Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Pretend Projects

I have two little helpers who come out to the shop some and they come up with all sorts of ideas of what we should make while they are out there. Unfortunately most their ideas are bigger than our time allows, or would require way more planning than is possible while the helpers are around. They have some good ideas and it is a lot of fun to listen to them explaining their ideas.

Recently one morning my daughter came out to the shop and wanted to make a wand. So we found a small piece of maple and she helped me turn the main part of the wand. We sized the handle to her hand. She likes to catch the chips as they some off the lathe. While she was napping I finished sanding the handle and applied a finish. She wanted a star on the end but I thought a star would be too good of a weapon. So I cut a heart out of cherry and glued it to the wand.

Little brother has been playing knight and pirates lately and his favorite sword was a pastry brush. I found some thin (3/8") cherry and glued some walnut on to build up a the handle and then roughed out a sword shape. The shape of the sword could use some refining but it sure made a little boys day when I brought it in from the shop for him, I need to steal sometime when he is asleep and give it a finish.
Cutting vines
After getting the sword he asked "where's my shield?"

Both toys were made with the stipulation that if it was used as a weapon it would be destroyed in the wood stove.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Green Bowl Turning

Late last summer I cut down a cherry and an apple tree in the yard, I cut some bowl blanks as I was cutting up the trees.

While hauling some firewood to the shop I got distracted by the bowl blanks and brought a couple of them to the shop. I used the band saw to cut a rough circle and then mounted the bowl to the lathe using a lag screw as a screw chuck.
I then turned then outside of the bowl and glued my glue block I've used with my other bowls on to turn the inside. The blanks weren't all the way dry and the "green" wood was fantastic to turn. Since the wood was green I could either leave the bowl thick and let it dry slowly in a bag of shavings and then true up the bowl and finish it once it was dry. Or I could make the bowl thin and allow the bowl to warp and dry on its own. I didn't want to have to wait so I chose the second option. I used mineral oil to finish the bowl, which is a food safe finish. Here is the finished Apple bowl. It has already warped and has became oval shaped.

I am looking forward to making more bowl like this one.
Snack time
I am working on a big project and I am going to make one blog post about it when it is done instead of several post along the way.