Friday, January 22, 2010

Lathe - Early Turnings

For some reason, I started off using my HP lathe by turning bowls on the lathe.  In retrospect, the only reason for doing it was that we needed some basic wooden bowls, and at the time, it seemed like a simple enough thing to do.  These photos all date from March-May 2008.

I used some old rimu timber left over from building our house in 1990.  Being from 200mm planks, these bowls were about 200mm diameter, which was right at the edge of what the lathe is capable of handling.  Even with the new 6:1 gearing, the work would stall at the slightest overload from the chisel.

By dint of having very sharp tools, and making only fine cuts, progress was possible, but rather slow, even with most of the waste wood in the centre chopped out with a chisel.

 The bowl that really went quite well was from a piece of fairly green birch wood. The wood was softer and this turned out well enough and mostly held its shape as the bowl seasoned.  It was good enough to give away to a friend as a present.

 When I came to repeat the turning with the other half of the split birch log some six months later, this had become rather too hard to easily turn and had developed enough of a split to be a problem.  I decided early on that this was not going to work well and binned it.

So, no more bowls on the agenda at the moment.  Until I do something about a lower ratio on the drive pulley, it's just not worth it.

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