Pyrography and Pepper Grinders

Someone once pointed out that it was useless to try to compete with places like Wal-Mart when it comes to making pepper grinders. I have to agree. There is no way I can match their prices on the models they turn out. So I have taken the competition away by producing something not to be found at Wal-Mart. Their pepper grinders have a straight bore through the center with a limited capacity for pepper corns. Plus there is the issue of their boring design.

The red hourglass and red arcs

The red hourglass and red arcs

One of the enduring pleasures of woodturning lies in how lines are pulled and pushed out of shape by changing the profile of the curve. The red streaks running through the body and cap of this pepper grinder are a good case in point. Careful manipulation made a red hourglass in the body. I tried to repeat the pattern in the cap, but the diameter would have gotten too small. So the cap has two red arcs instead.

Pyrographed parsley on the pepper grinder

Pyrographed parsley on the pepper grinder

The other side of the pepper grinder body was mostly blank, making it a good place for some pyrography. After some looking, I hit upon a drawing of parsley. I penciled the sprig onto the body, burned in the lines, and Parsley the Pepper Grinder was born.

I made the pepper grinder from a box elder limb. The finish is a couple coats of walnut oil topped with beeswax.

Ellis Hein, author of The Woodturner’s Project Book

About Ellis Hein

I am a woodturner and the author of The Woodturner's Project Book. I have a life-long interest in the gospel preached by George Fox and the early Quakers. You can see some of my material on that subject at
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