I was doing a bit of housecleaning in the corner of my basement that I call my shop when I ran across a small ash bowl I had turned back in January during an open house held by my woodturning club, MinnDak Woodturners. I didn’t sand it during the demo because who wants to watch someone sand?
So here’s the (finally) finished product. Sanded to 400 grit and finished with a carnauba/beeswax blend and buffed on the lathe.
Nothing fancy about it, just a clean, simple little bowl. 5 1/2″ diameter, 1 5/8″ high.
During midsummer this year, I heard that a friend was removing a few poplar trees from his property–a couple were dead or dying, and one was in the way of a shed he was planning to build. Being the wood scrounger that I am, I asked if I could come and take a few chunks.
This wood was very wet (you could see and feel the dampness of it when I was sawing the logs into blanks), so it had to be rough turned, coated with sealer to slow the drying and prevent cracking, and then set aside for a good while. But it was worth the wait. This is the first one I finish turned.
You can see a bit of curl figuring on the rim in this photo, and there are more patches of that on the inside. 9 1/2″ diameter, 3″ high. Walnut oil finish.
One of my kids’ favorites when they were growing up was the PBS show “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.” And one of his songs that we adopted for our own started with the line “Let’s think of something to do while we’re waiting.”
Monday was our oldest daughter’s due date, and from a phone call earlier in the day, we had a feeling that things were going to start happening. So to keep my mind occupied, I mounted a large chunk of green ash (rescued from the curbside in our neighborhood) on the lathe.
The grain and color is everything I could have hoped for, and when you look inside…
…there’s some subtle curl.
11 1/2″ diameter by 3 3/8″ high. Walnut oil finish.
I rescued a few large green ash logs off the curb last week, and while most of it is destined for our firewood pile (green ash is dandy firewood), I sawed a few bowl blanks from one of the larger pieces.
Update: Here’s the outside cleaned up, sanded to 400 grit, and with an application of walnut oil finish. (I’m planning to add a pyrography texture between those dark lines.)
Update 2: I didn’t expect to see that much curl figure in this.
I modeled this silver maple bowl after the stoneware bowl my mother always used for making bread dough. Mom’s is a bit larger than this, but I think I came pretty close to the basic proportions (although I’m operating purely from memory).
This was twice turned, and after the rough bowl dried, it was the most lopsided one I’ve done yet.
8 3/4″ diameter by 3″ high. Walnut oil finish.
American mountain ash (a member of the rowan family) is a common decorative tree in our community, but it’s susceptible to disease if it’s injured. A neighbor was slowly losing theirs, so my wife volunteered me to take it down for them.
The branch this one came from was about 7 inches in diameter, with a smaller branch coming off the side, making for a mitten-shaped bowl. (I like the oddball ones like this.) The wood cut nicely, so I’m looking forward to doing more of this stuff.
8 1/4″ long by 6″ wude by 2″ high. Teak oil finish.
The bark on this one was in large scales, so I’m happy that I managed to keep as much of it on as I did. It still needs to be sanded and then have a finish applied (most likely teak oil; that’s my present finish of choice for decorative items).