MCW Mar. '16 Program
Mar 19, 2016Public
Photo: Our demonstrator for the evening is the much-esteemed Mark St. Leger.  Mark comes with his own prized, built-in mic hanger.
Photo: Mark's potential safety hazard is taken care of very nicely by a neck band and his turning smock.
Photo: The project for tonight, his signature "Rock-a-Bye Box" is contained within this innocuous stack of blocks, comprising the work pieces and a couple of chucks to be made.
Photo: Marks weapons of choice: a parting/beading tool, a detail gouge, a skew, and his signature 5/8" spindle roughing gouge made for him by Doug Thompson.
Photo: He will also be hollowing with these three Mike Hunter carbide cutting tools that Mike makes according to Mark's design.  Note the important difference in the angles of the cutters on the two goose-neck shafts.
Photo: Here's the uniquely-shaped goal for the body of the box that Mark is about to make for us.  Its triangular shape comes from working with a cube from point to point.  It also has a round bottom.  More on that to come...
Photo: So we begin -- what could be simpler than this little block of wood?  Mark is going to start by making his accessory chucks first, for use later.  This is going to be the chuck for the tiny, multi-axis finial that will ultimately go in the lid.
Photo: Mark the center with a spring-loaded point.
Photo: You know the story -- mount it on the lathe...  except Mark is just using the end of the spindle with no other drive center.  Just guess at the centering...
Photo: ...and make it round...
Photo: ...with his signature 5/8" SRG.
Photo: Adding the first tenon between a Oneway Safe Drive Center and the tail live center.
Photo: What's this?  Mark has moved the piece to a second center at a slight distance from the first and turned a second tenon on this new axis.  He now has the ability to mount this little homemade jam chuck for the finial later in his scroll chuck at two different angles.
Photo: Mount it in a chuck on the larger tenon...
Photo: ...and round it off.  Make a slight dimple in the very center with a detail gouge...
Photo: ...so you can drill a hole with the bit held in a Jacobs chuck.
Photo: Here's the result, ready to be used later.  Remember that there's a second tenon, on a different axis, hidden inside. The hole goes all the way through to permit the workpiece to be punched out when completed.
Photo: To complete making the accessory chucks, we're going to make a collet chuck to hold the tiny lid that will be made later.  Note that the saw cut that will permit some compression to be applied does not go quite to the center, because we need a center point there.
Photo: First, make it round with the SRG and then add a tenon for chucking.  That's all for now.  The center, gripping hole will be cut later after he makes the lid and knows how big to make the hole.  Now let's get to the body of the box...
Photo: ...by putting a perfect cube of highly figured ash on diagonal corners between the spindle and the live tail center with the point removed.
Photo: This is IMPORTANT!  Rotate the cube and check the alignment of the three corners nearest the tailstock end against a registration marker, such as this pencil point.  Adjust the orientation of the cube carefully to place the three corners exactly in a plane perpendicular to the lathe spindle axis.  Tighten the tail center very firmly so the cube will not slip and rotate while being cut.
Photo: Mark begins the first cut with his detail gouge.  Note the steepness and pointy shape of his grind.
Photo: Please pardon the banding, but these shots taken off the TV screen are important to show what's going on, courtesy of the overhead video camera.
Photo: And thanks to Bert Bleckwenn for being tonight's videographer and getting all the great shots for us, live, and also for the DVD that is being recorded simultaneously.