Galloway Woodturners

We're in Galloway and we turn wood

Category : General

Wooden ‘Pebble’ tumbling machines

I got this message from a friend Iona Dunbar, and I remember seeing these drums in operation in Penpont. They tumble hardwood blocks, chiefly square and oblong offcuts, and end up with buckets of wooden ‘pebbles’ like a stone polishing machine.

I wondered if any of your members might be interested in a set of wood tumbling machines. My husband and I bought them from Archie McConnell at the sawmill in Penpont near Thornhill. The machines are languishing in a friend’s shed and we really feel they should be used so I thought I’d ask whether anyone in your group might be interested in them. They do take up quite a bit of room so it would need to be someone with a big shed! There are 3 sets of double drums that run on a single [three phase] motor per set. I can happily send lots of photos and more info about them if anyone was keen. We paid £700 for them but we are open to offers. We really just want them to be used – and I’m sure our friend would be glad to see them go! The machines are actually amazing and there are countless different things you could make – I’ve got photos of a few things we came up with but I’m sure someone with more talent and imagination could come up with some beautiful products.


Contact Rolf if you have a big shed with 3 phase, or know of someone with one. Archie used to produce sacks of these ‘pebbles’ and sell them to craft workers and alternative therapy practitioners.


One update on Rolfs’ last post, I can take up to two for a beginners course also other courses are available – boxes, hollowing, colouring etc.

If you are interested please drop e an e mail


Beginners Course 2/2020

As the first course of the year filled up so quickly I feel we can justify having another course before the summer.

Beginning on Thursday 14th May until 18th June course 2/2020 will be much the same as the first one, just not so dark, cold and wintery outside.

Same entry criteria apply, £35 annual membership if you are not already a member, and £100 for the course. 4 course members would be good, but I can take 6 depending on age, experience etc.

Roger Cutler also does beginners courses for individuals at his home workshop, in Creetown, if you prefer one to one tuition, and especially suitable/ practical for folks from the west.

If you are interested, or know of someone who would like to try woodturning then send me, or Roger, a message.

Beginners Course 1/2020

This course is now full, thank you everyone who signed up. Roger Cutler can do one-to one courses at his Creetown home workshop so if you didn’t secure a place on this course contact Roger and see what he can do for you.

The next course will be just before the summer holidays. See post regarding 2/2020.

Fresh Willow

I picked up some willow from the farm just behind the Industrial Estate this afternoon, and dropped it off at the club next to/ on top of the other ‘raw’ wood. If you have never turned fresh willow, and want to have a go, then see someone from the wood prep team (Hugh, Jimmy etc) and let us know how you get on. If you want to turn it seasoned, then put you name on a bit and either season it yourself, or let the prep team do it for you, and let us know how you got on in two or three years time. Jimmy will work out a price for you.

2020 – It begins

I hope you have all had a great Christmas, and wish everyone a very Happy New Year. I aim to open the workshop for the first time on Tuesday 7th January 7pm to 9pm.

Come along with your Christmas presents and left over shortbread/ mince pies.

Next Beginners Course

The next beginners woodturning course will be starting Thursday 27th February 7pm to 9pm, and for six Thursday evenings until 2nd April. This is open to existing and new members. The cost of the course remains £100. 

Thanks to everyone who has signed up, the course is now full and the next course will be just before the summer holidays, so sorry if you missed out on this one. The start date for the next Beginners Course will be posted as soon as I can.

David Simpson (winner), Phil Jones, Mick Schofield

Wednesday Afternoon workshop opening

The workshop will NOT be open next Wednesday 11th December but WILL be open 1.00 to 3.00 Wednesday 18th December.

It will then be open in the New Year from 1.00 to 3.00 on Wednesdays starting on 8th January.

December : Question Time

At our December we are having a Question Time, with a panel of the wise and silver tongued! 

If you have a question which has arisen from any demo you have seen this year, or something you read in a magazine or internet, or something confusing you saw on Youtube etc. or something which you have experienced yourself at the lathe please let me have the question in advance so I can research it, or bring a related tool/ wood/ item to the meeting.

You can submit the questions anonymously if you want. Questions can also be submitted at the meeting or may arise through a previous question or answer.

A lathe will be available for panel members, or questioners to show a particular issue, so you pay want to bring a tool or wood which is causing issues.

Questions can be on any woodturning related issues, from harvesting timber to selling completed items.

I look forward to your questions – remember there is no silly question (although some of the answers may be)