I had an enjoyable afternoon with Paul Atkin on Wednesday, picked up two bowl hooks and lots of helpul tips about bowl turning, which is quit a different skill to my usual work, known as spindle turning (long cylinders from chair legs to rounders bats). The hooks look like this:
You can only buy them from a few people, and then most turners end up making their own. They are very long and sturdy, with a small sharp hook that does the business, slicing through the blank to remove the wood.
My lathe needs a couple of modifications, a smaller mandrel, that’s what the band runs on, and a proper strap to replace the cord, although it didn’t seem to be slipping today. I’ll post a couple of pictures of the bowls I made with Paul, in the meantime here is one that’s been sitting on the bowl lathe in the woods for months, waiting for the replacement hook tools:
You can see here how the mandrel holds the bowl blank to turn it, and how the hook has to cut away the excess wood from inside, while leaving a core for the mandrel.
It’s quite hard work pedalling, more so than my normal lathe:
Basically the same principle but more effort required because the cut it through a more resistant section of the timber.
Anyway, this being my third bowl I’m pretty pleased with it, lots of room for improvement, but I think I now have the idea of how to get the result I’m looking for:
It needs to dry out now with the other two, and then be oiled before use.