Turning Archive 2007
>I spent yesterday attending a Melvyn Firmager demo. I then proceeded to spend 11 hours with him (and two other students) today getting a hands-on class at Angelo Iafrate's shop. Don't judge this fellow by his videos (somewhat dry in delivery). He's a funny and very personable guy! We had a really great time.
As some of you know, he has some VERY alien grinds on his tools. I learned to not only use them but also (most importantly) to sharpen them. In between sessions, I raced to grind my own gouges to match. All free hand grinding...couldn't figure out how they could possibly be jigged (although I tried). But with all the sharpening we had to do throughout the day, I got it down pat....with just a wide platform rest on the grinder.
All I can say is WOW. They really work well....and are used in the most UNCONVENTIONAL ways. With Melvyn's instruction and guidance, I was able to get honest-to-God "start-sanding-at-220-grit" finishes...no kidding...in both faceplate and spindle orientation (FYI, we were turning green Cherry). I couldn't believe it myself. And using gouges to hollow out forms thru a 1" opening was certainly an eye opener.
If you even get a chance to see him demo or take a class with him, you will NOT be disappointed! Your turning skills will only improve.