Turning Archive 2007
Brian Simmons, Heflin, AL
>I had this piece of poplar drying for several years now. It was a twin trunk tree and the slab was around 6" thick. I have thought about a really big turning and the wife said that for the new house she would like a really big bowl to hang on the wall. So I finally got out the Prazi and rough cut the round shape. Had to build a gantry setup out of wood to 'plane' the cupped blank flat with a router. I filled in the voids with epoxy and coffee grounds. Then I made a faceplate from a mitsubishi gallant rim 17" in diameter. Mounted my now flat blank on the bowl lathe (actually a Schauer speed lathe) and thought about how to proceed for a few days. I finally rough cut the face with the shape dictated by the character of the wood. Cut a core off of the back to later turn into a matching mirror. I finished the face and started to cut the back shape as far as I could. Made a 37" diameter mdf/plywood faceplate to mount on the rim. Hot glued the bowl blank on the large wood plate. Finished the bottom and then sprayed on gloss spar urethane. Mounted a lazy susan bearing so that she can rotate the bowl any way she pleases. She now wants a satin finish so I guess I will sand it down a little and respray but she is very happy with her new house warming gift. Finished size is 34-3/8" diameter and 4-1/2" tall with the wall thickness at around 3/8". The blank weighed around 200 pounds and the finished bowl weighs 18 pounds.