Friday, March 7, 2014

Root Ball to Bowl

by the Woodworker

I found a root ball in a pile of wood. Figuring it might be turned into a nifty bowl in the future I salvaged it and put aside to dry.   Soon I forgot it existed.  The other day  I rediscovered it in my scrap pile underneath my lathe. I pulled it out and considered how to turn it into a unique bowl.
After careful consideration I decided to cut off the bottom with a band saw in order to make a place to put my bowl chuck.

1. The original root ball.

2. installed on lathe using a face plate in order to hollow out the inside.

3. starting the turning process.

Extreme care had to be taken in order to avoid the misshaped and rotten root ball from coming apart due to poor balance.
4. The inside is starting to hollow out.

5. The inside starting to clean up and old rotten debris is falling out.

6.  Still more cleaning up and inside shaping. Very carefully of course.

7.  Now the outside is beginning to take shape. I had to make a special adapter for my tail stock in order to keep the bowl from coming apart. 

8. Still more work on the inside.

9. More outside work. Note how the holes appear as the decayed material falls out and irregularities in the wood start to even up. The red color is from bacteria that grows in the  tree. Bacteria can come in red, green and blue as well as other unusual colors. Sadly it fades over time.

10. Complete bowl. It looks like it will work well for holding apples and oranges. Peanuts; not so much.

It's always fun to make bowls out of exotic and bizarre types of wood. Often they don't quite make it to the finish line but when they do they are quite unique. Loads of fun to do.
This project took three hours.

No comments: