Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

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Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

Postby Blodhemn » Thu Apr 01, 2010 3:12 pm

Hi there

I am part of a Viking Living History group and we are going for a training weekend starting tomorrow. I am going to be their Pole Lathe Turner, and desperately need plans for a Viking Style Pole lathe, so that I can build one over the weekend and get to grips with it. It needs to be one that I can turn bowls on, as I shall be making their eating & drinking bowls etc.

I have done pole lathe turning before, but not bowls, but shall be putting in lots of practice over the weekend

Has any kind person out there got any plans / pics they can post, that I can print out to help me with my task.

Kind regards

Skjöldr 'Blodhemn' Håkonarson

or just plain old Rob :)
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Re: Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

Postby Heinrich H » Thu Apr 01, 2010 4:58 pm

Never seen or heard about a Viking Style Pole lathe. There may be a small bow lathe in the finds from scandinavia.
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Re: Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

Postby paul atkin » Thu Apr 01, 2010 6:15 pm

You will struggle to find plans for a vike lathe as there isnt one, we know from finds that they used them but what they looked like we will never know. Only one part of a so called lathe was found in york amongst tons of evidence of bowl and cup turning, i think the rest they found could also be a tool rack or something but we will never know. I have been demoing for years at viking events just build a lathe of some sort, preferably avoiding modern fixings and tell folk that the principle function is the same, people will be more interested in what your making than your lathe. Sounds like a good weekend build a lathe and learn how to make bowls, why not have a go at the viking period cups as well ( lovely little things they are)
a link to pics of my lathe
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=395
easy to build and easier to carry around and set up at events than a big log lathe
http://paulatkin.co.uk/




{the one with the pole of glee} morrigan 2008
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Re: Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

Postby Ian S » Thu Apr 01, 2010 6:50 pm

Hi Blodhemn (what does this mean, please?)

A fairly basic yet functional lathe would be using a half tree-trunk as the lathe bed, on either legs cleft from a large-ish log or using individual saplings (2 inches or thereabouts diameter), and poppets made from other wood. Have a look at these threads for other ideas:

http://www.bodgers.org.uk/bb/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=804

http://www.bodgers.org.uk/bb/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=437

The second thread in particular has lots of detailed pics.

Cheers
How sharp is sharp enough?
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Re: Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

Postby Blodhemn » Thu Apr 01, 2010 7:16 pm

Hi Blodhemn (what does this mean, please?)


It is Old Norse & means Vengeance in Blood ( or directly Blood Vengeance )

Thanks a lot for the helpfull advice, im off to check out the links now. And even though the weather looks to be awfull, ill be having lots of fun making my lathe, and then practicing the Bowls & cups.

Regarding the Lathe itself, yes I know there are no surviving ones, but we do know they used them as they found the offcuts from bowls etc at numerous places. My mate Larry Jones (The Wrekin Woodsman ) mentioned there was plans for one in a recent copy of the gazette he gets from the APT. Sadly he could not find it for me in time. Obviously it is plans for what they 'assume' it would have been like, as nobody really knows for sure.

Thanks again all
Rob
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Re: Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

Postby Blodhemn » Thu Apr 01, 2010 7:18 pm

Paul,

I just looked at the link to your Lathe and for some reason some pics are not showing? I only see pics from where it says MORE PICS... Any idea why im not seeing the rest?
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Re: Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

Postby robin wood » Thu Apr 01, 2010 7:49 pm

It seems most likely to me that Viking lathes would have been built in situ around earth fast posts, this is by far the easiest way to make a really solid lathe unless you need to be mobile. I made my first lathe to the pattern that you see in the links above when asked to do a demo at a Viking event about 15 years ago and have gradually refined it to get to the pattern you see there. The re enactors were not so impressed with my newly hewn lathe as they were with the old looking one made from reclaimed sawn fence posts bolted together.
http://www.robin-wood.co.uk bowls, books and courses
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Re: Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

Postby Heinrich H » Thu Apr 01, 2010 8:37 pm

[quote=/"robin wood" The re enactors were not so impressed with my newly hewn lathe as they were with the old looking one made from reclaimed sawn fence posts bolted together.[/quote]

:D
Last edited by Heinrich H on Fri Apr 02, 2010 9:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

Postby forestwalker » Fri Apr 02, 2010 5:40 am

robin wood wrote:IThe re enactors were not so impressed with my newly hewn lathe as they were with the old looking one made from reclaimed sawn fence posts bolted together.


But since the viking ages were a long time ago, anything that attempts to recreate stuff from then must look old, or it is obviously fake. Old wood and rusty bolts must be more historically accurate than nice clean wood. Or are you saying that Hollywood have been lying to us all these years?

BTW, in the pictures of your lathe I'm slightly uncertain as to the arrangement of the tool rest. Do you have any pictures from above? The way I'm understanding it there is one rest at right angle to the bed (left side), and one from the other poppet that intersects this one at an angle and rests on top: is that correct?
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Re: Plans for a Viking Pole Lathe

Postby RichardLaw » Fri Apr 02, 2010 9:27 pm

forestwalker wrote:BTW, in the pictures of your lathe I'm slightly uncertain as to the arrangement of the tool rest. Do you have any pictures from above? The way I'm understanding it there is one rest at right angle to the bed (left side), and one from the other poppet that intersects this one at an angle and rests on top: is that correct?


That's right, there needs to be a peg in the right poppet that fits into a hole in the underside of the tool rest to prevent it falling off. The top of the tool rest should be around an inch lower than the centre (some say).
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