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 our Contact page for a Map and our About / Prog page 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 Thur 3 October 2019

Gordon Eaton - member demonstration

Chairman's Challenge - Miniature


Next Competition

December - Fruit




September Meeting - Getting Fruity

Autumn is the season of 'mellow fruitfulness' so it was fitting that this month's meeting was about turning fruit. We were fortunate to have three members demonstrating their approaches to turning, colouring and finishing fruit. Jim Young showed us how to turn apples and pears with a natural wood finish, waxed to show the wood's beauty, Peter Brown showed us how to turn acorns and texture them, and Anna Cates showed us her painted and bitten fruit - her colouring is so realistic you could be forgiven for taking a real bite from one of her pieces! All this to help inspire members for the next club competition: turned fruit for December.


Peter Brown putting texture on an acorn cup

Jim Young turning a pear



Anna Cates taking bites out of her pear


Peter's acorns and some blanks ready for turning


Jim's fruit



Anna's coloured fruit



Chairman's Challenge - Branch



Member turnings



Turn a snowman or mushroom for the Nursery children to deocorate for Christmas - bring yours to the next meeting



July Meeting


David Hare was our member demonstrator for the evening. He showed how to create a multi-part column by joining shorter pieces of spindle turning with turned pegs or tenons to fit holes drilled with a blacksmith's bit. He also showed us how to turn an acorn to fit on top of a newel post.

We also had a competition - something turned from a 4" cube.

We need more members to demonstrate turning fruit at the September meeting - let the Chairman know if you can help.

Finally, turn a snowman...I know it's a bit early in the year, but we will be donating plain, undecorated snowmen to the nursery that uses the hall for the children to paint for Christmas presents for their families.


Dave's cradle for holding square stock for drilling

Turning an acorn to go on the top of a newel post

Shaping the column with beads at each end and a tapering curve

Dave Smith's acrylic pour with a resin finish was the highlight on the Turnings Table



The competition winners for the 4" cube - congratulations to all!



Some snowmen to inspire you to turn at least one to donate to the nursery by our November meeting



June Meeting


Another enjoyable and engaging practical evening with three lathes in use. Dave Smith gave beginners some practice with the skew, Graham Willsher showed an Easy Wood Tools carbide tipped tool in action, and Robert Brady showed how to create a carved, textured, coloured bowl and a spiral finial.


We were also joined by visitors from the Sussex Woodcraft Society. A range of work from members of the society was displayed with work from some of our members.


Dave Smith reminded us all of next month's competition - something made from a 4" cube...best get turning!

May Saturday Demo


Colin Simpson gave a beginners introduction in the first part, and a project in the second part










The first thing Colin demonstrated was some tool handling




Colin's first project was a natural edge vase hollowed from the bottom and plugged




In the second session Colin made a flask drilling the top hole...


before hollowing it from the side and plugging it




May Meeting


John Plater gave an interesting talk and demonstration, illustrating a variety of intepretations on 4" cube for our forthcoming competition









John showed us a number of options for holding a cube enabling access to all sides...


before he showed us his tooling techniques



He brought along a number of his '3D sketches' to illustrate his experiments



A good variety of different jewellery items made by members



A very nice simple light weight bowl brought in by a new member for all to see



Stewart Furini achieved a Highly Commended in the British Woodturner of the Year competition. The exhibition is on at the OXO Gallery in London until the 19th of May. Well done Stewart.


April Meeting


We had a short AGM followed by an interesting talk by Paul Reader, Chairman of the Sussex Woodcraft Society, then a Competition.


The annual competition results were announced and prizes duly presented. Promotions were also announced.


Paul Reader's Talk


Paul gave an interesting talk on his work at Wakehurst Place mainly focussed on the variety of trees that feature in the gardens including the different species and their native environments.


Audience participation was encouraged through a table of samples of timber that Paul challenged us to identify. Some of the varieties were very exotic and difficult to guess, however he included some nice native species like Hazel.


In addition to the samples Paul also showed slides of some of the trees and areas illustrating how they have developed, as well as some heartbreaking shots of the great storm in 1987 with trees all over the place.








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All material (c) South Downs Woodturners or contributing artists