Firewood Ladle – Shaping and Thinning the Bowl

The process for excavating the inside of the ladle continued as previously described — saturated with dilute epoxy followed by hollowing with curved gouges until soft wood is hit, followed by more epoxy impregnation followed by more sculpting… — until I arrived at the shape I wanted.  Unfortunately I failed to take any photos of these subsequent dozen or more sessions.

Interspersed with those sessions were exercises in refining the outer shape of both the handle  and the bowl, mostly using rasps since the wood was so squirrelly.  Once the shapes were close to finished I needed to thin the bowl so that it would be a somewhat elegant piece.

To protect the inner bowl and support the bowl wall while working towards the wall thinness I wanted I needed to devise some way for an almost form fitting support.  To accomplish this I looked throughout the barn for things that were the right size and shape, and the closest thing I found was this doming hardie from my collection of metalworking tools.  By draping the dome with several layers of drawer liner I got the fit pretty near perfect, the finished bowl shape slipped right into place and stayed put while I was working it with fine rasps and floats.

As with shaping the inside of the bowl, the protocol for working outside the bowl was epoxy >>>toolwork>>>epoxy>>>toolwork, etc.  With a gentle touch I slowly worked towards the final wall thickness of about a shy 1/8″.