SPSW’s response to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Today, Thursday March 12th I got word that the Fife Community Center is closing, and will not be available for our meeting this month. Although we have been monitoring the coronavirus situation closely, and were planning to make our own decision about whether or not to run our monthly meetings, the Community Center’s decision makes this decision for this month for us. Therefore, we will not be having our mini-symposium this month. Further, even though it is a much smaller meeting, we also need to cancel the Sawdust Session on the 21st.

The SPSW’s Board of Directors is closely monitoring updates and recommendations concerning the coronavirus pandemic. Things seem especially difficult for our friends in King and Snohomish Counties, and our thoughts and good wishes go out to them!

We encourage all of our members to continue to check themselves, and follow recommendations from reliable sources to avoid this disease.

I will be discussing this subject with the full Board of Directors later this month. If the worst comes to pass, and we need to cancel more of our monthly membership meetings, we may be able to tape the entire meeting and make the demonstration available on the SPSW website.

I will do my best to keep everyone informed as we go forward.

John Howard
SPSW President



Founded on April 21st, 1994 the South Puget Sound Woodturners is in the top 10 clubs in the American Association of Woodturners (AAW).


Our members range from beginner to internationally acclaimed professionals. Our interests range from penmaking to bowls, turned ornaments to hollow vessels, spindles to platters.


Attend our monthly membership meetings and you will find demonstrations on material selection, tool usage, segmenting, wood coloring, ebonizing, and lots of turning techniques.


Twice a year we have a mini-symposium where members demonstrate anything you could imagine.

Sawdust Session

Another great benefit for our members is our “Sawdust Sessions”. This is a hands on session with mentors from the club. This is an amazing one-on-one opportunity to improve your turning skills.


There are so many more benefits and learning opportunities to membership in the South Puget Sound Woodturners. Come and visit our next meeting and see what turning is all about!

Ray Key Bursary Award

The Association of Woodturners of Great Britain (AWGB) have undertaken a new initiative in memory of Ray Key, the founding Chairman of the AWGB in. He was awarded life membership in the AWGB in 1997 and appointed President in 1998. Ray was also made a Life Member of The American Association of Woodturners also in 2001, the first non-American so honored.

The Ray Key Bursary Award is open to all ages and its intended purpose is to provide an extended package of training and support for turners who have been identified as budding prodigies, standing out from the crowd in some way or showing great promise. The support could take the form of training, mentoring or other support tailored to the individual. Each award is up to £750 (~$950) but this could be extended if the reviewing panel decided it was justified. Any successful applicant will need to agree to a plan to carry out the objectives of the award and to report back at agreed intervals.

The aim is to give a boost to those identified as worthy on their journey to excellence as a turner. Any member of the AWGB can apply with the form found here.

AAW Makers Gallery

Looking for another way to share images of your work? AAW members can share images of their work on the new AAW website. These images are viewable by the general public and are displayed at random.

To get your photos into the Makers Gallery you first need to update your AAW profile to enable the “Maker” tab on your member profile. Then go to the new Maker tab and complete your Maker Profile. Once this is done you can add an image, along with a title and description.

That’s it! The AAW has provided complete instructions.

February Membership Meeting

Jon Magill Rose Engine Lathe
Over the years, SPSW member Bob Seivers has amazed us during the “Show and Tell” part of our meetings with his art, creativity, ingenuity, and skill in turning with the rose engine. Because the equipment is not easily portable, he has not been able to be a presenter of his techniques at any of our meetings, he’s only been able to show us his phenomenal pieces.

During this presentation, all of that will change, and we will get to see Bob demonstrating for us via a video taken by John Jacobs over the course of a couple of days several months ago. Bob will be in attendance to answer our questions and to provide more information about working with the rose engine.

January Membership Meeting

January 16th Meeting Demonstration: Dave Best, Jeff Marshall and John Howard spent a wonderful week at Arrowmont in Gatlinburg, Tennessee taking a class from Avelino Samuel. Avelino is renowned for turning beautiful urns and bowls featuring spiral carved and textured enhancements and delicate finials. Jeff, Dave, and John will present a step-by-step process showing how you could add similar enhancements to your work. The presentation will feature initial shape and design, layout, carving, adding texture, and finishing.

Upcoming Woodturning Symposiums

The Tennessee Association of Woodturners is presenting its 32nd Woodturning Symposium on January 24th and 25th, 2020 at the Marriott Hotel and Convention Center in Franklin, Tennessee. The 2020 Symposium features these leading woodturners and turning artisans: Cindy Drozda, Eric Lofstrom, Mark St. Leger and Derek Weidman. In addition to 16 woodturning rotations each day there will be a large vendor area, a gallery of wood turned art will be on display throughout the symposium and a Saturday Night Auction and Banquet. Early registration is open through December 31st.

florida woodturners logoSeven AAW chapters in Florida come together to present the Florida Woodturning Symposium from February 7th to 9th, 2020 at the Lake Yale Baptist Conference Center. Nationally known demonstrators include Nick Agar, J. Paul Fennell, Judy Ditmer and Keith Gotschall. There will also be hands-on workshops led by Dixie Biggs, Rudy Lopez and others. The symposium features a large trade show, auction and raffle.

alaska woodturners logoThe Alaska Woodturners Association is presenting their 2020 Woodturning Symposium on April 4th and 5th, 2020 at Glass, Sash & Door Supply in Anchorage. Featured turners are Sam Angelo and Stuart Batty along with local turners Jeff Trotter and Dave Staeheli. In addition, Sam and Stuart will be conducting two to three day hands-on classes following the symposium. The symposium will also feature an instant gallery.