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4th April 2016 – AGM and Brains Trust

12 April, 2016

Following this years AGM and Tea Break, we were treated to a Brains Trust aka Q&A session


Club Secretary Bob Hope was the question master and providing the Brains were three of our most respected members Jean Turner, Mike Hasleden and Harry Woolhead. With Chris Davey and Dave Gibbard chipping in with their expertise.


John Holden asked “How to hold a thin shallow dish without using a vacuum chuck?”

H/W recommended gluing the dish to a sacrificial holding piece that could be inserted in the chuck   and supported by the tailstock, other suggestions included using masking tape, double sided tape or even Camping Mattress Foam?


The next question asked “How to Make Two identical Eggs and Egg Cups?

Jean suggested using a combination of a half, a third, a quarter and an eighth templates, Mike recommends leaving the spigots on so that adjustments can be made, and suggested coming to a “Hands on Day” at Alresford and be shown how to do it.


Brian Hannam asked “When combining different species of wood how do you deal with differential shrinkage?”

Mike stated the obvious to use compatible timbers,

Harry said use Oak, knowing Brian’s dislike of the wood.

Jean suggested that you could plasticise the wood, but this can prove expensive.



Dave Simpson asked “At what point does a crack become a split?”

Jean volunteered when a crack right through the timber, it becomes dangerous to put on a lathe, don’t use it.



The next Question was of a legal nature regarding PAT testing of items such as Table Lamps

Mike recommended that to be safe only make for family and friends.

Harry suggested using cable clips to restrain cables from moving and connection becoming loose and to get them PAT tested.

Jean added to look at Product Liability cover, and CE Certification


Editors note.

Take a look at

Membership includes £5m Public and Products Liability (PPL) insurance and access to specialist insurance packages for artists for just £36 for individual membership


Alan Baker then asked “How to season a wet turned vase?”

Mike’s advice was to hollow it out and leave it exposed

Harry agreed and suggested it would also colour better that way.


Bob Hope asked the panel for their favourite wood for small turned boxes with the following responses

Harry – Sycamore for it’s beautiful colour and Yew

Mike – Any of the Acers, or Yew

Jean – Boxwood or African Blackwood


The final question came from Novice Corner “What is the best wood to start turning with?”

Harry answered “anything you can get hold of” which was echoed by the rest of the panel. Jean added that you should never allow a piece of wood to become too precious and leave on the shelf to age and eventually become too dry to work.  “Don’t be afraid, You cant improve without making mistakes”.


The Brains Trust was followed by a critique of the gallery by Bob Hope. Special mention was made to freshly voted “Novice of the Year” Dave Simpson for his excellent Spalted Beech bowl.


The draw was won by Martin Rooney who had dominated the table with three very nice bowls.

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