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lotsa questions. (Read 1,946 times)
 
junior
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lotsa questions.
Sep 9th, 2005 at 11:43pm
 
Hello, im junior. a future wood turner with tons of questions. right now i am saving my pennies for a decent lathe, and waiting to talk to my local club. while i wait, maybe i can bother you guys with some stupid questions...



like has anyone here ever turned any weird or rare materials?? i dont know, maybe raw ivory, or some other tusk/bone? i saw a thing on turning soapstone and thought that was pretty cool.



and when i finally get a shot at working on a lathe, what shoul i start with? obviously not something super detailed. i was thinking maybe a top?



How hard is it to turn, oh, say a baseball bat? or maybe a really small plate type thingy?   on a scale of one to ten? ten being extremely difficult.
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junior
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #1 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 12:21am
 
there are woods that are toxic to turn?? is there a list of these??? I live in Oklahoma, and we have a pretty large assortment of timber growing. i don't want to use something that will make me sick...



and in the photo gallery, under the oops pics, there is a picture of a lathe with a bent piece, what is that rod??
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junior
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #2 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 12:30am
 
is there a way to turn an entire piece off center on purpose?, SAFELY??  like to make it shaped oval i guess it would be? or multiple sided??

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Roger Turnbough
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #3 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 3:10am
 
Good morning Junior,

Some great questions you have posted here.  I started turning about 4 or 5 years ago, and saw Dick Sing making hollowed christmas ornaments.  Said to myself, self, you can do that.  Within a week or so, had a lathe, bandsaw and a small handfull of tools.  But alas, I had no clue as to how to turn wood.  Two broken tool rests, a few stitches in the top of my left index finger (which is another story) and I still didnt really know how to turn wood, but I was able to make chips fly.

You ask about turning rare/wierd materials.  You can basically turn anything that is softer than your tooling.  Including ivory, (if you can find/afford it),  there is an alternative to this, cant remember the name of it though, available at Craftsupply.  Most any kind of antler (though this has the smell of buning hair when turned which some find quite objectional).  Soapstone, Alabaster, turquoise.

You ask "how hard is it to turn a baseball bat......."  Turning in and of itself is not a difficult thing to do.  Personally I have a problem making something the same diameter across a long length, but I dont practice this either, and dont really do any spindle type work so I dont worry about this.  I find the toughest thing to do is get a piece that has very minimal toolmarks on it, chatter, or surface irregularities in it, that will be difficult to sand out.  Marks made by rubbing the bevel of a gouge riding to hard will pop thru the finish if not completely removed by sanding or correct surface prep techniques.

There are lots of books to look at, with lots of beginner projects in them.  Richard Raffan is one, Bonnie Klien is another.  Bonnie more or less specializes in very small items.  finger tops, small boxes and the like.  She is the Youth Mentor in the AAW  (American Association of Woodturners).  Raffan covers a lot of different topics.  From spindle type work to faceplate type work. 

In your second post, you ask about toxic woods.  Yes, all woods are toxic to a certain extent.  Though the effects may not become apparent till years down the road.  Fine wood dust has been classified a Carcinogen.  Some woods will give you an immediate reaction.  Be very careful with anything in the Rosewood family.  Which also includes Cocobolo.  (They say there are only 2 types of people that turn Cocobolo, Those that are allergic to it, and those that are not allergic to it YET!)  Cedars can be quite objectional to some and not bother others.  I have heard that Zebra wood is related to Poison Ivy so I stay clear of it. (this may be just fallacy though)  If you google wood toxicity charts you should be able to come up with a list of pertinent information.

In your third post you ask about off center turning.  There most certainly is a way to turn off center.  If doing spindle type work, this just involves making center marks out away from the natural center of the piece and putting either the drive center, or tail center into the appropriate position.  There are also several eccentric chucks on the market that will allow you to turn off center using a ball and socket type chuck.  (This In my humble opinion should not be attempted till you have a good solid background in proper tool use and presentation)

I hope I have not rambled on to much about this. And really hope I have answered your questions adequately.

Happy turning !!

Roger
South of Chicago
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Glenn
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #4 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 5:40am
 
Hi Junior.  Great questions!  I can tell from the level and depth of your questions you are going to be soooooo hooked when you get lathe.

Wood toxicity:  Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register; (did I do that right Chris  Wink )  Follow the above link.  There are several links that should answer your questions under the hazzard section.  The real message is that you have to protect your lungs.  Dust is bad for the lungs, regardless of species.  Many people have a dust collector system and make/buy hoods for their lathe(s).  I don't have one so I wear a respirator when turning.  The added benefit of the respirator is that it keeps my face shield from fogging up.  (Eye protection is an absolute must.)

Anyone turn odd material?  Philip and Rev Doug got everyone hooked (myself included) on turning corn cobs.  I have turned pens out of Corian,  polymer clay and Fibron (Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register; You can turn deer antler, horn, Tagua nut, bone...  I have seen turnings out of particle board.   Basically, we'll turn anything. Grin

Off center turning:  Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register; Jean Francois Escoulen is the pioneer in this field.  There is a special chuck that allows you to do this stuff.  Googling on J.F. Escoulen should get you ton more info.

I have never turned a baseball bat.  I doubt it would be very hard.  Most items can be made to turn as easy or hard as you want.  A bowl can be easy to turn.  You can also pust the limits of design and decoration and make some incredibly difficult bowls.

The bent piece in the ooops photo is a pen mandrel.  It is suppose to run between the headstock and tail stock.  Is should NOT be bent and sticking up like that, hense the ooops.  When making pens, the wood is drilled down the center and a brass tube is glued in.  The pen components (tip, twinst mechanism, etc) are pushed into the tube.  The mandrel hold the wood tight so it can be turned.

Hope this helps.
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JimQuarles
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #5 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 10:19am
 
Re: Ivory
   Last I heard, real Ivory requires a Federal permit to buy, sell, or trade.  This is an attempt to reduce the poaching of elephants.

JimQ
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junior
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #6 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 12:21pm
 
WOW.... al i can say is.. wow.


man, you guys are MAD helpful!! i have been on the internet goofing off for years, but have stayed away from forums and message boards after attempting to get involved with competetive chess.

the people in that circle are very stand offish, and not helpful at all.  after that experience, i thought everyone was being rude and using their computer to hide behind.



the off center questions are about making knife/sword handles that conform to your hand. maybe even pistol grips!!!


i didnt think that piece of steel on the lathe in the oops pics was right... it looked to me like a good way to lose an eye, or a couple of knuckles!!


i give it 30 days from today... I WILL HAVE A LATHE, and tools... man, i cant wait!!!
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junior
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #7 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 12:46pm
 
lol, just when you thought i was finished!!! lol....




when doing segmented pieces, all you do is glue the pieces together pretty much? make a block of wood out of pieces? man, i can see some WICKED patterns... im glad i have a decent jig saw!!!
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Gil Jones
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #8 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 12:53pm
 
Junior, take a look at this site. He also has a book on segmenting.

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kidcolombia
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #9 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 1:13pm
 
Gil is right on.  Tibbits has written a book and it is excellent.  Well worth it, but if you are just beginning, maybe wait a bit and work on solid  blanks first in order to avoid total frustration with the more complicated stuff. 

Enjoy,

Jim
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JIM
 
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junior
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #10 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 3:28pm
 
oh yeah!!! everything in time... i am just getting excited thinking of all the possibilities!!! i can think of 50 million solid blank things to make, so i should be busy for a while before i start trying to glue things together!!!
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Rick in Lincoln
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keep on turnin'

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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #11 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 7:04pm
 
junior, one our newer member, georgetroy, is an accomplished segmenter who has a very good web page that explains the basics of cutting up those pieces to make some really nice stuff.  If he doesn''t chime in with the site address soon, I'll look it up and post it.

p.s. - it'll take a bit more than a 'jig saw'.  Wink
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E. Bud Gillaspie
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #12 - Sep 10th, 2005 at 7:16pm
 
Rick & Junior, George listed his web site(s) on the "tool talk" "Beaver Lathe" thread.
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E. Bud Gillaspie Umpqua Turning Club
 
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Ned A from South GA
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #13 - Sep 12th, 2005 at 3:14am
 
I will check it out, time to more surfing.
And welcome Junior, the only problem you will have with folks here is too much info. Wink Everyone is willing to help. And friendly.
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Jimmy Cusic
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Re: lotsa questions.
Reply #14 - Sep 12th, 2005 at 9:38am
 
Welcome junior!!!    I'm fairly new to this too. Started about  1 1/2 ago.  Yes the segmented turnings are cool.  I have yet to attempt one because I'm working on the basics. Like the different types of cuts, end grain vs. cross grain, keeping tools sharp and so on.  I have recently moved from bowls to boxes and enjoy making lidded boxes.  I only recently learned how to use a skew to shape my pens I make. There’s a lot to see and a lot to learn... but that’s the fun part!!!!!

Here’s my 2 cents… Get with your local club and ask for help. The guys here in Dallas have been super!!!  Take a class or two, watch some demos and in general just stay in tune and you’ll pick up nice pieces of information and tools you’ll need.
  Also at the end of this month there is a woodturning show in Wichita Falls Tx.  This would be an excellent place to learn and see what goes one.  Here’s the link.  The link that Gil gave you… Malcolm Tibbetts.  He will be one of the demonstrators.   Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register;
Hope you can make it !!!! 
Jimmy c.
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