Maple Woodturning Project

I was out at my lathe, working on my latest project when it occurred to me that the topics of my blog did not necessarily only have to be about big, earth-shattering, complicated subjects, I think that blogs were originally about what what happening in your life on a day to day level and perhaps people would actually be interested in the little things too! I looked at what I was working on, turning a large chunk of fairly dry Maple wood into a big, pretty bowl and thought, right, this may actually be worth talking about. The creativity level is up there. This could turn out to be pretty interesting.

I did not start off thinking that this could turn into a blog subject, otherwise I would have taken some pics of the original, big and fairly ugly chunk of wood. I didn't, so I will simply tell you that it was large, not super heavy because the wood had been sitting out there under the carport for a while and so was relatively dry. I say relatively dry as this is the Pacific North West and the dryness of anything can only be measured in points of relativity!

Was this my dream chunk of wood, no. Turning this piece of wood was rather more of a duty. It had been sitting on our green wagon for ages and I needed to get that clear as I thought we were going to need it in order to move some large stone sculptures from our van to the walkway. I could have simply moved the wood out to my wood storage stash, but the wagon was only a few feet from my lathe and it seemed like it would be easier to move it in that direction rather than fight it onto the storage shelves and then have to move it again to the lathe at a later date. That was the theory, move it the shortest distance, once!

Using wedges and other assorted magic tricks of the physics variety, I got it onto the lathe and started rounding it up to a manageable level. My husband came out fairly early in this process and the look on his face gave skeptical a whole new meaning! Later on he came out again and said something along the lines of "Wow, you did a good job of getting that one cleaned up!" It must have looked pretty rough!

Now I am at the point where I am tempted to take it off the lathe and come back to it later, but I know that it will just form another layer in the "lying about waiting" pile. It is at that stage where the challenge of getting it roundish is over and the boring part of hollowing it out is upon us! It may all fall apart, there are lots and lots of cracks, I considered taking inches of wood from the outside and top in an attempt to solve the crack problem, but I can see that is not going to work, so....., we will simply keep going and see what we end up dealing with. Sometimes the challenge of fixing something is super fun and causes you to get really creative! But for now, we have a half-formed Maple wood bowl, about 14.5" wide and 7.5" deep. I am going to attach the few pics that I have just shot with my phone so perhaps this will make more sense to you, Dear Reader. The one pic shows a little patch of bark, more exterior wood really, that I am attempting to keep intact. This will probably end up being worked and sanded down into regular, smooth wood, but it is worth a try!

I will keep going with updates on this project, please let me have your thoughts and comments!

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