Turning Archive 2005

Subject:
Then I finished the bottom of the bowl, and....

David
>Argh. Just sharing a little frustration. Now, I've only made about six bowls total, so there is the slightest possibility that I've got a few things more to learn.

I had a bowl mounted up on the lathe for a few days, and shaped the bottom just the way I wanted it, cut in a recess for the chuck, sanded it in grades to 600 (highest I've got), finished with minwax antique oil (Which is why it was mounted for several days), it was looking very good, feeling really smooth. Took it off the lathe, very careful not to ding it around, flipped it, put it on the chuck, made sure it was secure, fired up, and it held pretty solidly. Started squaring up the end, and was just about to start hollowing it when....it spun right off, dinking off the lathe and wheeling across the floor until it came to rest - thank goodness the pickax and then the wall were there to stop it. I think I started pleading "-bad word- NO! NO no no nono ohhhhhhh" before it even hit the floor.

Fortunately the damage wasn't too severe, so I didn't lose the wood, but I did have to start over and erase my sins. I'm not certain of the reason it popped off, but my money is on either the recess didn't have at least a 90 degree wall, or I was pushing the limits of good taste by using chuck jaws that were too small. Both situations corrected now. I guess I should be/am grateful for the lesson, but disappointed that the piece won't be quite as big as originally planned.

I rescued this from curbside, having asked the owner if it was ok (try explaining a wood lathe to an elderly man who is exceptionally hard of hearing, and how you are going to make a bowl out of his waste wood. His reaction was "well what do I care? Its at the curb!") It took me about an hour to cut the piece out from the curb with a bow saw, and probably another hour and a half to make a blank out of it in the basement. It has been anchor-sealed and drying since April. I was so patient letting it dry - it seems to be pretty stable - and then rolled it like a tire.

When I am finished, I'll post it, and you can help me decide what kind of wood it is. I think it is Beech. I might still have pics of the pre-lathed wood.

At least I haven't turned it into a lampshade. Yet.

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