Sunday, April 29, 2012

Roller coaster

It's been a roller coaster the last 3 weeks. I had back-to-back shows, a demonstration, family in town, a museum exhibit opening, my wife's birthday, plus my normal 9-5. I'm hopeful that things will settle down soon.

The "Mesquite" exhibit opened at the Tohono Chul Park in Tucson on 4/26. I took my Mother to the artist's reception as she was in town and my wife was attending my son's 4th grade music program (I went to the 1:30 showing). The piece above is mine and is one of the first pieces visible as you enter the exhibit.

I have 2 other pieces in the exhibit, the hollow form on the left and the 3 piece nested set on the right. The small natural edge piece in the center is by a turner from the Tucson club. The little blue sticker indicates it has already been sold.

About a week ago I got word that a local club member was having some health issues and was liquidating his shop. The lathe and most of the other big equipment sold almost immediately and it was mostly small stuff left at this point. Last night I found out that among the pieces left over was a Teknatool Titan chuck. I've wanted one for a long time but they've been out of production for the past 3 or 4 years. Ironically they were just reintroduced but the specs changed enough that the one I had ordered was returned completely unused. Safe to say that this is an older one with the original specs (made in New Zealand, not China/Hong Kong where I believe they're being made now) and I got it at a really good price.

He also had a pair of Supernova 2s for sale and even though I don't need another one the price was too good to pass up. This photo illustrates the size difference between the Supernova 2 and the Titan. The Supernova 2 is a sizable chuck and I've used it to turn bowls and platters up to 19" but it's dwarfed by the Titan chuck and there's even a set of jaws larger than this that's next on my shopping list.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Gleatons

A trio of mini hollow forms in Ornamental Plum. The wood came from my neighbor's back yard. I actually turned these about a month ago and gave them to a good friend. He was hosting our monthly poker game and both him and his wife had just celebrated birthdays a day apart. Their daughter had also just turned 1 so I did a family set. Normally when I do a trio like this they're all the same diameter and just vary in height. This set vary in height and in diameter. The wife is taller and thinner (and older) the husband is shorter and heavier. The baby is 1 so she's the smallest of the bunch.

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Monday, April 2, 2012

Base 10

A little more work on the new base tonight. I spent about 30 more minutes picking away more bark and cambium. Then I used a paint brush to apply a coat of oil into all the nooks and crannies.

After the oil has been applied. The color is significantly darker now but that also means that some of the reds and they grays stand out more too.

I think that the dark bottom of the hollow form works well with the dark base. They aren't from the same tree but the almost look like they could be. This is supposed to be for the April President's challenge but I don't know if it will make it. I will not be at the April meeting as I have a show that day. I also have a show the week before that. If it doesn't sell at either of those shows I'll display it at the May meeting.

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Sunday, April 1, 2012


Today was my first real shop time in the last 2+ weeks. I got about 1/2 hour earlier this week but used it for cleaning and some organization. I had 2 projects in mind for the day and I think both were successful.

First is a bowl turned of some Ornamental Yew. I roughed out the bowl about a year ago and it seems to be the right size and shape for what I plan to do next. I plan to wrap the outside with leather. I purchased the leather earlier this year and never quite got around to do the leather work.

Next up was yet another base for my natural edge Box Elder Burl hollow form. It took me a while to find the exact right piece of wood. It's a small natural edge burl cap, also Box Elder Burl. This time I finally think I nailed it.

The top is slightly dished so the hollow form sits nicely but is also secure and stable. The natural edge was completely covered in bark so I spent as much time removing the bark as I did turning.

I didn't want to leave the bottom completely flat and plain so I ended up turning a small half bead and a shallow recess where the tenon was. No finish is applied yet. I still have some small bark pockets to take care of.

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