Forest of Bere Woodturners Newsletter Pages

Home 2019 Archive

This Saturday’s tutors were Bill Thorne turning Apples and Pears with Alan Brown explaining Beads and Coves to Beginners John Wyatt had set up his grinding system to explain and show how to sharpen our Turning Tools. With myself showing the principles on how to mark out Barley twists.

Bill with an Apple and Pear which he had turned.

Saturday Club 13th April 2019

Bill had as always a lot of interest more for his banter than his skill in making his fruit.

The photo below shows Alan describing certain aspects of turning Beads and Coves.

John with club members discussing tool sharpening.

The photo above shows John with club members discussing how to sharpen your turning tools whilst the photo bottom right shows Don explaining how after marking out how to cut your spirals to make your Barley Twist. As usual the morning was well supported and look forward to the next Saturday Club on 11th May 2019.


Written and Photographed by Don Smith

Masterclass Margaret Garrard 14th April 2019

Margaret then gave a brief history of her turning career which started in 1995, and after giving a demonstration at her home club was asked to do the same at another club.  Lack of confidence and nerves resulted in declining, however the club suggested doing a joint demonstration with a female member of their club, which was reluctantly agreed, however on the night the partner did not turn up! With little option Margaret flew solo.  The rest is history as they say.

The first item was a beech bowl with inserts.  A face plate was used to mount the blank on the lathe. The exterior of the blank was turned with a bowl gouge, and then a swept back gouge to remove a high spot, a scraper was then used only to show how it could be used for the same purpose.  At this point Margaret also said don't be afraid to use 80 grit abrasive it is another tool in your tool box.

A spigot was turned to hold the bowl when reversed. An explanation of how to safely use jaws was given. The bowl was removed and the face plate taken off, a recess was then turned on the reverse, this was important as it had a dual function for mounting and as an aid to glueing/clamping the inserts later.

Margaret's home made router board was fitted, and the Paul Howard router jig was set up. It took some time to line everything up as it was all set up for her own lathe.

The router was fitted with a 90 deg bit, and then aligned to centre height.  An independent indexer was used rather than the lathes standard equipment.

At this point Margaret passed round her own fabricated router jig which was no longer used as she felt it flexed in use.

Once the depth of cut etc had been set up six insert grooves were made in preset points defined by the indexer. Fabrication of the different wood inserts was then explained, the most important point being that the 90 deg angle that fitted the insert groove had to be cut/planed very accurately.  At this point the one that had been prepared earlier, with the segments glued in was mounted on the lathe.  It can now be seen how the the dual use recess previously turned can now be used to enable clamping the inserts when glued, there are a number of methods for this.  John Wyatt suggested that a cut down bicycle inner tube works well if wrapped around, Margaret really liked this idea. The square segments on the bowl exterior were then turned flush with the bowl exterior all of which was then sanded to a finish. The bowl was then reversed and the interior was turned to a fairly thin wall thickness exposing the interior or back side of the segments. This gives a petal look/effect to both the interior and exterior of the bowl.


There was a discussion from the audience on the various types of wood that can be used taking into consideration drying rates shrinkage etc.


The second item of the day was a coloured bud type vase.

A square section of oak was roughed down to round whilst advising that this should be done by starting in the middle and working outwards so as not to splinter the wood. A spigot / chucking point was turned on one end, and the blank secured in the chuck.  A large 26mm brad point drill bit was fitted to the tail stock with a Jacobs chuck, once drilled the top opening was opened  up to a taper. The hole was then sanded using abrasive secured to a dowel with double sided tape (never sand with your finger in a hole unless the lathe is not running). A large cove was then turned approximately 25mm from the top and sanded.


The one prepared earlier was then put on the lathe this had been taped with various types and sizes of masking tape ready for painting and texturing. An undercoat of acrylic paint was then applied, this was then coated with the first of 2 kinds of Jo-sonja crackle finish, then overcoated with blue acrylic then a beige top coat before the second crackle finish was applied.

A ball cutter in a Dremel type tool was then used to apply texture to the required area, this was then gone over with a fine rotary brush. The pot was then reversed by using a jam chuck into the previously made top hole, so the chucking spigot could be removed and finished.  Woodart can supply dremel type fittings along with numerous other items.

Don showing how to cut a Barley twist.

Club Night 20th April 2019

The Chairman opened the meeting by welcoming everyone and asked if we had any guest new members.

John mentioned that all those members who had not attended the Masterclass with Margaret Garrard missed a wonderful demonstration which he was certain would continue this evening. So after a few notices he welcomed Margaret Garrard as tonight’s guest speaker.

Jam Chuck being made

Photo on the right shows the hole with the lip, the basic shape of the box also showing a pencil line round the midpoint of the body.

The next operation is where the Jig Rest (made earlier) comes into play (unfortunately the photo didn’t come out to show this piece). The post had a hole already drilled in the top third which was the same size as the Coloured Pencils that she was going to use. Selected a letter drill “M” (7.3mm).

Setting the Jig into the Banjo with the hole centralized to the centre of the lathe and just clear of the box you are ready to start the next stage.

Photo showing the holes being drilled.

The Dividing Head now comes into play and using a Drill with the correct size drill bit attached and placed in the hole on the Jig Post and the first of 12 points selected on your Dividing Head you drill the first hole between 8 & 10mm deep. Margaret then drilled another 11 holes using the dividing head on every other point.

After drilling, the 12 different coloured pencils were Super Glued into each hole (the next photo shows them in place). The pencils used were “Crayola Pencils Coloured”.


Once the glue had dried the pencils were cut off.


The box was turned removing the stems of the pencils the lip was finished by turning abead and the whole piece was gently sanded and polished.

The above photo shows another idea for decorating Bowls or Boxes using the method described in making the Coloured Pencil Box.

Top of Bowl Beaded.

Written and photographed by Don Smith

The morning started with tea and coffee, followed by a short introduction by John Wyatt who introduced Margaret.

After a short break Margaret gave the option of a coaster or a spinning top box the latter was chosen.

Two blanks walnut and oak were turned round with chucking points.  The spinning top was turned first this also doubles up as the lid, followed by the box.  The idea being that the box is inverted and the concave turned on the bottom is used for spinning the top. As the top needs to be easily removed a loose fit was chosen. TIP from Margaret, if you turn a top that is too tight and cannot be removed possibly due to shrinkage, put the item in a fridge for a couple of days.

The day ended with Margaret answering questions from the audience.  The Chairman then thanked Margaret for a very enjoyable and informative day, and applause from the audience confirmed this.


Written and Photographed by Dave Reynolds

Margaret first explained that she would make a Jig Post (which she would explain its use later in the programme). This was due to the one that she had brought with her would not fit the lathe Banjo as the diameter was too small.

Margaret first project would be a small pencil box so taking an 80mm cube block of wood and placing it between centres turned it to the round. Once this was achieved a spigot was put on to the base to enable the piece to be held in the chuck.

Once mounted in the chuck  a 1.125” (28.5mm) hole was drilled into the block, ( the hole size is not critical but should be to the size of your smallest Chuck Jaws)  Margaret took a parting tool and reduced the top down to make a lip and then continued to shape the box .

Pencils being sawn off.

The next project was a variation on a bowl so I won’t go into turning the bowl but to show you photo’s of the finished items.

Margaret was asked what finishes does she use and the answer is as follows:


Bowls:- Spray Sander Sealer buffed and Micro waxed and buffed again


Pencil Box:- Spray Acrylic Satin Finish.

Underside of Bowl showing the coving.