This weekend turned out to be an exercise in extreme turning due to the weather. Normally I relish the Autumn celebration at the Weald & Downland museum, one of my favourite shows in the calendar. Saturday started with a frost in the morning and got windier and wetter as the day went on.
I was joined by Wayne and his son Olly who had brought both their bowl turning lathe and also a small lathe worked with a hand held bow and both were dressed up for the event to the delight of the visitors who braved the weather.
But by the afternoon the wind was rising and the intermittant showers became continuous. In the face of driving rain and gale force gusts of wind Olly took to an anorak but Wayne is clearly made of sterner stuff or………
The photos don’t really capture the force of the wind and rain. My shelter is not upto a full gale and started to suffer from the wind so I was unhappy to leave it overnight. Sadly I took it down and packed up on Saturday evening in the face of even worse forecasts for the night and Sunday morning.
However the experience seems to have given us something of a taste for extreme turning, perhaps an olympic sport for 2012 and the next venue is still to be decided!
Because of the rain I could not leave my wares out for long and so failed to sell anything – for the first time that I can remember. But as so often happens, just as I was totally losing motivation something interesting turned up.
This time the question was ‘Can you make a me a handle for a bronze axe-head?’ I’ve learn’t its best to go with the flow, and this sounded like fun. Besides I was suffering from the cold and wet and I needed a challenge. Before long I was talking to a weekend class who were casting bronze axe-heads to a 3000 year old pattern.
I started to make an ash handle and partway through was joined by the course members who watched the process. I enjoyed turning a handle for the axe head. I learnt about bronze age tools and we also had interesting discussions on the turning or spinning of early metal and the evidence, or lack of it, for bronze age wood turning.