Segmented Wood Sculpture – Art, Woodturning, Woodworking

With Artfields coming up very soon, I wanted
to make a new piece, a large segmented piece, based on the work of Malcolm Tibbetts. After making a very rough sketch, I started
cutting pieces on the mitre saw. Originally, I intended to use all walnut. Then, my friend Larry Reaves offered me some
poplar. The goal was to make a bunch of segmented
rings. I just started gluing up pieces. I glue them into half rings using dowels between
the halves. Then, I sand the faces parallel. Then, I glue up the half rings. This is very tedious. There was a lot of monotonous work in this
piece. I needed 84 segmented rings for this piece. I wanted to make three toruses. My next boondoggle was how am I going to cut
these at an angle? My solution was to glue them to a 2×4, then
run them through my new bandsaw. Well, my new-to-me bandsaw. I was given this bandsaw by a fellow woodturner. It did not come with a rip fence, however. I had to improvise one out of a 2×4 and some
clamps. First, I cut the waste off one side. Then, I adjusted my fence to cut the actual
size wedges I needed. Then, I moved on to the poplar. Again, a lot of monotonous cutting and gluing. While the glue dried, I sanded the faces of
my wedges. I started gluing them up in pairs, using rubber
bands to clamp them. I would also need a few straight pieces for
this sculpture. For the final two halves, I had to sand the
faces so they were parallel, then glue them together. I made a simple cardboard template that will
tell me the profile of my ring. My glue-ups were not precise, so I had to flatten one side in order to put it on my cole jaws. Because the piece was so irregular, I needed
to be very careful at first. I was just taking a hair off at a time. The centre of my torus had to be just the
right size in order to fit on the minimum size for the cole jaws. It was just about 3.5 inches. The profile of my torus was about 3 inches. Once I had the outside done, I could finish
the inside. Thanks to Uneeda for providing the abrasives
that I used on this piece. Of course, once I had them all sanded and
finished and all nice, I had to cut them in half. As you can see, I was not very precise with
my profile. That is OK. I will smooth it out later. Again, the diameter of this cylinder had to
be about 3 inches. Now, I had to figure out how long these straight
pieces had to be. The goal was to make shapes that kind of looked
like chain links. In order to straighten out my hand-cut pieces, I jury-rigged a little square on my sanding table. I glued on the straight pieces. Once the glue dried, I was able to sand those faces flat, then glue on the second half of my torus. Once the glue dried, I was able to smooth
out the joints with an angle grinder and my drill. Once I had my three links, I finished them
with lacquer, sanding between coats to ensure they are nice and smooth. In order to put this thing together, I needed
to cut one of them in half. Now comes the final glue-up. This fit was a little snug. More snug than I wanted. I was able to get it together with a little
elbow grease. I used the glue sparingly, because I did not
want any squeeze-out. I could not really wipe it off. I have to say I am very please with how this
piece turned out. It is based on the work of Malcolm Tibbetts. He calls himself the Tahoe Turner. Check him out if you have not seen his work. I am a big fan. It is made of 936 pieces, if my math is correct,
of walnut and poplar. Submissions for Artfields just opened, so this is going to be my Artfields entry this year. I wanted to make a new piece for Artfields
this year, something maybe a little bit more ambitious than I have done before. I think it turned out pretty darn cool, if
I do say so myself. As usual, if you have made it this far, thanks
so much for watching. I’ll see you next time in Cammie’s Garage.


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