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Allen Alexopulos

Banksia Pod Hollow Form Study

A lidded hollow form fashioned from an Australian Banksia pod with African Blackwood base and finial. Base Diameter: 1 3/8" Height: 13 3/4" Max Diameter: 2 3/8" Finish: Spray Lacquer, Friction polish

Banksia Pod Hollow Form Study
Allen Alexopulos, Apr 11, 2010
    • Jerry Rhoads
      Stunning Allen
      Absolutly wonderful

    • odie
      I agree with Jerry.......

      It's the slenderness of the overall look that gives this one the appeal!

      very excellent.......!

    • Michael Kuehl
      I like the overall design and the crispness of the detail on the finial.
    • Don Leydens
      I don't think I've ever seen a Banksia pod look this good. Very well done.
      Don L.
    • fgvanatta
      Very nice! Excellent use of Banksia Pod.
    • GA Darling
      Very nice shape and form, crisp detail and beautiful finial.

      personally, i would have made the final shorter but hay, to each his own
    • Jeff Greenwood
      Hi Allen
      Yessir this is gorgeous love it. I have a couple od Banksia pods but not got round to letting the spiral pairs go long enough to do anything with the pods. Later project or as a rest.
      Best from Jeff
    • Mr. Don
      VERY good!! I gotta make me one of them!! How did you turn the inside without breaking, and how thin did you go??
    • Allen Alexopulos
      Hi Jerry, Odie, Michael, Don, Frank, James, GA Darling, Jeff and Mr. Don,

      Thank you for taking the time to critique my study piece. The banksia pod that I turned this piece from had been sitting on a shelf in my shop for about 6 years. During the process of reconfiguring the shop I "rediscovered" the pod and decided that it was about time to either toss it or turn it. I'm glad that I chose the latter!

      Despite their fragile appearance, banksia pods are structurally stable and reasonably easy to turn. You do have to turn away a great deal of fuzz to get down to the solid internal material and this part of the process can be very messy. The hollowing process didn't vary much from any other chunk that I've turned. Since there are plenty of "eyes" distributed throughout the piece, it was easy to control the wall thickness without any fancy laser guidance. The final wall thickness on this piece ended up averaging about 1/8". I used a steady rest to constrain the pod while I was hollowing it out.

      My target proportion for the ratio of the distance from the bottom of the foot to the top of the pod to the finial length was based on the golden ratio (1.618). The finial ended up being about 3/16" longer than theoretical, a variation of less than 4%. I'll do better the next time...

      I also replicated the basic shape of the pod and base at the top of the finial. I am going to try to take another photo at a lower angle with improved lighting that will better show the proportions of the piece along with some details on the base that are pretty much hidden in this view.

      Thanks again for your comments, good turning, and have a pleasant evening.

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    Uploaded By:
    Allen Alexopulos
    Apr 11, 2010
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    File Size:
    240.1 KB
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    Date / Time:
    0000:00:00 00:00:00
    Exposure Time:
    320/100 sec
    ISO Speed Rating:
    ISO 100
    Focal Length:
    13.8 mm

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