Berea Bottle Stopper

Hybrid Turning Instructions by: Ed Davidson

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Lathe Turned Wood Arts

 

When I first came across the "Premium All-Chrome" Berea stopper base, my first reaction was not so good. I didn't like the two little humps at the top of the chrome base, making the transition from metal to wood too abrupt, IMHO. And that's the reason for this hybrid turning instruction...to effectively hide the humps and make a more pleasing transition. Why go to all this trouble? Because with this process, I really like the looks of the finished stopper. And, the Berea all-chrome stopper design allows for the best leak-proof wine bottle fit I've found anywhere.

Here's the Berea all-chrome stopper with a Arizona Silhouette stabilized Redwood burl blank measuring 1.5" X 1.5" X 2"

 

The blank has been mounted in a self-centering vice, and is ready for drilling. Note that the vice is held firmly in place on the drill-press table with a clamp.

 

A 3/4" Forstner bit has been mounted in the drill press, and a 3/8" deep counter-bore has been made.

 

Now, without moving the vice or it's clamped position on the drill press table, switch to a 6mm drill bit and drill a 1" deep hole in the center of the previously drilled 3/4" counter-bore.

 

Insert a drill-chuck into your lathe's headstock, and then mount the Berea bottle stopper mandrel into the drill-chuck. Note that the mandrel is not inserted fully into the drill-chuck, allowing the wood blank to bottom out on the mandrel's shoulder, and provide access to the backside of the blank.

 

Mount the blank onto the mandrel and bring up the lathe's tailstock. Lock the tailstock in place and then tighten the live center down, so that the center's point is inserted into the wood...stabilizing both ends of the wood in your lathe.   

 

Turn the headstock-side of the piece down to the pre-drilled 3/4" counter-bore.

 

And finish the turning as you see fit.

 

This turning has been dry-sanded from 100 to 600 grit, followed by a coat of Sanding Sealer and a Beall Buff.

 

As you can see, the Berea chrome stopper will fit into the pre-drilled impression made in the wood blank's bottom. If the wood is soft, you may have to glue the stopper base and the woodturning together. Thick CA (Instant glue) has been used in this example.

 

Here's the finished product...with an attractive transition from metal to wood.

 

And a close-up view of the transition...

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