My first bowl

Discussion in 'Newbie' started by Don Meyer, Jun 16, 2009.

  1. Don Meyer

    Don Meyer

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    I recently read one of the threads on some forum page about when a person is ready to turn their first project. Today was that day for me. I decided to just go ahead and do it. For a beginner I thought that everything was progressing quite well. I got the outside of the bowl turned and was surprised by how little I had to sand it. Got the turning attached to my nova chuck and thought that the inside was going just as well. But you can probably imagine my surprise when I turned through the bottom of the bowl because I totally forgot to figure in the depth of the hole where I attached the chuck.Well there is always tomorrow.
     
  2. Steve Worcester

    Steve Worcester Admin Emeritus

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    There will be a tomorrow and there will be more wood. Chock it up to learning and make a depth gauge.
     
  3. justaccord

    justaccord

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    Hang in there

    I've been through a few sides and bottoms. Especially when you have spent time sanding and finishing, it can be a might discouraging.

    But it's just a piece of wood and a learning experience after all, and it gets much better with some practice.
     
  4. Aaron G+11

    Aaron G+11

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    Starting out, folks usually do one of two extremes. Either you make lamp shades or you leave a hokey puck in the base. It's all part of the learning process.
     
  5. Joe Greiner

    Joe Greiner

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    First funnel on your first bowl? That's a lot of progress all at once. I made my most recent funnel a few months ago.

    Another trick for a first (or later) bowl, is to omit a waste block. Then you get to make four tiny feet to fill the faceplate screw holes. After the screw tips have done their damage to your chisel.:eek:
     
  6. Steve Worcester

    Steve Worcester Admin Emeritus

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    What you may want to do with that bowl is bandsaw it in half and see how you did with even wall thickness. I do it all the time in demos, much to the dismay of those watching.
     
  7. Don Meyer

    Don Meyer

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    my first bowl cntinued

    Steve, I glued a small piece of plywood into the recession for the chuck as a design consideration and it is now starting it's career as a change jar on my dresser. It will be a reminder to me that it was my first mistake but definitely will not be my last one and hopefully I will learn from all of them to come.
     
  8. MichaelMouse

    MichaelMouse

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    Ah yes, first funnel. Sometimes we get so preoccupied with things that really don't make a difference that we neglect one of the primary rules. The outside of a turning should always be larger than the inside.

    One of the things that preoccupies some people is this fetish for thin or "even" wall thickness. Leads to a lot of what you just did. We are not potters, even when we turn "forms" out of wood in imitation of those in clay. With clay it is important to keep things fairly uniform in thickness because of the kiln. With wood, makes no difference. Matter of fact, with the top generally larger than the bottom of a bowl, we like a bit of extra heft down there to lower the center of gravity. If we keep increasing the thickness in a nice fair curve it'll look good and be less tippy even if we have a fairly narrow bottom.

    Which is not to say you shouldn't periodically check for depth. Just check for it when you have a nice inside curve or are coming up on it. You can buy (as always) depth gauges, make them, or just sight across the edge of the bowl and put your thumb on your gouge to see how deep. Just remember, thicker can still be a bowl, thinner can be a funnel.
     
  9. GeorgeH

    GeorgeH

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    Ah, yes. Let me see. The bottom of this bowl isn't quite as smooth as I'd like it to be. I'll just take off a bit more with the round nose scraper. OOps; scraper dug in a little deeper than I had intended. I'll make another pass and smooth things up. OOps; is that the center of the chuck I see? :eek:
    I have a change dish on my dresser (glued a piece of very nice oak to the hold in my last funnel) to remind me enough is enough.
    Welcome to the forum and welcome to the club.
     
  10. Mark Warden

    Mark Warden

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    That's a very valuable bowl Don it will save you lots of heart aches in the future. I didn't blow through my first bottom until I had my first really nice Black Walnut hollow form all but done and when I went through it jammed between the tool rest and chuck and broke into little pieces.Consider it a good lesson.

    George every time I read 1 of your post your tag line upsets me.Knowledge anyone get get from a book Wisdom only comes from having been there and done that.If theres one thing that sticks in my mind that my Dad always told me is if you really want to learn something find someone older who has done it and pay attention to what they tell you. I for one very much value your opinions:)
     
  11. loberg

    loberg

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    Just to follow up on your thinking, if you think you know something try teaching it to someone else and you will find out what you don't know. I hope that confuses the issue.
     
  12. Tony Latham

    Tony Latham

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    Don:

    I'm thinking you are a quick learner..... It took me five bowls before I figured out how to turn one a tiny bit tooooo thin......

    I've still got a piece of that bowl, I'll take some advice from this thread and cut a cross section and glue it above my lathe and a little bit left of the firing line!:D

    TL
     
  13. MichaelMouse

    MichaelMouse

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    Nope, clarifies one of the biggest problems in teaching, or "educating," as those who have a different definition and refer to themselves as "educators" have it. Information is just that. It can't be taught, merely stated. You need breadth more than depth if you hope to teach. When the faces in the last row begin to fall, you need to dredge up another analogy for them to hang the information upon. That's what education is, relating, not repeating - fitting a piece of information into the larger reality.
     
  14. Walt

    Walt

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    Ah yes! The old inside bigger than the outside trick. Been there done that!
     
  15. Matthew Clarke

    Matthew Clarke

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    Another Suggestion

    Hi Don,

    One of the things that David Ellsworth taught me was to turn a small waste block between between the chucking tenon/face plate attachment area. His idea was that by having this additional block of wood on the piece, you preserve all of your options for shaping the bottom. That is, you are not locked into your original design. I can't tell you how many times this has allowed me to be 'creative' after making the inside of the bowl slightly deeper than originally planned.

    Keep those shavings flying,

    Matt
     
  16. JRutten

    JRutten

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    Mr. Mouse

    That sounds like the voice of experience, Mr Mouse. It's like trying to teach me something about nuclear science. If I don't have any framework for it I am going to be one of the dull-eyed people in the back. The best teachers are the ones who can find multiple ways to explain complex subjects based on a common experiences and since there is no such thing as common experience the more analogies you can use the better.
     
  17. Charles Henderson

    Charles Henderson

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    I have several of those turnings around. One in particular is something I was amazed I pulled off. I got too greedy about perfecting the bottom of the foot. I just HAD to take that one more cut to get the nub smaller, and WHAM, pieces everywhere. I glued it all back together, and put it on the mantle as a reminder. It's still an impressive piece, but I can't sell it, so I get to keep it :cool2:

    At the AAW symposium a couple weeks ago, something happened that made me feel better about my mistakes. During one of the demonstrations I watched Peter Hromek (google him, he's awesome) turn right through the side of a hollow form (capsula demo). He recovered pretty well though, and it was still a great demo.
     

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