Woodturning also involves much more than simply choosing a lathe.
There are hundreds of tools and accessories available. Do your research and buy wisely and you should be able to get started with the correct tools for your needs at a reasonable cost.
- Consider whether or not you will enjoy turning enough to justify the monetary investment
- Learn as much as possible before spending your money.
- Take a turning class or attend a club meeting – The American Association of Woodturners sponsors local clubs in nearly every region of the country.
- Perhaps you can find a wood turner in your area that can advise and help you.
There are two basic categories of wood turning.
- Spindle Turning – Spindle turning generally involves turning a cylindrical object usually turned “between centers”
- Face Plate/Chuck Turning – This category involves using a face plate or chuck to mount your blank directly to the headstock spindle
- Common spindle projects include pens/pencils, candlesticks, bottle stoppers, table legs, balusters, wands, telephone poles, knitting needles, finials, pedestals, Christmas ornaments, etc.
- Common face plate / chuck projects include bowls, hollow forms, urns, vases, platters, wall hangings, goblets, etc.
The cost of the lathe itself is only part of the picture. With a little research you can know in advance what other items are required.
A top-of-the-line lathe with all the attachments and highest quality tools will not make you a professional turner, or even a good one.. It simply makes you another turner with a nice lathe. What you produce with the tool is up to you.
Your hand and eye are THE most important tools in your arsenal
- Turning tools, or chisels
- Spindle Turning Tools
- Bowl Turning Tools
- Purchase individual tools or buy them as a set.
- A face shield is absolutely neccessary in woodturning
- Give careful thought to dust protection
- Good lighting and a comfortable floor covering
- Good shoes
- You can use a standard bench grinder with aluminum oxide wheels
- Include sanding supplies, finishes, etc
With these tools and supplies you can begin your journey as a wood turner. More accessories and tools can be added as needed. Now, have fun! Let’s get started!