Show-and-Tell - Freehand Sphere Turning – UFOs

Tuesday 11th March was our first March meeting held at the Riverside Centre. Meetings seem to come thick and fast these days! After the usual preliminaries we launched into our ever popular Show–and-Tell time.
Bernie with the continuing story of the Router Lathe, Tony with his ash hollow form inspired by Mark Baker’s article in the March 2011 edition of "Woodturner" and Clive with his multi-faceted turning captured our interest.
There was also Peter with miniature hollowers and Andy with a bowl of real Mulberry Tree wood – sorry Andy I missed the photo of that one!
Next we were treated to a short demonstration of freehand sphere turning by Paul. In the past we have seen several of Bill’s specialized jigs to turn spheres both large and small but freehand turning by eye is different. Paul took us logically through the steps explaining as he went. Unfortunately, a jig failure on the tailstock prevented the sphere being fully trued to shape but we all got the idea. Can any of our members repeat this process for the “perfect” sphere?
This month members were invited to bring in their UFOs (Un-Finished Object) for the May Competition. These were numbered with raffle tickets and members drew for their piece in the competition entry. This all caused quite a bit of amusement BUT now the Challenge begins!
A few pictures below give a flavour of the Tuesday meeting at the Riverside.


To see a larger image just click on any of the small pictures.

First on the Show-and-Tellwas Bernie with his router lathe explaining how it worked and some modifications he had made
Next was Tony with two small hollow forms in ash. These had been parted through, hollowed out andglued back together with a perfect grain match 
Here Clive tells us about his intriguing three-cornered piece – an inspiration which came from his wife. 
These are two miniature hollowing tools with 6 mm cutters used by Peter to hollow out his small boxes.The scale numbers are cms 
For the “Teach-In” Demothis evening Paul showed us how to turn a freehand sphere. In the past Bill has showed us how to do this with a special jig.
First a cylinder is turned with diameter equal to the required sphere diameter. A chucking dovetail is added to one end. The cylinder dia. Is marked off on the length using callipers. 
Next wood is removed outside of the markings to allow tool access when shaping the sphere with the gouge
The sphere is shaped using the roughing gouge taking care not to remove any wood at the maximum diameter 
 Now the sphere is taking shape
With the tail stock removed the sphere is parted off with a high tech hacksaw blade ready for trueing up Next, the sphere is jammed between two wooden cups, a large one in the HS and a small tailstock one. Using a large straight scraper the sphere is trued on the maximum diameter until a 360˚ cut is just obtained.The sphere is then rotated a small amount on an axis perpendicular to the lathe axis and again scraped. Continue rotating until spherical. Here is a selection of the UFOs, complete with numbers, all ready for the draw to take place. We are expecting some interesting results in the May competition!



  Here are just a few “Resources” for interest:-   
  • Tony’s Hollow Forms                       

These were inspired by Mark Bakers article in the March 2011 Woodturning Magazine No 224.

  • Miniature Hollowing Tools

Should anyone want to spend their hard earned pennies on these superb tools read about them HERE

  •  Turning Spheres
A method very similar to Paul’s (with good photos!) is described HERE Or if you want to watch a video go to HERE

Next Club Meeting:-

Scout Hall 27th March

Wight Woodturners presentation to the Scouts


Peter Smart - 13th March 2013