Woodturning – better bowl turning with Richard Findley

Ref: S2D32987

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About this course

This course is designed for those with some turning experience, who want to improve their bowl turning techniques and the overall quality of their bowls. Learn how to refine your technique through demonstrations and hands-on turning.

Course Description

On this course, you will learn the basics of bowl turning and you can expect to make two bowls, with the aim of improving and refining technique through demonstrations and hands-on turning.

There will be a maximum of six students on the course. You will have your own lathe for the duration of the course, along with a set of the necessary tools. The tutor will give you a safety briefing and time to familiarise yourself with the equipment and workshop.

During the course, you will work on two projects. Each stage of the turning will be clearly demonstrated by the tutor and then you will be given ample time and support to use those techniques to make your own bowls. The tutor is a patient and knowledgeable teacher, happy to show various approaches to solve any turning problems and help you to improve your turning methods and technique.

You will begin by making a small bowl to a set design to allow you to get used to the College lathe, the tools and the environment. The design of a second bowl will be discussed and you can have input into the exact shape you would like to make, based on suggestions by the tutor. Should there be time on the second day to make a third project, a third bowl can be turned, following another design to further challenge and inspire you.

Throughout the two days, you will work at your own pace with no pressure to rush through projects. Subjects such as design and sharpening will all be discussed throughout the course and all questions will be explored and answered.

Please note, woodturning can be a demanding activity, both mentally and physically, so a good level of fitness is required.


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops until 9pm, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials


  • Two bowl blanks (one small, one large), a bottle of hardwax oil and a pack of abrasives are supplied by the tutor and included in the fee.

What students need to bring

  • While tools are provided, it is often better to use your own tools, so you are encouraged to bring your own along. You should label them with your name and keep them safe.
  • Some sort of overall, turning smock or boiler suit is recommended. Woolly, fleecy clothing or anything too loose should be avoided. Long hair must be tied back securely.
  • A faceshield is provided, but you might be more comfortable in your own, and you are encouraged to bring your own (labelled with your name) if you have one.
  • Sturdy shoes or boots should be worn. Open toed shoes and sandals are not permitted in the workshop.

Available to buy

  • Available from tutor:
  • Additional timber blanks and abrasive pads, if required

Additional information

Please wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio. This includes stout covered footwear (no sandals or open toes).


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

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