June 14 2017 Keith Notley : Twice turned bowls 

Twice-Turned Bowl Turning 14.Jun.17
1. Cut log slightly longer than its maximum diameter. NOTE: The sooner you start on the
first turning after the tree is cut, the better.
2. Cut log in half lengthwise, having regard to the symmetry of each half and the position of
any knots or other significant features.
3. Trim half log to circular shape using band saw if possible or chain saw if too big.
4. Mount blank to lathe between centres, flat side at head end. Check for reasonably true
running and adjust if necessary before final tightening of tailstock. For larger blanks you
may consider using a screw chuck or faceplate.
5. Turn outside of bowl. Cut tenon or recess to reverse mount in 4-jaw chuck. (Generally
prefer recess with larger diameters.)
6. Reverse blank and mount in chuck by tenon or recess. (Make sure centre of base is
marked for later reference.)
7. Turn inside of bowl to wall thickness about 10% of max diameter. Try to keep wall
thickness fairly uniform to prevent stresses from uneven drying. Don’t worry about
achieving a nice finish. For large sizes and/or premium wood, coring can be done to
create more bowls and save on shavings production.
8. Coat outside of rough-turned bowls with anchorseal, or boil, cool and bag. Leave to dry
for appropriate time. (1 year/inch of thickness.)
1. Select dried rough-turned bowl from First Turning or Coring. If cored, you may need to
estimate the centre point on the base. Make dimple with bradawl. NOTE: It is useful to
measure the thickness at the centre of the base before mounting on the lathe.
Expand 4 jaw chuck to maximum. Hold inside of bowl over chuck jaws while bringing
up the tailstock live centre to engage the centre point. (Penetration of the live centre can
be limited by means of a washer or nut placed over the point.) Ensure that all 4 jaws
contact the wood by adjusting the contact points and tightening the tailstock as necessary.
2. As the rough-turned bowl dries, it becomes oval in shape. This is the reason why we
leave a fairly thick wall in the first turning so that we can turn away the outside on the
long axis and the inside on the short axis and still end up with a circular bowl. The
uneven shape will cause a lot of vibration when rotating. The larger the bowl, the more
troublesome this vibration will be. True up the rim first, and then turn outside of bowl to
finished shape. Use shear scrape technique to get as fine a finish as possible to minimize
sanding time. Do not sand the outside yet. If stub left from coring is too small, turn it
away and cut new tenon to suit chuck. (This is where it is useful to know the thickness of
the base – how much wood you have to work with.)
3. Reverse the blank and hold in the chuck by means of the tenon or recess.
4. Turn the inside. After removing the excess out-of-balance material from the inside, you
may be able to take another light cut on the outside to reduce vibration still more. Now
that the bowl is round you can increase the speed and continue hollowing the inside of the
bowl to the desired thickness. The conventional method of cutting using the bowl gouge
starts at the rim and proceeds towards the centre, riding the bevel and with the flute
towards the centre so that the cutting edge to the left of the tip does the cutting. With dry
wood you will find that you cannot take as large a shaving as you can with green wood in
the first turning. Take light cuts when approaching final thickness and try to minimize
chatter and tearout. Ideally, the final cut should be made with a single continuous sweep
with the bowl gouge. Don’t despair if you have difficulty with this at first. A round-nose
scraper can be used to get an excellent finish on the bottom third of the inside of the
bowl. This also solves the problem of riding the bevel all the way to the bottom. Turn the
lathe off and run your fingers across the bottom of the bowl to check for ridges. Use a
pencil to mark high spots and remove them with the scraper. Fingers are also the best
way to check for consistent wall thickness in small bowls. For larger bowls you will
need callipers. Don’t try to check wall thickness while the lathe is running. The bowl
rim is like a circular saw!
4a. As bowl size increases and wall thickness decreases, it becomes increasingly difficult to
achieve a good finish cut on the inside, as the tendency to flutter increases. There are two
spots on opposite sides of the bowl where it is difficult to control grain tearout. (You will
soon discover where these are!) I have developed two techniques to help solve this
problem: - The first is to use a pull cut with the flute facing towards you and cutting with
the left side of the flute. Once you have found the appropriate angle of presentation of
the gouge to the wood, try to maintain that geometry as the cut progresses from centre to
rim. The second way to control flutter is by using a bowl steady. I have found that the
commercially available types using wheels riding on the outside of the bowl create more
problems than they solve. The method I advocate involves mounting a disc of wood on
the live centre of the tailstock and running it in to bear against the inside of the bowl.
You can then use the pull-cut technique from the disc contact to the rim. With large
diameter bowls, a number of progressively smaller discs can be used and the finishing
cuts done in stages and blended appropriately.
5. When you have done the best you can with the tools, sand the inside. If your lathe is
reversible, you will find it beneficial to sand in both directions. Resist the urge to sand
the outside at this time. Wetting the wood occasionally will raise the grain and allow you
to achieve a better finish. There are always two spots on opposite sides of the inside of a
bowl where it is almost impossible to avoid some degree of tearout. Some dedicated
hand sanding with 80 grit on these spots may help to reduce the total sanding effort.
N.B. When sanding, be sure to clean the sanding dust away between each change of grit.
A vacuum or compressed air blower is handy for this. Pay particular attention to any
knots or bark inclusions which may have small pits where grit particles can lodge, to be
released later when you have progressed to finer grits.
6. When satisfied with the sanding job, you can apply the finish to the inside of the bowl if
it is one of the finishes that can be applied and buffed immediately. (Shellawax or
Clapham’s Salad Bowl Finish.) For other finishes that require time to cure, leave the
application of finish till later.
7. Remove from lathe. Measure thickness at centre of base with callipers before
remounting. Use a cushioning block in the chuck, and a pad to protect the finished inside
of the bowl before placing bowl over the chuck. Bring up the tailstock to the centre of
the base and snug up tailstock.
8. Finish turn the base to as close as you can get to the tailstock centre. Use the thickness
measured in 15 above and the height of the stub at the centre to determine how deep to
make the recess in the base. Turn a foot if the design calls for it or blend in the bowl
outside curve all the way to the bottom. Make any finishing touches to the outside
surface with the side of the bowl gouge used in the shear scraping mode.
9. Sand the outside of the bowl and the accessible part of the base. (Use a flat sanding
block with the coarser grits to maintain a flat plane surface on the foot. When sanding
with a block, keep it moving to avoid burning the paper.)
10. Apply finish if it was done on the inside.
11. Remove from lathe, sand off stub, sign and finish base.
Keith R. Notley

May 10 2017 Malcolm Zander demo

Notes of KWT Club Meeting of May 10, 2017 held at Frontenac High School.

·         Nelson called the meeting to order at 1855.


·         Herb discussed the Joint KWT-KWA symposium to be held at the Communications Museum of June 10.

o   Objectives of the Gallery is to show the public the work KWA and KWT members do and to raise the profile of our respective clubs

o   Show to be called “Artistry in Wood 2017”

o   Registration for the event is free to KWT members but the organizers need to know you’re coming. Therefore, there will be a registration. Registration forms were available at the meeting. The registration form will also be posted on the KWT Website.

o   A brief description of items should be included with the registration. The “item size” part of the form is not really applicable to KWT. It is geared toward KWA, some of whom could be bringing in large furniture items.

o   Entry of items will be open to KWT and KWA members (only) and items will not be screened / juried.

o   Members were strongly encouraged to submit at least one item. Organizers are looking for a broad spectrum of work from turners of all experience levels.

o   If you are unable to attend, please leave a piece or 2 with someone to take on your behalf

o   Tables are 6 ft in length.

o   The room is available for set-up from 1300 – 1600 on Friday

o   Small posters are available. Please take 1 or 2 to post in local businesses

o   There will not be an entry fee to members to display / sell items or a club commission on sold items.

o   Sale of items will strictly between exhibitor and buyer

o   In order to encourage attendance, entry will be free to the public

o   Exhibitors must bring their own extension cords if they need them


·         Malcom Zander from the Ottawa Valley Woodturners made a presentation and demo of turning thin walled pierced vases. See also Malcolm’s handout (available on KWT website at http://kingstonwoodturners.com/meeting-notes-2017/).

o   No sophisticated tools are required.

o   A 60o bowl gouge is used for 95% of the time, with a 45o bowl gouge also used

o   Endgrain and cross-grain examples were presented

o   Why thin-walled?

§  Create a form with lightness and delicacy

§  If the item is pierced, a thicker wall “closes off” the holes when viewed from obligue angles.

o   Why use dry wood?

§  Dry wood moves much less during turning

§  Gives more time to the turner to cut the thin wall without the piece becoming oval during turning

§  The piece can be sanded to its final finish on the lathe

o   Why use cross-grain blanks?

§  No special tools are required, just bowl gouges

o   Malcolm’s current work evolved from starting with natural edge bowls with sapwood rims

o   Most lace is based on a hexagon shape

o   The “Heart” bowls are turned end grain

o   One idea can lead to a whole series. For example, the natural edge with leaf motif

o   For a natural edge piece, the high wings must be the same height. It is aesthetically ok if the low wings (ie front and back of bowl) are of different heights.

o   Use the tailstock for support for as long as possible

o   The cone center can be effectively used during hollowing

o   Once the wall thickness is about ⅜” thick, switch to the longer bevel (45o) bowl gouge

o   To create an even, thin wall sight along the profile using both eyes.

o   Calipers can also be used. Set the calipers so there is a gap at the desired thickness. As you progress down the bowl if the gap lessens, the wall is too thick.

o   When entering a cut near the edge, use your left thumb as a steady/fulcrum to prevent the gouge from “skating”  toward the rim

o   Work in 1” increments so that the piece does not become prone to flexing during turning

o   Once you are done a section, you can’t go back.

o   When hollowing, set the tool rest to be parallel to the profile.

o   The bowl in the presentation was approximately 12” diameter with 1 mm wall thickness and sanded to 2000.

o   Piercing can be done with a dental drill or an NSK unit.

o   Both turn at approximately 400 000 rpm.

o   The NSK is a “pen” configuration, while the dentist’s drill is a right-angle configuration

o   The NSK has enough torque to handle a wall thickness of ⅛”.

o   A dental drill can go up to about 1.5 mm (1/16”)

o   A 40 000 rpm unit, such as Foredom, tends to track the grain

o   Cut with the bit perpendicular to the surface of the piece

o   Use one finger as a fulcrum for steadiness.

o   File the holes with a diamond file to smooth them and to get rid of burn marks.

o   Prior to filing, most of the burn marks can be removed by “wiping” the cut surface with the edge of the NGK (or dentist’s drill).

o   The Rollie Munro “Holy Rollie” hollowing tool was demonstrated and discussed.

o   Good light is essential for thin walled vessels and for piercing


·         Several items were presented at Challenge / Show and Tell including:

o   Box incorporating alumilite resin

Malcom has provided us with a PDF hand out from the demo he did for us . 

Malcolm Zander thin-wall handout
Zander Thin-wall handout.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [955.0 KB]

Febuary 8 2017

Notes of KWT Club Meeting of February 8, 2017 held at Frontenac High School.
· Nelson called the meeting to order at 1900.
· Les Clarke provided a reminder about the KWA Symposium to be held at Frontenac High School on April 8, 2017.  The early bird rate of $45.00 ends on February 28, 2017. Thereafter, the cost is $65.00. Payment can be made online. The Symposium will have 9 sponsors (5 in attendance), a gallery, and will feature presentations by 6 craftsmen. Lunch is included.  Les also noted that the KWA Gallery is being targeted for June or July, and asked any KWT member interested in participating on the committee to speak with him or Marty.
· Nelson reminded the members that sandpaper, CA glue, and End Sealer were available for purchase from the club. Lathes are also available for sign out from the club.
· Members were informed of the benefits of AAW membership. Promotional material was provided. AAW membership includes subscription to American Woodturner (published 6 times per year), FUNdamentals (on-line magazine published 6 times per year) and other publications.
· The Totally Turning Symposium will be held in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. on April 1-2, 2017. Demonstrators include David Ellsworth, Curt Theobald, Jimmy Clewes, Kurt Hertzog, Trent Bosch, Lionel Bedard and others. Some KWT members will be going so there will be car pools. If interested, talk to Nelson, Dave or Joe.
· The KWT library is always looking for new items. If you have a book, DVD, or magazines that you no  longer need, consider donating them. It was suggested that the library inventory list be posted on the website.
· Trevor and Ian from the Quinte Woodturners Guild attended the meeting. Trevor provided a demonstration regarding casting of alumilite (ie resin) with wood (eg burls, pinecones) to produce blanks. Trevor’s castings can be used for game calls, wine stoppers and many other small items.  Resin can also be incorporated into bowl turnings
o A pressure pot is required. Cost is about $100.00 including fittings.
o Incorporating resin can make a holey piece of firewood into a very attractive blank.
o Resin is available from Woodchuckers and Leading Edge Hobbies.
o Although the resin is pricey, wine stoppers incorporating resin typically sell for $40 and Duck Calls $80 to $100.
o Molds are required and can be made from hardboard. Mold pieces are glued with medium CA glue.
o Since substantial heat will be generated, the mold material must be robust (no plastic yogurt containers)
o Molds are single use and are cut off when the casting has cured.
o After the mold is made, it is necessary to seal all the joints with CA glue as well.
o A shop built tray is used within the pressure pot to hold 2 levels of molds.
o Since wood will float, the wood is glue to the mold. Toothpicks can be glued to the bottom of the mold so the wood will sit on top and the resin will also cover the bottom face of the wood.
o Only bone dry wood should be used.
o Trevor dries his pieces in an old toaster oven set at 180o to 200o. The cycle is 2 hours on and ½ hour off.
o If not being used right away, the wood must be sealed immediately afterward so that the blank does not reabsorb moisture prior to use.
o Any soft material (eg bark) has to be removed from the wood using a pick, wire brush, or similar tool.
o Since the resin flow by gravity, the orientation of the blank (ie orientation of the cavities) within the mold is important.
o Wax and end sealer is the enemy of resin. Resin will not bond to a waxed surface
o For finishing, Trevor uses spray lacquer.
o Pieces are wet sanded to 400 to 600 grit.
o Several options for coloring are available, including:
§ Dyes (translucent)
§ Fluorescent dyes (opaque)
§ Mica Powder (sold for use in making home cosmetics. Mica powder does not absorb into the wood)
§ Oil base paints (though these are opaque and will also result in the resin not fully hardening)
o Once the wood is added to the mold, screen fabric is glued to the top edge of the mold so the wood does not float away.
o The alumilite is mixed and poured through the screen. A smallhole can be placed in the screen to allow the alumilite to get through faster.
o The aluminlite is mixed by weight, not volume.
o The open time is approximately 15 minutes. It is not necessary to hurry, but it is important to be well organized and have all materials etc ready to go.
o The alumilite was mixed in plastic cups. A mixing attachment on a cordless drill was used to ensure the product was well mixed, which is critical.
o A red dye and silver mica pigment were selected for use in the demo. The resin mixture was divided into 2 cups, with Mica added to one and the dye to the other.
o There are no hard rules as to how much dye to used Beginners tend to use too much, resulting in a more opaque finished blank. Use of less dye will result in a more translucent look.
o Once poured, the castings were placed on the tray and put into the pressure pot.
o The pressure pot Trevor uses is rated at 65 psi. There is no reason to go above this.
o Although curing time is typically listed at 2 hours, it is better to leave the blanks under pressure overnight.
o Blanks can be turned 48 hours after removal from the pressure pot.
· KWT offers our sincere thanks to Trevor and Ian for a very informative and interesting demonstration.
· The challenge for February was to bring in a tool sharpened using the techniques presented at the last meeting. Items brought forward included:
o Home-made parting tool
o Parabolic bowl gouge
· The following items were brought forward for Show and Tell:
o Christmas bell ornaments
o Potpourri bowl (red cedar finished with butcher’s block finish)
o A hollow shallow form
o Winged bowl (spalted maple)
o Vase (red cedar, finished with tung oil)
o Bowl (cherry)
o Bowl (burl)
o Surveying tray with integral bowl
o Hollow form (maple burl)
o Pens (Maple, Japanese Olive, Walnut and Redheart)
· The next Club Meeting will be Wednesday, March  8, 2017 at Frontenac High School.  The challenge will be to turn an item made from a medium other than wood.
End of Notes
Notes by Dave Lindensmith
Adobe Acrobat document [46.3 KB]

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