getting through the work a lot quicker
 At this stage the underside has been given its final shape and the spigot reduced. To save on time the  large spigot is now reduced in size to create the finished foot and I put a slope on the side of the foot so that when I sand the underside the abrasive goes over the slope and saves time better than sanding a square edge. .The underside is then sanded down to 1000 grit 120,180,240,320,400.600.1000 I sand all of my work down to 1000 grit.Then I apply a coat of Cellulose sanding sealer and wipe of excess and spin the piece up fast with a bit of Safety cloth held quite firmly against the piece to create a bit of heat to set the sealer.

 Next with the Lathe stopped and a thin film of Yorkshire Grit is wiped on.The lathe is then spun up slowly to star with and building the speed gradually to break down the grit this creates a very fine finish
 Then a thin coat of Hampshire Sheen High Gloss polish is applied again with the lathe stopped followed by buffing with safety cloth with the lathe at quite a high speed.
 This is the underside finished to a very high standard and all that is left is to remove the Spigot later
 Bowl reverse chucked and rim sanded to 240 Grit don't go any smoother than this as the paint needs something to grip on

 I then apply a coat of Chestnut Ebonising lacquer taking care not to spray inside the inner Bowl or the paint will be sucked up the end grain and you will never remove it.What I used to do to avoid this was to coat the surface of the inside with wax polish to fill the end grain and then if you get over spray it will not be sucked up into the grain If you do it this way when you have finished your colouring turn out the first bit of the inner bowl with the Lathe running slowly or the polish we go all over the rim because of centrifugal force
 To speed everything up I have dried the paint with a hot air gun.
 I am going to do the colouring with Jo Sonja's iridescent paints as pictured below.I keep the paints upside down because then I don't have to turn them up to get the paint to the top it is already there time saved.
I am using three colours on this piece first is Red

 Followed by Turquoise and a bit of Gold.I do not like putting on too much Gold I feel it can over power the other colours. The paint is simply dabbed on with a bit of crumpled up carrier bag
 All colours on and to save time I dry the paint with a hot air gun this does not hurt the paint just don't burn it.

The inside of the Bow is then turned down to a finish and sanded to 1000 Grit
 I am now going to put a border both sides of the coloured rim to make the painted area stand out and tie the whole piece together.Firstly I cut through the paint very carefully with the point of a Skew chisel.Take care doing this and only use the point of the skew or it might track of left or right spoiling the piece.The skew must be dead upright.
 Skew from another angle.
 That is the two lines defined then I carefully remove the paint with a Spindle gouge to create a nice margin keeping them the same size or they will look odd
 Carefully sand down again to 1000 Grit

 Then the whole top wood and paint is given a coat of Chestnut Acrylic sanding sealer and a couple of coats of Hampshire Sheen Gloss lacquer sprayed wet on wet .The sealer coat in my opinion is very important to seal the Paint and protect from fading.
 Then again I go through the the same process with the Yorkshire grit and Hampshire Sheen high Gloss this gives a very good finish but this is only on the wood not the paint.
 Remove the spigot and put my Brand on the bottom and we are done.

 Finished Bowl

It took me longer to write this up than it did to make the Bowl.I have been making hundreds of these for about 15 years and have got it of to a tee.When I do these in bulk I do each stage on about ten bowls at a time and I have got it down to about 30 minutes from roughed out Bowl to finished


  1. Lovely clear instructive piece. And a nice bowl too. Many thanks. Mike313.

  2. Thank you for taking the time to read it and comment Mike.
    I know it is a bit long but I have tried to cover every bit of the process

  3. This is much more than "Artistry in Wood". Taking the time to photograph and write up speaks volumes beyond the piece being made.
    ATB John

    1. Thank you John it is a lot of work but worth the effort

  4. Nice to see such clear instructions on how to do the paint finish.

  5. Thank you I am pleased you like it