Woodturner’s shoulder?

So I’m asleep when all of a sudden…


And my shoulder is hanging in an odd fashion and…it hurts. A pint of Firey Jack, a tube of something else hot, and a dozen pain  killers, and it was just about possible to do a Mel Gibson on it.

So no turning for a couple of days then. Glum, glum, glum.

So no woodturning news to speak of…but on a brighter note the cat brought me a nice present yesterday…


There are many advantages to living in the countryside. A free Partridge for lunch is just one of them. Cheers Holly! (the cat)

Back at last…

So I’m back on broadband at last. New ISP. Totally wireless. Totally better than dial-up! I still don’t know where the old broadband connection went…and neither did my old ISP…hence the change.

So what’s been happening?

Well…it’s been a long day, so it’ll have to wait until tomorrow…

as for now…I’m loading this via scribefire add-on for Firefox…let’s see how it does!

After a busy weekend…

This last weekend was a busy one; Weird & Wonderful Wood again.  WWW really can be weird, is cerctainly wonderful, and without exception is, wood. And more wood. And then more wood just incase. It’s a fantastic event, organised and orchestrated by the apparently tireless Tarby.

Woodies come from far and wide to exhibit, demonstrate, look and buy. Anything woody you can think of is represented: woodturning, pole turning, hurdle making, basketry, chainsaw sculpture, rustic and fine furniture, chairmaking by the Abbotts, musical instrument making, carving, fine cabinet making, timber conversion, wood sales, tool sales from Classic Hand Tools from Suffolk, stick makers, bow makers, diggery doo makers!, wood related passtimes for the kids, and to keep you otherwise content there’s great local food, great coffee, and music from some fantastic groups.

One of my problems is that I exhibit alone, so rarely have a chance to have a good look around. But this year I made a point of taking the odd break and having a wander. I picked up a lovely kent pattern axe head for a few pounds…now mounted on a hand-made Ash handle.

I also had visits from a lot of turners…even Bill Care turned up and was inundated by old friends from what I can gather. I also met a turner who I haven’t met before, but knew of, Sam Cook. I nice guy, with a very personal and attractive range of turnery which was quite an attraction for the “undercover” turners. You could almost hear them thinking, “Umm…I’d like to copy that”.

So it was a great weekend all the way.

Meanwhile I’ve had a frustrating week with my ISP after they lost the broadband connection after migrating the server. The end result…after speaking to a number of morons reading from a script and incapable of independant thought. And apparently completely lacking in any understanding of the workings of routers, servers and software…is that I’ve arranged for a new ISP from the 27th May. After ten years you’d think they’d bend over backwards to sort your problems out. I do hope it has nothing to do with the fact that the American owners have recently sold out to a UK company!

The conversation could have gone like this (if the ISP’s telephone reps were all northern and British)

ME: After ten years I am closing my account.

ISP: Eh? Oh ‘ell!

Anyway…posts will be thin on the ground until the 27th as dial-up is sooooooo slow!

Search Terms Used!

search term resultsSuch an early post is unusual for me…the mornings are a busy time…but I couldn’t resist this screen capture from my stats page at cobwebcrafts.

I’ve had some visits over the years which were the result of searches, but one in particular here takes the prize…

Look at number 17! What in the name of anything are “glue stockings”? And what on earth did they think when they found the link took them to a woodturning website? And what about number 13! Extreme oil painting? The mind boggles. Hanging off a cliff with your easel, perhaps?

And number 20 rubs a bit of salt. Holly blanks! Yes, I could supply some of those…but I promise you they’d split, warp and crack.


When plans fall apart…

I think I’ve been having one of those prolonged senior moments again this week. I almost forgot two important things. One a demo tomorrow evening, and the other a two day event at weekend!

The first was quickly sorted out. Cut some wood, make a plan, and call to confirm they haven’t changed venue or lathe Etc. Done.

The second means a mad rush to finish a few things that were roughed especially for the event, which are now done, and then a tangent…in the way tangents are often taken…Oh, that’s an odd plank of oak. Now what could I do with that? Small dishes? No.

three-part wall piece

taken from the other blog…


May 12th 2008

So another week passes into history. It often seems unfeasible that time can pass so quickly. Maybe it is simply a product of age: the older you get the quicker the hours pass. Maybe I’ll email Stephen Hawking and ask the question.

Everything that had to be done got done. Some things that didn’t have to be done, but I wanted to do, didn’t.  And, oddly, a few that I didn’t even know I wanted to do got done also. So no complaints on that front.

I got the big Stihl saw working on Saturday, and cut up the very large Holly log into a dozen 14” bowl blanks. With coring – they’re 6” deep – it should produce about forty bowls. Not a bad log! Of course, this relies on the rough-outs not splitting, warping, cracking, or running off into the sunset. Damned Holly.

I turned two ultra-thin bowls over the weekend, hoping to remove all but the very last vestiges of stress from the Holly. Humm. Have you ever made fresh popadums? Well you know when you get them they are beautifully flat and uniform? And then you drop them into boiling oil and they…whoosh! Well that’ pretty much what the Holly does. Whoosh!

I accept that this is probably a lost cause. And that this battle has been fought before by far better men (or women). And probably lost.  But it does feel like a battle. And I don’t back down easily.Damned Holly.

I do wonder if the Holly would be suitable for one of those basket vessels that Christian Burchard (sp) is so famous for. I’ve always like them very much. Simple, aesthetically pleasing, (that horrible word) tactile. The log section would need to be knot free and clean, but maybe there’s a chance?

But for this week it’s sycamore and beech. It’ll be nice to have a rest!

Odds & sods…

It’s been an odd week one way and another. Odd jobs. Odd mood. Odd all round.

The roughing out holly bowls experiment has already had a result…one seriously cracked bowl, and one working its way to being the same. Today I took the unusual step of sealing over the PVA with satin varnish. Anything to try and even out the moisture loss. I have also sealed them in groups of two pairs in polythene bags.

I also noticed that there has been a dramatic colour change in the Holly. Gone is the pristine white we are used to, and now they are streaked with green. I assume this is merely oxidisation of the sap, and will no doubt fade as the wood dries out. Though I doubt they will return to the pure white of old. It’s rather a pleasing look all the same. I just hope a few survive!

The centre has been busy over the bank holiday weekend, and I spent two days sitting out in the sun carving spoons from sycamore and holly.  It made a nice change, but now I have a sun-burnt head!

The rest of week will be another mish-mash of odd jobs…finish some recently dried bowls and plates for a customer, a spot of furniture restoration, some sign making, making a green oak pedestal for a sculpture, and I have a batch of lace bobbins to make. Fiddly things for a ham-fisted soul like me.

But that’s the day-to-day! Hey ho.