Monday, April 18, 2022

When things work out.

Today in woodshop I did an experiment in preparing an elm log for turning on the lathe. What I wanted to do was to simply take a slice off each side so that the short firewood-length log could be mounted on the lath chuck. Woodturning is nearly always experimental and of course that's part of its appeal. We wonder, "can I do that?" and "how?"And then are pleasantly surprised when things work out.

Normally in cutting a log on the bandsaw, that it is round causes difficulties as it passes through the cut. If it twists even the slightest amount, the blade can bind and the flat surface desired will not result. What's needed is a way to hold it steady without twisting as it passes through the cut. 

There are of course, more complicated processes and jigs for this. With an interest in keeping things as simple as possible, I decided to screw a piece of plywood to the side of the log, positioning the screws where they do not interfere either with the cut, or in what's planned as the finished bowl.

It worked, and the technique will be published as a tip to American Woodturner Magazine. More photos will be taken from various angles tomorrow. The masking tape provides a guide for making the freehand cut.

In the meantime, as I observe sales on Amazon, the new book is near the top in three categories among the millions of books they sell. More important to me, however, is the glowing review of the book I received in email this morning from Hans Thorbjörnsson in Sweden. He was my early mentor as I gained an understanding of Educational Sloyd and to hear his praise means a great deal.

Make, fix and create...

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