Decided to have a go at one of those "thin wafer things" as they are known here done by Pascal Oudet, didn't have any green Oak so I decided to give it a go with some green Sycamore. This is how I got on.
So taking one log I then cut slices off with the pallet mangler, also known as an electric chainsaw, these were about 60-75mm thick and around 200mm in diameter including the bark but have a natural edge, more on this subject later.
The slices were then marked with an approximate centre marking and mounted on the lathe, using a steb centre as a drive and a ring centre in the tailstock. The face nearest the tailstock was designated as being the "back" of the finished piece and it was faced off before a 50mm spigot was cut into it, a slight curve was put into this face though I am not sure it was needed but I think my bowl making instincts just took over briefly.
The piece was then reversed onto the chuck and I set about removing the surplus wood from what would be the "front" of the piece, this was done in step cuts in order to leave as much wood in the centre as possible to help keep the piece stable whilst turning. It was a case of working the outer 30mm down to thickness and then moving in towards the centre, the ring centre was used in the tailstock throughout to offer as much support as possible.
An LED light was used, this was placed behind the piece shone through it to allow me to work out the thickness and uniformity of the piece as I was turning, a pair of scissor calipers were also used - these proved very valuable as I moved further into the piece. The turning mostly consisted of careful push cuts in towards the centre of the piece and some shear cuts back out toward the rim. It was necessary to work quite quickly and to keep the wood damp as I was working, this became very necessary as the piece got toward its final 2mm thickness.
The final cuts were made and the piece removed from the chuck, it was decided to remove the spigot using a combination of sharp chisel and sanding to complete it.
The second of the two pieces made proved to be far more interesting as the shape was considerably more irregular which of course meant that I was unable to actually see where to make the cut on the leading edge so it was sort of suck it and see really. However, it all worked out in the end!
As I have just been given some Oak I can now have another go using the Oak and then nip it round to the sandblaster to see if I can make my own version of the originals - will put them up here as and when.
As I said initially all credit goes to Pascal Oudet, a turner whose work I regard as a source of inspiration.