How thick?

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Stigmorgan

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So I've started my next turning and have the outside ready for sanding and finishing before I turn it over and hollow it, is there a general rule for how thick the walls should be in comparison to the overall size of the bowl? Up to now most of my turnings have been on the small side at around 4 to 6 inches across so have had fairly thin walls, this one is about 8.5 inches across and almost 4 inches deep and I'm not sure how thick to leave the walls, the wood is Sycamore and if it matters its very (very) dry.
 

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MARK.B.

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I don't think there are any hard and fast rules Stig, Have only made a few bowls and so have no great experience or skill for that matter :cry: i just went by what looked and felt right and what it was it's intended to be used for ,if known that is . Not very scientific i know but it seems to work most of the time:)
 

RichardG

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It probably also depends on the planned use. If it's ornamental then go for what looks best, however, if its going to be used then needs to be thicker with a slightly heavier base for stability. I think the hardest thing to judge is how something feels in the hand, I turned one bowl and it felt too top heavy so I remounted and completely messed it up....
 

Richard_C

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I think common sense, look and feel is the way to go.

I recently turned a fairly deep shape, maybe 18 cm diameter, such that the whole thing was close to half a sphere aside from an external flat bottom, from spalted beech, and left a very consitent 12mm wall thickness and dead flat rim, the blank was good looking but 'told me' if I went much further I would have problems with the weaker spalted bits. Before that I had turned a shallower ash bowl c. 20cm diameter, left the bottom about 10mm so the weight felt right but the sides ended up tapering right down to about 2mm at the rim then rounded off so there was no flat. It just felt right at the time, cutting well, sharp gouge, good blank.

No single answer, think about what you want but be prepared to adapt as you cut. I will often stop when the basic shape is there, make a cup of coffee and just stand and look at it while I drink it. "Right, I know where I am going with this one ....."
 
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