Gulf Coast Woodturners Association



Club Information




May 2012 - Spring Retreat - Number 16

Retreats are fun!  Retreats are educational!  Retreats are . . . well . . . a lot of hard work!  It takes a small army of folks (and equipment) to pull off a retreat plus some very dedicated leadership.  This year the leadership was provided by Retreat Chairman Doug Grissom and his committee and the club thanks them for a another highly successful event.  This was the sixteenth year that GCWA has held a Spring Retreat.  Here's hoping for many more!

As usual, a number of classes and demonstrations were offered to provide a wide-range of learning opportunities for those attending.  Here are two documents that describe the hands-on class offerings and their instructors, and the schedule of classes and demos.
Who is doing what at the Retreat (a MS Word document)
2012 Retreat Class Schedule (a MS Excel spreadsheet)

Opening Comments and Safety Instructions
Retreat chairman, Doug Grissom welcomed all attendees, went over the procedures for the two-day event and, most importantly, reminded everyone about the importance of safety.


Club president, Reggie Keith thanked Doug and his committee for all the hard work in putting the annual retreat together.

Jonathan Bartz, has been coordinating retreat facility issues, like loading and unloading, for some time--so much so that he's known as the official retreat "wrangler". (You don't mess with Jonathan's instructions!)

A Comprehensive Learning Experience
Spring Retreat #16 offered 30 learning opportunities, of which a few popular ones were offered more than once.  The pictures of this year's retreat are largely from the first rotation (since the photographer taught a class in the second rotation and took a class during the third rotation).  In the following two panels are the hands-on class offerings by area with the instructors and participants of those classes listed. (Boards for the demos are not included.)








Advanced Bowl Turning
Scott Njaa helped GCWA members hone their bowl turning skills with a hands-on class for advanced turners.

Basic Bowl Turning
Lane Bradford
offered a hands-on class for beginning and intermediate turners on basic bowl turning




Basic "Bic" Pen Turning
George Kabacinski took those new-to-pen-turning the basics of turning a "Bic-style" pen



Beginner's Track
The Beginner's Track is offered to those new to turning and want a complete overview of what tools, equipment and skills and safety practices are needed to become a successful turner.  Tom Irven, shown at the right in the first picture, and Andy Chen, at the left in the third picture, as well as Paul Millo (not shown) took "newbies" through all the steps over the two day retreat.





Miniature Corian Turning
Andy Chen, in addition to working with Beginner's, also taught a hands-on class on turning miniature items from Corian.  You can view one of Andy's Corian creations, here.

Fancy Finials
Brian Laing
shared his skills on turning fancy finials with participants of his class

Turning Jewelry
Troy McLaughlin
discussed turning jewelry with participants of his hands-on class.


Miniature Hollow Forms
Larry Zarra turns things big and small.  In this hands-on class he focused on the small and added hollow form to the learning process.


Photographing Turning
Our own resident expert table-top photographer, Paul Millo, shared the tricks of his trade with any member interested in improving their photography skills.  Paul is one of the best gallery photographers among AAW affiliated clubs, so participants got top notch advice.



Pyrography for Turners
Janice Levi, who is a great turner (and president of the SouthWest Association of Turners) is also skilled at pyrography.  She shared those skills with members of her hands-on class.

Sphere Turning
Ric Taylor demonstrated his sphere turning jig for interested participants.

Wood Identification
Derek Powers, who grew up in East Texas (the Piney Woods), knows a thing or two about tree and wood identification, shared his knowledge and expertise in this demo/discussion.

What would any respectable Retreat be without a RAFFLE?!!!
Delia Spicer (at the right in the first picture) operates the monthly raffle at our meetings.  Delia also coordinated ticket sales for the Retreat Raffle.  This year, three lathes were included in the raffle items!
    Delia: "And remember, you can't win anything unless you buy tickets!!"        

Faces in the Crowd




Candid photography by Dale Barrack and Peter Miao