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1st October – Les Thorne

19 October, 2018

As one would expect there was a large crowd in attendance for the next episode of our annual event “Showtime with Les Thorne”

Les Thorne has been on the Register for Professional Turners since 2001 after spending most of his life involved with wood in some capacity. From his workshop in Old Alresford in Hampshire, Les is primarily a production turner and works on a huge variety of jobs and with many different clients.

Les offers a range of woodturning courses from his workshop and also has a small range of instructional videos and his own designed turning tools.

Les offered us an Interactive demonstration in preparation for a major event at the weekend, he was going to ask at various points of the demonstration “how would you do this bit?” he would then tell us what he was going to do anyway whilst explaining why.


“Oh my God, It’s another bowl! Or is it? Is how he introduced us to the subject of the evening a lidded box, the top of which was like a side grain bowl. Using a hexagonal kiln dried European Oak blank, left over from a large commission for McDonalds restaurants in London.

He started by attaching the blank to a screw chuck

Tip Les uses a small amount of paste wax to lubricate the threads on his screw chucks, it stops them binding and rusting when using wet wood.


Discussing which tool to use Les opts for the one that gives the best optimum cut.

He removed the corners and rounded the six corners, and then very quickly turned the outer shape initially with a spindle gouge and then a bowl gouge. Then cutting a small spigot for the Nova chuck.

Once fitted to the chuck, Les then a drilled hole through the centre of the “bowl” with a drill bit in the tail stock chuck. This will accommodate the handle/knob. Then using pull cuts he improved the outer shape.

“No way is perfect for every project”


Reversed into the Nova chuck and hollowed out with ¼” bowl gouge

“No way is perfect for every project”

Les then gave us a short masterclass in hollowing out a bowl, explaining the need to change position and possibly tools at various points, and allowing for differing angles and a lower peripheral speed nearer the centre of the bowl

He then created a small step inside top edge of bowl (that will match the base)

Using his multipurpose tool i.e. a round skew he finished of the inside off the bowl with a larger gouge to counter the additional vibration.

Once turned he moved onto adding a decorative finish, using his preferred Lemon Oil which gives a matt finish and doesn’t go off

Placing the bowl in a pine jam chuck to hold in place with tail stock centre, in his workshop (Les favours using a flat jam chuck, with 360 grit abrasive for grip).


He also recommends using paper inside the jam chuck to reduce noise

Then selecting the parting tool from his Sorby small tool set to cut a series of grooves on the outer surface for decoration.

He then went over these with brass brush in a drill, followed by a quick sand and then liming brush to emphasise the beads. Les the applied an acrylic sanding sealer followed with black ebonising lacquer


We then had a brief Q&A before the tea break

Returning to the lathe Liming wax was applied with liming brush. Les then worked it into the grooves with his ‘“Wife’s” toothbrush promising that he always washes it before returning it. He then broke a cardinal turning rule by buffing it up with small piece of rag not paper, warning the novices in the audience of its inherent danger.


Les then turned a thin base from Ash attached to a blank in the chuck by hot glue gun, this was then supported with his “One Way” Ring & Point Live Centre in the tail stock


Les then used signature spindle gouge to cut the smallest spigot possible (as he didn’t want to remove it later) disguised with a small decorative bead. Then used a round skew to produce a smooth surface.

Reversed on lathe, having removed the base from the blank using a standard chisel to prise it apart, cleaned up any glue residue from the surface. He then measured and turned a lip for the upturned bowl to fit onto, it does not require a very tight fit. Les managed this at his second attempt, quickly finished of the surface and then moved onto a simple top hat shaped finial. This was of course met with a loud round of applause.

Les then moved to the gallery table for the critique, taking his time to mention every exhibit, giving the occasional constructive critique but as is becoming the norm at HWA gave a strong vote of appreciation for the quality of exhibits.

With time running past the usual Ten O’clock finish time, the final event of the evening was the ever-popular raffle with its usual range of quality prizes.

We now look forward to the third of our in house demonstrators with the next episode of Mike Hasleden’s mystery turns at our November meeting

Andi Saunders


1st October – gallery

15 October, 2018

3rd Sept – “Some Turning, Some Colouring and a few other bits” Part II.

16 September, 2018

56 members and 4 guests attended the September meeting which has become a club favourite on the calendar with a demonstration from our very own Adrian Smith, an experienced woodturner who brings to his demonstrations a light hearted approach that is filled with great humour and lots of very useful hints and tips. This years offering was to be a continuation of last years demonstration in which he ran out of time, so I now offer you “Some Colouring and a few other bits”.


Bob Hope standing in for Dave this month kicked off the meeting with a few announcements before introducing Adrian who immediately had us smiling by admitting that he had forgotten to bring a blank that he had prepared earlier, but not to worry he just produced another one which he now needed to quickly paint white, so out came his trusty tin of Zinsser Bin paint, which he opened with a Skew chisel stating that was probably it’s most useful application.


Some Colouring

Moving swiftly on to his first sample of decoration, he produced a couple of cans of spray car paint, and claiming that shaking the cans was hard work, passed the cans to members of the front row to shake them for him. He then produced a selection of  Virginia Creeper leaves (Sometimes called Boston Ivy which he laid out on newspaper and proceeded to spray them with a combination of Red and Green he then quickly applied the leaves to a pot already prepared with Zinsser, he then gave the whole bowl a light dusting over the leaves. Sadly the required effect wasn’t achieved due to the leaves being too limp and the paint not transferring as he had hoped.


Moving quickly on Adrian then produced another bowl this time painted black, and his set of Jo Sonja Acrylic paint tubes. He then dispensed a very small amount of iridescent Blue using the wrong end of a small paint brush dabbed small blobs around the bowl. He then produced a unique piece of kit a car tyre inflator which he powered with a battery charger (reducing 240 volts down to 12). Then attaching a football inflator adaptor to the compressor Adrian used the compressed air to spread the small blobs out into a petal type shape, he then added a further layer of iridescent Violet over them and again spread them out, this produced a very convincing flower effect. Adrian has been using this set of paints for some ten years so they do represent very good value (£3.99 per tube on EBay)


Adrian’s next show piece was a Vase of Flowers, or at least flowers in a pre-prepared vase. Starting with some Hazel branchwood in the chuck, he quickly removed the bark and rounded the wood with a round skew, then using a short length of wire as a drill bit, he bored a small hole in the core of the wood, and then proceeded to shave back layers of the wood to produce the flower heads much in the same way that many of us have produced Christmas Trees. This works pretty much with any soft centred wood. The finished flower heads were then lightly sprayed with red paint, building up to the required finish before parting off. Adrian then inserted green painted cocktail sticks into the base of the flowers to serve as a stalk. This process was then repeated a couple of times to give us the vase of flowers.

This took us up to the tea break, during which Alan and Harry held a critique of the novice gallery entries. After which John Holden was volunteered to carry out the critique of the other gallery items.


A few other Bits

Adrian returned to centre stage for the final session, this time he set up an Beech cube “corner to corner” between the chuck and a hollow ring centre in the tail stock. He turned a chucking point on the tail stock end before reversing the piece into the chuck and then hollowing out a three-pointed winged bowl. This process required a lot of stopping and starting to check the depth of bowl and the thickness of the wings, not a job for the faint hearted.


Adrian then reverted to the original white painted blank from the start of the evening, as this was a lot longer than he required so without explanation he proceeded to reduce by turning a snowman which when parted off left him with the required length of wood to turn jam chuck.  But yet again time ran out on us so the half-finished bowl was passed around the audience for inspection. The demonstration ended with the usual warm round of applause for one of our most popular members and demonstrators. Bob then thanked Adrian for “a most entertaining and informative evening, but mostly entertaining” before moving onto the raffle.


Andi Saunders


Editors Note:-


Jo Sonja’s® Artist Colours & Mediums

Jo Sonja’s Decorative Painting System was developed by Jim Cobb (Director of Chroma) and renowned folk artist, Jo Sonja Jansen.  Both artists wanted a colour system that would meet the needs of the serious artist, so with the up to date technology that Chroma had to offer, the brand of Jo Sonja’s was produced to have both versatility and longevity.  This flexibility enabled the decorative artist to create techniques from the past and develop new techniques for the future.  Introduced in 1985, the brand quickly found its place in the market.  Artists worldwide recognise its value and quality with Jo Sonja’s playing a major role in the decorative painting market, a position that Chroma will maintain with its ongoing commitment to innovative ideas and quality.


The Paint

Jo Sonja’s Artists Colours are flow formula acrylics that offer the look and feel of traditional gouache.  Being made from only the finest quality, pure pigments.  Colour layering within designs can easily be achieved as the colour dries within minutes and can easily be painted over without damage being done to the underlying layer.  It provides opacity of colour and dries to a velvet matte.  While other paint ranges target the craft audience, Jo Sonja’s colours offer a professional paint range for the more serious artist.  Jo Sonja’s Artists colours are two to three times stronger than the bottled craft colours as well as being permanent.  No special instructions are required as they have been created to be used with ease.


The Decorative Painting System

With the range of paints, also comes a range of mediums to allow unlimited techniques.  Acrylic mediums are invaluable if you wish to change the paint consistency or alter drying times.  Chroma has discovered ways of allowing the same set of colours to be applied on a variety of surfaces such as wood, metal, glass and textiles.  The same colours (with the use of the mediums) can be stencilled, stamped, crackled or used in a host of elaborate faux finishes.

The Website contains lots of useful hints & Tips


Also Repeated for those who missed (or forgot) last years report

Zinsser Bin is a Shellac-based primer, sealer and stain killer. Suitable for use on interior surfaces and spot priming of exterior surfaces. Offers excellent adhesion to glossy surfaces, including glass. Blocks stubborn and persistent stains including water stains, marker pens and more. Seals porous surfaces with excellent enamel holdout, even sealing bleeding knots and sap streaks. Permanently blocks every kind of odour. Touch-dry in 20 minutes. Recoatable in 45 minutes. Hard-dry in 1-3 days. Covers approx. 12.5m²/Ltr.


  • Excellent Adhesion to Glossy Surfaces
  • Blocks Stubborn & Persistent Stains
  • Seals Porous Surfaces
  • Permanently Blocks Odour

Andi Saunders

3rd Sept – Gallery

16 September, 2018

6th August – Club Challenge and New Forest talk

24 August, 2018

Club challenge and Talk on the history of the New Forest

We had 48 members attend with 2 new members and 3 honorary members (under 18) giving us 53 in total on the night. New members are Peter Draper from Southampton and Stuart Morgan from Lee on Solent. A good turnout considering the very hot weather and holiday period.

As the title suggests the evening was in two parts, firstly the Club Challenge to turn something incorporating a material other than wood. An ideal opportunity to try one of the themes from our previous three meetings gilding, lacing or resin filler.  And secondly an illustrated talk by Richard Duponte about Management of the New Forest.

The Challenge attracted an excellent range of entries, one or two which initially prompted the question “where is the other material?” most of which were resolved by closer inspection for example one item had been gilded on the underside of the edge, which wasn’t apparent until it was picked up. Members had until the break to inspect the entries and then submit their 1st, 2nd & 3rd place votes into the ballot box, this said voting was concluded very quickly and John Holden was able to collate the results in good time for Lynda Barkaway to produce the certificates in her usual hand calligraphed style during the tea break. Results to follow below.

Our guest speaker for the evening was Richard Duponte, a Ranger in the New Forest who has a wide knowledge of the forest current and past. Richard’s talk took us on an illustrated whistle stop tour of the history of the forest from its early uses right up to the current management of what is now a National Park. The talk was accompanied by a large selection of projected slides. I think it safe to say that the majority of the audience were not only well entertained but also learned quite a few things that they did not know beforehand. The New Forest has never been a forest in the way that we generally use the name today, it was actually placed under “Forest Law” by William the Conqueror i.e. an area set aside for the sole use of the King in pursuit of his hunting activities. There are probably more trees there now than in William’s time.

The large stock of Oak and Beech currently to be found were planted in the early 1800’s initially planned to be used in ship building for the Royal Navy.

In 1949 following the reduction in stock during the two world wars, 5000 acres of open forest land were set aside for new pine plantations known as “Verderers Enclosures” which continue to be harvested to this day, these are then being returned to open heath land. Richard continued his presentation with a brief introduction to his current project which is the New Forest Reptile Centre, located two miles to the west of Lyndhurst where Specially created display enclosures allow you to study these animals in close-up. They have the only collection of all the native lizards, snakes, frogs and toads, including Britain’s only venomous snake – the adder – and rarest lizard – the sand lizard.

Richard then answered question form the audience, before receiving a warm round of applause.



We then moved onto the Challenge results and presentation of certificates, Dave Gibbard announced the results in traditional reverse order

3rd           Tom James                         Metal rose on a wooden Base and Glass dome

2nd          Dave Simpson                   Infilled bowl using an acrylic pen blank

1st           Mike Hasleden                  Multi-Offset turned bowl with inlaid Milliput and wooden ball in the centre

We now look forward to September’s meeting with the inimitable Adrian Smith returning to complete his presentation from last year.

Andi Saunders

6th August – Gallery

13 August, 2018

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