Turning - The Lowest Risk, Least Materials, Least Time of All The Types of Woodworking?

I've been doing a lot of turning lately - Christmas presents.
Turning is the weirdest of the types of woodworking I've done and I've been thinking just how weird it is.
Whether you carve, sculpt or make furniture (or boxes), you force the tool into stationary wood or feed the wood to a spinning tool. OK - so if you carve, you hold the wood still, hold the tool still and wack it with a mallet or push the tool into the wood. Turning is the only form of wood- working I can think of that has the wood moving, the cutting tool moving in one, two or three axis - AND often being rotated around one, two or even three axis.
Of all the types of woodworking, turning uses the least amount of wood - often cut offs and scraps from other woodworking projects. So it's low risk in terms of the wood needed. Screw up and you're out a little wood that you couldn't use for much of anything else. In an hour, an hour and a half at the most, you either have a piece done - or know it isn't worth continuing with. So it's low risk in terms of wasted time if things don't turn out well. And despite the apparent insanity of poking a sharp tool into a spinning piece of wood, it's surprising safe - relative to other woodworking operations. Again, a low safety risk, despite first impressions.
When I think about it, it's like jumping on one leg while patting your head and rubbing your stomach while whistling and chewing gum while juggling one or more sharp tools. If I think about it while I'm doing it I'm afraid I'll punch myself in the stomach, hit myself on the head, spit on my wood while choking on my gum, falling over and having the sharp tool stab me in some v ital organ. Logically, turning should be the riskiest thing to do in the shop - but isn't.
Think about the other tools you use in woodworking. With a miter saw, you're spining a 1- or 12" round plate of steel - with 60 to 80 sharp carbide teeth and lowering it into a stationary piece of wood - sometimes with your fingers inches away from the sharp spinning things.
With a router, you push the spinning at 20,000 to 28,000 rpm sharp carbide into a piece of wood.
Table saw - a 10" - 12" piece of steel with a bunch of sharp carbide teeth spinning up out of a cast iron table that you shove a piece of wood into. If the fence is set up wrong, or if the board isn't flat, or the edge against the fence isn't straight some of that wood may become a spear thrown with surprising force and at a speed that's quite surprising.
Drill press? Ever had a big forstner bit catch? If it can't remove wood it can spin the wood with pretty amazing force.
12" disk sander spinning an abrassive that will wear through skin in an instant - bone as well.
How about a joiner with three sharp knives spinning - and cutting the bottom of a board inches from your finger tips.
The planer is probably the safest of the major power tool. You'd really have to work at getting any part of your body near the spinning knives.
Then there's the time "start to finish". What other woodworking project can you do in an hour to an hour and a half?
Think of another woodworking project that uses 2 board feet - or less. OK - so maybe a small jewelry box or a tool rack - but that's about it.
Fun this woodworking thing.
charlie b
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Could be why it is so addicting.

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Charlie,
Your posts, particularly regarding woodturning, have been a pleasure this year and this is a good time to thank you for your inputs.
Have a great holiday. TomNie
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Tom Nie wrote:

Thanks. I hope that some of it gets a reader to think "Hell, if he can do ___ I sure as hell can.", and maybe laugh when the screw ups happen, then figure out a fix and keep going 'cause that's the fun part.
charlie b
Now back to Santa's Elf Mode - have an A&C table lamp prototype to do for Ex #2 -by Christmas. It's in redwood and she'll decide if she wants it in mahogany or QS oak. Will leave the staining for her to do. I've learned that when it comes to color. with her years as a picture framer, it's wise and prudent to have her do the colors. Hell she can distinguish between a hundred shades of gray.
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