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Making a Plywood Vase…

One of the more challenging woodturning tasks is making segmented bowls.

Some advantages of segmented turning is you can easily repeat an item and they take a lot less wood that if you made the item from a single solid piece.

This is how I made a vase from 3/4″ Russian Birch Plywood. (it did state on the board that it was made in Russia)

First I cut the board into more manageable sizes and then began to rip the wood for the segments.


The plywood was ripped into pieces just over 1 inch wide. I left the saw set where it was incase I needed more pieces to cut.

The next step was to cut the segments for the bottom or base of the vase.


After that it was simply cut pieces for each succesive ring.

This item has 13 rings with each ring being made from 16 pieces. I also made a plug for the bottom that used 2 additional pieces of wood. Total of 210 pieces were used.

Rings were glued together using AeroMarine 300/311 epoxy. This is a slow curing adhesive which gives more time to build the rings.

After the rings are glued together they are stacked together on the lathe to make sure they were all signed up properly.


The last step was to turn first the outside then the inside of the vase.

I used my Jamieson hollowing jig to turn the inside. This is easier and safer for both the finished item and the lathe operator that using regular gouges and scrapers.

After turning the vase was sanded and finish was applied.

After who knows how many hours to cut segments, making and stacking the rings it took about 1 hour and 20 minutes to turn and finish the vase.


I plan to begin a new plywood vase in the next few days.

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A UFO has landed!

One of the YouTube channels I frequently is Brendon Stemp.

He is a very accomplished wood turner located in Australia.

Two different videos inspired making this project: and

I started off with one of the slabs from a large Ficus tree that we got some wood from in 2017.

I roughed out the bowl and then cut a deep wide groove in what would become the top of the bowl.

I then used hot melt adhesive to attach some Eucalyptus Seeds in the groove. After the glue had set and cooled I then filled the groove with Liquid Diamonds Resin and placed it into my pressure pot and waited about 48 hours to make sure the resin had fully cured.

Once it was out of the pressure pot I began turning it.


I then reversed the bowl and hollowed out the inside.


After finishing off the bottom of the bowl it told me it wanted a lid. With a nice final on it, thank you. Sorry no pictures of the lid being made.

The next request was to make three feet for it to stand on.

I then realized that a UFO had landed in my back yard!

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A three cornered lidded box

The January Challenge for the Orange County Wood Turner’s Club was to make a three cornered bowl.

This is one of the more terrifying things for a wood turner to try.

My bowl started off as three different 4X4X2 blocks of different types of hardwood that were glued together, cut in half and then rotated and glued back together again.

When you begin turning this you put the block into the head stock and tail stock of the lathe.


After creating a tenon on the bottom end of the bowl its is mounted into a 4 jaw chuck and the turning continues.

The next step was to make a lid for the box before cutting off the foot and finishing the box.