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Online Club Demo 16th June 2021 - John Wyatt

Here we are still in the middle of the Coronvirus pandemic but with modern technology the club is able to use ZOOM to stage demonstrations. The first demo was back on 17th February when we had a Cindy Drozda appearing on our screens from the U.S.A demonstrating Finials. This was followed closely by Les Thorne on the 18th May.

Then  on the 16th June we were all set up to watch our Chairman John Wyatt giving us demo on turning GONK’S and his second project was going to be using Sea Urchins.

For club members to be able to join the meeting emails were sent out with all the information required to log on to Zoom, the host would then log you on and you are ready to start watching. (If you didn’t receive an email then you need to contact the webmaster through the website to give him your email address).

So the evening started with John announcing the sad news that Ken White had passed away, then we had a couple of notices and we were set to go.

John’s first project was turning a GONK the photo on the right shows three that he had made earlier.

Starting off with a piece of square section 3 x 3 x 6 inches (75mm x 75mm x150mm) the centre was determined on each end so that it could be placed between centres when it was turned to a cylinder. On each end a 30mm spigot was turned then it was removed and one end fixed in the jaws of the chuck. John then explained about his template so that he could mark off a dividing point approximately 1/3rd to 2/3rds in length.

Keeping the 2/3rd piece onto the lathe John turned a 30mm by 25mm deep spigot once he was happy he undercut the face to make

 (the best way to describe it) is the brim of a hat

The piece was removed from the chuck and reversed using the spigot.

From this point the hat was shaped towards the top once happy (not the top ball) by concaving the top to take the ball later. John then used a 6mm drill and drilled a hole in the top before sanding and polishing. Removing it from the chuck he was ready to start the next stage.

The smallest piece was then placed in the chuck and the end was faced off and using a 30mm Forstner bit bored a hole 25mm deep.

From the edge of the hole a witness mark was made about 10mm this was his reference point which would be used once he started turning the body. It was at this stage that John checked that the hat fitted on to the body making any adjustments needed for a neat fit.

Photo showing three Gonks

Showing the hat from the underside

Finished body with nose

Once satisfied he started turning the body which was slightly domed shape again once satisfied a 6mm hole was drilled to take the nose later. This would be sanded and polished at this stage if you didn’t’ want to add the hair.

John reversed the body and cleaned the base up ready for his hat.

John explained that the next part it was better to use two small off cuts than a too larger piece as it would give better balance whilst turning. The piece of wood that was used for both the nose and top knot was large enough to produce a ball of 16mm diameter with a 6mm spigot. Both items were parted off and fitted to the GONK.  If you intend to put the hair on your Gonk then this was applied before the hat was fitted to the body.

John had coloured his hats but you can leave them in the natural wood.

The second project was going to be using Sea Urchins (which you can buy on line).

The first thing required is a dome shaped sanding block which he described how to make as he had one already made. Fixing this onto the lathe and picking up the Sea Urchin again explaining that when you look at them, the hole in top and bottom are not perfectly round and this is where the dome sander comes into play. Keeping the Sea Urchin parallel and very slowly bringing it up apply the hole onto the sander round the hole up on both sides if necessary.

Using square section 2 x 2 x8 inches (50mm x50mm x 200mm) this was turned between centres to a cylinder and two spigots added and divided in to 1/3rd by 2/3rds in length. Starting with the 1/3rd length for the base of your ornament the turning was almost the same as the Gonk except this time you had to make a spigot to fit the larger of the two holes in the Urchin (i.e.:- the underside) shape and finish the base not forgetting to clean up the bottom with a slight concave.

Taking the longer of the two pieces of timber, clean the front off and turn a spigot to fit the smaller of the two holes shape the top to about 15mm from the finished finial. Remove from the lathe re-chuck and carefully finish off the finial. When it comes to putting the pieces together you can glue them in.

 Throughout the evening John kept emphasizing the grind on the tools that he was using which had a double grind one at 45 degrees followed by a 40 degree grind. This helped in turning as it could be used either as a turning tool or used in the manner of a scrapper. When he is able he will be demonstrating this method of grinding either at the club or on another ZOOM meeting.

This was another splendid demonstration by John and a big thank you must go to all those behind the scenes with their technical knowledge of the workings of Zoom without them this would not be possible.

Written by Don Smith

Photos by John Wyatt

Photo shows the finished Sea Urchin