News — Maine woodturning

We have been chosen for CAP 2019

We have been chosen for CAP 2019 0

York Gum Burl winged bowl

Back in December, Jed Malcore and I applied to become one of five teams for the Craft Apprentice Program. Each team consists of a master (me) and an apprentice (Jed) who have to work together for a minimum of 100 hours from the months of March through September. In our application and follow-up interview, we had to describe how we envisioned the apprenticeship working and our expectations for it. We had decided to concentrate on bowls and hollow forms for our apprenticeship. 

We must have done well enough because we have been selected to be one of the teams. I'm excited to see where we end up and I'm also excited to see where the other four teams end up. I am positive that we are all going to learn a lot from this experience. 

You can see our profile on the CAP website by clicking here and see all of the other teams and past participants by clicking here.

Dyed green Maple Burl lidded vessel


Dyed green Maple Burl lidded vessel open

Recent experiments

Recent experiments 0

Recently I've been experimenting more with stabilizing wood and also with dying wood during the stabilizing process. So far I've stabilized the following woods: Birdseye Maple, Box Elder Burl, Cherry Burl, Curly Maple, Maple Burl and Redwood Burl. I've dyed and stabilized the following woods: Box Elder Burl with the color blue and Curly Maple with the color green. 

Stabilizing is a process where as much moisture is cooked out of the wood as possible and then the wood is put in to a vacuum chamber with resin. The vacuum pulls the air in the wood out of the wood and replaces it with the resin. If I want to add color to the wood I just mix the resin with a dye and then do the process of putting the wood into the vacuum chamber with the dyed resin. The wood is generally under vacuum for an hour or more and then left to soak in the resin (or resin and dye) for hours or sometimes a day or more. Once this part is done, I then take the wood out of the chamber and wrap the pieces in aluminum foil and put them in to the oven to cook the wood again. Don't worry, I have a separate toaster oven that I do this in and I don't use our kitchen oven for this process. After allowing the wood to cool sufficiently, I take off the foil and I'm ready to start the turning process with the stabilized wood. 


Dyed and stabilized woods used in bottle stoppers and pizza cutters

From left to right in the picture above

Dyed Green Box Elder Burl t-handle bottle stopper and corkscrew combination

Dyed Blue Box Elder Burl t-handle bottle stopper and corkscrew combination

Dyed Green Curly Maple handle on the pizza cutter

Stabilized Birdseye Maple t-handle bottle stopper and corkscrew combination

New color combinations for the Ferris Mini-Grinders

New color combinations for the Ferris Mini-Grinders 0

It's been a while since I have added any new color combinations to the Ferris mini-grinder line. So let's change that right now. Below are pictures of the new color combinations. I hope that you like them and if you want more information on any of them, just click the picture and they will magically transport you to their page. Alright, so it's not really magic, it's actually hyperlinked pictures but the magic thing sounds a lot cooler.

If the color combinations are listed as limited edition and you like the way that they look then you shouldn't hesitate to order them. When they are gone they probably won't be back again, at least not before Labor Day. Some combinations I'm testing out and others simply won't be back. 


Set of black and natural (white) Ferris mini-grinders - Dailey Woodworking

Set of Blue and Black Ferris Mini-Grinders

 Set of Dark Knight Ferris Mini-Grinders - Dailey Woodworking


Set of limited edition Evergreen Ferris mini-grinders - Dailey Woodworking 


Set of Red and Black Ferris Mini-Grinders - Dailey Woodworking



Looking for some honey

Looking for some honey 0

I've been looking for something small to make. I had a few guidelines for myself to follow. I didn't want to use anything thicker than 1-inch wood and I wanted to be able to turn it on my mini-lathe. Oh, and I wanted to be able to turn most of the piece using only the skew. 

Probably one of my wife, Mary's, all time favorite characters is Winnie-the-Pooh. So I did what Pooh would do. I sat down, tapped my head repeatedly with my right hand and said, "Think, Think, Think". When that didn't work for me, I got up and walked around and again, repeatedly tapped my head with my right hand and said, "Think, Think, Think". 

When the headache finally cleared, I came up with the idea of making honey dippers. I would start with wood that was 1 inch by 7 inches long and I would be able to use the skew for at least 90 percent of the project. A parting tool would be used for the rest. Perfect!

I turned the prototypes that you see in the picture above and then realized that I had another problem. Do they really work? See I don't use honey in much stuff, I'm already sweet enough. Don't ask my wife about that one though, I'm pretty sure she would just roll her eyes.