Matching Grain in a Compound Bowl
On this page I'm going to show how I match grain in a compound mitered wood bowl. This is a step some woodturners leave out but I think it makes a better looking woodturning. I must admit I haven't always done this and just glued the segments together randomly. Now I try to match when I can. The picture below shows the layout I use for matching. It's actually quite basic but a lot of folks just don't do it. It isn't possible to get an exact match but it is very close.
With this method you can get 2 bowls with very little material. This board was 24" long, 4" wide and 1" thick and it made 2 bowls with matching grain. The advantage to doing this besides matching grain is it allows you to use highly figured woods due to being able to get 2 bowls hence reducing the price per bowl. To start, split the board with a bandsaw. This will give you 2 boards about 24" long, 4" wide and 3/8" thick. Now being that the 2 boards are now bookmatched the ends will be the same. Glue them together end to end and you will have a single board again but it will be 48" long. This is enough length to get the segments for 2 bowl plus about 6" or so extra for the bottoms. Once you have your segment length (which in this case is 2-3/16" for an 8-5/8" diameter bowl) lay out the board as I have done in the picture above. I'm only showing a portion of the board to get a better view of what I am doing. You will have segments 1-12 at the bottom and segments A-L at the top. Now just cut the segments. You don't need to follow the lines. They are only there to determine how many segments you can get in the board.
To cut these segments I set my tablesaw blade to 9 degrees and the miter sled to 12 degrees. Below are the segments already cut. If you are unsure how to cut the segments read the page entitled Compound miters.
This picture above shows the 2 bowls cut from the single board.
This is a larger picture of the numbered bowl from the picture above. The picture below is the lettered bowl also from the picture above.
I will add pictures of the 2 bowls once I glue them together. In the meantime the 2 pictures below are 2 claro walnut bowls I made from a single board using the same method.