Tennessee Valley Woodworkers

Vol. 15/ Issue 10                                              October 2000                                    Editor: Tom Gillard


Meeting Notice:

The next meeting of the TN Valley Woodworkers

Will be held, October 17, 2000 at 7:00 p.m. in the

Duck River Electric Building, Decherd, TN

All interested woodworkers are invited!



The following people have agreed to serve as contacts for their particular skills.  If you have questions, suggestions for activities, or other comments relating to these skills, please call these folks.  Their interest is to help the club better serve their area of expertise.  Your participation with them will help them achieve that goal.


                Alice Berry 454-3815    Design                    Phil Bishop         967-4626    Finishing

                Tom Church 967-4460   Turning                   Harry May          962-0215     Carving

                Bob Reese 728-7974   Sharpening              Jim VanCleave    455-8150     Joinery 

                Maurice Ryan  962-1555   Health and Safety


Bob Leonard announced that Alan Noel would present a seminar on wood finishing on October 28, 2000. The event will be held at Tom Gillard shop in Tullahoma, TN and the cost will be $25.00. The event will be from 8:30 A. M.  to 3:30 P. M.
















Wood Anecdote


The Northwest’s most abundant hardwood likes having wet feet.


In the Pacific Northwest, almost whenever you find water you’ll discover red alder.  From southeastern Alaska into California, this cousin of the birch tree grows best where its roots get wet, and seldom more than 125 miles from the ocean.

            Trout fishermen know it well because the tree shades the deep, clear pools where the big fish lay.  Along the streams and rivers, its roots steady banks against erosion and deep the water running clear.  And when salmon begin their run from the ocean, they do it amidst stands of red alder because nowhere does it grow more abundantly and to greater size than in boggy areas near salt water.  In those favored conditions, it can attain 100’ heights with diameters to 3’. 

            Once considered by lumbermen as a nuisance tree, red alder today rates as the most commercially important hardwood in the Pacific Northwest.  Increasing 20-fold since the 1920’s because it swiftly appears on burnt or cutover land, red alder’s current standing volume represents 60 percent of the region’s hardwood inventory. 

            Early loggers only cut red alder for firewood, for which it excels. (its smoke gives salmon a distinct flavor, too).  But 75 years ago or so, Northwest furniture manufactures began giving the tree well-deserved attention.  Because its evenly textured, moderately hard, and heavy wood seasons well and works easily, it rivaled more costly eastern hardwoods for modestly priced furniture, cabinets, and turnings.  Now, much red alder also becomes veneer for plywood cores as well as high-grade face.  And logs find a ready market in Asia and Europe.


Wood October, 2000






President Tom Cowan called the meeting to order at 7:00 P.M.

Welcomed guests were Wayne Hawkersmith, Marvin Moore and Ken Could.



 President Tom Cowan announced that the club newsletter, “Splinters” were available. Tom also announced that Ronald Dawbarn recently lost his father.

Doyle McConnell announced that events currently at the Coffee County fair consisted of exhibits and woodturning. The woodturning is located at the Morton Youth Village.  Sign up sheets for people to work at the fair on Saturday were passed around to obtain required volunteers. Henry Davis advised club members to wear identification badges or hats and to come in the third gate so those members would not be required to pay for entry into the fair.

Bob Lenord announced that Alan Noel would present a seminar on wood finishing on October 28, 2000. The event will be held at Tom Gillard shop in Tullahoma, TN and the cost will be $25.00. The event will be from 8:30 A. M.  to 3:30 P. M.

President Tom Cowan appointed the following people to the nominating committee for the year 2001 for club officers: Loyd Ackerman Chairman, Henry Davis and Doyle McConnell. The officers to be considered are President, Secretary, Treasury, and Publicity Chairman.  Loyd Ackerman passed around a notice to the club for any one interested in becoming an officer to please notify one of the committee members.


Bob Reese announced that Ross Roepke would present the program for the club in October on  adial saws. In addition, Dean Lute and Andy Weaver would present the program in November on corain applications.

President Tom Cowan announced that the December program would be an expansion of show and tell. He asked that members bring something that they do really well that has been made recent and something that was made in the past.

Harvey Church is giving away used wooden doors. Contact Harvey if interested.

Manual Brown announced that lumber is on sale at a lumber store in Madison, TN and in Memphis. The wood is very good and several varieties are available. Contact Manual for details and directions if interested.

President Tom Cowan announced that he, Henry Davis, Loyd Ackerman, Doyle McConnell and John Mayberry recently attended the 13th Woodturning symposium at Arrowmont School in Gatlinburg, TN.



Doyle McConnell-showed a natural edge bowl made of maple.

Tom Gillard-sail boat plaque.

Murrel Chattin-table made of walnut and finished with lacquer.



 Bob Reese assisted David Whyte in presenting the program on various fixtures and jigs that David had fabricated. The jigs are very unique and useful and David is willing to share more information about any jig or fixture that anyone found interesting.

There were a total of 46 members and guest in attendance.

Respectfully submitted, John Mayberry, Secretary
























Congratulations go to our own Tom Cowan for winning the “Peoples Choice Award” for his turned vase at the recent Tennessee Association of Woodturners Symposium in Gatlinburg.  This same vase also took a first place ribbon at the Coffee County Fair.


Way to go Tom !!!