Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Day 43: Light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation

Limited time in the shop tonight, I had to go to the photo lab to pick up this pair of 11 X 14 prints.  They're headed to their new owner tomorrow.

What little time I did spend in the shop I spent trying to disassemble and repair the laser for my hollowing system.  It should be a single point, not the spider web pattern you can see here.  I didn't make any progress, my neighbor thinks it's dust, I think it's a lens out of alignment or broken.  We've agreed to disagree.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Day 42: lessons learned

No photos tonight, I gave a lesson to a fellow turner on how to turn collars for hollow forms.  He brought over 2 Mesquite hollow forms he'd recently finished along with a chunk of Wenge for the collars.  I turned the first one and the he turned the second.  We used a shop made jig I call a compression chuck.  I use similar jigs and techniques to turn the solid wood rings that i use for bases on some of my round bottom bowls.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Day 41: Necessity is the mother of invention

I cut the index finger on my right hand yesterday so I took it pretty easy tonight, I finally finished the bottom of the eccentric goblet.  It took me a couple of days to figure out how to get it done.  Eventually I decided to make a long vacuum drum.  I used a 3" ABS pipe with a reducer on the end to form the vacuum chamber.  I had to cut a slot in the reducer to accept the stem and then had to tape over the slot and around the joint between the pipe and the reducer in order to make it air tight.

 The finished piece, better showing the offset between the axis and how the ring is captured

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Day 40: Shaken not stirred.

Another goblet today, based on the sketch below.  I decided though that I'd switch it up a little and make it a martini glass rather than a typical goblet that I sketched.

The martini glass is Mahogany, the pimento is a small piece of Padauk, the toothpick is a small sliver of sapwood from the same piece of Padauk.

I had a problem hollowing the olive and got it a little too thin which caused the step to break off.  To solve this I inserted the stem into the olive and when I drilled the hole for the toothpick I made sure it went through the stem as well.  It's secured fairly well with just the toothpick acting as a pin to hold it in place.

Day 39: A day late...

Not much spare time yesterday but I did manage to get some work  done before I headed off to run a couple errands and go play in my monthly poker game.

Sissoo nested set.  I think this is the 2nd to last piece of Sissoo to rough out.  I'll probably do the last piece today just so I'll be done with it.

Both errands last night were also turning related, I delivered a hot dog to its new owner and I met with a new turner at his home in Anthem to give him a few pointers and answer a few questions.  Combine that with a poker game that lasted until well after midnight  and I didn't find the time to write the blog entry yesterday.

By the way, I came in 6th out of 31 players in the poker game, they paid the top 5.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Day 38: Miscellaneous

I had someone ask me how I did the multi-axis piece from yesterday, I didn't want to turn another one so I drew out the steps on another blank.

Here you can see 2 of the jaws have been removed, this will allow the piece to be moved from side to side to accommodate the second axis.  This blank is Mesquite and is about 3 1/2" square and 10" long.

The center line on the primary axis is shown as a dotted line, the inside and outside of the cup portion will be turned.

 Still on the primary axis the top of the first transition is turned.  As each section is finished it is sanded and finished.  You can never go back.

The blank has been shifted to the second axis, the center line of this axis is shown as a second dotted line.

The bottom of the first transition and the first part of the off axis stem will be turned.

The captured ring is turned and the rest of the off axis stem is turned.

The top of the 2nd transition is turned.

The blank is moved back to the original axis, noted with a darker dotted line.  The marks from the corners of the jaws can be used to recenter the piece with a reasonable degree of accuracy.

The bottom of the second transition is turned as is most of the bottom portion of the stem.

The base is turned and the entire piece is parted off of the lathe.

I'm still figuring out how to finish the base.

One more hot dog tonight.  This bun was turned from Ficus and I decided to make this one look like someone has taken a bite out of the end.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Day 37: Chandler and challenge

Judy and I stopped by the Chandler Center for the Arts Vision Gallery today as I wanted to snap a couple of photos of the installation and my pieces.  Today was supposed to be the last day but I learned this afternoon that it has been extended to 10/3/09.

This is from the North end of the gallery looking straight South.

One Man's Trash.  Bug eaten Palo Verde.  This log almost went into the recycling bin a couple of years ago.  I was cleaning the shop and had tossed this log section into the pile to be recycled.  At the last moment I decided to cut into the log and was amazed at what I saw.  I still have several pieces of this log left to be turned.

 Off Broadway.  I drove past this tree every day for almost a year. I could see the burls on the side of the tree as it stood dead in an empty lot.  One morning I noticed that the tree had been cut down and I made a detour to investigate, hoping that it was still there.  I was pleasantly surprised to find it laying in the middle of the lot along with several pine trees.  I called my wife from work and convinced her to bring me my chainsaw, I was going to salvage as many of the burls as possible on my lunch hour!

I still have a couple of pieces of this burl, including one that's probably about 18" across.

Tonight I worked on turning one of the goblets I'm planning for next month's President's Challenge.

This is the multi axis piece with the captured ring I sketched in the link above.  I think it's extremely close to what I sketched.  I still need to finish the bottom of the base, the method I thought I was going to use won't work because of the multi axis element.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Day 36: Cleaning day 3

Another vacation day spent cleaning (mostly).  I can see the top of this cabinet for the first time in quite a while.  I also spent a lot of time organizing my tool box.  The storage box on the right is full of pen blanks as are the 3 boxes in the middle.  The dust collector, table saw, and compressor are to the left, the drill press is to the right.  The stereo sits on top of the pen blank storage box.

Somebody dumped a tree in the desert behind our house a couple days ago and I've had my eye on it for as long as it's been there.  Today I decided to grab it and throw it on the lathe even though I knew it was a variety of pine.  Several of the knots line up nicely and I was hoping for it to look like Norfolk Island Pine (which is not actually a pine)

Light shining through the knots.  I turned it as thin as I dared.  Unfortunately I got a little to thin when turning the base and cut through the bottom a little bit.  I'm considering a couple of different ways to possibly save this piece.

Speaking of Norfolk Island Pine, I started to refinish this bowl tonight.  It had a very thick and uneven coat of oil built up and I'm in the process of sanding all of that off and back to bare wood.

I have the outside sanded smooth, the inside still needs quite a bit of work.  I'm hoping to have this one done in time for the Sunnyslope Art Walk on 10/10.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Day 35: Cleaning part 2

I can walk all the way around the lathe for the first time in a long time.

The pile in the back left corner is mostly Desert Ironwood with some Mesquite and Olive mixed in.

Middle left (not shown) are 2 shelves with Eucalyptus Burl and Cottonwood Burl.

Front left is a mixture of Mesquite, Sissoo, Palo Verde, and Ash.

The shelves in the back are dry roughouts of various woods including Mesquite, Mulberry, African Sumac, Desert Ironwood, Quaking Aspen, Poplar, Acacia, and others.   The bottom 2 shelves in the back have more Desert Ironwood and Mesquite logs.

Tomorrow should be all the small stuff, mainly cleaning up counters, cupboards, and shelves.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Day 34: Cleaning part 1

Spent most of the day today cleaning and organizing the shop.  This is a shot of my primary wood shelf as it appears after being organized today.  The very top is mostly spindle stock.  The second shelf is all burls, oak, cedar, Box Elder, Walnut, and others.  Third and fourth shelves are various bowl blanks in a variety of sizes.  The bottom shelf is mostly large bowl blanks.

The log to the left is Pecan, the log to the right is African Sumac.

I still have a ton of stuff to clean tomorrow, including several very large and very heave pieces of Desert Ironwood.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Day 33: Vacation eve

I'm on a mandatory vacation this week but we're not going anywhere.  I plan to clean and rearrange the shop as well as do a few things around the house.  I also plan to spend plenty of time turning.

Today I decided to finish another hot dog bun, this one is out of Shamel Ash and like the others is 6" long and 2 1/4" diameter.

I also roughed and cored one of the pieces of Acacia I got yesterday.  The blank was just under 16" square and was close to 100 pounds before it was trimmed to fit on the lathe.

The resulting bowls are 15", 12", 9", and 6".  I'm really happy with the grain matching on these pieces.  I have 2 more half logs from this tree, they're both a bit smaller but should still produce stunning bowls.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Day 32: Sketch book

A peek into several sketches from tonight.  Almost everything I did today was related to woodturning but ironically I didn't spend any time in the shop.

From 10 to Noon I had a Desert Woodturning Roundup  committee meeting.  Noon to 4 was the Arizona Woodturners Association monthly meeting.  After the meeting I dropped a friend's house as he had some wood for me.

This sketch is an idea for a hollow form I've been kicking around for a while but haven't put to paper.  I plan to cut windows out of the top of the piece leaving a bridge of wood surrounding the hole used to hollow it out.

Simple vase form.

Another fairly simple form.

Square opening.  This will involve a fair amount of hand carving and sanding but I'm looking forward to the challenge.

Similar form to the drawing 2 spots up but with a curved slot extending from the opening down the side of the piece.

The President's challenge for October is "Goblets".  I have a couple of ideas I'd like to try.

Eccentric stem with a captured ring.  I'd like the ring to be small enough to be captured between the transitions from the 2 centers.

Eccentric turning on the stem again, this time with an offset sphere.

A continuation on the goblet above but with the sphere centered.  The twist here is that I want to hollow the sphere, paint it olive green and then insert a small piece of red colored wood and a toothpick so that it looks like a pimento stuffed olive stuck in the middle of the stem rather than in the drink.

Last one tonight.  Goblet with an angled rim.  I could hollow it out and then cut it at an angle but that would be too easy.  I plan to cut it first and then hollow it, possibly adding a captured ring as well.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Day 31: Deux dogs

I grilled hot dogs for dinner tonight and had to take this picture.  The hot dog on the left was my daughter's dinner, the one on the right is headed to a new home.  It sold to a friend of mine after he saw it posted on Facebook.

I then turned 5 more hot dogs, the original one is on the bottom of this photo.  The 5 I turned tonight are just a bit thinner than the first one.

Then I turned and finished buns for 2 of the new hot dogs.  The bun on the left is Shamel Ash, on the right is Eucalyptus.

I don't think it can be seen in this or any other photos but there is a very small amount of carving on each end of the hot dog meant to mimic the markings left on the end of a real hot dog after the plastic casing has been removed.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Day 30: Pie filling

Finished working on the Mesquite pie tonight.  The 2 bowls that were cored from the larger pieces were sanded and had the bottoms finished.

Nested set.  This was a lot of fun to do but I'm not sure how many more I'll do.  It was more of an exercise to see if it could be done and to accurately reproduce the initial idea and sketch.  I think I succeeded.

The 2 smaller pieces have round bottoms so they sit nicely inside largest bowl.  I left the base on the largest bowl a bit thick and fairly wide so it's nice and stable.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Day 29: I wish I were an Oscar Meyer weiner...

Not a lot of time in the shop tonight, I was in there just long enough to turn a bun for the hot dog that I turned last night.

Curly poplar bun with Sapele hot dog.  Both are very close to life size.

Alternate view.  I wanted to do the bun as a single piece but I knew that if I cut the notch before I turned the bun that It would end up smaller than I wanted and with the notch extending less than half way through the bun as I needed solid wood for both the drive center and the live center.  The other option is to cut the notch after turning the bun round but I didn't feel like I could do that safely and accurately.

So I went with option #3.  I cut the notch first and then glued a temporary waste blocks onto each end so I could center the block properly.  A bit of turning, a bit of sanding and a quick coat of oil and it looks good enough to eat.