Friday, May 25, 2012

Bowl -o-rama and hand carving a spoon-a 2 part posting today

Hi Everyone,

Well, today was a very productive day in the wood shop.  There is a series of bowls that I began making last month that have been drying out and need to be re-cut today and we'll be doing that in a moment and I also have decided to try to do some hand carving again by carving a wooden spoon for a friend of mine. Since there are so many photographs, I'm going to do this as a two-part posting.

Part I - The bowls

Last month, I began a series of bowls that were ordered by a friend of mine for her family and I made the bowls out of hickory, pecan, red elm, camphor, and some other wood whose name escapes me at the moment*. The hickory and pecan bowls have been completed and delivered and this leaves the last three bowls still being worked on.  I rough cut them last month and placed them in drying bags and I took them out last night to look at them and to see if they have cracked or distorted.

Good news-the bowls have all survived the preliminary cutting and drying with minimal distortion. So it's time to re-cut them again.

Bowls made out of unseasoned wood will shrink and distort while they dry out. Let's take a look at one of the bowls:

 This bowl is the red elm bowl and you can see that it's a little longer from side to side than it is from top to bottom. The bowl shrank some while it was in the drying bag. This means the bowl is no longer round in shape but has become oval.  Turning it on the lathe will re-shape it and make it round again. Fortunately the there is enough wood in the walls of the bowl to re-shape it.

This photograph shows the bowl after it's been re-cut and made round again:

And I spent a portion of the day re-turning all of the bowls in the drying bag:

You can see how the bowls in the bottom photo have been rounded and the walls and bottom of the bowls thinned out.

These bowls are 10 inches x 3 inches. Here is a photo of a large hickory bowl from last month:

This bowl is longer than it is tall and it still has the potential to distort while drying so I didn't cut it too much.

All of the bowls above will be going back into the drying bag for another month and then I'll take them out and cut them to their final shapes and sizes. We'll do this at the end of June.

Ok, my next posting is about the spoon I've begun making so let's go on to part 2.


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