My first turning

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Project by YoungWilly posted 04-11-2013 06:13 AM 1460 views 0 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch
My first turning
My first turning No picture No picture No picture No picture No picture
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Nothing fancy, just setup the lathe my uncle gave me and used some small turning tools a friend gave me. I had fun rounding the square stock of what I strongly believe to be walnut. It has no purpose that I can think of other than a self defense stick held in one’s fist. The scratches came from using 40 grit sandpaper too hard on the stock. Finished with butcher block oil just to bring out the color and grain.

-- -- Measure twice, cut once; why, did the wood grow?

13 comments so far

View scrollsaw's profile


13032 posts in 4120 days

#1 posted 04-11-2013 09:44 AM

You done a nice job

-- Todd

View Tom Godfrey's profile

Tom Godfrey

488 posts in 2442 days

#2 posted 04-11-2013 12:13 PM

Most likely all of us start with square stock turning a spindle for no reason other than practice. I know I did and turned a lot of them before I got the hang of what I was doing. Want be long before you take on bigger and better things.
I made a lot of mistakes, hurt myself a few times but it was a lesson learned and I love every minute that I spend turning and yes I still make mistakes but most of the time I can turn those mistakes into something useful. May not be what I wanted but wood has a way of letting you know who is the boss.
When you thing everything is going great a bad spot shows up and you have to deal with it.
Good luck on your turning and be careful and go slow, you can get hurt, I know I did several time.
btw. I am not that good yet but working toward the day that I will be considered to be a pretty good wood turner.

-- Tom Godfrey Landrum South Carolina (

View GlennM's profile


26 posts in 2543 days

#3 posted 04-11-2013 01:39 PM

If you really like turning there is probably a turners club or guild in your area. They are usually very cheap to join and are a tremendous resource.

-- Glenn, Nova Scotia

View DaddyZ's profile


2475 posts in 3306 days

#4 posted 04-11-2013 03:05 PM

I don’t know how many “Billy Clubs” I made through the years….


-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View YoungWilly's profile


101 posts in 2335 days

#5 posted 04-11-2013 03:07 PM

Thank you all for the nice comments and the great tips!

I do have a problem though where I get a lot of vibration or juttering of the piece when I apply the blades to it, are there any ways to minimize that?

I tried going slowly and taking off less material per pass and it did help, as well as cutting the stock down to minimize bending in the wood. But I still get juttering and as a result, these deep grooves in the finished product…

-- -- Measure twice, cut once; why, did the wood grow?

View MasterSergeant's profile


1373 posts in 2954 days

#6 posted 04-11-2013 03:15 PM

Sorry to say you are probably “Hooked” on turning now :-). Way to go, exciting to see your first turning come out of the lathe!

-- Kelly, woodworker under construction

View LesB's profile


1966 posts in 3709 days

#7 posted 04-11-2013 05:02 PM

Most of us started just as you have. Obviously 40 grit sand paper is way to coarse. I occasionally use 60 grit when I need to remove a lot of wood that is damaged by tear out but usually start with 150 grit and work up to 320 or 400 for the final finish.
Regarding your “juttering” which I’m going to assume is what most of us call chatter, it can be caused by a number of things from a dull tool, and hard end grain to vibration of the wood being turned. Assuming you are using a scraper tool and not a gouge or other tool shape being sharp does not mean sharp like a knife. Scrapers need a small burr on the edge that does the cutting. The burr is achieved when the metal is ground off the edge of the tool in only one direction, bottom to top. Depending on the hardness of the wood it has to be renewed frequently. This burr is best achieved using a bench grinder with a fine wheel. A slow speed grinder is preferred to avoid burning the cutting edge of the tool but you can use a regular grinder if you work carefully. If you don’t have access to a grinder you can try using a fine metal file; remember go from bottom to top of the tool. Obviously there are techniques for getting the best edge that to complicated to explain here.
You will reduce your learning curve tremendously if you can find a mentor or take a class. If not search the web for instructions and videos to watch. There are a ton of them out there.
Now you need to start searching fire wood piles for interesting wood to turn. I make most of my works from wood I have cut or scrounged from friends and neighbors who are cutting down trees. Wood turning is a life long learning process. Enjoy it.

-- Les B, Oregon

View RogerInColorado's profile


321 posts in 2220 days

#8 posted 04-11-2013 07:00 PM

Nice knuckle buster, great start down the slippery slope.

Go to youtube and search for ‘woodturning” or “lathe projects”. There is a ton of stuff out there to watch. Some of it is good, some of it is not. Some of it is boring. You will learn a lot in a very short time just watching. Some are about sharpening specific tools, some are about how to use specific tools, some are about how to turn something specific. Some aren’t about anything specific, but are just interesting. Some turners have lots and lots and lots of videos on youtube so you can figure out who you like and search for their videos. It’s a wonderful rescource. And FREE!

View dwlckn's profile


47 posts in 2830 days

#9 posted 04-11-2013 08:59 PM

I agree with Roger, YouTube is a great free resource to learn from. Once you start turning you’ll fall in love, the first time you see curls coming off of your tool not scrapings you’ll be hooked for life. Keep at it your off to a great start.

-- “Enjoy what you do, or do something else!”

View YoungWilly's profile


101 posts in 2335 days

#10 posted 04-11-2013 11:46 PM

Wow, thank you all so much! So much information here and community support! And yes I did mean to say chattering, I only heard some say it but I guess I mistook it for juttering…

-- -- Measure twice, cut once; why, did the wood grow?

View hoss12992's profile


4120 posts in 2159 days

#11 posted 04-12-2013 02:59 AM

Great job. I have a project post, “Cedar turned birdhouses” that you may find interesting. My kids all started turning them to help them learn how and practice turning. They are really easy and always sale quick, so they made money. Congrats on your first turning and I look forward to seeing your future projects

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

View tomd's profile


2190 posts in 4036 days

#12 posted 04-12-2013 03:01 AM

You are being drawn into the turning vortex, throw all hope aside.

-- Tom D

View MonteCristo's profile


2099 posts in 2454 days

#13 posted 04-12-2013 05:56 PM

Good first turning !

-- Dwight - "Free legal advice available - contact Dewey, Cheetam & Howe""

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