North East Chapter – Irish Woodturners
North West Chapter, travelled from Bridgend, Co. Donegal, for a full day’s turning. John’s style of turning incorporates the traditional and the contemporary, which he links with
his unique insight into the science of laying out and marking
out his work-piece, that combine to produce mind boggling artistic
His first project was a Bowl Weave. A 7” blank was brought to a
round mounted between centres and marked out to show the base as the south pole, the rim as the north pole, and
the centre of the sphere shaped body as the equator, and the perimeters of the sphere as the
circle was drawn on the north pole 1” in from the outer edge and divided into 6 equal sections, and numbered
clockwise 1-6 starting at 12 o’clock.
While the south pole was similarly marked and numbered anticlockwise starting at 6
o’clock. Numbers 1&1 were mounted diagonally between centres, and the first two cuts were made with
the parting tool to a fixed depth cutting at both tropics. Now the sphere shaped body of
the bowl is turned with peeling cuts away from the equator to the tropics. The lathe is stopped, and the
first diagonal line is drawn on the sphere section joining point 1 south tropic to point 1 north
tropic. Repeat the above procedure for each of the 5 remaining off centre pairs of
John Malone marks out a sphere
Remount on points 1 & 1, and using a point tool cut a light v cut on the diagonal
burn into the v cut with a heavy wire.
Repeat this process for the other 5 mounting points. Mount between centre points to
shape base and rim. Apply spirit dye to central chequered diamonds to enhance the design. Cut spigot at south pole for
chucking to turn inside of bowl.
The above description comes with a reproduction warning due to the complexity and
amount of marking out required, and your reproduction may not turn out as
John demonstrated his unique method for cutting the perfect sphere by marking an initial
series of points to enable a series of flats to be turned. These flats were subdivided to
facilitate turning on a series of different planes – a complex procedure but
His third project was a variation of the Bowl Weave which he presented to Imelda
Connolly. Thanks John for sharing your techniques and a very informative
Thanks to Pat Walsh for his critique on the following exhibits:-
Burr Beech platter – John Conneff.
Ash eggcup stand & Oak cheeseboard – James
Laburnum garden owl – Bob Dier.
Elm bowl & plate Eamonn McKelvey.
Oak 14” platter – Cecil Barron.
Laburnum vase – Cecil Barron.
Oak cheese board - James