A Project by Walt Claxton

"Finding a Project"

Rummaging in my wood store I found a fairly large (30 cm x 25 cm approx.) Yew log under the pile, it had a few surface cracks and two large branch stumps, but was dry and not going to crack further.

Carefully removing the branch edges I mounted the log on a four prong drive and revolving centre positioning the heavier end (branch end) to the headstock.

Using a half inch bowl gouge began to take away the protruding branch stumps making plunge cuts. (Trying to use a roughing gouge would have been impossible, the piece was too irregular)

Once I had turned enough to a cylinder I cut an 80 mm spigot to fit my large gripper jaws. After fitting the log in the chuck it became safer and easier to take it all to a cylinder and begin shaping, positioning the two deep bark inclusions just above centre line to give balance. Still using the half inch gouge, took away waste wood, making the headstock end smaller (Leaving enough to ensure strength during hollowing) then changing to a 3/8th spindle gouge, rounded the top section making a 25 mm collar and 8 mm bead leaving central hole of approx.50 mm.

Inserting a No. 10 Bit in a Jacob’s chuck I drilled a starter hole which was then opened out with a 25mm flat bit to within approx. 12 mm of the bottom of the hollow form.



Starting with the Roly Monroe hollowing tool the top was made wider gradually working around the shoulder, emptying the waste after every two or three passes, changing to a Hamlet Big Brother as the depth increased, removing wood at a faster rate with a greater cutting capacity of the tool, constantly removing debris and checking wall thickness with figure of eight callipers until the wall measured roughly 12 mm, then reverted to the Roly Monroe to take final cuts to 3 mm finishing with the Roly scraper attachment.

Once hollowed, the base section was shaped making it smaller than the top collar to give “life” and perspective to the piece.
Sanding started at 120 grit through to 800 grit, using the rotary sanding pad.

Three coats of neat sanding sealer were applied, flatting back between coats. Dilute sanding sealer applied to the inside.

The piece was parted off (carefully) the base sanded. Finally it was completed with the Beal Buffing System.

Final size 21.5 cms by 19 cms.

Finished Hollow Form