I'm sorry I haven't posted sooner but we had a sudden illness in the family and that had to be dealt with. Everything is better now and so it's time to get started on our tea box projects.
Today we'll begin working on the silk oak tea box. This particular piece of unseasoned wood came from a supplier and it's coated in wax to keep it from drying out and cracking:
As this is a rectangular shaped piece of wood and it needs to be turned from a rectangle to a cylinder, I'm going to place it between centers on the lathe and this is a photo of the lathe set up before I put the block of wood on it:
Before I put it on the lathe I'll find the center in both ends by connecting the corners. I've also punched a small hole in the center with an awl and marked a circle on the end. I use this as a guide as I cut off the edges of the block and it keeps me from cutting off more wood than I need to:
And here is a photo of the block on the lathe ready to be turned. I'll start off at 300 rpm:
Here is a photo of the block after about a minute's worth of turning. Note that the edges are beginning to come off. I'm using my roughing gouge for this:
This is about 5 minutes into the turn. Note that it's beginning to round off:
This is the block after about 10 minutes of turning. It's a cylinder now. Note that wild grain pattern and color:
This is a close up of the left-hand end of the block. I'm preparing to cut a tenon on this end. This will provide a secure way of attaching this block to the lathe when we come back to work on it later this spring:
Here is the completed tenon:
The wood is unseasoned and very damp to the touch so it will need to dry slowly out before we work with it. The way to do this is to wrap it in heavy paper, tape it shut and leave it to dry slowly for a few months and that's what I'm doing in the next two photographs. I've used a paper shopping bag for this step:
And here it is wrapped up and ready to cool it's heels in the wood shop. I'll come back to this in late May and see how it's doing. If we're lucky and the wood fairies are kind to us, this will be drier, lighter in weight, and will have few hair line cracks on the ends:
Keep you fingers crossed on this one.
Ok, our next turn will be this weekend and I'll work on the pine block next. See you then.