Woodturning classes

As a woodturner of long experience, I offer woodturning classes in London. They are suitable for complete beginners as well as people who have done some turning before. The classes are great value, with no hidden extra charges.

Introduction to bowl making

turning first bowl

If you have never done any turning before, you are like most of the people who take my woodturning classes. No previous experience is necessary. The classes are a great opportunity for you to try your hand at woodturning. They are a chance to express your creativity by making a bowl while gaining an insight into the craft. The beautiful hardwood bowl you take home will be something to be proud of.

A woodturning class makes a brilliant ‘experience’ gift.

Enjoy the challenge

Making a bowl needs concentration and care, and you will enjoy the challenge. After an intensive session, working under guidance through every step of the process to shape the bowl to the best of your ability, you will end the day with a great sense of achievement. Your finished bowl will be your own work, made by your own hands, and there won’t be another in the world quite the same.
All my woodturning classes are one-to-one. As the only student, working at your own pace, you will have my undivided attention to make sure you get the most from the day. A class for one person takes between four and five hours.
If you want to bring a second person to share the session, I can work on the same basis with a class of two. Each of you will get true one-to-one attention, taking turns on the lathe to complete each step in the process. Working with two, the class takes a bit longer, usually about seven hours, with a break after each step while the other person works.

Already into turning?

Woodturning is an absorbing hobby. But if you try to learn without going on a woodturning course you will make lots of mistakes along the way. If you persevere, you may get there in the end, but life’s too short for that approach. And sometimes those mistakes can be dangerous, so proper woodturning classes might save you from injury.
My woodturning classes give a foundation for further development. I can’t make you a skilled turner, that takes lots of practice. But I can get you off to a good start, or help you overcome difficulties you may be having.  You can return to your own workshop to build on what you have learned. The lessons cover health and safety issues and tool sharpening  as well as the use of the tools.
I can help you improve your bowl making ability. In an introductory class, I show you how to use the tools to avoid catches and get a better surface on the wood, so that less sanding is needed. If you have made bowls before, you can move on to more advanced techniques.

Spindle turning classes

I can also help you develop your skills with spindle gouges and the skew chisel. These tools are used to make a great variety of items such as candle sticks, furniture parts and much more. My wooden mice and bud vases are spindle turned. The class is one-to-one and normally takes about five hours.
It can be a good idea for beginners interested in spindle turning to start with a bowl-making class if they wish, because it can help them get a feel for how the tools work. This skill is transferable to spindle turning.
When you can make a bowl and turn a spindle, you will have the confidence to make items such as boxes and hollow forms in your own workshop.

Sharpening classes

I also offer a shorter class on tool sharpening, because sharp tools are critical. If you can’t sharpen, you can’t turn! You will learn how to shape the tools properly, how to get their edges sharp, and how to make and use the simple jigs that make sharpening quick and easy.
All my classes are very informal and flexible. I can usually tailor the lessons to your own requirements, but please let me know before booking if you have any particular issues that you would like to cover. Sessions can be on weekdays or at the weekend, at times that are convenient for you. To find out more, call me on 07496 021531.

Other tuition

I also give woodturning lessons to groups at the Camden Town Shed. Although working with limited time greatly restricts the attention I can give each person, these classes consistently get great reviews.

From one-to-one sessions:

turning first bowl

two bowls from an introductory class
Two bowls from an introductory class

Bowl made by student

A more advanced yew bowl

bowl made during woodturning lesson
Ash bowl made by someone with more experience
bowl made during woodturning lesson
Spalted beech bowl made with more experience

Some recent reviews:

  • “What a brilliant afternoon with Terry, learning (and doing) woodturning. The bowl I made looks great, even if my new expertise means I can tell where it isn’t perfect. A great Christmas present from my wife, and a great session. Thanks Terry.” Roger
  • “My partner and I had an absolutely brilliant day learning how to turn a wooden bowl under Terry’s expert guidance. It was a really hands-on day. You get stuck in straight away and learn by doing. We both had lots of time on the lathe turning our bowls and came away understanding the principles of how to turn a wooden bowl. Terry is a patient and friendly teacher who explains everything in a really clear easy to understand way. We were both really happy with the bowls we made. If you’re looking for a fun educational day where you learn to make something, we couldn’t recommend it more highly.” Lauren

For other reviews, go to the “Book a class” pages, and here are lots more, and details of the Camden classes.

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