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Thread: Figured purpleheart

  1. #1
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    Figured purpleheart

    As I've said before, I'm all about the wood. Happened on some figured purpleheart in 1" board form, and used it to exercise a John Jordan-style square(ish) platter pattern. Need to thank John for the design idea -- I don't know if he came up with it, but his work was the first place I saw it and I quickly added it to my list of common forms. I really like it not only for its simple grace, but it's really good for nice wood in board form, because more of the board ends up in the finished piece. John recommends 1.5-2" stock, but this was just 1" and I've done it with 7/8" when that's what I have. I've also done the same form with rectangular stock, though that can get kind of goofy in how the underside profile is reflected in the top profile; I turn these so the edge is of consistent thickness, so the top profile has to follow the bottom profile until you're inside the entire edge. If the piece is square, that's not an issue, but if it's a rectangle that's very far from square, it can get weird, and you have to think carefully about the profile of the underside before you reverse the piece. I keep telling myself I'm going to start working on decorating the underside like John does, but haven't made that leap yet.

    Anyway, just couldn't believe the figure in this wood, and especially nice since the figure will remain once the color begins to brown. Forgive the fisheye effect of the photo, the piece is actually completely symmetrical. Someday I'm going to have to get a real camera and set up a place to take proper pictures.

    Best,

    Dave

    Capture3.JPG Capture5.JPG
    Last edited by Dave Mount; 02-25-2021 at 1:38 PM. Reason: typo

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Wow! That is some spectacular figure in that purple heart!
    I think the shape and finish is excellent.
    Well done!
    Thanks for sharing.
    Be Blessed

    George

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    E TN, near Knoxville
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    Incredible figure! Never saw anything like that. And fantastic job on the piece.

    And yes, that's an original design of mine. Thanks much for the kind words! I was partially inspired by Frank Penta's square plates but he used straight sides, rounded corners, and made them from 4/4 wood. I decided to use thicker wood so would sit up off the table a little to make a bit more shadow under, but you might inspire me to try one from 1" stock!. When I made the first one (for my Lovely Bride) I really liked the look of the radiused sides when viewed from different angles.

    If interested I'd gladly share the simple (and cheap) setup I use for photographing smallish things. It's really all about the lighting and the background, far more important than the camera! I sometimes use my cell phone when I don't take the time to set up the DSLR. The DSLR is better because of the tripod and the lenses/focus, but almost any camera will work.

    JKJ

  4. #4
    That's really special. Keep it away from the window. Also, consider spraying it with a finish containing a UV inhibitor. Can't make the flower live forever, but you can make it last a little longer!

  5. #5
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    That is actually incredible. You have done a magnificent job in highlighting that beautiful wood.
    Dave

    Nothing is idiot-proof for a sufficiently ingenious idiot!

  6. #6
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    Columbus, OH
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    Wow, that's incredible! I've never seen curly purpleheart. Great idea on how to use it. Congrats on an excellent piece of work.
    Brian

    "Any intelligent fool can make things bigger or more complicated...it takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." - E.F. Schumacher

  7. #7
    Stunning!!!
    Thanks for sharing.
    Tom

  8. #8
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    Very nice, and a plate was a good choice for that piece of wood.

    Can you or John share a bit more about the curved sides? How did you cut them, do you turn the plate first and then cut the curve, etc?

  9. #9
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    Thanks all for the kind words, it's fun to come across a really unique piece of wood.

    John is the master of the pattern and he has a really extensive pdf on the process. I cut the curves on the bandsaw before turning, but I don't bother to clean them up. I then superglue a waste block on the face side, turn the bottom, reverse and do the top. I hand sand (actually did a little filing with the purpleheart) the bandsawn profile smooth once the turning is done but the piece is still held in the lathe; easier when you only have to smooth a small thickness. I also round over those edges by hand.

    Cutting the curves first is kind of important in my opinion, because I work to keep the rim the same thickness everywhere, which requires you to follow the outside profile as you begin shaping the face. With the profile cut, you can directly see the thickness of the rim, which isn't cut at the same place all around, because the shape isn't round. That's probably not a very clear explanation -- I'm sure John will be along with a pointer to his pdf. I found it somewhere out on the web but don't recall where; I'm sure you can Google it up with "John Jordan square platter".

    I also realized after I posted the pics that part of why the camera distortion seems so bad is that my camera turned the photo 90 degrees from what your mind expects. Here are the same two pics turned; with the perspective turned the shape seems less distorted.

    Best,

    Dave

    Capture3.JPGCapture5.JPG

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pat Scott View Post
    Very nice, and a plate was a good choice for that piece of wood.

    Can you or John share a bit more about the curved sides? How did you cut them, do you turn the plate first and then cut the curve, etc?
    Pat,

    I can post a basic tutorial in a new thread here. I've made a bunch of these, give them for wedding and housewarming presents. One of my favorite demos!

    JKJ

  11. #11
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    Dave -- It would really help to see a side view of the plate.
    David Walser
    Mesa, Arizona

  12. #12
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    Dave, beautiful wood and great execution! Well done Sir!
    Ken

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Walser View Post
    Dave -- It would really help to see a side view of the plate.
    Here you go. Had some trouble getting the phone to focus on the edge so a little blurry. The underside profile is a shallow cove; I usually make it a little parabolic with the steeper part of the curve near the base. The top is just a very shallow fairly even cove. The side walls dip down slightly because the radius is shorter there.

    Best,

    Dave

    Capture11.JPGCapture12.JPG

  14. #14
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    Thank you.
    David Walser
    Mesa, Arizona

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by John K Jordan View Post
    Pat,

    I can post a basic tutorial in a new thread here. I've made a bunch of these, give them for wedding and housewarming presents. One of my favorite demos!

    JKJ
    That would be great, I think I'd like to give them a try. Thanks John!

    Actually I just googled you/it and found a 14 page .pdf from 2018!
    Last edited by Pat Scott; 02-27-2021 at 9:46 AM. Reason: Found a .pdf

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