© Copyright Forest of Bere Woodturners Association 2015

Forest of Bere Woodturners Association (Havant)

Galileo Thermometer


By Don Smith

I was recently asked if I could make a base for the object shown in the photo which is 450mm high with a base of 85mm. The way that I normally make them (Look on our website, Newsletter under Lockdown Projects scan down and you will find a photo of the original design) my client didn’t want it like this but wanted a base which would make the object more stable.

So thinking cap on and I came up with the following design.

The idea behind this design was to make a base that was large enough for stability and then a top that would drop over the main body locking it in to place.

I will not go into the full turning of the project but will show a few photo’s of them on the lathe.

The left hand photo has been turned and shows the position of the magnets and the right hand photo shows inside of the top again showing the magnet positions. The next photo shows the top reversed and the shape taking place.

This shows the a pencil line which represents the distance in of the magnets this used as a witness mark so that you make certain that you do not turn it to thin and break into the hole.

Once all the parts had been turned sanded and polished I inserted the four magnets and then checked that they locked together.

You will notice a little white dot on the right photo this is where one magnet was out of line and the original hole was plug and re-drilled.

Finally they were all buffed.

These two photo’s show the finished article with and without the Thermometer attached.

I hope that this will inspire you to look outside the box to make something which at the start looks impossible. The magnets used here are strong enough to enable you to lift the object without losing its base. To break the connection you just twist the top of the stand and the thermometer can be lifted out.


The project was designed, written and Photographed by Don Smith.