silver rimmed bowls and Mary Rose bowl

I have been working for a while with Sheffield silversmith Owen Waterhouse to make replicas of medieval mazer bowls and the Scottish whiskey drinking bowls called quaiches. It took us quite a while to work out how to do it but now Owen makes the rims then I turn bowls to fit. The difficult bit is getting a wooden bowl which tends to shrink to fit to a silver rim which stays stable. I have two methods, sometimes I part turn a bowl and dry it completely then put it back on the lathe and turn it to exactly fit the rim, sometimes I turn the bowl green to just oversize by hte amount I think it is going to shrink, then if i get it right in a couple of weeks when it is dry the rim will jam on nicely. If I get it wrong I have another nice mazer or quaich to sell without a rim. I fitted these 4 this week and am rather happy with them they are laburnum and burr lime.


Today I felt like a challenge so I made a copy of one of the big bowls from the Mary Rose. The original is one of my favorite bowls, so much so that I put a picture of it on the cover of my book. The replica is part of an order for the Mary Rose Trust to use with visiting school groups. Once the bowl is finished it is fairly heavy but when I first try to mount the blank on the lathe it is about as much as I can manage to lift and maneuver.


Here is the original made by a turner more than 450 years ago.

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