Full speed ahead

I got chatting to a professional turner at the Scottish Woodworking and Power Tool Show on Friday. During some general banter this chap started imparting some pearls of wisdom, which I naturally hoovered up and stored away for later. Interestingly, I have always been reluctant to run the lathe at full speed. I was advised however that the higher speed allows the cuts to be made far more easily, so yesterday the speed was cranked all the way up.
Big difference in the flow of the tools on the timber. So much so that I was able to rattle off this little mushroom in about 10 minutes.
10 minute mushroom
Something like that would previously have taken me over an hour. The wood is a bit of cherry from the junk box. It has a few cracks, which is why it was in the junk box in the first place. No dig ins, so no random bits flying about.
Next was a bit of red ash, again from the junk box. Under the bark is like sponge, and full of holes – possibly why the tree was felled in the first place.
red ash goblet
This is a really beautiful wood. I wish I had more of it, but it was given to me in among a pile of random bits & bobs. I’m just grateful for what I have.
Finally, a bit of dried yew. This was dried in the airing cupboard and checked until the weight was stable. I’m not all that happy with the lid though. It’s a bit of beech, and after I started turning it I discovered it was a bit punky inside. I was going for a contrast, but now I’m not so sure.
I will re-visit the lid at some point and maybe introduce another species, or maybe use the rest of the bit of yew, which has a fair bit of sap wood in it.
lidded yew box
I really feel I’m improving all the time. I’m really considering a bit of professional tuition. Just need to drop the hints to the family as Christmas gets nearer.

So the new lid is made, and I like it much better.
New lid on the yew box
It was actually a lovely piece of wood to work with. I have another load of it drying which I might just bring inside and set in the airing cupboard.

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