There have been several threads on philosphies of
woodworking, design, aesthetics and the like. Following
a link from the woodturning news group I cam acrossed
this one - about woodturning but just as applicable to
other woodworking. May be worth checking out,
BTW - lathe work requires less planning and thinking
than solid wood furniture making and can be a nice
"while the glue is setting up/ the finish is drying/
between major projects" thing to play with.
The JET VS midi-lathe and some turning tools for under
$400 is within most people's range. Can be yet another
slippery slope for those of us who are tool junkies - but
hey, Try It, You'll Like It!
I can't make any sense of the above statements. Lathe work requires just as
much thinking and planning as any other form of woodwork, often more.
If your finishes are drying in the shop then I doubt firing up the lathe
would be a great idea.
Hadn't intended to belittle any form of woodworking. My intent was
to get others to try some turning - specifically some spindle turning
since it's a) not real pricey to get into b) doesn't require a lot of
tools to get started, c) doesn't need a lot of room and d) can
almost instant gratification, relatively speaking.
OK - caveats
1. spindle turning
2. one piece of wood, no laminates, no paper/
glue part line
3. no eccentric work other than initial rounding
to a cylinder
4. no special chucks, indexing heads etc. a la a Legacy Mill
5. no duplicator and pattern making for it to follow
There's no grain matching to deal with
There's only one part - so parts marking and
parts orientation aren't necessary. There is
no piece of furniture that has just one part.
(Pointy Sticks on the other hand . . .)
Dealing with wood expansion and contraction
isn't an issue
There's little stock prep necessary
no joining a face and an edge
no planing to thickness
no ripping to width
OK - so there's the cutting to length that's common
to both spindle turning and furniture making
And there is some layout - IF you
decided to do a scaled drawing, but nothing
like laying out mortise and tenons - often
by the dozen, dovetails, . . .
There's no glue squeeze out to miss and
then discover while applying the first coat
No joinery to decide on, make and assemble
No glue up / clamping fun and games / challenges
No finishing worries about getting tones
etc., etc., etc.
As for turning and a finish drying - I'm blessed
with two spaces - one for spinning carbide
and the like, and The Quiet Space with no tailed
Now I know it's tricky to plan for and
execture segmented bowls and I've seen
some pool cues that are pretty complicated
but would like to see some links to turnings
that take 300-400 hours to complete.
Maybe not 300 hours but not your usual segmented bowl or pool que either
then click on _Selected Works_ beneath the 2005 January 22-February an
then look at some of the wood artists offerings...
Thanks to all for the great links to turnings other than
spindle turning. Hollow vessel turning, while amazing
when done with skill and sensitivity, scares the bejesus
out of me. Kickback is one thing, but an exploding
big heavy, asymetric spinning thing being poked with
a sharp tool is just way beyond my comfort level.
Experiencing a "catch" while turning a spindle form
is scary enough for me thank you very much. But
I can appreciate the skill of hollow vessel turners.
Segmented turners ability to think and "see" in
3-D is also pretty amazing.
Just read an article about hollow vessel turning
by David Marks in Woodworker West (www.woodwest.com).
When the hell does that guy sleep? He's into everything
related to woodworking, and is pretty good at them all.
Anyway, if you haven't tried turning, be it spindle
or hollow form, give it a try.
Glue drying, maybe. Finish curing, no way! Chips fly EVERYWHERE when I've
got the Jet 1442 running. Particularly if I'm using dry wood, there's a
dusty cloud settling towards the north, as the breeze carries through the
garage/shop/studio in that general direction.
The DC has little influence, until I get to sanding...
It's a lot of fun, though.
maker of unusual bowls and interesting firewood...
When I haul out the chainsaw, pull a log off the pile, cut a blank, put
it on the lathe and start turning a bowl, there's virtually no planning
Turning, for me, is a journey of discovery rather than a manufacutring
I don't even have to measure anything, or draw a picture.
~ Stay Calm... Be Brave... Wait for the Signs ~
Ever tried segemented turning? Crazy stuff- you need to be able to
think in ways flatwork doesn't ever require; lots of planning there-
and at least as good a use for scrap as a chessboard!
But beware the hidden dangers... even if you figure you can get by
with a modest set of tools for the ol' woodspinner, there's a pretty
high cost in aching muscles and bisters if you go out and harvest your
wood. (Does it count as a gloat that I got 12' of yellow birch with a
15" dia. for free (storm blew it down and the owner let me take it)-
even though I'm all banged up and hobbling around like an old, old man
from lugging it home?) Not to mention looking at every bit of metal
in the house with an eye to it's possible utility at as a hollowing
But in all seriousness, I agree- while turning can cost a lot in
tooling if you let it, it's done a world of good for my budget. I
still like to do flat projects as well, but 40 or 50 bf of nice timber
and a sheet or two of furniture-grade ply just isn't always an option
when the bills are due. A couple of hours in the woods with a bow
saw and an axe is generally in my price range, though! Nice to be
able to work on a project at any time, and not just when I've saved
enough pennies up- good way to study forms and proportions, too.
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