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January 2011

Seamus Cassidy presented us with a fascinating array of techniques and practical tips during his demonstrations while turning a garden dipper with depth marks, a mushroom with a natural edge, and a sculpture which he textured with the use of an arbortech. 


The textured surface was sanded using a nylon bristle disc (orange grit) in a hand held drill.  This sanding was compared to sanding using a deck scrubbing brush.  Next, part of the sculpture was sprayed with a commercial lacquer containing a mixture of eboniser.  Another part was painted with home made eboniser for comparison purposes.  Very similar results were achieved with both methods of sanding and ebonizing.  


His fourth project was transforming a piece of burr oak which he rescued from a drain, into an artistic sculpture with a gold plated bowl as the centre point.  Having mounted the project on the lathe, the surface was flattened with a chain saw, leaving some saw marks as a feature. 


Seamus Cassidy - Chainsaw


Seamus Cassidy at work


The face was then scorched with a blowtorch, and sanded/cleaned with a deck scrub. The small centre bowl was turned and gold size applied to the bowl area as an undercoat, and allowed to partially dry until it reached tacky stage.   Gold leaf was applied by lightly pressing small strips of gold leaf into the bowl.  Allow to cure for 24 hours, and then lightly tap any flaked gold into position, and burnish lightly with your finger.  Finish by applying oil to the scorched area only, to give a black surface.  If wax is used a brownish/ black finish will be achieved.