Explorations in Woodturning
with Alan Carter

Woodturning Series Level: Level II/III


In this five day class Alan Carter helps experienced turners develop new ways of looking at turning and to explore more creative ways of assembling work.

Class Description

Day 1: “Turn it thin” and “There be goblets among us”

Introduction: Review of turning techniques and woodturning safety practices
Demonstration: Turn small goblets and the thin stem bases to support them
The stems are 7-8” tall or more and taper to around 1/16” thick. Alan shows you how these can be turned safely without using any special steadying mechanisms. He also demonstrate and discusses the turning of the goblets themselves, including various embellishments to enhance the visual interest of the pieces.
You will turn a thin stem and goblet to make a complete work of art you can take home.
An article on this technique was featured in the June 2011 Woodturning Design magazine.
This project is designed to build confidence  and learn too control, which will be most helpful in the future projects.

Days 2-3: “Suspended vessels” or “How to stand apart and still be connected”

Demonstration: Make a suspended vessel
Alan shows you how to make a suspended hollow form vessel including  the steps required to ensure that  the completed piece will stand correctly and everything lines up properly. 
Using a Powerpoint presentation, Alan describes the steps involved in establishing the correct placement and alignment of holes for support pins for more complex pieces. He also shows you how to build a drilling fixture for the lathe to simplify the process. You will learn how to “think outside the circle” to look at things more creatively.
You will turn a hollow form to be mounted with pins on a supporting stand that you wil make. You will learn how to drill the holes in both the vessel and supports in the proper places so the completed project will be balanced and correctly aligned.
You will learn the underlying principles involved in this process so they can expand on them and create your own designs.

Day 4: “Splitting the Difference- split bowl vessels”

Demonstration:  how to turn, cut and reassemble a shallow bowl
Alan shows you the process to accurately and safely cut the bowls in half to make the new vessel. Alan  also shows how the tops are made for the vessels and how the vessels can be further enhanced with various texturing techniques. He discusses different methods of making bases for the vessels and top finial options. He will show slides of more involved pieces and discuss how thery were designed and executed.
You will turn a shallow bowl that’ll be cut in half, re-assembled, and will make a top and base to transform the original turning into (and now for) something completely different.

Day 5: Continuation of split bowl vessels and a recap of the week's study

You’ll continue with the split bowl vessels and also revisit any earlier projects you wish. You may want to begin an entirely new project based on the lessons learned. Throughout the week Alan will encourage you to explore new ideas and techniques. He will also discuss design issues, why he designs pieces a certain way, and how designs can change throughout the construction of project. He will answer any questions you may have about design, technique, tools, etc. He will challenge you to take what you’ve learned and apply it to your own turning style, to “boldly go where no turner has gone before”. And have a lot of fun doing it.  


  • Bowl and spindle gouges
  • Roughing gouge
  • Skew
  • Parting tool, preferably 1/16”
  • Scrapers
  • Alan uses Easy Wood carbide tip tools extensively- if you have any, include them in your tool list
  • Steel ruler, preferably center zero kind
  • Compass
  • Awl


Prior turning experience. Suitable for the graduates of Bonnie Klein's turning classes who have gained some experience after the classes.

Class Information and Registration

Class starts at 9:00am on the first day.

Please read our What to Expect page for general information about the School.

Please also read our Registration Policy.

Class size: 8
Cost: $750
Materials Charge: $75


When you click on the Register link you will be able to register for the class or, if the class is full, sign up for the wait list.

May 27-31, 2013

Explorations in Woodturning




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