Turning Cups and Goblets

discussion of the niceties of turning on a bow, bungee or pole lathe.

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Turning Cups and Goblets

Postby Twalsh341 » Thu May 29, 2008 5:53 am

How do some of you tackle the turning of the cup part that holds the drink? is it turned last? Do you use a mandrel to turn the body? Any special profile hook tools?

Thank you very much.
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Goblets

Postby Robin Fawcett » Fri May 30, 2008 12:06 am

Yes, definitely turn the cup last with small to tiny hook tools.
Keep undercutting the core (bearing in mind the grain direction) until it starts to wobble about, remove from the lathe, snap off the core and clean up the bottom of the cup with a suitable hook tool or knife.

(I say this but I'll admit to only ever having turned 3 or 4 goblets on the pole lathe - there are other experts out there like TREVOR WATSON for instance)
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Postby robin wood » Fri May 30, 2008 7:56 pm

You don't need a mandrel you can just turn a long fat spindle, I tend to thin down the bit the cord runs on to increase the rpm. As the other Robin says, turn the outside first then hollow away. I hate hollowing in end grain because you end up sort of bent round the lathe peering in at the end of the goblet, if I did much I would build a lathe where I could stand at the end for the hollowing. Personally I don't like goblets much but the globular viking drinking cups are a nice design (like a goblet without a stem)
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Postby Twalsh341 » Fri May 30, 2008 11:24 pm

Thanks Robin, I'll have to look the "globular viking drinking cups".
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Postby Trevor Watson » Sun Jun 01, 2008 12:02 pm

As both Robin's say you hollow out the end grain which can take a lot of effort and you often have to stand in a funny position. The snapping off of the waste core can also be frustrating being end grain as it tends to tear rather than snap.

One thing you should always do when turning goblets & beakers is to split your log into quarters so you never use the central growth rings or pith in your finished item. You could end up with a hole in the bottom if you do.

The viking globular cups look like fat tulip flower buds that are just starting to open, with a rounded bottom with no stem and a pinched section about 1cm or so below the rim. Wooden ones are made to copy the style of the then expensive ceramic ones.

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Postby robin wood » Sun Jun 01, 2008 3:50 pm

Trevor Watson wrote:One thing you should always do when turning goblets & beakers is to split your log into quarters so you never use the central growth rings or pith in your finished item. You could end up with a hole in the bottom if you do.

The viking globular cups look like fat tulip flower buds that are just starting to open, with a rounded bottom with no stem and a pinched section about 1cm or so below the rim. Wooden ones are made to copy the style of the then expensive ceramic ones.
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Here are some, a picture from my book,The Wooden Bowl, more of them in there if you can get a copy.

Image

I actually often turn them from round wood and most of the originals were done that way too, here is one that shows it clearly.

Image

Received wisdom says they should split but in practice if you turn them with a thickish base and thin sides they don't.

Interested Trevor in the idea of the wood copying pottery, I am not sure there is any evidence to suggest that is the case, do you have any records for wood/pot prices in this period?
I have not seen a lot of pot vessels of this form have you? I have seen them rarely in glass and metal. and lots of wood but then I do go looking at the wood reports not the pot reports.
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Postby Mark Allery » Tue Jun 03, 2008 10:44 am

Hi,

its taken me a couple of days to overcome problems posting these images. Still don't know why I can't paste the url from my flickr account and see the images, but here goes.

I have only turned a few goblets, but I do enjoy it. Have made my own tools after buying my first one from Gavin a couple of years ago. As others more expert than I have said I do the outer first. Except that if its a thin stem I tend to leave it oversize and come back a finish it just before I undercut the core.

I am making smaller hook tools now to try and find the right size for the goblet. A particular issue for me as I quite like the shape where the goblet narrows upwards towards the lip. Trial and error in my case.

I've found that its really important to finish the goblet in one go as it rapidly becomes more brittle and unforgiving of a final mistake.

Image


Image

Image

Image

cheers

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Postby paul atkin » Tue Jun 03, 2008 1:26 pm

nice photos mark, 8)
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Postby Trevor Watson » Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:28 pm

I beleive that archaeologists accept the principle of higher status items being made of cheaper alternatives by those who cannot afford the real thing, especially in the Dark and early Medieval ages. This applies to expensive metal cooking pots being substituted with ceramics glazed to look metallic and to wooden cups being made as a copy of ceramic ones. Glassware is a bit special as its extremely high status. There are a huge amount of saxon ceramic finds and the shapes of the few wooden ones recovered tally very well with them. It could be fashion that dictated the general shape of beakers in this period, either ceramic or wood.
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Postby paul atkin » Wed Jun 04, 2008 11:39 am

Image Image a couple of roman cups, very simillar in shape to the coppergate cups, maybe this was a common shape for a few hundred years.
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Postby Andrea L Willett » Wed Jun 04, 2008 12:38 pm

They're nice paul. Where were they found? Looks like some kind of Terra sigillata but not one of the types listed on potsherd.

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Postby paul atkin » Wed Jun 04, 2008 1:33 pm

Caster 2nd century AD
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Re: Turning Cups and Goblets

Postby paul atkin » Tue Sep 27, 2011 8:23 pm

Viking york cups.JPG
Viking york cups.JPG (191.04 KiB) Viewed 15165 times
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{the one with the pole of glee} morrigan 2008
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Re: Turning Cups and Goblets

Postby Stanleythecat » Thu Sep 29, 2011 11:58 am

paul atkin wrote:
Viking york cups.JPG



Wow, those are lovely Paul. Did you make those too?

They look very similar to some Japanese tea bowls. Is there any chance that we might be able to see a close up of some of the tools you use?
I know a couple of us would love to have a go down here in sunny Wiltshire!

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Re: Turning Cups and Goblets

Postby Don Wagstaff » Thu Sep 29, 2011 3:26 pm

Hello,

One of the things I like about these cups is the interrupted line patterns on those two. This makes it more interesting than the continuous pattern. And I don't know if grip is an issue but the grooves in general give an added tactile element. I would quite like to drink from such vessels.

Greetings,
Don Wagstaff

Oh, and don't you mean CE
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