View Full Version : SMC Turner Interview - Neal Addy

Andy Hoyt
08-04-2007, 9:44 PM
Name: Neal Addy

Physical description:
My wife just says "tall, dark, and handsome". At 5'8", 155 lbs I'm obviously not tall, so her judgment is in question.

Where is home:
Fort Worth, Texas, or as we call it: "Foat Wuth". Been here 28 years. I'm a native-born Texan but couldn't stay put long. Lived in Galveston, Topeka, Wichita, Arkansas City (where's that?), Houston, and KC, Mo. You railroad folks might detect a pattern there.

Family information:
Married to a wonderful woman who's far above my station. I've got two kids (twins), she's got four. Yes, we are blessed, doubly so since all the kids are grown. We've got a three-year-old granddaughter, a grandson just born in early June and another on the way in December. We also have a cat (or is that the other way around?) who doesn't understand where all these new kids keep coming from.

Do you have a website? If so, what's the URL?
Just a family site at the moment and while I have been working on a turning-related site, it's still in early development.

Oh no it’s not! (http://www.nealaddy.org)

I manage application software testing for (let's just say) a "large organization", mostly Unix/web-based systems.

Shop Overview:
Two-car work shop. I currently own two lathes, a Jet 14" bandsaw, basic drill press, and various dust control equipment. Not much in the way of flatwork aside from the usual cache of small power tools. I figure the day I buy a table saw is the day SWMBO will want me to construct that built-in library she always wanted (thus taking valuable time away from turning).

How many lathes do you own?
Two – a Jet mini and Jet 1442. The mini was bought one day on a whim while wandering through my local Woodcraft. I thought, "hmmm... there's an inexpensive way to get into woodworking". Famous last words. Bought the 1442 about 18 months later. It's a good machine that serves me well so I should be set for a while. More famous last words.

Why is your shop air-conditioned?
Now there's a good idea!

How many turning tools do you have?
I own about a dozen Sorby and a few Crown tools, including a Crown mini set. Favorite tools are my beloved skew and a round-nose scraper that I've modified into a cutting tool. I also have a Talon (w/ #2, step, and spigot jaws) and several home-made donut chucks, jam chucks, etc.

How long have you been turning, and what got you started in the first place?
I'm only in my fourth year but still consider myself a beginner. Started turning in April, 2004. Turned about a hundred pens in the first two months and was hooked on bowls by June. I got started when we bought a new home and realized that my nice, clean garage would make a
great wood shop. It hasn't seen a car (or been clean) since.

What's your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Moxie Chocolate chip. Mmmm, mmm.

What do you enjoy most about turning?
I love the immediacy of turning. Unlike flatwork you literally watch a turned piece take shape right before your eyes. I also love the fact that each piece of wood is a blank canvas with infinite possibilities. Yet each blank "speaks" to us. It gives us subtle hints that allow us (if we listen) to lovingly coax from it the natural beauty hidden within.

What do you enjoy the least about turning?
Hollowing a small-opening HF. Absolutely hate it. I subscribe to the school of "no interior should go unfinished". As such I constantly struggle to get a perfectly smooth and consistent inside wall, and rarely with perfect success. My only other gripe is lack of turning time. Texas weather doesn't allow a very long "turning season".

What was your first completed turned project? You get bonus points for a picture of it.
See the magnificent Oak 'thingy' below. Note the delicate foot, the elegant beads, the graceful stem. This was turned the first day after buying my mini and a set of Crown mini tools. In my ignorance I thought that the Crown mini tool set would be enough for my needs (hey, I only wanted to turn small pieces, right?). It's a wonder I wasn't put off to turning forever. I was back at the store the next day for full-size tools.


What's your favorite individual piece that you have turned, and why?
Awww... can't I pick two? The Zebrawood piece is probably my favorite. I just love working with Zebrawood. The other is Black Limba, an interesting wood that finished very nicely.

69428 69429

What's your favorite form that you turn?
Hollow forms with lid and finial. I love turning finials. Gives me a chance to use the skew.


What color carpeting is on your shop floor?
Grey shag. Great for the toes and curlies.

What do you not turn now that you want to - or plan to - in the future?
Someday I hope to turn something decent.


How do you take your Moxie? (Straight up? beer chaser? neat? With grits?)
Straight and unchilled. I just pour it directly over the fire ant mound.

What's your favorite form someone else turns?
Difficult, there are so many. Being partial to hollow forms I really enjoy the HF work we see here on SMC. There are quite a few Creekers that I consider true artists. I also admire the lidded-vessel work of Cindy Drozda. I would guess that she has had the most influence on my
own turning. Her sense of form, proportion, and balance are wonderful.

What's your favorite individual piece someone else has turned, and why?
Again, there are too many to choose from. This (http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?t=46725)is probably one of them.

What's your favorite wood to work with and why?
African Blackwood. I love how it turns and finishes.

Operators are standing by during this pledge break

Andy Hoyt
08-04-2007, 9:44 PM
What brought you to SMC?
Had seen references to it on other sites and thought it would be a good place to check for opinions on dust control. It was, and much more.

What was your first post about? Or don't you remember?
Just a howdy-doody post to the Creekers.

Nope. Ya chimed in with something rather ugly (http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?t=38251).

Do you recall the first thread you started?
Yep. The one mentioned above.

Nope – this one (http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?t=49903) beat it out by about six hours.

What's your favorite old thread (started by someone else) on SMC?
Again, there have been so many. Probably this one.
Have you met or hung out with any fellow Creekers? Tell us about it.
I've had the good fortune to meet several of the FW gang at our local club meeting. Let's see... Bill Boehme, John Chandler, Randy Johnson, and Max Taylor just to name a few. All great folks!

Got any nicknames? How'd you get them?
Most folks just call me "Hey, you!".

Now let's get a little deep... If you were a turning tool, what tool would you be and why?
Round-nose scraper. I'm kinda dull in the end.

If you won the Kentucky Derby what part of your life would change?
Was I the horse or the rider? Makes a difference. I guess if I hit the jackpot I would retire, buy a Mayo (or two), move to the mountains, build a dream shop, and turn to my heart's content.

Sheesh! He waits ‘til the very end to pledge allegiance. Oh well. At least he did.

Thanks, Neal. Here is some more of your stuff I've found scattered about.

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69435 69436

Ken Fitzgerald
08-04-2007, 9:51 PM
Nice to know more about you Neal! Beginner.....not in my book!

Curt Fuller
08-04-2007, 10:00 PM
Great to know more about you Neal! You do some incredible work.

Steve Schlumpf
08-04-2007, 10:34 PM
Neal - thanks for taking the time to do the interview! Great to get to know you a little better! I already have most of what you have posted saved to my favorites file - thanks for that!! - and I am always looking forward to what you will be posting next!

Bernie Weishapl
08-04-2007, 11:35 PM
Neal great interview. It is nice to know you better.

Travis Stinson
08-05-2007, 12:08 AM
"Hey, You!"....... Get back out to that shop and turn some more of that cool stuff!:p
Great interview Neal, I love your work.

Gary Herrmann
08-05-2007, 12:13 AM
Great interview, Neal.

Nancy Laird
08-05-2007, 12:19 AM
Great interview, Neal, and beautiful work. I envy your talent.


Mark Cothren
08-05-2007, 9:35 AM
Thanks for the interview, Neal. Your work is top shelf.

But the burning question in my mind is..............have you drunk water from a hoofprint?

Ed Scolforo
08-05-2007, 10:09 AM
Nice interview, Neal. I really admire your work.

Tom Sherman
08-05-2007, 10:54 AM
Neal great interview, you do some nice work for a beginner, and if you are I may as well give up. Thanks for the interview.

Shane Whitlock
08-05-2007, 12:42 PM
Great interview Neal ... You do great work!

08-06-2007, 9:51 AM
Neal, beginner? What is he smokin'!!

Nice to hear from all the Texas Folk lately. If it didn't take 6 hours for us all to meet in a central location we should have a creeker gatherin' of the Lone star folks.

I'm loving reading all the stuff about ya Neil, great interview!!!

Mark Pruitt
08-06-2007, 10:28 AM
Neal, for a beginner you ain't half bad.:D

You know the saying, some got it some don't....well you most definitely "got it." Beautiful stuff. I always enjoy seeing your work.

Barry Stratton
08-06-2007, 10:59 AM
Terrific interview Neal!

I ALWAYS enjoy looking at your work - GREAT stuff.

Frank Kobilsek
08-06-2007, 2:10 PM
Nice interveiw. Somehow I got it in my head you were a 'young one' like our friend Joseph Peacock. Sorry if any of my past responses sounded like I was talking to a teenager.

Keith Burns
08-06-2007, 3:13 PM
Frank, he just acts like one ! Great ionterview Neal, nice to know you a little better.

Don Orr
08-07-2007, 12:13 PM
Hi Neal, very nice interview-thanks for sharing. I've been watching your work for a while here and on other forums and really like what you do very much. Strong work-keep it up.

Dennis Peacock
08-07-2007, 11:45 PM
Great interview Neal. Nice to know more about you. Beautiful turnings on some great forms and wood. :D