Copyright © 2019 Burnham-on-sea Woodturning Club

Burnham-on-sea          Woodturning Club

Meeting Reviews

July 2019 - Chris Foweraker

June 2019 - Paul Sweet

May 2019 - George Foweraker

April 2019 - Bryan Milham

March 2019 - Mark Sanger

February 2019 - George Foweraker

January 2019 - Paul Sweet

November 2018 - Jason Breach

October 2018 - Colwin Way

September 2018 - John Blake

August 2018 - Paul Sweet

July 2018 - Mark Sanger

June 2018 - John Lancaster

April 2018 - Liz Kent

March 2018 - Paul Hannaby

January 2018 - George Foweraker

November 2017 - Jason Breach

October 2017 - Tony George

September 2017 - Bryan Milham

September 2017 - AWGB

August 2017 - Mark Hancock

June 2017 - John Aitken

April 2017 - Chris Foweraker

March 2017 - Mark Sanger

February 2017 - George Foweraker

January 2017 - Paul Sweet

November 2016 - Jason Breach

October 2016 - Bryan Milham

September 2016 - Mark Sanger

August 2016 - Keith Fenton

July 2016 - George Foweraker

June 2016 - Chris Foweraker

June 2016 - Stuart Mortimer

April 2016 - Pete Moncrieff-Jury

March 2016 - Mark Sanger

February 2016 - Ray Blake

January 2016 - George Foweraker

December 2015 - Nick Agar

November 2015 - Paul Hannaby

October 2015 - George Foweraker

September 2015 - Mark Sanger

August 2015 - Jason Breach

July 2015 - Chris Foweraker

June 2015 - Nick Agar


July 2019 - Chris Foweraker


Chris’s demo was based on off-centre turning, similar to the one George did earlier in the year, but as always with Chris, the focus was on precision planning and control as well as numerous homemade tools and jigs to ensure accuracy and safety.


The objective was to create a 6” diameter sycamore bowl with 6 identical indented bowls in the top. The first task was to mark out the 5 equal segments at 72 degree spacings and then mark a 2” circle around the centre which would define the centre points for the 5 outer bowls.


The bowl was then mounted in an ingenious jig which enabled the bowl blank to be screwed in place such that the whole assembly was then more in balance to enable a higher lathe speed than would otherwise be the case.






























To mount the bowl blank the jig baseplate was mounted in the headstock and then with one of the bowl centre points precisely aligned with a sharp pointed revolving centre in the tailstock, the bowl blank could be held in place in place with a 2 or 3 screws.










The first bowl (13/16” diam) could then be carefully turned out to the required depth using a 3/8” bowl gouge, checking with a simple pre-set depth gauge to ensure all the holes are the same depth.


Top Tip 1 - health and safety  - Chris advises removing all finger rings and watches when turning

Top Tip 2 - to check that a piece of work is in balance, bring up the lathe speed until it wobbles, increase until it doesn’t, then again until it does and then reduce slightly - this is then the maximum in balance speed

Top Tip 3 - when turning the bowl, leave the centre pith until last and then, with bevel on first, remove the pith bit by bit to make sure the fibres aren’t damaged which would otherwise create a hole.


Having turned the first hole, remove screws, reposition the blank on the next centre mark using the revolving centre in the tailstock, replace screws, remove tailstock and turn the next  hole. Repeat until all 5 identical holes have been turned.


Mount the bowl blank against a backplate with the centre point held by the tailstock and screw through the backplate to hold the blank. Drill using a depth mark (less than the depth of the subsequent middle bowl!) to enable the blank to be held on a screw chuck in order to turn the bottom of the bowl blank.


With the blank mounted on the screw chuck And supported by the tailstock …


Top Tip 4 - shavings should come out through the flute if the presentatiuon angle is correct



Top Tip 5 - when using the bowl gouge as a scraper then resharpen afterwards as scraping takes the edge off



Remove from the screw chuck and remount on the spigot. Mark and turn the centre bowl as for the other 5 and then add a bead on the edge to cater for a lid if required and then sand the top face.


Remount on a faceplate held very gently on the tailstock. With the flute of the gouge absolutely horizontal tidy up the edge of the foot and then hollow out the foot to remove the centre dot. Finally, mount a sanding arbour to remove the pith from the foot.






















The finished bowl could be used for eggs or earrings for example. If used for earrings then the centre bowl could be replace with a post and cross piece for necklaces. A lid could be added to engage against the bead on the top face.


An excellent demo with lots of useful tips illustrating that patience, planning, precision, care and good technique will produce an attractive and useful object. Thanks again Chris.



 David Langan