150 – Bowl Turning Tools & Techniques w/ David Marks

Video - June 14, 2011

On a recent visit with my friend and mentor, David Marks, we decided to make a little video together. Initially the idea was to simply show David my video production process. But as things started to progress, I knew we had the makings of a great video and this was something I wanted to share with the woodworking community.

The goal was simple: let’s turn a bowl! But as easy as that sounds, properly filming a bowl turning from start to finish can be quite tricky with just a few hours to play with. I had to catch a plane that evening and this was something of a last-minute idea. But we managed to pull it off, amazingly.

Anyone who has worked with David knows that the man is a perfectionist by definition. He regularly achieves a level of quality that I can only hope to some day match. So with David Marks, even a “quick and dirty” bowl deserves a perfect spherical profile, an absolutely tearout-free finish, and a crisp decorative band. And forcing him to produce a David Marks creation under those conditions proved to be a challenge and an important learning experience for me. When David works, there is really only one way to do things: to the best of his abilities. So there’s really no such thing as “good enough”. Its either done properly or its not. This is something I really admire.

David shows you a number of tools and techniques in this video. You’ll see some of the more standard options like the bowl gouge, the parting tool, and the pyramid point tool, as well as some interesting offerings from Easy Wood Tools. In this video, David shows the Easy Rougher and The Easy Finisher. You can purchase the Easy Wood Tools, including the David J. Marks Pro Series featuring beautiful Bubinga handles at David?s website. The advantage of buying the David J. Marks Pro Series in addition to getting a signed bubinga handle, is that the handles are longer than the standard Easy Wood Tools which gives them better leverage.

I hope you enjoy this special episode. Maybe this will help fill in the gap left by my severe lack of turning content! And for those of you who miss the good old days of Woodworks, this is going to be a real treat!

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