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Woodturning 101 Tips

Photo Gallery from Wood Works – A Regional Exhibition thru Feb. 17, 2017



Photo Gallery from Wood Works – A Regional Exhibition thru Feb. 17, 2017

Wood is a medium that has been appreciated by mankind since the discovery of fire and the first use of tools. We still use wood to make fires and tools, but along the way we have come to appreciate this medium in many different ways.
Exhibit’s Curator - Abraham Tesser













Woodturning 101 Tips

Woodturning tips from Bob Marshall at The Timid Dragon.

Though experienced in all areas of woodworking Bob's shop is particularly crowded with his specialty, carvings and turnings. In a recent visit Bob gave us some simple hints that the beginning wood turner might keep in mind.

  1. Begin with a soft hardwood like basswood. Avoid anything that has knots, particularly pine or poplar.
  2. Take extra care in marking centers and fixing the stock firmly in the lathe.
  3. Always wear goggles and a long sleeve shirt to avoid the distraction or injury from flying shavings.
  4. Train yourself to watch the top of the turning where the chisels have been, not the cutting edge and where you are about to go. This take practice!
  5. Most lathe chisels come flat ground and scrape the wood off. Hollow ground chisels cut off long shavings and leave a smooth surface requiring less sanding - being sharper though they require a little more careful handling. To hollow grind your set simply use the round, rather than the flat, or your grinding wheel.
  6. Sharp chisels cut cleaner and are less likely to dig in and become dangerous flying missiles. Check them regularly and don't be in too much of a hurry to give them a touch when needed.
  7. Be mindful of applying too much force, the lathe should do most of the work so save your muscles.

Originally published in Wood News Issue #1 December 1977.

Other helpful articles getting started on your path as a wood turner...who knows where you might exhibit one day:

  • Woodturning Newsletter
  • Woodturning Articles
  • Shop Woodturning Equipment
  • Shop Woodturning Tools
  • The Woodturning Lathe: A Brief History
  • Highland Woodworking Social Media
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