Metal Spinning in Seville, Spain

Silver, brass, and nickel silver are often shaped on lathes to produce the basic form of metal candlesticks, lamps, and other cylindrical items. 

Vase and Candle Holders on Float, La Macarena, Seville

 Vases and Candle Holders on Float, Seville

Joaquin Ferreira Romero is a professional metal spinner. He may be contacted (in Spanish) at 9 Calle Covadonga, Trianna, 41003 Seville. A quick look at his working techniques should give you an idea of the first steps involved in producing a complicated candlestick. The spun metal pieces will be sent to a silversmith for finishing.

The candlestick is composed of more than ten spun components.  A section of the pattern is measured with calipers. A piece of oak is turned to match the shape and size of the section to be spun. The lathe is adjusted to secure a metal disk onto the mold. The metal disk is greased so that a tool may easily slide over the surface.

The metal disk is quickly pushed over the spinning mold. Notice the strap around his waist and that the tool's handle is under his arm - both of which help Joaquin apply the tremendous pressure necessary to shape the spinning metal.

The shaped metal is annealed (heated to rosy pink, then immediately quenched) to make it less brittle. A silversmith will finish the candlestick.

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Web page, photographs, and text by Carol Ventura in 2005. Please look at Carol's home page to see more about crafts around the world.