West Island Woodturners was formed by a small group of woodturning
enthusiasts in early 1989. The Club membership stands at about 70.
We meet Tuesdays between 7:00 and 9:00 PM from September to June
at the Pointe Claire Municipal Court, 401 St Jean Blvd. H9R 3J2
We are a non-profit organization whose aim is to promote the
art and craft of woodturning, the exchange of ideas, and provide
a supportive social setting to work in.
The weekly programme consists of a variety of subjects, including, guest
speakers, demonstrations of woodturning and discussions on related topics.
Members regularly compare and discuss each others’ work.
Instruction takes place at all levels. A multipart course entitled “Introduction to
Woodturning” is repeated periodically for the benefit of members who have no
experience and who are interested in getting acquainted with the craft. Instruction
in more advanced techniques is provided informally, on a one-to-one basis, to
members seeking to develop existing turning skills.
Three lathes are available for members’ use and the Club owns a comprehensive
assortment of equipment. A number of instructional videos and woodworking
magazines and books are available to members for home use and arrangements
have been made to enable members to purchase certain supplies and equipment
at a cost lower than normal retail prices.
Annual dues are currently $60.00 per member. Interested individuals are invited to
attend one of the Club’s regular Tuesday meetings, to meet the
members and to see the activities in progress.
Come and see what woodturning is all about; have a coffee, and get to know
some interesting, friendly people.
Further information may be obtained from: email@example.com
An exhibition of woodturnings by Eric J. Webb at the Beaconsfield Public Library during the month of January 1989 led to a show of interest by a number of local woodworkers. All were interested in learning more about the craft and expressed a desire to meet for the purpose of comparing notes, trading ideas and discussing their accomplishments to date. Accordingly, the first meeting
of what was to become the “West Island Woodturners” was held at Centennial Hall, Beaconsfield in the spring of 1989.
A series of monthly meetings was scheduled, at which guest speakers led discussions on turning styles and techniques,
as well as on other related subjects. Membership gradually grew and by the spring of 1990 stood at approximately 20.
The need for a facility to demonstrate and teach became evident. The search began for a new meeting place.
In January of 1991 the Club held its first meeting in John Rennie High School (Pointe-Claire) woodwork shop.
From then on, meetings were held weekly with the second Tuesday of each month being reserved for the continuation of general (“Club”) meetings and the remaining Tuesdays for teaching (“Working”) meetings.
During the course of 1991 membership rose to about 30. Because most of the members were retired and over 60 years of age, a Federal government “New Horizons” grant was obtained. With this funding it became possible to purchase sufficient equipment to carry out a program of formal teaching at all levels of proficiency.
As of 2005 the Club has a membership of around 70 enthusiastic woodturners and continues to meet on a weekly basis
between September and June. Teaching forms a significant part of the Club’s activities. At these meeting,
members also exhibit their work for evaluation and criticism. From time to time all-day seminars are held
for the purpose of demonstrations by internationally known professional woodturners.
Four times in each year the Club’s bulletin “Turning Points” is circulated to its members and to other interested clubs and organizations. A well-stocked library enables members to view videos and read books and magazines on woodturning and
W.I.W. long-term objectives:
1 To revive and promote woodturning as a craft and art form in the
Montreal (West Island) area through teaching.
2 To provide facilities to enable members to enhance their knowledge
of woodturning and to develop their skills.
3 To hold a regular forum at which members can discuss the subject
of woodturning and its allied activities along with the promoting of
information exchange among members.
In 1991, the first presentation of a six-part course
entitled “Introduction to Woodturning” was
made. The course was designed to introduce the basic elements of the
craft to those who were interested in learning more about it. Since
then, the Introductory Course has evolved into a 10 week course with the primary
goal of teaching the new members how to turn wood; how to turn safely; how to turn so
that they are safe to be around when they are turning.
Intermediate and advanced teaching is ‘one-on-one’ using discussion,
drawings, and lathe time to demonstrate and perfect techniques.
College Rosemont, (cabinetry trade course), and John Abbot College, (woodworking
course), send their students interested in wood turning to be trained
by the WIW as club members.
The West Island Woodturners is a group of wood enthusiasts, the majority
of whom are retired. Membership is open to anyone more than 18 years
old, and interested in learning to turn wood.
No member may turn wood at the club meetings unless they are certified
as safe and capable and follow the W.I.W. Safety Guidelines. Several
of our members now turn full time for a living, which argues well for
our teaching methods and their inner drive and love of wood.
For many years, W.I.W. members have participated in local community events
by providing free demonstrations at ‘days-in-the-park’, fairs, and exhibitions.
We, as a club, have presented John Rennie High
School with bookstands, a flagpole with mount, a scroll saw,
bandsaw blades, and repairs to some of the
school facilities. The lathes and some woodshop machinery had
been maintained and-or repaired exclusively by the W.I.W. for
During a period of 3 years, the club supported
the West Island Palliative Care Centre through donations of our
work for the Charity Gala and Auction fundraiser
held every year. Each year apart from individual works donated
by members, there was also a large group project that went to
auction. There have been 3
different styles of spinning wheel produced and auctioned at
approximately $1000 each, with total auction benefits to the
Palliative Care Centre around $2000 yearly.
Copyright Kevin Kemball 2002-2005