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2nd July – Jim Overton Inlaying with Milliput

19 July, 2018

51 members attended including 3 new members, from Durley, Woodlands and Chandlers Ford.

6 Visitors, this included 3 young lads under the age of 16, 57 in total for the evening.

Our demonstrator for July was Jim Overton, or Dr. James Overton BDS (Lond.), LDSRCS (Eng.) to give him his full title.

Jim is a working dental surgeon who lives on the edge of the New Forest in Hampshire in the UK. Who in his spare time makes and creates things, mainly out of wood. a lot of Woodturning but also wood carving, cold casting, knife making and leatherwork. Jim has also built up a large international following online with his own You-Tube Channel on which he shows us a lot of experimental woodturning and other crafts.

He is now regarded by many as the King of Milliput. Although Jim has demonstrated his craft at many trade shows across the country, this was to be his first ever club demonstration.

Jim started his demonstration with a sycamore bowl blank in his “Easy Wood Tools” chuck, he quickly turned the outside of the blank to its finished shape, before moving onto cutting the required channel for the Milliput inlay with a scraper, approximately an inch wide along the centre line of the outside edge. Jim recommends inlaying the outside before hollowing out.


In preparing the inlay, he uses a slow set epoxy resin prior to applying the Milliput this improves grip, stability and quality.

He then prepared the Milliput, for this demonstration Jim used two colours black and white, Jim mixed equal parts of the two-part pack, at first just folding and pinching in his hands until the colour was consistent throughout, keeping both colours separate, each was rolled out very thin using a rolling pin and baking parchment. He then trimmed the pieces into thin one-inch strips using a Stanley blade with a Milliput handle to chop the edges rather than slide the blade through. Jim wears gloves for the mixing process mainly to avoid contamination between the colours but also due to skin sensitivity, the colours do wash off the hands quite easily with soap and water. He enveloped four layers of the two colours before twisting, Zig-Zagging and “Squidging” it into a long sausage shaped piece, which he then broke into smaller lengths to inlay into the bowl.


This brought us to the tea break, during which Jim was kept very busy talking to members who had lots of question for him.

Following the interval, we had a Blue Peter moment, Jim had replaced the original piece with another similar one that he had prepared earlier (some six months earlier) so the Milliput had had plenty of time to cure, it is normally ready to work in 24 hours. You can use pretty much any tool to cut the Milliput back, Jim tends to use either his Record Power heavy duty square scraper or his carbide tool from Easy Wood Tools.


Initially the cured Milliput was quite white and dull but the more it was turned the more the pattern emerged the black still looking a little grey but darkens as it is polished. Using a Simon Hope sander Jim used 180 and 380 grits before using cellulose sanding sealer (in his own workshop he prefers to use the aerosol version) Mike Hasleden asked if he dilutes the sanding sealer, which he confirmed he does, which met with a favourable response from the audience, although not recommended by Terry from Chestnut products. He then finished with a couple of applications of Yorkshire Grit, which he feels removes the need to use a wider range of abrasive grits.



Following a thank you from Dave Gibbard on behalf of those present, Jim then somewhat reluctantly agreed to give his first ever gallery critique, only due to the fact that he felt what was on display was of a standard too high for him to critique, so he just picked out several of the items and gave his admiration to the work.


About the Milliput Company

  • In 1968 Jack and Lena Rickman founded The Milliput Company to manufacture a two-part epoxy putty for Industry and DIY markets.
  • It was during 1970 that modellers worldwide soon began adopting Standard Milliput to fill gaps in metal models, converting stock figurines, making buildings and scenic base work and for the production of master models for commercial purposes.
  • In 1979 Milliput moved to larger premises in Dolgellau, Mid Wales which enabled the product to be developed further.
  • In 1991 The Milliput Company received official recognition of their efforts with a prestigious ‘Rural Enterprise Award’ from the Development Board for Rural Wales.
  • Jack and Lena retired from the business and handed over the running of the company to their son Eddie and his wife Jane, successfully maintaining the ‘family’ stamp on the Company for the future. Their son Stephen joined the business in 2006.
  • Milliput is located in Dolgellau, a small town in the beautiful Snowdonia National Park

More information on how to use Milliput can be found on their website.

Andi Saunders

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