March 2016


IMG_2860Once again  we were delighted to have Charlie Ryan as our guest for our March meeting, to give us  a class in turning and well were we entertained for the afternoon. Charlie showed us how to turn a clever little device to hold a dressmakers tape and a needle holder with a pincushion lid.(Was this a hint that some of us should take up dressmaking instead of turning)

He  started with a talk on safety in the workshop which is so important as we all get careless from time to time, example, I’m typing this with one of my fingers plastered, Charlie put great emphases on face protection particularly the eyes and on dust inhalation, as we should know a lot of timbers give off toxic dust, so come on guys wear the face masks and face protectors.(my wife says its an improvement)

IMG_2874First to the tape holder which was in the shape of an acorn , these of course are tailor or dressmakers tapes. usually a metre long and maybe 15 to 25mm wide. This holder can be made from any small pieces of any timber we have available, Charlie used a piece of sycamore and laburnum and he used the sycamore for the bottom part which I will describe as the shape of an egg with the top cut off, around 50mm in diameter. First he turned a cylinder as I said around 50mm and in one end drilled a 40mm hole with a  fostner to about 35mm deep, then in the centre of the hole drilled a 6mm hole, this in about 10mm to take a dowel which in turn will hold the fabric tape. His next trick was to cut a slot about 35mm down one side of the hole this to allow the tape to pass out the side of the finished holder. (are you still with me)  Charlie then reversed the piece in the lathe and shaped the end, roundnosed, put this aside and with the piece of laburnum turned the top to fit over snugly as a lid. This can be treaded on if one has the facility to do this. This top is drilled to take the dowel which acts as a spindle and to assemble the holder the lid is removed, the tape with the metal tip cut off from one end.( making sure its from the long measurement end) This end is glued around a piece of dowel which is long enough to sit into the inside hole and pass through the hole in the lid, the tape is then wound around the dowel, which is put into the bottom hole, the free end of the tape passed through the slot in the side and the lid fitted on. The dowel coming through the top is now cut leaving a small protrusion to allow a cap to be glued on. That’s it, you can now pull the tape out through the slot, do any measuring and wind it back around the dowel using the cap.

IMG_2873The second part was easier, this was a box turned again from a piece of sycamore about 75mm square and it was finished around 100mm high with concave sides, hollowed out to hold needles and bits and bobs as used by a dressmaker, the lid was padded to act as a pin cushion.

As usual the lads didn’t give Charlie an easy time with their comments from the floor but as we all know Charlie can give as good as he gets, with interest, thanks Charlie both for your skill and your humour.

Now for the competition results. In the advanced The1st went to Tom Murphy 2nd Tom Gibson 3rd Chris Hayes.

In the novice section the 1st went to Kevin Mcloughlin 2nd Frank Trappe 3rd Jim Cassin.  Well done all, great to see a good number of entries in both sections, keeps the standard up and all trying harder.

That’s all for now, looking forward to our seminar next month and seeing all your smiling faces, until then keep safe.

Pat Gannon