fascination wood art
In this type of toy production, a piece of fresh spruce wood is set in rotation on a lathe and then worked by hand with various tools. Gradually, a tire with curves, notches and grooves is created. The wooden rings appear simple and inconspicuous at first glance, but when small slices are split off the finished ring with a knife and hammer, small animal figures emerge. In order to breathe life into these blanks, they are reworked with a carving knife . After the tail and ears have been attached, each animal is finally given its species-typical painting.
Each animal is unique:
handmade and with an individual character.
The scent of fresh wood fills the room. Large chips whirl through the air for meters and cover the floor of the workshop. Hundreds of figures are made in just one step; a sensation in toy production. This is made possible by the so-called ring turning. It is one of the most demanding and fascinating processing techniques in wood art.
Only a master who has a great imagination and a fine sense of form has the ability to recognize and shape the incomparable shape of each figure during the processing. He must be able to see the positive form of the figure in the negative form of the ring. The high complexity of the craft, increasing quality requirements and rising automation have meant that ring turning has been replaced by other woodworking methods and has become rare.
The Reifendrehwerk Werner in Seiffen is the last factory where tire animals are traditionally handcrafted and sold worldwide.