Still more woodworking–a sycamore bowl

During one of my wood-buying trips to Woodcraft, I bought a piece of sycamore, not knowing what I’d do with it.  I ended up turning a bowl, and gave it to Santina–she has it in her office at work now.

Just a word about sycamore–it’s related to maple, but isn’t as close-grained.  That means there’s a lot of tear-out when turning end grain, which you do twice per revolution on a bowl.  For those non-woodworkers out there, that means the turned bowl has some very rough spots on it, which need quite a bit of sanding.  Then I put the water-based finish on, only water will raise the grain of many woods.  That is, getting sanded wood wet will cause the wood to swell a bit along the grain pattern and the wood won’t be smooth!  The result is…more sanding!  Sanding is probably a woodworker’s least favorite activity.  At any rate, much sanding was needed in between coats of finish before this bowl was as smooth as I wanted.  The final result is:

Sycamore bowl 1 small

 

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