Welcome to South Downs Woodturners


East Sussex & West Sussex wood turners typically meet on the first Thursday of the month from 7:00 to 10:00pm in Lancing Parish Hall.

See Contact for Map and About / Prog for activities


If you would like to join us please come to any meeting without obligation

and meet our Membership Secretary. For further info please e-mail us at Enquiries@SouthDownsWoodturners.com



Next Meeting


19:00 Thurs 5 July 2018


Mark Baker  - Editor of Woodturning


Next Competition


August - Bud Vase / Weed Pot


June Meeting


Chris Grace presented a slide show illustrating a range of different bud vase designs before demonstrating two variations and showing three methods of drilling suitable holes




Drilling the first project blank with a long jobber bit in a tailstock mounted chuck, Chris illustrates the efficiency of a high feed rate - you can barely see his hand turning the handle


The final method of drilling illustrated is using the humble spindle gouge. Chris' 12mm spindle gouge has a short fingernail grind of about 50 degrees and is asymetric with a little more ground away on the right for clearance when drilling


See the newsletter for a photo of a finished 3 bud vase and dimensions


For the second project Chris uses his height adjustable sled (see the March issue 316 of Woodturning Magazine). The drill is in the headstock and the blank is pushed onto it - make sure the blank is longer than the drill or use a push block


This month's Chairman's Challenge was Box, and numerous hopeful members entered hoping to win one of the 3 pens available as prizes


Having created a bottom and a face chucking point, and created the scallop at the top using the former, the first face can then be turned to a suitable curve. The second face is turned using a cup chuck and tailstock support


We encourage all members to show us what they have been making, or the tools they have been using. Here Jim Young made some boxes out of small scraps


May Practical Evening


Stewart demonstrated his latest colouring techniques

Barrie got technical with his equipment showing laser engraving pens


John showed members what you can achieve with a Banksia Nut

This month's Chairman's Challenge was Toy



Dave spent the evening helping newer turners, here he advises a new member

This month members brought in an extensive range of their turning for others to see


April Saturday Demo


Simon Hope visited us for a demonstration, brining many of the tools he sells.


He turned several projects, showing different methods of achieving the desired results.



Simon demonstrated thread chasing using hand chasers, as well as his special jig, reinforcing the sycamore with superglue


Not everything needs an expensive tool as illustrated by off-centre turning between centres. You could have a go with the Club's new Sorby Chuck


This is the final result, with sections turned on axis and a combination of others on other axes



April Meeting


This was a busy meeting and included our AGM, presentation of our annual competition awards, a cottonreel stand competition and a chairman's challenge together with a floating rim resin platter demonstration by Gordon Eaton



Gordon performs a bit of kitchen chemistry with some sticky epoxy resin and dye pouring it into a recess he has cut in his platter blank on his turntable


Gordon first turns the bottom of the platter (left) revealing the trough of resin in the wood


Then the top is turned, and following sanding to 2000 grit he uses mops and buffing compound in 2 stages to add shine before adding a protective layer of carnuba wax on a third mop


Gordon brought us along a selection of the platters  and bowls he has created using this technique, including some with sections of branch adding extra decorative elements to the resin features

Right are this months Chairmans Challenge entries for the Kitchen topic, the items Norman selected belonged to Robert Kemp, Peter Pullin & Bob Harris



Members created some interesting cotton reel stands incorporating some additional features such as lids, pin cushions, scissor holders


See the competition page for this month's winners together with the results of the 2017-18 annual competition


March 1st Club Meeting Cancelled

Due to the forecast weather the Commuttee have decided to cancel the March meeting due to concerns about travel and the safety of our members and our demonstrator. Jennie Starbuck has agreed to come in December instead. 


February Meeting

For the first demonstration of the new year Andy Heath shows us how to make cotton reel stands for the April competition.

Pete Brown has been turning his hand to pyrography lately and brought these in to show members what he's been up to.






Here Stewart Furini shows us his latest textured and coloured creation.



Our freestyle competition winners above are proudly displaying their work and certificates, see competition page for results.


Thanks to Alan Wesley for taking the photos this month.



December Meeting


At this year's festive meeting members showed us their Xmas decorations, we enjoyed special Xmas biscuits and were treated to turning demonstrations by Dave Smith and Jim Young





In his first ever demonstration Dave decided to show us how he makes offset candle sticks using a standard chuck



Jim held his blank with a faceplate ring enabling him to turn a chucking spigot on the base. He leaves the ring on until he is happy that the blank is mounted concentric on the turned spigot


He starts the process by turning  a chucking spigot and then turning the top section on-centre. Then he made 4 equal marks on the base of the work 


Using each mark he loosens the chuck, tilts the work (with the spigot still in the jaws) and re-tightens. Using a sharp spindle gouge and skew he works his way toward the chuck changing position as he progresses


Is that Steam or Smoke - no, it's Jim attacking the blank with his favourite carbide tool, making both shavings and dust at the same time!


Above he explains decorating options


In recognition of the 12 days of Xmas, members produced 12 decorative items for us to enjoy



November Meeting


Members were obviously getting into the swing of things early for our practical evening


They had produced an interesting variety of items for our Tools 'n' Turnings table







Ron Inglis turns for his audience


Beginners Time entry


Beginners Winner



Intermediate Winners (right)



This month's Chairman's Challenge was 'Two' and as usual there were a variety of interpretations with interesting items made by members



Pete Brown explains to members


Intermediate entries



Jim Young announced the competition topics for 2018 and displayed examples



Steve Church entertains a gaggle

      Steve enjoyed his first practical demo

Advanced entries


Advanced Winners



See Competition Page

for details of winners


Practical evenings are an opportunity to have a go - here Pete Brown helps another member understand a new technique


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All material (c) South Downs Woodturners or contributing artists