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Jig making is an essential part of wood art. Your designs will only be as tight as your jigs will allow and your ability to use them. Jigs also greatly increase your accuracy in design and safety by keeping your fingers away from the blade.  It may surprise you how simple and easy to make my jigs are.

Ripping jig assortment

Ripping jig assortment

Here is a sample of ripping jigs. Some are for specialized cuts but the center one can accommodate almost any shape and size. Below is one of my favorite, a simple sheet of plywood or MDF with hold down clamps located where ever I need them to be.  Hold down clamps are an essential part of jig making and the multi generational method. I have them for sale on the ‘stuff for sale’ page for much less than most would be able to buy them.

a favorite

a favorite

The first order of events is to insure your ripping fence will not move by clamping it firmly in place. Then we cut an eight inch or so off the edge of our jig to within an inch or so of its bottom. Since our fence will not be moving we know precisely where the blade will pass in relation to the jig, ie: its edge.

By transferring the line to the board bottom we can align the cut precisely.

By transferring the line to the board bottom we can align the cut precisely.

By transferring our line off the top of our board on both its front and rear,  to its bottom it will be easy to align our line to the edge of the jig and therefore the location of the blade.

Alignment of the blade to a true 90 degrees and alignment of the bottom line to the jig edge is vital.

Alignment of the blade to a true 90 degrees and alignment of the bottom line to the jig edge is vital.

Our blade is checked and rechecked for its 90 degree accuracy. Also in the bottom left corner notice the line on the design board is aligned carefully with the jig edge. Also, I use cut up pieces of sponge sanding blocks to help the hold down clamps hold the piece firmly.

blade fallows the lines

blade fallows the lines

Care is taken with each cut, watching how the blade interacts with the top line. If it was aligned properly our cut should be directly above the jig edge and fallow our top line.

slow even consistant pushing

slow even consistent pushing

Care should be taken to have a slow consistent push of the material into the blade. I use extra hold down clamps as handles.

This had been the long way of saying something that is really quite simple and intuitive. This jig helps me get great results and keeps my fingers away from the blade. Try it , and I think you will agree.

Yours in wet glue.



Creating multi generational lamination’s of all types and varieties is a fun and easy process.

Multi generational lamination is not that difficult.

Multi generational lamination is not that difficult. Here we have 4 Generations of Walnut and Birch with its original material below.

Creating multi generational lamination’s of all types and varieties is a fun and easy process.
The process consists of :
A: Cutting boards into strips.
B: Laminating (gluing) those strips back into a board with a different pattern.
C: Repeat until desired design is achieved.
If for example we begin with two different boards with contrasting colors (cherry and oak) and cut them into strips we then can glue them back into board form with an alternating strip pattern.

We begin with boards of cherry and oak which are cut into strips and then glued back together into board form with an alternating pattern.

We begin with boards of cherry and oak which are cut into strips and then glued back together into board form with an alternating pattern.

This new board is then cut into strips of 60 degrees .

This new board is then harvested into strips once again at a 60 degree angle.

This new board is then harvested into strips once again at a 60 degree angle.

These new strips are then realigned into a new pattern and glued back into board form

By flipping every other one over we create a 'chevron' pattern to make a new board with a new pattern.

By flipping every other one over we create a ‘chevron’ pattern to make a new board with a new pattern.

This new board is used to create a lazy susan.

Our new chevron pattern board is used to create a lazy susan, a favorite around our kitchen.

Our new chevron pattern board is used to create a lazy susan, a favorite around our kitchen.

However if we choose we can cut our lazy susan material again with a 45 degree cut and use these strips to create the cutting board to its right

Our chevron pattern board could be harvested once again, cut into strips at 45 degrees to create the cutting board on the right.

Our chevron pattern board could be harvested once again, cut into strips at 45 degrees to create the cutting board on the right.

From board to strips to board again , as many times as our imagination will allow.

All 3 generations are shown , demonstrating from board to strips to board to strips and lastly, from board to strip.

All 3 generations are shown , demonstrating from board to strips to board to strips and lastly, from board to strip.

Really , not as hard as it seems. If you are willing to get it wrong the first time the second may surprise you.
Always in wet glue

Schedule etc.

Hello there friends
I wanted to give you the heads up on my last presentation until the fall.
I will be at the Epsom Public Library on April 2nd at 7PM.
My displays will be there begining the 20th of March.
I would love to see you there.

If you are thinking of scheduling an evening lecture in the fall the schedule is filling fast so I recommend getting a jump on things. Also I have already scheduled a number of double headers for the fall, a children’s program just after school lets out at 4pm ish for ages 10 to 16 and the adult program beginning at 7pm. It makes for a very full day , but is lots of fun for everyone and a big bang for your buck in terms of wood working programs.

I will be coming out with a post in the near future on another variation on the 180 degree multi-gen concept. The sunrise or phoenix pattern is easy and a wildly versatile design. Here are a few pics to wet your interest. This design is applied in the pics to what are called ‘spoon saddles’ or a cradle of sorts that sits on the counter top next to your stove. They are to place a large spoon or ladle on once you have taken it out of the chilli or stew pot.
Always in wet glue

Wood Finishes

I love it when folks write in with questions.
Paul from NH writes:

Hi Steve:  I attended one of your presentations at the Stratham Library last fall.  I couldn’t believe the beautiful work you do. I had just inherited my father’s lathe.  I have subsequently taken some lessons in how to turn bowls and am enjoying that a lot.  I remember one thing that impressed me was the finish you had on your wood. Someone asked you about that and you said that you put sanding sealer on and then sandpaper it off and that you do that five times.  And  then you use bees wax.  My question is, am I remembering that correctly, and if so, how do you apply the bees wax? Do you mix it with some kind of oil? And what do you use to apply it? Do you polish the work after applying the bees wax? And do you use fancy polishing systems like the Beall buffing system, or something more simple?  And during the five times that you sand, do you start with say 80 each time, or do you start with a higher grade each time, like 220, 320 etc? 
I guess what I am asking for is a lot more detail about how you finish your work.  Eventually my goal is to gain the skill to produce segmented pieces similar to what you do and multi generational laminated work as well. 
I just joined your blog using Yahoo because I had an account set up with them.  But I use Comcast.net for my e-mail. Thanks in advance for any help you can give me. And if you ever decide to give lessons in how to do what you do, count me in! 
Yours, Paul

Dear Paul: 
Thanks for the great questions.
Although I feel my expertise is not finishes I am glad to pass along what I use an what I have learned. 

First my method for finishing continues to evolve and is very different than the one I used a year ago, and I trust next year it will be changing also. Your method of finish work is a journey in which you are always looking for new ways to get the best look and adapting to apply those new techniques.

One book well worth getting that helped me is ‘Wood Finishing 101‘ by Bob Flexner. 

My fall back tried and true is 3 or more coats of sanding sealer fallowed by 2 coats of a wipe on poly.
Finish is as much about feel as it is about look. Sanding sealer fills in and gives it that smooth feel. Sand between each coat starting with 120 up to 320 or a fine steel wool. 
On the lathe I will use a friction polish for smaller vessels. The friction polish ‘cooks’ into the wood giving you a wonderful long lasting finish. I will apply bee’s wax to a spinning piece on the lathe for the final finish. the speed of the lathe melts the wax as you touch the wax to the lathe. Fallow with a clean rag and get it as hot from friction as your fingers can take. The larger vessels I use the ‘tried and true’ method of sanding sealer.

I like the polyurethane’s also. I would never use it right out of the can but thin it with paint thinner. I have mason jars labeled 50/50 and so forth.

Recently I have discovered OJ Shine juice.


This is a wonderful easy to use and make finish.

Regarding lessons, I have been thinking of starting a ‘open shop time’. Say a Saturday in which I will be in the shop and it is open to anyone to come by and talk about wood and ask questions. If enough folks are interested that sounds like it may be fun. 
I will be lecturing in Epsom on Tuesday March 2 and would love to see you there.
Thanks for your support
Always yours in wet glue

Pin Wheels or a new take on the 3D Multi Generation Diamond Lamination Design

Pin Wheels

a new take on the 3D Multi Generation Diamond Lamination Design

For some time now I have wanted to try this design. This ‘pin wheel’ is simple and lots of fun with one exception (a very dangerous miter cut of 67.5 degrees) which we will get into later. It is a spinoff of the Multi Generational Diamond Lamination technique demonstrated in my last post. All the basics laid out there are essential. Please do not take this post independently. Use the previous one and graduate up. As with the other it is simple but not easy. Be willing to get it wrong a couple of times before you take it to your critics.
With that in mind let’s get started…..

Oop’s, almost forgot, as with many of these projects, variations yield a wide variety of patterns and designs that are surprising and delightful to explore. As it happens, I had left over from another project some previously laminated material. A 1 by 1 Brazilian Walnut laminated with a 1/8th Brazilian Cherry and its opposite. Going into this project using these materials I felt might be a fun exploration.

You be the judge.
So let’s get back to it.
The most important aspect of this technique is without a doubt the jig. With this design you need the ability to cut at 67.5 degrees. This cut is very dangerous. Most miters go to 45 maybe 50 degrees but you need the full 67.5 to make this work and it needs to be accurate. (Also pay special attention to the vertical 90 degree angle of the blade to the bed of the saw or you will be making a shallow bowl). I feel the table saw is your best bet.
Here you can see my jig. You will have to come up with your own but be aware you will need stops on the front and rear to keep the jig from moving too far into the blade. Also keep in mind your fingers are very close to the blade so spend the time to make a jig that protects them, slides even and true. Also, be sure and stop the blade from moving before you move the material forward to load up for another cut. Nothing can move, not the material that is loaded or your cut-off. Make sure everything is clamped down tight, and be sure and count your fingers before you start and write down the number. If the number is different when you are finished you may have to go upstairs and tell your wife she was right. Humor aside, there is nothing more confidence building than the proper jig which gets you and your fingers away from the blade.
This is the goal. Nice clean half diamonds made by flipping the material for each cut.
Now we feel more comfortable and will move into the more expensive material. Notice the jig holds everything in place, even the cut-off, and uses an oak stop block so each cut-off is uniform in length. When making this jig be sure and use 3/4 inch ply for a base. I have had problems with less than that taking my material out of square simply by the force of the hold down clamps. Substitute more clamps for less pressure on them to avoid this.
When I do my wood working lectures one of the most liberating aspects I talk about is safety. A little bit of safety goes a long way toward enjoying and having fun in your shop. The opposite is also true. If you are unsettled or unsure of your new jig or equipment – Do not use it. Just stop. Take the time to increase your confidence level by getting a friend involved or taking a course through your local wood working store. Do whatever it takes to turn this liability into an asset. Remember this is supposed to be fun, so if it isn’t, stop, reevaluate and get the help you need. You can always send me an email and I can help point you in a direction.
Here is the pinwheel pattern proper.
Here it is forming diamonds. For me, the previous post on MGDL diamond technique is safer and easier, but this one affords you the possibility of including vertical runs of laminate within the diamond. Also notice how the grain orientation is better with this 67.5 degree cut, running fully with the length of the triangle.
The different orientations and designs with these ‘half diamonds’ are also fun. I have fun with all these shapes before I commit myself to a particular look and bring out the glue bottle.
Here is another look you can get by simply sliding everything to the left or right. When I was making many backgammon boards I had lots of leftover elongated triangles so I glued them up. The more pressure I put on them the worse it got until I had glue on me the dog and a 2 foot diameter mess that sloped to the left horribly. So I let it harden up only to find one of the most curious and wonderful pieces I have ever produced. I turned it into a clock whose hands turn clockwise but the wood oriented counter-clockwise. Believe it or not the more I stare at it the more my hair grows back.  Do not be afraid of making mistakes as they sometimes are the gateway to unique and wonderful creations and ideas.
Still working on ideas and patterns before glue up.
Look at these last two pictures closely and see if you can pick out the subtle differences in design.
Now we are ready to get the glue out.
When it comes to clamping these, less is always more. If you do not have a tight fit do not force it. Stress in wood is a lot like stress in people, it will find its expression like water flowing through the path of least resistance. Work on better joinery rather than forcing a bad fit. Forced fits, generally speaking, crack within the first year or so. I use a lot of rubber bands. You should not need more than that. If you do, try hose clamps, they work great. Graingers sells them in the 16 in diameter but lots of smaller ones put together also work, in some applications even better because you have multiple tightening positions around your circle rather than just one.
You will be putting together the stars in one glue up so be careful not to damage the points with your clamping. One way to protect the fine corners of the diamonds is by using caul blocks cut from scrap to distribute the clamping forces to the broad faces of the diamonds rather than the sharp points (see picture below). Also using rubber bands as clamps gives you a bumper so to speak if you choose to use other clamps. Whatever you choose be sure and keep them nice and ‘pointy’.
 Then try a dry fit.
After the star we begin to add on the walnut triangles. The great thing about this project is the design possibilities are endless. You could use squares or 2 separate colors of triangles in both a horizontal or vertical orientation as you build out around your central pinwheel design.
It is important to remember you are adding as you go. If you let glue dry in the trough of the diamond it will act as an obstacle to your next fit-up. I use a tooth brush as you see here to remove any wet glue so that when it dries I have a nice fit for my next piece.
Rubber  bands act as clamps for the accenting black locust triangles.
Cherry triangles on top of the walnut  ones.
A close up of the pin wheel project.
So there you have it, another fun, fun, fun 3D-ish design that has many different applications. Weather a lazy Susan, cutting board, trivet, hot pad or wall decoration, it will get you lots of Oooohs and Ahhhhs through the years.
Yours in wet glue,

Multi Generational Diamond Lamination (MGDL) or Fun with Diamonds

Fun with Diamonds
Diamonds may be a girl’s best friend but the wood worker’s among us can have lots of fun with projects using diamonds to make dynamic wood art.
Multi Generational Diamond Lamination (MGDL) is the process of gluing multiple first generation laminations into both vertical and circular design patterns.
Believe it or not these designs are made with the same material and with the same construction method. The diamond orientation differs, but the parts and pieces are the same. On the left you see the vertical or linear orientation and on the right a circular design. The difference from top to bottom is simply different finishing techniques which can be employed. These 4 designs represent a small fraction of what is possible in variation and expression in the endless array of designs possible using this technique. While working on one design I am taking notes on the next 4 projects I want to try.
With these lamination projects we are focusing not on making something in particular rather, we are ‘making something to make something’. To create the above material is a wonderful beginning to a beautiful …..  whatever. Whether lazy Susan, cutting board, platter or a vase, bowl or plate all would be fitting uses for this wonderful, colorful material. For all woodworkers whether you have a lathe or not, this type of project is nothing but fun. For our purposes we will focus on the making of these blanks above and allow the wind to carry your application of it where it will. I beg you though, comment and let me know how you were able to apply these techniques.
First we need to determine how many varied colors and wood types to involve. I have chosen 6 for this project but 4 is a better number to start with as with my first try at this seen above. Here the diamonds are larger and easier to work with but it uses 4 types of wood with the same basic circular 8 pointed star pattern.
 As with all these types of projects its success is centered on all the material being the same width and thickness. Also best results come from using wood with a similar density and relative hardness. Combining poplar or pine with Iron wood or purple heart is not recommended. The material must be spot on in dimensions and be sure and make up twice as much as you think you’ll need.
Above you see I have milled up cherry, ash, walnut, black locust, Brazilian cherry and Brazilian walnut. The more contrast in the wood the better the woods augment each other and the designs stand out.
With the material milled we can begin to make the first generation lamination. These six are laminated together as below.
Notice here that each lamination is different. Each one in sequence moves the top most wood to second position and the bottom wood to the first position. Thus you are making six sequenced laminations. Follow the darkest wood and you will see that with each of the six glue-ups it is in a different position. They are ordered in a step fashion.
Now that our material is ready let’s get started.
What is a diamond?
There are many ways to answer that question but for our purposes, diamonds share a common length along each of its 4 edges, like a square whose top has been pushed over by the wind. Now this sounds easy but it is not. In order to accomplish this you need to pay close attention to the width of the material because the width will determine the length of the 2 edges which are along the cut or mitered sides.
Your project will be determined by the center set of diamonds in the round. Like building any round object we begin from the center and work out. Here we are looking at 8 diamonds all pointed to the center. 8 divided by 360 degrees is 45. So each piece will contain 45 degrees. Since each diamond has 2 sides which connect on the edges moving towards the center we will divide the 45 degrees evenly for a diamond with all its edges at 22.5 degrees. That is pretty much the end of the math. This math can apply to any number of center pieces. For example , 10 center pieces at 36 degrees each with cuts at 18 degrees. The difficulty is in getting a perfect cut from your table saw miter jig or your miter saw. Practice and cut scrap until you have a perfect 8 pointed star with no gaps or spaces on the interior or exterior. Remember , cumulative error is to be avoided, so the time you spend getting it cut just so , pays off down the road.
Once our miter is ready we can begin cutting diamonds 6 at a time.
Weather table saw or miter box this process must be precise and consistent. Uniformity is the key.

Notice here the 6 laminations sequenced to form the linear design. The circular design is simply a different order of the ‘Tags’ (what I call each cut section of 6 diamonds).

that we are more comfortable with the design we can get the glue bottle out. We begin with a diamond of diamonds. With all projects like this it is always best to glue in stages and steps. In this case, larger diamonds.
Notice the rubber bands and glue boards. Because the shape of a diamond will not support glue pressure on its pointed ends these ‘outriggers’ so to speak are necessary
Above the finished diamonds form the linear pattern

Beginning to take shape

And here you have it. It is important to trim the unfinished 2 edges to make these stars come together perfect. A miter or table saw jig work well for this as will a disk sander.
Care must be taken maintain the exact 22.5 degrees and not to remove so much material as to disrupt the overall design pattern.
In the interests of time and space and knowing a picture is worth well over a thousand words, especially to a wood worker I will show more and talk less.

A dry fit up showing both finishing techniques. One with a continuation of the linear pattern and the other with a simple section of material cut to fit.

I have found the best way to finish and flatten these is to use a belt sander.
I hope you have found this posting helpful in opening up new dimensions in woodworking. It is one of the most fun projects I have enjoyed for some time. Remember if you try it be sure and let me know how you did.
Always gluing something:

3D Designs Using Multi Generational diamond concepts

Here is a post I am working on / a step by step on incorporating multi-generational concepts in developing diamond 3D design.
Thought I would tempt your appetite with some pic’s first.
These are all through and through, no substrate, all glue.
If you like what you see stay tuned.

New Kids Program and the upcoming Schedule

Wanted to post my schedule for

 lectures along with some pics of interest.

I will be at the :

Nashua Public Library on Monday Feb. 4th beginning at 6:30 2 Court St. Nashua NH
Lecture topic: General Wood craft
Epsom Public Library on Tuesday April 2nd beginning at 6:30 
Lecture topic: General Wood craft

Be there or be …. well you know.


Beginning a new program

Kids and Wood working
Our Kids evening in Concord was such a success. I feel the kids were involved , engaged and generally had a lot of fun. It is a very hands on (no sitting in chairs)  program of basic information on types of wood, tools etc and possibilities on what you can do with woodworking.
Here are some pic’s:

On this occasion both the boy scouts and the local kids were able to make the program. The Kid’s program went from 5 to 6 ish and the adult program began at 6:30. It was an easy and seamless transition and both groups got a lot out of it. There is a different fee schedule for the kids program. For any Library thinking of both, this is a great way to get multiple generations involved and the biggest bang for the buck , so to speak.

Matt asks about Hollowing Tools

Here is a great question from my friend Matt in Hooksett about hollowing tools

Hey steve,
I hope this email finds you well. I have a question about turning. I am looking into hollow vessel turning and find I am in need of a hollowing tool. Faced with paying north of 100.00 for what amounts to a carbide bit on  a shaft I really don’t know what to do. Can you give me any good feedback? How do you hollow vessels?


hey there and God bless
Great question
I use some hollowing tools and yes they are expensive but worth every sent. 
As with all lathe tools the closer your tool rest to the cutting area the better and smother the cut. Vibration is the problem so try to get your tool rest into the mouth of the piece as much as possible. the more you extend the tool away from the rest, the more chance of catching , grabbing and tear out.
My suggestion … spend the money. Hollowing tools are one place where a little more expense in tool makes all the difference.
I do mostly segmented stuff so I hollow as I go, adding rings and hollowing one ring at a time as I add it in place right on the lathe. The tail stock makes a great ring center-er so to speak and  clamp. This way I never have to extend into a completed work or large wood blank. The blank grows so to speak as I add the rings. The tail stock adds pressure to the new ring from tail stock to head stock. A couple of jigs that attach to the tail stock help here with both even pressure in gluing and centering. 
My tool of choice in cleaning the interior is my parting tool followed by my favorite scraper. Usually I will make larger than needed rings to harvest the balance for another use. On both the exterior of your work and the interior you can cut away the unused portion of ring using both the donuts and the donut hole so to speak. 
Also I work from both ends of a piece  (top and bottom on separate face plates like making 2 bowls) to the middle and the last glue up is the two middles glued together. that way you are never working on a small tight opening and extending your tools long distance.
Try that and see if things don’t improve.

Placing as design or pattern in a vessel

Placing as design or pattern in a vessel
I get a lot of questions during my presentations and woodworking talks and one that pops up almost every time is ‘how did you do that’ while pointing at a design inside a bowl  or vase. How do you take some design that is flat and make round? Good question!
Using the tumbling block design below I will try to go through some of the steps and methods of doing this without going to deep into the ring construction method used to make the rest of the vase.
Above you see the cutting board everyone likes, a basic tumbling block, 3D pattern that is fun to do. Now let’s think about placing it into a vessel.
See below that we have already completed the difficult process of getting good clean diamonds whose 3 parts or diamonds form a single tumbling block.
We then can use these same angles to make diamonds for the top and bottom and longer pieces for the sides. Essentially we are surrounding the design with the same material as our vase. Be mindful during construction to keep the patterns uniform and be sure and make a couple extra as some are bound to be less tight and appealing as others.
Here we are laying out and preparing for the glue up. Remember as you make these single designs you are making one of eight (depending on what you use for a degree and design look, meaning you could form many or more designs in a single highlight ring depending on the look you are after determining the degree of your cut) which means your are determining your vase diameter by the length of the design. Best to start with a vase diameter, determine its circumference and divide by 8 giving you a ball park for the distance from left to right of each design piece.
Here you see it with its rings on the right that will form the sides of the vessel under and over the design ring or highlight ring (I use these interchangeably as the designs are the highlight and they form a ring (one of several) within the vase).
Prepare for the glue up by getting everything in place and each design uniform. Checking for tight joinery and getting the rubber bands out. I use rubber bands for this type of glue up. 6 or 7 thicker ones are more than enough to get you great results. If not the problem is your cutting and accuracy of miter not more clamps.
This next step requires cutting jigs. If you have been to one of my presentations you know how I feel about jigs, all kinds of Jigs. Here I will be laying out MDF for a precise cut making the top and bottom uniform and accurate according to the design in the middle. This cut will then be the basis of the right and left hand cuts so this one is worth getting right.
I love double stick flooring tape which you can get at any Home Depo / Lowes.
It holds everything in place nicely. Remember you are lining up the center design here not the edges of the glued up piece. You want the designs in the center to line up more than just cutting off the bottom and top. The jig will allow you to move the pieces and hold them in place in a way to insure the uniform look of the design in the center of the highlight ring.
Above I have marked with pencil to insure that my designs are centered.
Here are my jigs all loaded up and ready to rip on the table saw. Use a good sharp blade so you can join right away or keep your jigs in place and run it through the planer and thickness sander if you have one. Mine usually are joined with table say cuts only. A good blade makes all the difference. Mark the outside of your jigs with the lines of the designs from the inside so you know you are taking as much from the bottom of the ring design as the top.
Here they are all 8 just off the jigs with their bottoms and tops perfectly aligned. This perfect alignment is then the basis of the miter cuts to join them.
Again, a cutting jig is essential here to getting a good cut and safety. Also marking to center the design is the key. You can see my mark on the jig below the clamp. It is set for the center of the design not the edges of the piece. The center of the design is the standard to set your cut against. Before the saw is turned on your fingers should be far removed from the entire saw area and the piece should be locked down by clamping with a certainty it will not move or vibrate during the blade pass.
Here we see the cut off with design center lined up with the pencil mark. Keep these cut off’s !!! I have made funky and wonderful small projects (Christmas ornaments especially) with these. They are exact, witch means if you join them correctly they will fit together just as your ring will, making a clever little, whatever.
Here are the segments ready to make into a ring. At this point you can choose to further highlight or not. For example with these Ash rings I will make windows around each design by inserting another wood in between each design segment. On the Black Locust I will not.
This will begin to move rather quickly so I will try to let the pictures speak more.
Check for a good tight fit with no gaps before gluing. If you have less than perfect joints use the half ring method, forming and gluing up half circles and then sanding the two remaining joints to perfect fits. Much easier to work with two joints than 8.
Here the highlight rings have been glued up and are ready to go. Notice I inserted a piece of black Locust in between each of the ash rings to make the left and right sides of the windows
Now, finally after weeks we have something to put on the lathe. Centered we begin to add rings as we go. The top and bottom of course will be black locust in order to close our windows for each design highlight. Rings of Brazilian walnut help to further highlight.
The black locust vase will be plainer and less decorative by design.
I use a lot of weight instead of clamping. Make sure the weight is evenly distributed or it will show in wider than necessary glue lines. Check out my post on PVC for more info on that.
Here is the ash vase with the black locust windows and Brazilian highlights. All in all I think it came out good. Not great but a solid good.
Interior shot.
Here is the black locust with no extra highlights. My wife likes this one best. Sometimes less is defiantly more. For me I like the more complex designs and therefore the ash with highlights. Sometimes less is defiantly less, right?
Anyway, whatever your preference or design choice these steps can help you get something whose design is flat (cutting board) and design it into something round.
Keep turning and be safe