My daughter is now a pen turner...

  • Advertise with us
Project by jbswearingen posted 12-17-2012 03:47 PM 2456 views 1 time favorited 27 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Emma has been bugging me for months to use my lathe, but understood that I wanted to wait until she was 10 (she will be in July). This weekend I gave in and figured we’d give it a try. Afterwards I realized she needs her hair tied back; it’ll be done next time. She was a bit nervous at first, especially as I repeated the dangers and what not to do over and over. She warmed up to it quickly and loves it. She turned another pen the next day (yesterday) and has already wrapped them as Christmas gifts for her mother and a favored teacher.

Looks like we’ll be making a new pen each weekend for a good long time to come! She’s hooked.

This is a simple Slimline in bocote.

-- Semper fi, Brad

27 comments so far

View sb194's profile


197 posts in 3618 days

#1 posted 12-17-2012 03:57 PM

Nothing better than getting the kids into the shop.


View Dubb's profile


81 posts in 2593 days

#2 posted 12-17-2012 04:03 PM

Thats is awesome. Keep up the good work DAD.

-- Dubb , WV

View luv2learn's profile


2998 posts in 2903 days

#3 posted 12-17-2012 04:07 PM

That is totally awesome Dad. You trained her and then had enough confidence in her skills to let her go. Congratulations to your daughter as well, she turned a awesome looking pen.

-- Lee - Northern idaho~"If the women don't find you handsome, at least they ought to find you handy"~ Red Green

View Marcus's profile


1165 posts in 2619 days

#4 posted 12-17-2012 04:07 PM

I love seeing kids get involved with constructive work like this. She has some great pieces she can be proud of right now and a skill to take w/ her the rest of her life. Great job to both of you.

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile (online now)

woodshaver Tony C

7111 posts in 3953 days

#5 posted 12-17-2012 04:08 PM

I love seeing the younsters in the shop learning and building. Teach them all the safty stuff too like keeping your hair in a hat or away from anyting moving! I could name a ton of things here I’m sure you have told her all this!
I see she had her safty glasses on!!!
And she has made a very nice pen! Good job!

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30505 posts in 2938 days

#6 posted 12-17-2012 04:32 PM

Thank you for getting your daughter involved. You’ll love it and society will be better as well.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View blackcherry's profile


3343 posts in 4423 days

#7 posted 12-17-2012 04:38 PM

So cool to see maybe another woodworking star in the making, nice work on the pen as well…BC

View a1Jim's profile


117899 posts in 4177 days

#8 posted 12-17-2012 04:49 PM

Isn’t that great,I love to see folks spending time together with kids in the shop.


View Fishinbo's profile


11362 posts in 2776 days

#9 posted 12-17-2012 04:55 PM

Consider that an awesome bonding time !!! Great for the both of you.

View stefang's profile


17034 posts in 3934 days

#10 posted 12-17-2012 06:14 PM

Your daughter did a great job on that pen. You might find it difficult to get lathe time in the future! A wonderful way to share time with your kids. I also found your lathe very interesting. It looks like a very good quality and pretty beefy. Is it old?

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View jbswearingen's profile


150 posts in 2759 days

#11 posted 12-17-2012 06:18 PM

It’s not new, but not really old. It’s a 1971 Delta Rockwell 46-201 that I found on Craigslist three years ago. It has a 3 phase motor, so I put a VFD on it. As it was, its lowest speed was ~915 rpm, high speed ~3k rpm. With the VFD, I can dial down the speed all the way to 0 rpm. It’s great when turning large, heavy blanks; I can spin it at around 200 rpm—just fast enough to cut the blank, but slow enough that the lathe doesn’t try dancing across the floor. It’s currently bolted to the floor, but I’ll eventually build a better stand for it and put a 1.5hp motor on it.

-- Semper fi, Brad

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 3085 days

#12 posted 12-17-2012 07:18 PM

You must be really proud! My little girl is almost three. Too young to include during shop time, but she’s eager to “help” with anything I do at this stage. She knows what a hammer is for since she saw me work on my parents’ shed. She calls it a “tap tap”.

-- Brian Timmons -

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3715 days

#13 posted 12-17-2012 07:19 PM

your daughter did a great job :-)
so did you now your can relax a little on the honey to do list
and make a father to do list she can make … lol


View Hawaiilad's profile


3374 posts in 3621 days

#14 posted 12-17-2012 08:10 PM

Brad I love to see posts like yours. With so many schools not able to afford to teach youngsters to work in a wood shop, it’s up to people like us to teach them. I have worked with lots of kids showing them how to run a scroll saw.

-- Larry in Hawaii,

View ohwoodeye's profile


2283 posts in 3753 days

#15 posted 12-17-2012 08:18 PM

She did an awesome job on the pen. Yes definately… tied back and short sleeves.

-- "Fine Woodworking" is the name given to a project that takes 3 times longer than normal to finish because you used hand tools instead of power tools. ----Mike, Waukesha, WI

showing 1 through 15 of 27 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics