Wet Bowl Reprise #1: Back on the horse, back in the bag

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Blog entry by Douglas Bordner posted 07-28-2007 09:17 PM 1166 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Wet Bowl Reprise series no next part

This is my second attenpt at wet bowl turning after gathering valuable advice from a forum topic calling on bowl turners.

Special thanks to Dorje, Mot (and his excellent CyberSkillShare series on bowl turning) and a very detailed and helpful tutorial by a fairly new member of LJs, SteveRussell (he isn’t new to bowl turning by any means, and I believe we haven’t heard the last from him in terms of sage advice).

This is the second and largest log section from a sweet haul of boxelder that I found laying on the ground at my sister-in-law’s outdoor wedding (Thanks, Trisha and Don and their hosts, the Petrovich family in Chicago, IL). I have two more sections left and have decided to see if I can get more of the pile at a future date.

On the first go ‘round, I determined that I am not very likely to appreciate the form taken when the wet bowl warps in drying, so I left a stub tenon on the inside of the bowl and turned a much more shallow dovetail recess in the bottom, so that after about a month in a paper bag (turning the bag inside out every day or so), the bowl should be ready to turn to it’s final shape.



This time I also soaked the top around the heartwood/sapwood dehiscion line with thin Hot Stuff cyanoacrylic glue. The other bowl started to shed the little bit of heartwood that was attached and that is right where most of the red-streaking in this bit of boxelder resides. I lost a fair amount of height in that shedding, and ended up with a dainty little bowl, which is in my projects for view.


I also left this bowl much thicker, in the hope that I will be able to shape it a bit more. So, it’s back in the bag for a month, and we will see what develops. I’ll keep you posted!

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

7 comments so far

View Bob Babcock's profile

Bob Babcock

1804 posts in 4055 days

#1 posted 07-29-2007 12:15 AM

Very nice….the figure in the bowl almost looks like a landscape.

-- Bob, Carver Massachusetts, Sawdust Maker

View Dorje's profile


1763 posts in 3966 days

#2 posted 07-29-2007 08:17 AM

Alrighty! Here we go again! Back on the horse…this should be good!

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View Don's profile


2603 posts in 4146 days

#3 posted 07-29-2007 09:44 AM

Looking forward, to the next installment, Doulgas.

-- CanuckDon "I just love small wooden boxes!"

View SteveRussell's profile


101 posts in 3929 days

#4 posted 07-30-2007 03:39 AM

Hello Douglas,

Thanks for the kind words… :-) Your bowl has really nice color! I can’t wait to see it finished. It’s rare for me to get Box Elder with that coloring, so it’s nice to see it being turned. Good luck to you and best wishes in all of your woodturning endeavors!

Steve Russell
The Woodlands, Texas

-- Better Woodturning and Finishing Through Chemistry...

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4130 days

#5 posted 07-30-2007 10:39 PM

oh it’s lovely already!!! A month? I wouldn’t have the patience :)

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4023 posts in 4033 days

#6 posted 07-30-2007 10:46 PM

Between wood and pixels I’m always behind on something so I just shift focus and the time flows by. I get to look the bowl over everyday or so, and it becomes a science project to see the chnages that take place as the drying is ongoing.

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

View oscorner's profile


4563 posts in 4280 days

#7 posted 07-31-2007 02:35 PM

It is a longer process, but I really think you should try soaking your bowl in water with just a little dishwashing liquid. Wiegh it down so that it is completely submerged and put it in a container that has a lid, so you can keep it closed. Leave it like this for a month, making sure it is covered by the solution. After a month drain the water out and keep in closed container for another couple of weeks. The piece will be discolored somewhat, but when turning greenwood you always leave enough thickness to allow for a finished turning, later. I’ve used this process and have never had a crack. The paper bag method with green shavings has left me in tears more than once.

-- Jesus is Lord!

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