This meeting of Great Plains Woodturners, held on UNL’s Innovation Campus, was called to order by club president, Rob Otte.

One visitor (Matt Wheeler) was recognized.

The motion was made and seconded to approve the minutes of the March 15, 2016, meeting, as printed via club website. Motion passed.

Club treasurer, Theo Alles, reported a deposit of $525 from dues. Current treasury balance is $5574.35. Motion was made and seconded to approve this report. Motion passed.

Otte spoke of his concern about our club having such a large cash balance in the treasury and will be visiting with the club’s board about some possible uses for these funds. He cited our recent purchase of an audio system as a useful expenditure because of the poor acoustical properties of the large room in which we meet. A small lathe was also mentioned as a possible use of such funds. Tom Steyer mentioned that Loess Hills Woodturners (Omaha-based) has recently invested in an enhanced video system that allows for both overhead and eye-level perspective as well as a large-screen TV for viewing images. He and Loess Hills fellow-member Curt Norman estimated that the expense of such equipment was around $2,500. One member suggested that members of our board should visit the Omaha club as a way of examining such a system.

Otte encouraged members to continue turning boxes for the UN Med Center’s Bead Box project and that our annual Christmas Party in December would be an excellent time for such boxes to be shown and donated.

Otte reported that UNL Maker Space Director, Liana Owad, is delighted with the objects club members have on display in the lobby gallery. She has received many positive comments about the quality and beauty of these turned works.

Otte mentioned that he is trying to organize events for the first weekend in December (a Friday/Saturday combination) in which the Maker Space would be used by turners (from both Lincoln and Omaha clubs) and carvers to provide public demonstrations, as well as having available some hands-on activities.

According to Otte, our club has now formed a contractual relationship with UNL that allows our use of the Maker Space for the upcoming year, while at the same time, obligating our club to provide mentoring and tutorial assistance to students needing help with processes related to turning.

Curt Norman brought information regarding two Omaha sales events in September (Omaha Quilters and an Aksarben group) that may be able to provide space for turners interested in selling items.

The President’s Tip-of-the-Night pertained to various kinds of wax finishes—beeswax, carnauba wax and palm leaf oil—with particular emphasis on microcrystalline wax (such as is found in a product sold under the brand name, Renaissance Wax). He emphasized the hardness and great utility of such a material.

The Show-and-Tell portion of our meeting featured a wide variety of objects from both new and experienced turners. As usual, there were numerous questions of those presenting objects—many of which provided unique teaching/learning opportunities for all.

After a quick raffle of donated woods, the program was presented by club member Scott Josiah, who is known professionally for his job as Nebraska State Forester. Scott is an accomplished turner with a special interest in plates, platters and shallow bowls. As part of his presentation, he brought many of the items he has turned over a period of years to illustrate the changing style of his work as well as to highlight strategies for taking advantage of unique grain patterns in wood. He emphasized that it is often possible to utilize some questionable cuts of wood (discards because of potential cracking) if care is taken in their drying. Josiah also demonstrated some tools that he uses to make beads and various kinds of textures. One of the unique features of his turned objects is the extensive detailing of their bottoms or undersides. Members will find his strategies very useful as they try to turn objects similar to those Josiah passed around the room as part of his presentation. An excellent job!

The next meeting of Great Plains Woodturners will be May 17, 2016, 7 pm, on Innovation Campus.


Recorded by Doug Wilson, secretary