Our April meeting is traditionally the biggest of the year as it is a 2-day event, consisting of a demonstration on Friday evening, followed by workshops for members on Saturday to make the object demonstrated.
We finish up on Saturday with our annual dinner in the Burrendale Hotel in Newcastle.
This year our demonstrator was the talented Mark Hanvey.
Mark made a very nice Beech box with an inlaid lid of 4mm plywood. Mark had made this plywood himself from American Walnut and cedar. The box was made in the traditional way except that he cut the centre of the lid through to make a frame in which the plywood could be inserted.
He suggested this method of inlaid lid as an excellent way to use up off-cuts of expensive wood. At home he had cut the plywood into squares and countersunk screw holes on each corner
He screwed the square to the centre of an MDF circular block, which he attached to the chuck using a faceplate. He used his fine parting tool (an old a butter-knife) to cut a circle into the walnut to expose the cedar.
Next he reattached the plywood to the MDF block in a slightly different place and again cut circles. He suggested using a soft pencil initially to mark where to cut, as if the cuts are too close to the original ones the small pieces generated could be easily broken off. He then moved the plywood again to a new position on the MDF until he was satisfied with the final design.
In order to cut the plywood piece for the top to the correct diameter, he mounted a scrap piece of wood in the chuck and cut a spigot on the end to match the diameter of the inside of the lid. He then sandwiched the plywood for the lid between this spigot and another piece of scrap wood held in place with the tailstock. This meant he had a template to cut the plywood to fit the lid
He had several tools which he had modified himself - e.g. an old butter-knife which he had converted into a very narrow parting tool and a round nose scraper he had ground to give a pronounced bevel on one side so that it could be used to shape the inside of the box more effectively. Another excellent suggestion he made was to oil the tool rest to reduce friction before using the scraper to finish off the inside of the box.
The workshops on Saturday were very enjoyable as was the well-attended annual dinner