27 Feb 2024 – Demo by Mark Beckett

 In Online Demos


27th February 2024 our second IRD of the year, we were joined by Mark Beckett, The Gentleman Woodturner, all the way from his workshop in the beautiful seaside town of Westward Ho! in North Devon.

After the usual introductions, Mark told us a little about himself and his entry into woodturning and went on to describe his project for the evening a textured, coloured display piece with, as he calls it, a ridiculously small bowl in the centre. A 10 inch by 2 ½ inch Ash blank was already mounted on a screw chuck on the lathe ready to form the base; this was to be a shallow Ogee with a small foot, Mark used a pencil to indicate where the centre was and also the start and finish of the Ogee, using the basic 1/3rd method, so that he could begin to form his desired contour. Shaping was created using a half inch bowl gouge with a swept back grind to 55%, this he explained was the grind he finds most forgiving when teaching his students and therefore has got used to using it.

Throughout the evening Mark explained in detail his actions, for instance the reasoning behind a 4mm tenon to hold the piece in the jaws of his chuck and safe turning speeds etc. this is always useful for new turners to learn. Unusually for some demonstrations, Mark sanded and finished the bottom to a high gloss finish, as his turning had not created to many tool marks this did not take too long. With the lathe running he went though the grits from 80 to 400 before cutting back the surface with True Grit sanding paste and then turning up the speed to 2500 revs to buff to a shine.

On to removing the piece of work from the screw chuck, reversing, and mounting on the tenon, ready to clean off the face and round over the edge with a ¼ inch bowl gouge. The texture was to be created using a large rotary texturing wheel which was braced on the tool rest and applied towards the centre of the bowl with some pressure, this was then repeated several times with Mark picking up the original grooves similar to the motion when thread chasing.

When the desired texture was achieved a Klingspor Polymide Bristle Brush on a power drill was used to take of rough edges prior to colouring. A coat of black lacquer was applied over the texture and dried before applying two water-based waxes, blue and violet, in the direction of the spiralled texture. This was done by hand whilst wearing protective gloves, Mark explained that in normal circumstance he would allow natural drying of finishes before moving on to next stages, however, for demonstration purposes this is not possible, so he speeded up with a dryer.

Next, on to hollowing out that ridiculously small bowl in the centre, which he did with a ¼ inch bowl gouge and then sanded and finished similarly to the base. Two definition lines were added to the rim of the bowl and also the outer edge of the completed piece.

Final task, remove the tenon and complete the foot, Mark held the work on a shop made pressure plate backed up with the tail stock and then sanded the last remnants with a rotary sanding disk mounted in a Jacob’s chuck. Mark would allow a few days drying before applying satin finish to highlight the texture and colour. We ended with a few questions and chat and thanked Mark for his demo and look forward to having a go ourselves.

Thanks again Mark

Thank you Zak for capturing the evening in words and screenshots of which you can see the rest in the Gallery HERE.

And lastly,

5 Mar 2024 – Committee Meeting reminder.  Any Agenda items please let us know ASAP.

8 – 9 Mar 2024 – Midlands Woodworking Show, Newark Showground.  More details HERE.  The Club will be at the show and you can find us on Stand 84.  Please come and say hello.  Hopefully we will see you there.

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Showing 6 comments
  • Chris Fisher

    Great write up Zak. Lots of words, mostly in the right order.😉😉

  • Alan Buckle

    Nice one Zak, good demo especially for the new turners,

  • Chris Fisher

    Absolutely Alan.

    • Paul Tunmore

      Great evening all very clear and well explained , thought I could do thay but on looking at the price of texturing tools decided it wouldn’t be worth it for the use it would get. maybe the club could buy some tools like this and hire out to members between Hands on Nights. What do others think?

      As ever great write up well done all concerned

  • Mick Close

    A great evenings entertainment. Everything clearly explained.
    Really good demo from someone who has been through the mill health wise.
    Well done Mark.

  • Rob Smyth

    A considerably better demo than the pervious one, not that it would be difficult to improve on it. Very well explained by Mark and a very effective finish, which seems achievable for most turners, however as Paul commented texturing tools are expensive and are infrequently used. The idea of the club hiring out to members seems a good option.

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