First Plate/Shallow Bowl , Box Elder

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Project by scrappy posted 07-25-2009 10:28 PM 1429 views 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here is the first item I have turned with my new FacePlate I got from Grizzly.

The wood is Box Elder I got from Rastus. Very nice wood. Love the color and figure in this piece. It was only 1inch thick so I decided to do a plate. This has a shallow well to it but with the small foot, it is more of a bowl style (plates are usually 1/2 the diameter? I think)

Over all 6 1/8 inch diameter x 7/8 inch tall. Got it down to about 3/16 inch thick wall.

Rough turned the back side first, then did the hollowing of the front. Got it fairly smooth. Was haveing trouble getting the tol marks out of it. No tear out, but kept leaving grooves. When I went to smooth and finnish the foot edge, this was all ready warping. Had it turned nice and straight, went back to it and the inside was running straight but the back had a woble to it. It had warped while I was thinning it out. (greener then I thought.)

Got the back most of the way smoothed back out (made this even thinner then planned). Got down to turning the edge of the foot and the piece of pine I had it glued to split. The edge of this Box Elder proved to be pretty tough when it went flying and dancing on edge accross my shop! Took it a few to settle down. I am glad I was to one side of it and wearing my face shield. Allways GOT to ba safe!

All in all I am very satisfied with this attempt. Know I need to get another tool rest.(mine is 9inch long) Kind of hard to get the big one in the tight spaces. Allso know I need a LOT more practice.

Please leave all comments and critiques. I know I need to improve, so any comment, tip, trick would be helpfull.

Thank You all for looking.


-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

7 comments so far

View lew's profile


12432 posts in 3957 days

#1 posted 07-25-2009 10:32 PM

I have to agree, the color and grain is beautiful!!

Nice Work!!

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View a1Jim's profile


117328 posts in 3779 days

#2 posted 07-26-2009 02:54 AM

Nice turnings they look great.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 4448 days

#3 posted 07-26-2009 03:03 AM

That’s not a bad looking platter Scrappy. Not bad at all. I like it. Nice color and grain.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View Karson's profile


35148 posts in 4602 days

#4 posted 07-26-2009 03:30 AM

Great looking. I just bought a mini lathe to make a cane for my Mother-in-law and so I need to try a few other projects.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia †

View scrappy's profile


3507 posts in 3632 days

#5 posted 07-27-2009 06:41 AM

Thanks for the nice comments.

Karson, Carfull, once you get started you might not want to quit!

This has become my current addiction.


-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

View Gary Fixler's profile

Gary Fixler

1001 posts in 3583 days

#6 posted 07-30-2009 06:48 AM

scrappy – I’m in the same boat, learning as I go, but I’ve been having some nice successes lately that are inspiring. It’s still amateur stuff, but it’s a good little leap up from where I’ve been. Some things finally clicked. I’ll share a few things that I stumbled into that are working for me lately to get smooth faces and curves pretty much just how I want them. First off, what tool, or which tools are you using? For me I’ve been using a 3/4” roughing gouge to get things to cylindrical, or roughly bowl/plate/cup shaped. Then I’ve been using this Robert Sorby Spindlemaster to do some skew-like smoothing and shaping. I’m glad I looked up the link for you, because I see now there are bigger ones. I hadn’t realized! I have the 1/2”, but they go up to 1”. I need at least the 3/4”, and the 1” would be fantastic for smoothing work. Basically, I point the tool in the direction I’m running around the bowl (outside), tilt the tool tip up (hand down) about 15° or so, and then rotate the tool to present the back edge against the bowl, and roll it into the cut a bit. I often don’t even roll, but just present the tool at the right angle, but rolling is a safe way to ease into it. Since the tool is small, I’ve actually had to hold the handle with my right hand, then press the tool against the rest with my other hand’s finger tips. I’m getting good at alternating directions and hands, which feels great, and weird. Using the back edge, I can control how much of the wood to remove, and smooth right around, changing the horizontal angle (yaw) as I go, and letting that determine in which tangent it wants to cut. I believe this is how skews work, though I’ve not tried one yet. For inside the bowl, plate, etc, I use a 1/2” spindle gouge, which could be bigger for larger stuff, whenever I pick one up. I use the same technique, angles, etc, and ride on the bevel itself. Just light yaw changes in the tool allow me to change which angle it wants to ride in, and have made for incredibly smooth curves from the center of plates and bowls out to the edges. I had one that I actually determined looked worse after sanding, because I had such a clean, smooth face with a perfect curve. I ruined that one anyway later, but it was a good moment :)

You know, I should probably just make a video of this at some point. I’m sure it’s common, maybe even the proper method, but after watching countless videos online these past months, I really haven’t heard anyone talk about riding on the bevel. Maybe I’ve not been paying attention.

-- Gary, Los Angeles, video game animator

View peruturner's profile


317 posts in 3564 days

#7 posted 07-30-2009 07:06 AM

Sometimes Iget those lines too but take your grinder with 24or36 grit and get them of(leave the plate a bit on the thick side those grits will eat wood fast,once they are gone just up your grits to 400 and done my 2cents

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