Questions tagged [turning]

Using a lathe to create items. Spindle work, bowls and goblets, pens and pendants. And so much more.

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20 votes
5 answers
7k views

How can you stabilize green wood after turning it on a lathe?

I've turned a few things green on a lathe and I expected them to to do odd things, and they warped and/or cracked. But what useful techniques are out there that this could be minimized or even ...
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17 votes
3 answers
2k views

Is this table saw lathe jig safe?

I recently saw a video on how to build a jig for turning stock on a table saw. It seemed unsafe to me, as the motorized jig was advancing stock sideways into the rotating saw blade. This seems like a ...
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14 votes
9 answers
49k views

How to cut the centre out of a large round of wood

I have a large round of wood (horizontal slice of a tree) which is about 20 inches across (circle diameter) and 8-9 inches deep. I want to take the centre out of the wood, either by cutting a circle ...
  • 315
14 votes
8 answers
32k views

Why are metal lathes not used for woodturning?

I'm an engineer and have designed several parts that are made on metal lathes. I'm wondering why metal lathes aren't used for turning. In particular I'm wondering why woodturners don't use a tool ...
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14 votes
2 answers
4k views

What minimum amount of equipment is required to start turning bowls?

I'm curious to know what is the simplest set-up to start bowl turning? Which tools should be high-quality and which can I skimp on? I'm not interested in being able to turn a large variety of bowls, I'...
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13 votes
3 answers
862 views

Which first gouges to get for a beginning turner

My father no longer uses his shop (for the most part) and the tools are going to me. Over time and disuse some of his turning tools have disappeared or fallen into disrepair. I would like to start ...
  • 5,384
12 votes
5 answers
4k views

How do I know when my lathe speed is wrong or could be better?

I'm about a year into learning to turn on an inexpensive mini-lathe. I mostly turn small lidded boxes or bowls. With both boxes and bowls, I like them big, so I'm often within an inch or two of the ...
  • 1,053
12 votes
1 answer
537 views

What are these blemishes called and how do I avoid them?

I'm just beginning bowl turning and can't seem to avoid these deep blemishes in the exterior and interior of the bowl. Are these pockets naturally occurring in the wood or am I causing them through ...
  • 641
11 votes
3 answers
507 views

What should one consider when purchasing an intro turning chisel set?

I'm a total beginner when it comes to turning, but am interested in doing more of it both to help augment my woodworking (e.g. everything from custom button plugs to chair legs etc) as well as to do ...
  • 1,409
11 votes
1 answer
367 views

What are the main categories of wood-turning tools?

For example, you have the spindle gouge: A parting tool: And several more. Walk into any wood-working store, and you'll probably see many of these sorts of tools, among others, that come in a great ...
10 votes
6 answers
3k views

What do I need to know for basic lathe safety?

I am a complete beginner to turning, I have a set of tools arriving in a week or so, and want to make sure I'm not going to make a mistake and injure myself. What are basic safety precautions when ...
  • 5,384
9 votes
2 answers
1k views

How do I use this hollowing tool?

I bought this Sorby hollowing tool (I just looked it up 2 years ago!) and I've never figured out how to use the dang thing. There wasn't ANY instructions that came with it, not even how to put the ...
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8 votes
2 answers
5k views

How can I determine when a linseed oil finish has cured?

I have only recently begun experimenting with linseed oil and walnut oil finishes, after mainly using mineral oil. Today I read this question and realized that my process may be flawed, because I am ...
  • 1,053
8 votes
1 answer
219 views

What are these white fibers emanating from the inside of my lignum vitae lidded box?

Several months ago I turned this lignum vitae lidded box. The first thing I noticed after completing it was how quickly the wood changed color in the sunlight, going from a just-turned honey brown to ...
  • 1,053
7 votes
3 answers
3k views

How do you make nesting bowls from a single piece of wood?

I've seen matching sets of turned bowls that fit inside each other almost like Russian dolls. I've also heard turners actually say the bowls were cut out from the same piece so they didn't waste a ...
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7 votes
2 answers
982 views

How heavy a piece of wood can my lathe handle?

I have the Jet 1642 EVS. One of the nice features that I bought it for is offbed turning, the head stock moves and I can turn bowls and platters greater than the 16" diameter bed limit. However, I ...
  • 15.1k
6 votes
2 answers
2k views

How do you turn the bottom of the bowl?

How do you turn the bottom of the bowl? Do you have to leave a rabbet or tenon? What if I don't want to leave a tenon as a foot? or the chuck damaged the foot and I want to clean it up/remove it?
  • 15.1k
6 votes
1 answer
4k views

Large hole filler products, what is available

Now and then when turning I get holes and voids in my project. The pictures below had a branch going through the blank and popped out leaving a large hole to deal with. The hole is ~1" in diameter. ...
  • 15.1k
6 votes
1 answer
660 views

Filling pores on a turned bowl while remaining foodsafe/organic?

I recently received some really helpful answers to a previous question I had that exposed a big gap in my understanding of turning. This answer mentions "filling the pores" of a walnut bowl as a ...
  • 1,053
6 votes
1 answer
8k views

Wood Stabilization on the Cheap

I have a couple of burls I've harvested from some trees on my family's property that will make nice turnings and knife scales. There are probably some voids in there and the wood is probably a little ...
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5 votes
2 answers
2k views

How do you use a 2D template with a lathe?

I was watching another Roy Underhill video where he showed us making a Shaker round stand. He explains the original table was built by the Shakers and how he has been wanting to replicate one. He ...
  • 20.1k
5 votes
2 answers
181 views

Lathe Semi-Automation

I don't know enough to even google. Basically, you see those cnc laths; the cutter on those. What are those called? My goal is to craft or purchase a cutter that can be held in place at set ...
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4 votes
3 answers
257 views

Recommended tools for a lathe

I am making a homemade lathe with a drill. I have previously done some wood carving and looking to get into some lathe / turning work. I have a few chisels from some wood carving and wondering what ...
4 votes
2 answers
1k views

What kind of wood blanks should a beginner use for bowl turning?

I recently took a bowl turning class and want to build experience in a frugal way. From a quick online search, I see bowl blanks cost around $10 ~ $30, depending on the wood. What kind of wood blanks ...
  • 641
4 votes
2 answers
372 views

Most durable foodsafe finish to highlight chatoyancy

My favorite lumberyard (where I get most of my bowl blanks) specializes in curly/fiddleback/birdseye maple, all of which I love for their holographic/chatoyant qualities. Because I'm a beginner, I've ...
  • 1,053
4 votes
1 answer
457 views

Turning chisel handle templates?

I'm new to turning and I'm looking to turn some chisel handles, but I want them all to look the same. Are there any printable online templates that anyone knows of? Is there anyway I can create my ...
  • 363
4 votes
2 answers
3k views

Can I use sculptor chisels with a lathe?

I got a tiny (almost "toy") lathe, for turning wood. The problem is the chisel I got with it was totally a toy; total crap made of some bendy, soft iron I ruined on the first try. The lathe, tiny as ...
  • 208
4 votes
1 answer
1k views

What are recommended angles for different wood-turning tools

I am going to make a jig for sharpening my lathe tools and I want to mark on the jig where each tool should be sharpened to. Like the roughing gouge to the skew and stuff. So for each of these ...
  • 3,058
3 votes
1 answer
181 views

How are these toolmarks happening, and how to prevent / get rid of them?

I'm noticing that when I turn really hard woods, even with brand-new and very sharp carbide bits, sometimes I'll see these long scratches on the surface. Often they'll only become apparent once I've ...
  • 1,053
3 votes
1 answer
197 views

What type of lathe do I need for duplicating parts

I've worked with a lathe maybe a few dozen times, making things like wooden salad bowls, goblets, baseball bats, and some other relatively simple items. I'm looking to buy a lathe, and one of the ...
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2 votes
2 answers
170 views

How to cut chevron detail on mjolnir handle

I'm trying to achieve a similar effect to the handle on this: I want to do this entirely in wood. How would I go about cutting that on a wood lathe? Or any way for that matter...
  • 363
2 votes
1 answer
247 views

How can I control the "reddening" of Red Alder as it dries?

On the top is a freshly turned Red Alder bowl. As it dries, the alder bowl turns splotchy red. Different bowl redden different amounts. How can I control the amount the bowl turns red? Ideally it ...
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1 vote
3 answers
594 views

Morse taper #2 to #1 converter

I have a wood lathe with a #1 morse taper. Most of the accessories that I can get locally have an #2 taper. I need an adapter that will let me -for example- use a MT#2 pen mandrel in a MT#1 lathe. Is ...
  • 363
1 vote
1 answer
71 views

Use of carpet tape for turning a bowl

I'm learning to use an inherited wood lathe, and would like to turn a basic bowl. I have a couple of face plates but no three-jaw chuck (and no funds to buy one right now). I have read you can use ...
  • 223
1 vote
2 answers
893 views

Carving a wood bowl or cut without a lathe

My son wants to make my wife a wooden bowl or cup out of a section of a log. I don't have a lathe and was wondering if its possible to hollow it out using some type of drill bit or sanding disc on a ...
1 vote
1 answer
121 views

What's this substance that was found fully-enclosed in a eucalyptus blank?

This glassy, opaque item was deep inside a eucalyptus blank. There was no indication from the outside of the wood that there was anything inside, so it must have been grown over while the tree was ...
  • 1,053
1 vote
1 answer
319 views

What finish can I apply to mixed end-grain/cross-grain bowl that's sanded to 7000?

I'm new to woodturning. I've made a small bowl from layered woods. I don't know what these woods are as they're reclaimed, but it's a red-coloured wood sandwiching some pale wood. I think the red-ish ...
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1 vote
1 answer
128 views

What does a torn fiber look like compared to a cut fiber?

I've read many references to tear out and want to understand this better. In paragraph five of this answer to a tear out question, Bowlturner says: "Sharper gouges are more likely to cut the fibers ...
  • 1,855
1 vote
0 answers
65 views

How to prevent wood checking and how to save already checked piece? [duplicate]

A branch fell off a walnut tree and I cut a section to turn into a bowl or something, because the grain is beautiful. I thought it might age better if I removed the bark, so I did that, but other than ...
1 vote
0 answers
40 views

I'm looking for a good finish for goblets and shot glasses [duplicate]

So I have started turning some goblets and shot glasses, and I'm trying to find a good finish for them that can be nice and glossy, but doesn't need constant reapplication. I'm pretty sure that ...
1 vote
0 answers
153 views

Why is my wood screw getting stuck in my bowl when turning with my lathe chuck?

I'm starting wood turning, I'm currently doing my second bowl. For some reason, my wood screw is getting stuck in my bowl. (both times) Whenever I try to remove my bowl, it simply does not move. It ...
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1 vote
0 answers
223 views

Best method for making segmented rings for wood turning?

I am a wood turner, and like to do larger bowls. For segmented bowls, where you glue of rings of say 10 or 12 segments, then stack and glue segments to make the rough bowl blank, what is the best ...
1 vote
0 answers
140 views

Turning a convex arc

How can I turn a convex arc in wood? I want the arc to be perfectly symmetrical. I have looked at various turning tutorials and they do not explain how to do this kind of operation.
  • 2,009
0 votes
2 answers
282 views

How to use this type of chuck without grooves/teeth?

This chuck here is the chuck I have with my lathe. It doesn't have any teeth or grooves to bite the wood. Just smooth surfaces. Does anyone know how to use it?
  • 143
0 votes
1 answer
160 views

I made a pepper mill. The top is not concentric with the bottom. How do I correct this?

The mill is rough turned to 2 3/8 inch diameter. I drilled the hole for the body first, then parted the top and drilled the top for the shaft. When I put the top tenon into the bottom hole there is no ...
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