The November meeting was a demo by Eric Turner. Due to the imminent approach of the festive season, he had decided to make a hip flask. The members welcomed this idea, although most felt that the flask designed by Eric would be too small for their personal use. He started with a rectangular block of pine, which he had pre-drilled approx. ½" deep on each face. He mounted the block lengthways between centres and turned the neck of the flask and a chucking point on the base. He also turned the shape of the flask, while leaving the front and back of the flask flat.
After sanding, he drilled a hole down the neck of the flask to the end of what was to be the hollowed-out section using a Forstner bit. Next he remounted the piece using the pre-drilled centre as a chucking point and hollowed out the centre of the flask. Then he mounted the flask on a jam-fit chuck to clean up the base.
Finally he made 2 mahogany discs to fit onto the front and back faces to seal the flask. He also made a mahogany stopper to fit the neck.
This description is of how Eric says the flask should be made. However, he needed three attempts to complete the body of the flask, as the wood fractured on the first two occasions as he drilled out the centre! This provided great entertainment for the Down Chapter with many comments on the reluctance of a Ballymena man to spend money on decent wood rather than using bits of waste wood for demos!
By the third repetition, Eric's turning speed was so high that it was difficult to follow the different steps in the sequence! It is wonderful to see what a real master turner like Eric can do under pressure. Afterwards we enjoyed our usual excellent supper provided by Lorraine.