LJ friends and gifts. #14: Bungee lathe spinning in Scotland - visiting Ronnie

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Blog entry by mafe posted 09-15-2013 09:29 PM 4713 reads 0 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 13: Jamies tool cabinet - a happy monkey in Jamies work shop Part 14 of LJ friends and gifts. series Part 15: Look what the postman brought - a gift from my friend Jamie in Scotland »

Visiting Ronnie
Bungee lathe spinning in Scotland

While I was visiting our LJ friend Jamie in Scotland, I had the luck to be invited to his friend Ronnie’s house.
More exactly his wonderful little garden behind the house.

This is the view from Ron’s house, beautiful surroundings in Scotland.
Trust me, the grass really is greener there!

Here we are Ron’s bungee lathe, in the little garden behind his house.
How cool is that!
Ronnie has a wonderful relaxed approach, KISS principe; Keep It Simple Stupid.
And so his lathe is a made from bits and pieces, that he got from around.
This gives it a really cool rustic look, which I like a lot.

Here from my little sketchbook.

The poppets are really simple build up, the rests are a part of the construction, rather than a add on and held by wedges.
The iron centers are just screwed in, in a hole a bit smaller than the threaded rod.
The tightener a bend piece of iron welded to the threaded rod.
Here is my first go on the late (with a wee help from Ron – thank you).
Ron wanted a saw holder for the lathe, so this was a perfect fist project.

Here a video of Ronnie is showing how to do it:

Close up of the fixed center.

And the other one.

The tool rest is a simple piece of wood resting on the poppet’s shoulders.

Like so.
I love the simplicity.

Here the foot part (don’t know the name).
A base and two hinges.

Mallet for the wedges.

Ron’s wonderful tool tote.

One of Ron’s homemade saws.
The one that needed a place to hang.

Ron’s go on a shaving horse.

The man in action.

A block for chopping.

Here all is simple.

And up went the hangers for the saw.

My first turnings on a pole lathe.

Here a video where I am using the lathe:

My next project was this strange shape…

My go on a mug, got this idea as I stood by the lathe.
The rest of the mug was made later and can be seen in this post:

So we will leave Ron here, in his wonderful little garden, look at the field behind – what a place to go and relax after work, I’m jealous in the most wonderful way.

Thank you Ron for a wonderful day, for passing your knowledge to me and for keeping the coffee streaming when I was there. It will be a sweet day in my memory for the years to come, and I think you will be the reason I build myself one of these at some point.


Hope this blog can bring some inspiration, it sure did inspire me.

Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

16 comments so far

View littlecope's profile


3152 posts in 4964 days

#1 posted 09-15-2013 10:57 PM

Thanks for sharing your side tour with us Mads…
The Weather and Country looked picture-perfect!
Love Ron’s Lathe!

-- Mike in Concord, NH---Unpleasant tasks are simply worthy challenges to improve skills.

View WayneC's profile


14359 posts in 5559 days

#2 posted 09-15-2013 11:11 PM

Looks like a wonderful day.

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View tsangell's profile


216 posts in 4155 days

#3 posted 09-15-2013 11:41 PM

The “foot part” would be the treadle.

Looks like a lovely day!

View Don W's profile

Don W

20389 posts in 4029 days

#4 posted 09-15-2013 11:52 PM

ok, my first post seemed to have gone the black internet hole.

This is really cool Mads. Thanks for sharing it.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View peteg's profile


4438 posts in 4285 days

#5 posted 09-16-2013 12:38 AM

I guess you would never see Ronnie stuck or without a solution for any problem, a man for all seasons
thanks for sharing your journey, days like this remain with you forever :)

-- Pete G: If you always do what you always did you'll always get what you always got

View Loren's profile


11506 posts in 5109 days

#6 posted 09-16-2013 12:51 AM

Nice stuff.

View Tim's profile


3859 posts in 3423 days

#7 posted 09-16-2013 12:59 AM

This is great Mads, thanks for sharing your experience. I like the turned and carved utensils.

View lew's profile


13534 posts in 5217 days

#8 posted 09-16-2013 01:02 AM

This has to be a most satisfying way to live!

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View Schwieb's profile


1925 posts in 4923 days

#9 posted 09-16-2013 01:48 AM

I think I will stick with my new Robust Lathe, even though I do admire ” traditional technology”. It is good that there are individuals that keep touch with the basic ways of doing our work.

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

27710 posts in 4567 days

#10 posted 09-16-2013 02:41 AM

Thanks for sharing what you found in the countryside for woodworking. Man is so creative in his ways of ding things . necessity is the Mother of invention!!!!!!!!!!!!
cheers, JIm

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View stefang's profile


17040 posts in 4796 days

#11 posted 09-16-2013 09:12 AM

Always great to see people making things with simple tools. It can be quite a free feeling to get away from the need for electricity. I have always wanted to make a pole lathe or bow lathe, but I don’t have a place for one indoors or out. Thanks for sharing this with us Mads. You had quite a woodworking adventure while visiting Scotland. I worked in Scotland and traveled around there quite a bit too. I have nothing but fond memories of the time I spent there.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View mafe's profile


13872 posts in 4551 days

#12 posted 09-16-2013 08:32 PM

Hi ho,
Mike, yes it is really a way of freedom that opens up for our eyes.
Jim, re-invention, but I feel this is happening all over the Western world now, the old values, more basic ways are slowly finding back as we become aware of how empty the life of growth is. (Why is it I always want to share this hope with you)?
Ken, I also have to stick to my motor lathe, but this gave a so different feel, it touched the roots. Yes, so wonderful that there keep being people that look back as well as ahead.
Lew, lets buy a island. ;-)
Tim and Loren, smiles thank you.
Pete, yes he is one of those, not too many questions, just do it!
Don, I experience this also, the black web hole…
tsangell, thank you.
Wayne, so wonderful!
littlecope, I will be high for a long time after this trip.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

View Roger's profile


21055 posts in 4266 days

#13 posted 09-19-2013 01:23 AM

Kool Mads.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

View mafe's profile


13872 posts in 4551 days

#14 posted 09-19-2013 01:00 PM

Smiles Roger.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

View Mauricio's profile


7170 posts in 4613 days

#15 posted 09-20-2013 07:29 PM

Very cool Mads. I’d love to have one of those in my backyard.

Obviously your friend Ronnie is in the witness protection program. He does a good job of hiding his face! ;-)

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

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