The June club meeting was well attended, despite the cold but sunny weather!
The highlight of the meeting was a presentation by Bob Aitken and Terry Hulm on the use of resins in their work. Unfortunately, I had to leave early, and missed a very slick and informative presentation – regretfully, we have no photos!
A diverse range of pieces were put up for ‘Show and Tell’. Steve Dodd and Alan Bishop shared the draw for vouchers.
As we head towards the next Jacaranda Festival Exhibition (Saturday 29 October through Sunday 6 November), our members are hard at work. The Jacaranda display and sales is the Clarence Valley Woodworkers Association’s major event of the year. All members are encouraged to participate. Members can display and sell made items or choose to just display only.
Here are some new pieces by Bob Aitken and Roy Ellery
Apologies – this article was written back in April, but someone forgot to press the ‘publish’ button!
The CVWA General Meeting of 30-April, 2022 was followed by a demonstration by President Roy Ellery. Roy brought in the range of tools he uses to carve and texture his turned and sculpted pieces. Roy’s demo generated a lot of interest, with questions from the floor. Some of Roy’s tools have a reverse switch option, apparently, that feature can be used to correct mistakes…
As usual, the meeting featured the traditional Show and Tell section, with numerous items and plenty of discussion.
The meeting concluded with a sausage sizzle and good conversation – thanks to Colin Lang.
Congratulations to CVWA member Alan Bishop who has some of his woodwork items (photos above) in the current Wood Symphony Gallery Exhibition, ‘Turned and Sculpted Wood‘. The exhibition is made up of artworks by the most prominent masters of wood art.
The Turned and Sculpted Wood yearly exhibition has become a major event in the wood art world by presenting to the public the finest selection of contemporary wood art from around the world. The current exhibition features over 74 pieces created by national (USA) and international artists.
The Lower Clarence Arts and Crafts Association held its Clarence River Arts and Crafts Festival (22/23 January) after cancellations and delays. The woodworking section was well supported with a very strong and diverse range of entries.
The Clarence Valley Woodworkers dominated – both in quantity and quality of entries!
The work was judged by Bim Morton, a studio woodworker and educator of more than 30 years experience. Bim is also a co-founder of the Tree-O Gallery in Raleigh, just off the Bellingen Road. In addition to fine woodwork, Tree-O Gallery features other arts and crafts, such as ceramics, painting and sculpture. Next time you find yourselves traveling to Coffs Harbour, take the time to visit!
Neil Cryer won the prize for Best Overall with his tour de force piece ‘Butterfly Fantasy’. Everyone was drawn to this piece, and it was widely admired.
Pat Johnson’s ‘Flower Bowl’ as another wonderful piece, taking out First Prize for the Carved, Sculpted or Joined Section. Although partly turned, the real work was in the detailed carving around the rim and underneath. The piece was made from a stunning piece of curly Mango.
Steve Dodd’s wonderful ‘Musical Bench’ took second place in the Carved, Sculpted or Joined Section. The choice of timbers, the design of the piece and the execution were outstanding.
First Prize in the Turned Section went to Roy Ellery for this beautiful ‘Leafed Bowl’. It was no surprise that this piece sold very quickly. The judge had no problem selecting this piece, and he noted the form and the beautiful finish on the inside of the bowl.
Pat Johnson’s ‘Grinders’ in ebony and jacaranda took second place in the turned section.
Earlier this year, before lock-downs, the ‘My Clarence’ exhibition was held at the Coldstream Gallery, Ulmarra. Roy entered a beautiful surfboard depicting Iluka and surrounds. Roy’s surfboard went on to win the ‘People’s Choice’ award, and of course it sold quickly! (see a brief video of Roy presenting his surfboard here)
Roy has subsequently made another surfboard (see photos) and those who have seen it think this one is even better!
Roy described his process:
I start by acquiring a second hand surf board from the recycle centre. I then remove the top half of the fibre glass and sand until I have a flat surface. I then layer the top half with 3 ply timber giving myself a flat surface to work on, then using different timbers, start to display a theme. This one is my interpretation of Iluka with a sunset over the Clarence looking through coastal grasses. A walk through the rainforest onto the beach with the rockwall, ocean and river. The timbers are Jacaranda, Mango, Camphor Laurel, Cedar and Huon Pine. Carving and air brushing give the details.
If you are in town and running errands instead of getting out to the shed, drop into your newsagents and get the latest issue of Australian Woodworker magazine. The magazine features an article by CVWA member and Jacaranda festival stalwart Bob Aitken on his adventures in making clocks with poured resin decorations.
During this year’s AGM, Long Service Awards were presented to two members for distinguished long service.
Ron Moore joined the club (then the Northern Rivers Woodworkers Association) in 2005 after moving to Grafton from Bowral in the Southern Highlands. In 2012, he stood for President of the Club and was duly elected. He said at the time that he decided to stand because he had gained a lot from the Club, and it was time to pay something back. He was President for 3 years – 2012 through 2015. He was responsible for leading the Club to a sound financial footing. He instigated the CVWA involvement in the Bunnings BBQ program, which greatly increased the Club’s revenue. Further, the Bunnings BBQ served to increase the Club’s exposure to the public, to increase membership, and also to provide an extra social outing for Club members.
Ron’s woodwork covers the broad spectrum of skills, from earrings to tables, both new work and restorations. However, he is best known for his box making – both band-sawn and lidded boxes. His work is distinguished by his original and innovative designs, attention to detail and for superb finishing. Ron’s work has been exhibited and sold though galleries around Australia.
Ron has always found time to help others and to share his knowledge. He has lead many skill building workshops for Club members, and has always been generous with his time and knowledge.
Ron was also instrumental in establishing the Club’s first dedicated workshop at Hoof St, Grafton, and served as Shed Manager and coordinator.
Roy Ellery also joined the Club in 2005, and has achieved the milestone of 15 years service with the Club. Roy settled in Iluka after leaving Victoria. Roy is the current CVWA President, having served as President in 2015-16, and from 2017 to 2020.
Roy is renowned as a turner and carver. His work has been published in National and major US woodworking publications. He is best known for his thin walled vessels in Jacaranda, many of them finely pierced and coloured of textured. His carved ‘Log Books’ are something special and an article featuring his work was published in Fine Woodworking magazine. He has also received numerous awards for his work, within the Club and in open competitions.
Like Ron, Roy is also very generous with his time and knowledge. Roy is always more than happy to explain how a piece was made and to pass on his skills.
Roy’s output is prolific and wide ranging. He has been a major contribution to the Jacaranda Festival, as an exhibitor, a demonstrator and a volunteer.
The CVWA are extremely fortunate to have had the benefit of both Ron and Roy as members – we are all better for their contributions.
CVWA member Dick White has been spending some time in the shed during COVID restrictions. He recently finished a doll’s house for one of his granddaughters – see photos. Now working on a truck for his grandson. Well done Dick – a ripper of a doll’s house by CVWA member Dick White.
This is a proper Australian Dolls House. Does it have a redback?
For some time now, I have wanted to make a chair with a saddled seat. Over time, I bought a few tools that might come in handy. A week or three ago, a friend of a friend asked me to make a couple of bar stools with saddled seats. Of course I could do it – how hard could it be?
It turns out that its not that hard, or time consuming… And it gave me an excuse to put a few tools to work in earnest…
The AEG Super Clamp
I have used the Triton equivalent – borrowed during the Jacaranda show while I was demonstrating. The AEG is probably easier to use, and rock solid. The controls allow unlocking with out the risk of getting clobbered in the shins by the foot pedal.
To hold the seats while I hollowed them out, I screwed a block onto the back of each seat, and clamped the bock in the jaws. Worked well!
This was the first time I used the beast. It works well, removes wood quickly, and only has a few vices. Beware ‘climb cutting’, where the cut is with the cut of the blade – in a split second, the blade can grab, dig in, create a great divot, and, if you aren’t careful, take a divot out of you. That said, cutting against the flow (think of cutting with a router – the work moves on to the teeth), the tool is quite controllable, cuts quickly and quite smoothly on wide flat curves like the chair seat.
On the down side, the thing chucks shavings and dust all over the place – best used outside. Even so, Su complained of shavings all over the vegetables!
This tool was something of a revelation. I bought it a few years ago – I saw it one in Carbatec, and wasn’t expensive, so I bought it to hollow out chair seats and maybe bowls. It sat unused until this week. The edge was pretty basic, especially the inside bevel. Wet and dry around a suitable scrap worked to get the edge of the inside bevel OK, then a lick on the back with the stones, and it was sharp enough.
I had kind of expected it to work like a draw knife, but it is quite different. Instead of slicing off the waste, it shaves the surface – making tightly curled shavings. It worked well, and dressed up the rough cut surface left after the Arbotech. It did a good job of shaping the seat.
The Chairmaker’s Plane
This little HNT Gordon plane has curved bottom – curved in two axis. It is a little tricky to use – the body of the blade has to be held at the correct angle to cut, but it worked really well. One of the seats had some pretty wild grain, but the little plane didn’t care – I got no tear-out to speak of.
Like all Terry Gordon planes, this was good to go straight out of the box. The blade held its edge, and was easy to sharpen as needed.
Two stools, ready for finish… These turned out well – happy with that.