MCW Sept. '15 Program
Sep 25, 2015Public
Photo: Clif Poodry, our demonstrator for the evening, was asked to make an "impossible" hollow form with a tiny, tall opening by using the technique of "hollowing through the bottom".  Here are a couple samples he worked up at home while practicing.
Photo: The key to this technique is to get a perfect grain match on the plug in the bottom and to disguise the glued edge of the plug with a "decorative" line.
Photo: Do you remember this multiaxis "golf club" or "musical note" one he did in past years?  The one tonight will be much simpler -- on just one axis.
Photo: As an experiment, he did this larger hollow form and put a tiny, off-center hole in it "for effect".  The experiment was a success, and the wood is nice, but he wasn't happy with the basic form.
Photo: Here's another nice example.
Photo: Clif turns a lot, and he is very concerned about the ergonomics, so he doesn't put any undue stress on his body.  One of the most important considerations in that respect is having the lathe at the right height so he doesn't strain his back.  As a result, we have the Powermatic up on 4" risers for him.
Photo: Two of the most serious safety concerns for turners are face protection and lung protection.  This little baby takes care of both.  Clif wears it at home.  Tonight, for the sake of communicaiton, he'll wear just a cheap face shield that can easily protect him from any potential impact from his small spindle turning.  His lungs, and ours, will be unprotected for this short stint, but this is a concern for Clif because he has become sensitized to dust, particularly maple dust, and complete avoidance is the best policy.
Photo: The spindle blank has been rounded and chucked up on a tenon on what will become the bottom, and had another tenon added prior to drilling the small hole (with the bit held in a Jacobs chuck) in what will be the top opening in the final piece.
Photo: The work piece has now been reversed.  A half-inch (American) spindle gouge is a great tool to use for this shaping.  Clif's isn't sharpened to quite as acute an angle as Barbara Dill's -- but whose is??
Photo: The simple task at hand here is removing unwanted wood, as quickly and efficiently as you wish, depending on your needs and goals.  Clif likes to whack off a number of furrows very quickly with plunge cuts into the sidegrain and then clean up the ridges in one smooth cut.
Photo: Design, design, design.  That's what it's all about.  Clif talks about he form and the curve that has to be a smooth transition into the long neck, with no lumps, bumps, or flat spots.  Note the wood cylinder still attached to the bottom.
Photo: Clif has now removed most of that wood at the bottom and has left only a little nub in its place.  Here, he begins to craft the plug that will be sized and shaped and moved the short distance into the soon to be opening in the base of the form.
Photo: The plug will have a tenon with the width of Clif's 1/16" "thin" parting tool.
Photo: And here we have the plug, with its tenon, parted off.
Photo: Now we have to transfer the plug dimensions to the base for shaping and hollowing.
Photo: Voila!  The partly hollowed body with it's mortice, and the associated tenon on the plug, whose wood came from only 1/16" away, so the important grain match should be excellent.
Photo: Clif provided a handout to show what he's doing with the quick and crude part of the hollowing using drill bits.
Photo: So here goes the big Forstner bit, held in the Jacobs chuck.  It only goes in for a limited distance...
Photo: ...and that distance needs to be measured in advance!
Photo: The next drill is smaller in diameter and goes deeper into the form.  Measure in advance!
Photo: Clif was having a hard time seeing into the form, so we got some added lights set up for him.
Photo: After the drilling, the turning part of the hollowing is done by hand, much as it would be for a holiday ornament.  So, appropriately, Clif uses a small, manual hollowing tool made by Bob Rosand for his types of the ornaments.  (We had Bob in October 2010.)
Photo: Clif has sharpened away some of the tip over the years, but it still works great.
Photo: Here's a classic "tip" for removing the shavings if you don't have an air compressor.  For the cost of one drinking straw...  Just be sure you don't breathe in!