How to make a "planter" style bowl?


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Established Member
14 Mar 2019
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Awbridge, Hampshire
I have a requirement to make a turned "planter" style bowl and I'm not sure the best approach to use.

The bowl is to be made so that it can be hung on a wall - the effect is that 1/2 of the bowl comes out from the wall and the bowl has a "back" e.g. it's not something that can be turned like a normal bowl. It should have, or look like it has a turned inside and outside but also a flat back that's not an obvious addition e.g. like a piece of plywood etc. because it should look like it's made from one piece of wood.

I could turn the outside of a bowl and then hope to use a router bit to create the inside but it's unlikely to have a good enough finish on the inside to give the effect of being turned (when it wasn't).

My first idea was to make a complete bowl, cut it in half and rebate the cut edge to take a back - obviously the construction will be evident in the finished piece especially from the back. So, this is what I'm aiming for, but also hope to avoid.

My second idea was how others might attempt this. I don't have the means to hollow turn a vase - if I did, I could make a vase and cut through it to create one or two bowls. To create the illusion of a bowl turned on a face plate, I could make the bowl blank using end-grain across the blank. The two issues here, are not having the hollow tools and lacking expertise in using them.

So my final thought was to take a bowl blank and cut it into three pieces e.g. to remove "behind" the back, and a section for the back e.g. two cuts through the bowl blank. Then, glueing it back together with paper between the three pieces but the middle piece replaced with another piece of wood. Turning the inside of the bowl and finishing it. Splitting the three sections and restoring the middle "back" wall and turning the outside of the bowl and finishing it. Finally cutting the section of bowl behind the "back" away, sanding and finishing it.

Or, Is there a better/easier way?