Thursday, 13 August 2015

New workshop

Last summer I moved to dorset and of course wanted to carry on with woodwork so I built a workshop.

Here you can see the walls are made from an old shed and has a traditional round timber frame the roof has a pond liner as in the spring I am going to put a green grass roof on to help with insulation and to make it look more pleasing to the eye.

Here you can see the frame a bit better the poles are cedar and they are from an estate 9 of them 12' in total and all man handled by two through a field to a lay by luckily one of the neighbours kindly help with his pick up truck.
The windows are double glazed, double walled and has full electrics two lathes workbench and a sofa with fold down bench.

The workshop is fully equipped to run courses and will be making a wood burner and new forge soon.
The workshop was a joy to make and if it wasn't for the snow would of been completed in just two weeks

Monday, 11 February 2013

FAN BIRDS since I have moved to Dorset I have been making birds amongst other things, I love making them and very passionate about them and now make them just using a knife and a small gouge and have made various sizes from 2" -10" wingspan.

This is my latest one, sorry for poor photo quality this has a wingspan of 10" and made from pine I have made some from beech, hazel, oak but found to get long feathers the pine I have found in Dorset  can rive to 10". I have riven feathers out from 12" but in the interlocking feather process they fell off. I almost certainly know why and once I have confirmed it will let you know.

Friday, 2 March 2012

Food holdy devicy thingies

I have been turning bowls now for 9 months at shows and at Sean's workshop but recently due to my new workshop I try a turn at least 7 bowls a week if I don't have a project I have been experimenting with different sized hooks and shapes aswell as different woods with different moisture levels.

I made my own lathe using logs and bits of hazel from a local woodland not ideal as it is slightly rotten but work a treat and really stable and can take a lot of force.

I have about 10 hook tools of course each one is unique and suited for different tasks these ones I use for roughing and finishing and two below are for undercutting the core and for goblets they are made from a recycled car coil springs and are forged and heat treated by myself.

I have turned bowls and plates and goblets aswell as other spindle items. Woods I have tried are oak, beech, cherry, ash, birch, yew, damsine, hazel green mellowed and dry. Obviously green wood is a lot easier to turn but I find the finish is not quite there were as dry wood is very hard and time consuming but finish is great and also the bowl doesn't warp but at the end of the day mellow wood is easy to turn good finish and quick so this is my preferred option.

Here are a few bowls some are for sale and I welcome commissions please email me at

Friday, 1 July 2011

A cock up

Today I turned my second bowl which started as a cock up, I was axing out a blank ready for when Sean finished his bowl but I started chamfering both sides for some reason I thought I could still use it but Sean said to leave it but I couldn't through it away. So I came up with this ambitious idea to make this shape bowl that is under cut in the inside. The finish on it is fairly smooth but could be better. The thickness is the same and shape is nice I though I would take photo soon before it warps.

Monday, 13 June 2011

My first bowls

Sean has got me addicted to bowl turning now the shows have started I have been helping out turning bowls at shows and I must say it is so relaxing I did turn a bowl a month ago out of beech I am happy with it although the finish is not good with the tear out but it has not split and does hold food.

Today I finished my first hook tool for turning I brought a cold chisel from trago for pennies. At home I forged it using my 2 brick gas forge I made at 1 of Sean's courses. Sorry the photos are not clear but I put the bevels on the outside.

Soon I will be making more hook tools as I turn more bowls and I will do a review on them.

This is my first bowl have carved I got given an ash burr and I have kept the natural shape on the out side. The inside I carved with and adze and hook knife but it was hard as this was a seasoned bit of ash but I finished it and gave it to my mum for mothers day.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

My First Pole Lathe Mess

My amazing boss Sean Hellman lent me one of his spare pole lathe i have been making various things and practicing and have most probably spending all of my free time treadling awy and after Christmas i received a set of Ashley Iles pole lathe tools which i will do a reveiw on later in the year.

I made my first dibber which works well but is too short i must say the beading is a bit crude so am currently practicing beading's ready for log to leg race at bodgers ball.

This is my first cup and ball i am really pleased with the finish and shape i made and finished it green and wished i prepared it waited for it to season then finish it but hay we learn from our mistakes. I burnished it with a spare bit of sting giving it a nice sheen. I took this to college and everyone doing the course and the adults were all playing with it and everyone complained it is to hard but i made the bowl to shallow on purpose for that reason.

The ash i used for these two projects was from local sawmill which i must say after reading various posts on bodger forum, my experience of ash does back up the fact that fast grown ash is much harder split and cut than slow grown ash the ash used is about 2 rings per inch.
Happy New Year everyone, i am sorry i have not posted for a while although i most proberly have one person who reads my blog