After a lengthy vacation and getting the shop ready for cold weather I was finally able to complete a couple of projects. This piece of oak (or maybe pecan) was sitting out behind my shop for a long, long time and when I cut into it I found some very nice spalting. It was a bit “spongy” which necessitated gluing a piece of hardwood on the bottom for good attachment to the lathe but I rather liked the look so I turned that into a foot. I also didn’t want to go too small so I left the bark inclusion on the side which also added to the appeal of the piece. I have more photos which I have yet to process of this and some other piece of late.
After battling a post-trip head cold I was finally able to make some dust. This project I actually started before leaving and finally finished up. Had a few short boards of what I suspected was black cherry. the grain was so figurative that I had to use them in a pot. The only ways was to do another segmented one. I think this urn gives you the idea. The smaller pieces are more of the maple counter top that I made the other segmented vessels from. The top and bottom are the standard cherry I usually use.
I hadn’t done a totally segmented piece for some time. I have had a tonne of old maple counter top sitting in my shop for 25 years and this is the perfect kind of project to start using that up. Each piece in the counter top was 2″ x 2″ which dictates the size of the segments a bit but I only used about 1 1/2 ” for the height of each. The grain figure is very pronounced and the cherry accents it very well. The cherry has been out there even longer as I had a few boards left from when I fabricated cherry trim for my family room 30 years ago.
This maple blank was painted with white lacquer and has a teak top (which has been hanging around my shop for about 25 years). I have to say that I hate working with teak. It dulls tools quickly and smells awful but it sure is pretty when finished. Only one more white blank sitting on the bench after this one — I have special plans for it.
This piece of cedar was just too “cedary” for an urn like this so I decided to go the limit and ebonize it. This was done with black lacquer in a spray can (after a lot of careful taping). I had added the foot and rim before deciding to blacken the project but wanted to leave those natural. That did add a lot of time to the project. Plus trying to achieve a perfect finish in gloss black is a nightmare. I got about a 98% perfect finish — the best I could hope for. The top was done with white spray lacquer just for the dramatic contrast.
I sometimes get into the groove and create multiples of a technique. This helps improve the technique and come up with better ways to do it. This piece is some spalted oak with cherry base and rim with the glass top like I posted a few projects ago. I have very little spalted wood around and pieces with this much black need to be mellowed out by a contrasting wood.
There is something very satisfying about chucking up something headed for the bin and turning it into something beautiful. The maple burl was just a wedge I got when squaring off a log. I was able to get a nice size piece about 4′ round and 2″ tall. The sapele was not scrap but I needed the dramatic contrast for the piece. The lid is cherry and walnut.
Some wood is too nice to toss and this cedar was no exception. Also the maple ring which was just cluttering up my bench — time to let it go as well. The cherry bits came out of the scrap box so it was totally a scrap wood project. On the cedar I tried a new experiment — I put orange alcohol dye in the shellac to brighten up the colors in lieu of dyeing the bare wood as I normally do. I was very pleased with the result – just a hint of color. I’m sure all wood turners have boxes of cut-offs and scraps that can be used for these types of projects.
I’ve been a bit slack on posting recently but not due to a lack of new projects — those I have in abundance. This one was driven by using up scrap wood, primarily that nice piece of spalted Pecan that was too nice to chunk but too small to make anything else. Everyone who sees it asks if it is an old map. The walnut is a perfect contrast. I ended up with a small hole for the lid to save all the spectacular grain and figure in the walnut at the top.
I have also been doing a lot of improvements in the shop recently including installing a new AC since it has been seriously hot and I still need to be out there. What a difference it makes!
I had done a piece I called Ebony no Ivory a while back. This one I wanted an ivory lid on. I had tried various inks and dyes but could not achieve the white on wood so I had to resort to paint. After rooting around in the garden shed I was able to locate a can of spray paint that was called Ivory and this is the result. The bowl itself came off the wall of shame and got updated with the black with floral pattern. It started out as cherry and still is on the inside. The black spindle just sets the piece off perfectly.