Saturday, February 14, 2009

And now a word from our sponsors...

More often than not, a new group struggles to find its identity. With our one year anniversary rapidly approaching, the Water Gap Woodturners is final starting to find its own identity. I firmly believe that we are one of the most "hands-on" clubs in the AAW, with an unofficial charter of a hands-on skills session at least once per quarter. This is somewhat uniquely possible because of the generosity of our host, Peters Valley Craft Center.

Our origins are also somewhat unique. The club was charter by Steve Butler, who heads up the woodworking program at Peters Valley. The funny thing is that Steve is not a woodturner. I keep telling him that it's somewhat disturbing to have our president not know how to use a lathe, and we kid about having to get him some lessons.

But that's what makes this club so special. Folks from all walks of life can get together around a common topic, woodturning, and socialize in a GREAT facility. I think that our willingness to learn from each other coupled with our access to great equipment (9 Oneways- are you jealous? :-)) is a winning combination. And we are not afraid to make shavings...

Peters Valley recently instituted a woodturning program that has had Michael Mocho, Beth Ireland, Graeme Priddle, and Mark Sfirri just to name a few. Many of the instructors in the woodturning program make time to demonstrate to our group, and there's always something going on during the warmer months at Peters Valley woodshop.

If you are looking to take a great class in a quiet corner of NJ, you can find Peters Valley on the internet @ This year's line-up includes Harvey Fein, Craig Nutt, Beth Ireland, and Lee Alexander. Peters Valley also has photography, fine metals, blacksmithing, fibers, ceramics, and woodworking programs.

If you get a chance to take the ride up to Peters Valley this summer, stop by the woodshop and we'll show you around.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

February 2009 Meeting minutes

The WGW meeting was held on February 11, 2009 at the Peters Valley Craft Center Woodshop in Layton, NJ. Roughly a dozen members were in attendance and braved the mud on Thunder Mountain Road. Only one car got stuck, and was quickly extricated thanks to a downhill lie...

The meeting kicked off with a short discussion of club business. With our one year anniversary just around the corner, it seems like the synergies are starting to take place. People are getting more involved, and the club is growing. 2009 promises to be a great year.

A couple of events that are upcoming were discussed.

The show and tell had several wall hanging by Dan Moore who discussed his method of work for mounting the slabs to the lathe. If we had brought a camera, we could have posted some pictures :-) I encourage the membership to nominate a Club photographer...

During the main discussion, the topic was "Jig, Tips, and Fixtures". Sevral member brought in some of their favorite hints for holding work on the lathe. We saw several versions of the Straka Chuck (aka Donut chuck), cone centers for reversing hollowforms, and how to turn your lathe into a variable speed buffing system. (you'll never throw away a bedsheet again!)

Towards the end of the meeting, a member showed his McNaughton bowl coring unit. It was discovered that several members had an interest in seeing the unit in action, and decide on the spot that it would make a great topic for the April meeting. If you own a McNaughton, please bring it to the April meeting and we'll core some bowls together and let some folks try it out before spending the big $$$.

Next meeting will be on Saturday, March 7th and is an all day session with Dennis Fuge on decorative platters.

Safe spinning.

The Official Water Gap Woodturners Blog Is Here!

With the one year anniversary of Water Gap Woodturners coming next month, we finally have achieved critical mass-we are on the Web!

The Water Gap Woodturners meets at the Peters Valley woodshop in Layton, NJ on the first Wednesday of every month (weather permitting). As a new chapter of the AAW, our club is fortunate enough to have access to a great facility with 8 Oneway 1224 lathes, 1 Oneway 1640 and an 8' Vega! Once per quarter, Water Gap Woodturners has a hands on meeting- meaning we use the equipment and tooling to hone our skills!

This Blog will serve as an announcement board, tips and tricks, and your online newsletter for the WGW. It will be published periodically (when I get to it, when someone sends me something to publish (hint, hint), or shortly after our meetings) to inform members of what's going on, what's coming, and hopefully, as a means of directing new members to what we are all about.

If you need to forward a link to someone, we should be reachable at:

Look forward to seeing everyone in March.

Secretary, WGW