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Turn With Independence

May 2018
Offcuts from the Board
May 2018
            As woodturners, we do not have much scrap, just smaller pieces that can be used together to make something larger in combination with other bits and pieces. That's what this little section attempts to produce. By adding the small parts of our activities and plans we have a combined bigger picture of opportunities to take part in within the club.
  • This month’s Open Shop will be held at the normally scheduled time and date on May 12 at Metro Hardwoods from 10 AM to 12 noon. 
  • Our first Silent Auction was successful in raising $47 for our 'new equipment' fund. Thank you to all that participated by either bringing something for the auction as well as taking part in the bidding and purchasing.  
  • Dues for 2018 are now being accepted. They are still $15 for emailed newsletter (or no newsletter) and $25 for hardcopy USPS delivered newsletter. Please see Mel Bryan at the meeting to pay.
  • The 'special raffle' of the airbrush produced $125 toward our 'new equipment' fund. Congratulations to Don Burns on the lucky draw.
  • The Mid-Continent Library display of our handiwork is once again in place. We will still need items for display to rotate to keep the display fresh and interesting, so if you would like to add your work, contact Michael Straughn (816 812-7621) for getting it included. (See the 'Mid Continent Library' article later for more info.) 
  • If you have some extra Slimline pen kits you can donate them to the club for the Youth Camp pen turning project. (See more info in the article below.)
  • Discounts are available for the taking. (See the Klingspor update later)
  • There are many ways you can contribute to the life of our club. A really good way is to partake in the Open Shop by bringing a project or turning and get a lathe going. Another  way is to submit your woodturning tips also for the newsletter. (Refer to the article later.) Of course there are many other ways to put your enthusiasm into action. You can ask any officer for direction. There are many practical ways to be involved. A simple way to help is to come early to the meeting and help set up the room for the meeting and/or stay afterwards and help clean up. Either or both are appreciated. 
Keep turning safely and we’ll see you at the meeting.
Monthly Open Shop
     Last month Open Shop ended up being a couple of demonstrations by Mike McReynolds turning a platter and a lidded box turned by Mel Bryan while new members observed and questions were fielded.
    This month Open Shop will be on May 12 at Metro Hardwoods from 10 AM to 12 noon as usual. We will concentrate on preparing the pen blanks that will be used when we go out to Camp Tomah Shinga in the next couple of months to teach the youth at the camp to turn pens and introduce them to the world of woodturning. 

    Keep turning and be safe.

Scenes from last month:

Our Last Meeting

      Jerry McMasters gave us a very good demonstration on how to enhance, embellish and help give your woodturning an artistic flare by explaining the use of an airbrush. Jerry showed us examples of his work to start off then explained the different airbrushes available followed by how to prepare your work for airbrushing. He gave many tips and recommendations for the types of paints and dyes he uses. Before he was finished he explained how to clean and care for your airbrush.
     Thank you, Jerry for a very informative demonstration of adding interest and another level of beauty to our woodturning. 


  The video of  for this demo is delayed in being edited and produced because of a family emergency situation but will be made available as soon as possible. Sorry for the inconvenience. 

Trusted Turning Tips

     Submit your tips for this column and win a $10 gift certificate from Craft Supplies, USA if it is published here in the newsletter. You may submit your tip to Mel Bryan at or

Now for this month's tip:
   Here is a tip from the October 2012 American Woodturner by Bill Fordney on how to protect your already turned project from the jaw marks of a chuck. Just click on this link to read his tip. 



A footed bowl by Gale Markley

Lidded box and Salt shaker by Steve Tyner
 Femispheres by Mel Bryan. Left is painted fir and right is padauk

"Spam & Eggs"  by Mel Bryan (Woods are Padauk, walnut, aspen, Osage orange, chakte viga, silver maple)

Segmented vessel by Michael Straughn 

Coasters  by Don Burns

Officers contact info


Don Bird

(816) 377-2752

Vice President

Vaughn Bradley

(816) 589-1325 


Gary Gahm

(816) 313-5065


Mel Bryan

(816) 524-7767

Director at Large

Bill Baker

(816) 836-5656


Where We Meet

Metro Hardwoods

4243 S. Noland Rd
Independence, Mo.

Click: for a map


Upcoming Events

May  12   
 Open Shop
         At Metro Hardwoods
         From 10 AM to 12 Noon

 May 15   
 Monthly meeting
         Metro Hardwoods
         7 PM to 9 PM

Jun  16   
 Open Shop
         At Metro Hardwoods
         From 10 AM to 12 Noon

Jun 19   
 Monthly meeting -
         Metro Hardwoods
         7 PM to 9 PM


Upcoming May Meeting 

         At this meeting, Mike McReynolds will show us the secret to how he makes the "secret" puzzle box known as a "cryptex"  box. He will show us all the "twists & turns" he has to make to turn this combination locked compartment box. 

Treasurers Report

  Treasurer's Report  
  As of April 30, 2018  
        April 18 YTD  2018  
  GENERAL Account


Coffee & cookies
Lathe Fund
Available Funds
Mel Bryan, Treasurer
Turning to the Library.
     As a reminder, be sure to take advantage of the fact that our monthly demonstrations are not only in our library on DVD discs, but are posted on You Tube.  One advantage is that the most recent demo will be on You Tube faster than it shows up in our library.  This is true for most of the demos done this year. Simply go to the You Tube site on your computer, tablet, iPad or smart phone and in the search box, search for  “Indep Woodturners” and the topic in which you are interested. And usually, the first item in the search results will be our YouTube channel which when you click on it you will get our channel with all the videos. Not only will the video of our demo show up, but related videos will show on the screen for later viewing.
          Don’t forget to check the inventory of our library as we are regularly adding new items.            

---  John Thornton, Librarian


     "I am a maker."  That is the phrase that is going around now.  Everyone considers themselves to be a maker.  What is that?  As I understand it, it is simply someone that makes things.  Anything.  Artists, craftsmen and craftswomen, inventors are all makers.  It doesn’t matter what you work with – wood, glass, metal, clay, electronics, paper or even food. 
      Are we makers?  Technically, I guess we are.  We do make things.  But, in my mind, I wonder if we are more than that.  Being called a maker just because we make things almost seems impersonal. Are we artists?  Crafters?  Each has its own definition and connotations.  Some say artists make only one of a thing and crafters make the same thing over and over.  We can argue that even though we make the same style of bowl over and over out of the same type of wood, each one will be different due to the nature of wood.  To some, artists are eccentric and snobbish.  Crafters may be seen as simply someone with a hobby.  We know that it is more than a mere hobby.
     This was brought on by an event that happened last weekend.  A couple of weeks ago, my daughter called and asked me if I would mind making her 4 pens – one as a graduation present for her college roommate and three for teachers that she has had for the last few years as “Thank you” gifts.  What else could I say but “sure”.  She picked out the kits and the blanks that she wanted for each one and I “forced” myself to go to my happy place and get lost in the process.  When she gave her teachers the pens and explained what they were, they looked at me and started asking questions.  One said “So are you a maker?” Another said “No, you are an artist.”  The third said “No, he is a craftsman.”  I was unsure, so I just smiled and said thanks, I just like working with my hands to create something.  “See, a maker.”
     On the drive back home from Lamoni, IA, I had time to think about it.  Often on applications for shows, they ask if you are showing an art or a craft.  I am never sure how to answer.  After thinking about it for a long time this weekend, I believe that I prefer the term “craftsman”.  I am not sure that I can explain why other than I do tend to think that “maker” is a bit cold and everyone in the world could be called a maker of something.  “Artist” tends to make me think I will have to explain to someone what a piece represents and how they should feel after looking at it with their platinum card in my hand.  “Craftsman” seems to leave me with a warmer feeling.  We may do the same type of thing over and over, but that is because we are trying to perfect it, not duplicate it.  Crafts are more of a class of art that is not overly expensive and that can be used in someway everyday – something substantial.  Many crafts are dying off.  I can think of myself as a craftsman trying to save a dying art or two.  I will never consider myself an accomplished craftsman, because I will never be done learning and trying.  Artists tend to burn out after a few years and go into seclusion because many will never be recognized until after death.  The maker term and movement may well die off in a few years.   Craftsmen are appreciated every day for what they make.  Craftsmen have been around and practicing for thousands of years and we have no plans to go anywhere anytime soon.
      You may not agree with me, but that is OK.  Maybe you consider yourself an artist.  I will not argue against you calling yourself that or calling yourself a maker.  It is something that each of us can think about and decide what label we are most comfortable with for ourselves.  Let me know your thoughts.

Crafted by Bill Baker
Discount Update
            Regardless of how well your turning techniques are, everybody needs sandpaper sometime. Be advised that our membership list has been updated with Klingspor Woodworking. And I have already tested it by placing an order. You save 10% automatically once you’ve set up your online access. If you don’t already have one, simply create one when you attempt to login. Be sure to use the email address that we have in our records. Then when you shop, they will show you the discounted price automatically. They have several woodturning tools as well as other woodworking tools in addition to their premium sandpaper. Give them a try. To check them out, click on this link to Klingspor woodworking (or the logo at the top).   If you order by phone, be sure to tell them that you are a member of Independence Woodturners.
           Once again we are on display at the Public Library.  Our Independence Woodturners have put together an impressive mixture of items on display at the North Independence Branch, Mid-Continent Library, just across from the Truman Presidential Library.  One entire section of the glass display cases in the front lobby area of the library are filled with the handiwork of our members.   Those contributing their turnings for this event are Mike Straughn, Lester Gillett, Mel Bryan, Gary Gahm, John Thornton, Mike McReynolds, Gayle Markley, Don Bird and Don Burns.
The display will be in place for an unspecified time, so don’t miss the opportunity to see this extensive “Show-and Tell”. 
     If you would like to enhance the display with some of your work, please contact Michael Straughn (816 812-7621) to make arrangements and more information.  

    Please make sure all your items are identified by having your logo or name on them or with a tag or label. It will insure that they are returned to you. 
      So, gather your woodturning work and  share it with the public.

Submitted by John Thornton 
Youth Camp Penturning

     Once again we have the opportunity to take our woodturning craft to the younger generation. We've been invited (and have accepted) to go to the Tomah Shinga Youth Camp to help the youth campers turn pens. Tomah Shinga is just outside Junction City, Kansas. It's about a three hour drive and we go out and return the same day and spend 3 or 4 hours setting up, turning pens with the kids and packing up to return. It's a good days work, but quite worthwhile and fun. We are open to volunteers that can make the venture with us. We will be going out on; June 6th, 20th, and July 11th, 18th. It will be discussed at the meeting and you can contact any one of the officers to volunteer or for more information.
     We will be preparing the pen blanks at the upcoming Open Shop in preparation for going to the camp. All help will be appreciated and if you'd like to learn about the pen turning process, this is an excellent opportunity. Please bring any tools, jigs, or equipment you think might be helpful. 
     The urgent need to start with is acquiring the pen kits. We use slimline pen kits and need several. (We will possibly help 50 or so kids through out the summer.) So, please donate some kits if you can (even if you can't go) or cash donations will be accepted so we and order kits and supplies. We seem to have enough pen blanks at this point. 

Hollowed vase form by Bill Corteville


Offset cherry bowl by Lester Gillette


Rings by Mikeal Jones


Natural edge apple bowl by Don Bird

Marble stands by Ron Bruno with pyrography by Kathy Bruno



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Local phone: 317-873-4485
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15248 Stony Creek Way


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