Crafted: 12-Crossed Lamination Tama Posted on 09 Jan 21:25

Donning the Kendama Carrier Helm

Crafted: 12-Crossed Lamination Tama

Simple stacked wood lamination is pretty easy. You glue flat sections of wood together and get a pattern along the stack direction. Simple variations have two wood types laminated together in a 50/50 split while much more complex stack lamination can include several wood types, additional cuts, and re-stacked laminations for what looks like a checkered pattern. What they all these stacked laminations have in common is that they all happen at 90 degrees. You get squares or rectangles or basic parallel stripes. So, for our first lamination project, we wanted to try something different.

Since we already know what a 90 degree stack will get us, we opted to do our cuts and laminations at 45 degrees from the center axis. The outward pattern envisioned was a series of diagonal loops that cross each other as you spin the tama. To get this you have to cut and glue four times from each side of the blank – waiting long enough after each glueing before making the next cut for the next glueing. At the end the blank looks like an "X" box with borders on the top and bottom of the ready-to-turn tama blank. It would be good to sand off excess glue and any bits that are protruding too far from the blank to make for an easier and much safer time on the lathe.

At this point it's basic sphere turning. You find the diameter, turn down to the length, round it up till it looks like a ball caught on two nubs. You part those nubs off toss the rough ball on your cup chucks and sand away till you're ready to bore out the spike hole, bevel and string hole.

Voila. A natty, geometrically patterned tama with crossing stripes. Only a couple things you have to watch out for.

  • Use enough glue as it would break hearts for your tama to warp and split a couple days later.
  • Along the same line, use thin hardwood boards that are not are not significantly bowed to start with.
  • Cut away the same thickness from the blank as the wood you're adding in because if you don't it will shift over the difference of the thickness each time and not line up right.

Go ahead and try it sometime. Thin stripes, thick stripes, 30 degrees, 60 degrees, six cut directions or more, it's just another way to laminate your super-rad custom tama.

- Daniel

Wearing the Prototype Kendama Carrier
Riding with the Kendama Carrier Prototype