The birth of a Wooden Bowl;Glenn Mast
Wooden bowls are special and those turned by hand more special yet. Too many of our crafts that once were made by skilled artisans often working alone in small shops have been assumed in recent years by robotic machines in factories, turning out repetitious copies without the subtleties that make hand work so remarkable. Most if not all of the factory bowls are apt to be made of quite bland wood as well. It is easier for factories to deal with.
The skilled wood turner begins with a choice of wood. Bowls are pleasant things to turn but the novelty quickly wears off. Then the choice of wood makes a difference. As good wood turner will say, "life is too short to turn ugly wood." Quite simply, there is a pleasure in taking a gorgeous piece of wood or a couple of different woods glued together and making it shine with a well applied tool, sand paper and finish.
Pieces of wood large enough for turning are cut to an appropriate length for use and treated on the ends to prevent checking. Then the piece of wood is cut into a working piece just big enough for the bowl to come. That piece goes on the lathe and is quickly roughed out. To prevent it from warping or cracking a wax emulsion must be painted onto the end grain and the bowl left to dry for a period of time
After the bowl dries, the warped but hopefully not cracked bowl is remounted to the lathe and the wood turner now proceeds a careful process of design and final turning. It is not unusual for the three quarters or more of the wood to be turned away, leaving a wooden bowl behind. Once this bowl is sanded and oiled like a work of art it is ready to be used on the table. A treat for the hands and the eyes as well as for the taste buds, food, salad and bowl salute you at the dinner table.
Author Resource: Glenn Mast is a successful business owner of a couple websites that offer Amish Handcrafted Products. His sites offer products and information about Amish Made Products & decor for your home, lawn or garden.