Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Oh gawd - what have we gone and done now?

First we said no more cats after my two old moggies died a few years ago. So obviously we took the first two that needed a home.

Then we said, thats enough now. So what did we do?

Monday, August 15, 2011

The end of the plank

The elm is finished. Shame as its beautiful wood. The colour and grain is fantastic and, apart from a few issues with some very soft patches, the wood has been very rewarding to turn. A few more things to add to the collection for a couple of exhibitions coming up.

The little bowl in the middle is an interloper from an earlier supply. Thought I'd attack it as I was in the 'elm' mood.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Still learning the basics

Basic wood finishing techniques apply just as much to turned wood as any other. I seem to have dropped this information from the poor old fading grey cells somehow. This elm was causing me trouble with torn grain that I just couldn't sand out. SAND WITH THE GRAIN.

I like the first platter with its knot hole and double curve to the bowl but the second is much better after changing both the scraper and sanding technique.

Another three to come from this plank so the fifth one might be OK

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The joys of green yew

The last tall stemmed vase decided to bite back. This is the first time I have had a bit of the yew crack since I started sealing straight after turning. Maybe I've been lucky.

So I had to cut off the base and make another one, this time its black and I think I prefer it like this.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The joys of self sufficiency

We came to France to enjoy all the finer things of life. Friends called us Tom and Barbara. We have chickens, we do all our own fruit and veg.

CORRECTION.... for 'we' read 'her'.

However, fate, as ever, has intervened. By destroying my back, I have edged myself into the other camp and have to join in a bit. This means spending time away from the lathe and enjoying life's little luxuries like joining lots of the onion family together into long strings so I can hang them on the front of me bike - if I could ride it now. Good job I don't have a beret.

Friday, August 5, 2011

More scallops

After the tall stuff and boxes, back to bowls.

A friend gave me a really big lump of Apple last week and, once his had been made, I thought I'd do a scallopy bowl and add a lid and finial / knob. This was intended to be a tall finial but nature intervened. There was a small knot half way up so it became a knob!

Finish is walnut oil then wax.

Monday, August 1, 2011

When I came to France, I had spent eight years getting nowhere with the NHS as I suffered from Trigeminal Neuralgia and they couldn't or wouldn't fix it. Keep taking the pills was the cry.

Sadly, it flared up pretty badly as soon as I got here but the French system eventually provided what I needed but I still had to get past one idiot who a) didn't like the English and b) was an incompetent twit.

If anyone wishes to know what its like or what its possible to go through sometimes given the care of the 'best health service in the world, please feel free to read the Google Doc in the link below.

After all the excitement of making stuff for galleries and exhibitions, its back to everyday things.

Looking around the workshop, quite apart from the usual mountainous piles of shavings and sawdust, there seem to be a number of offcuts littering the lathe bench. So what can we do with them other than put them on the firewood pile.

Lots of them are about 2 inches long and most include the hole from the screwchuck. However, one or two had tenons on and so lend themselves to producing small boxes like this in boxwood. Very quick, very attractive and very parsimonious with materials. Perfect in fact. (Not necessarily in form - thats down to me)