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Turning bamboo countertop stock (Read 1,359 times)
 
Birk Binnard
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Turning bamboo countertop stock
Jul 5th, 2011 at 4:16pm
 
I recently bought my first lathe and wanted to make my first project from a piece of bamboo countertop stock. I searched for information about this type of material but could not find any. So I have posted some web pages about my initial experiences with this type of material. Here is the link: Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register
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Birk Binnard
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Larry Matchett
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Re: Turning bamboo countertop stock
Reply #1 - Jul 5th, 2011 at 4:32pm
 
I have turned a number of pens using bamboo flooring material.  Worked well and made nice looking pens.  Somewhere on this forum I posted a picture and there was some discussion of using bamboo.  I used ewt tools and they worked really well.  Nice looking platters by the way.  Here is the link for a discussion of turning bamboo.
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« Last Edit: Jul 5th, 2011 at 4:35pm by Larry Matchett »  
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JimQuarles
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Re: Turning bamboo countertop stock
Reply #2 - Jul 5th, 2011 at 4:50pm
 
Birk Welcome to WR.  I noticed on your web site that you bought foam mounting tape to mount to your face plate.  Not a good idea.  The foam center section will not withstand the stress.  The foam also is soft and the pad effect will your wood to move as it spins.  Double sided turning tape or carpet tape would be a much safer choice.

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Lark Leazar
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Re: Turning bamboo countertop stock
Reply #3 - Jul 5th, 2011 at 4:54pm
 
Good start!  Wish my first efforts were photo-quality.  I upgraded to the same Delta lathe last year.  It's a great tool.  You've got a good start with that and the G3 chuck.  Welcome aboard!
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Chuck Beland
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Re: Turning bamboo countertop stock
Reply #4 - Jul 5th, 2011 at 5:38pm
 
Birk,
Welcome to WR.

Ditto what Jim said I also would like to add that the best carbide tool & made by a fellow turner & member of WR is Craig Jackson here is his web site. Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register A lot of us here have these tools & we swear by them they are made especially for turning including the carbide ground to a specific profile & made only for Craig at EWT.

Also for normal turning tools we also swear by Doug's gouges here is Doug's web site. Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register Doug is also a fellow turner & member here. His are the best gouges by far way better then the name brands.
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« Last Edit: Jul 5th, 2011 at 5:38pm by Chuck Beland »  

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Birk Binnard
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Re: Turning bamboo countertop stock
Reply #5 - Jul 9th, 2011 at 10:20pm
 
JimQ: excellent point about the foam mounting tape. I appreciate the feedback. I didn't know there was anyt hing called turning tape - I will check it out.

Chuck: I did see the tools at Craig's site and they do look totally delicious for sure. But at about twice the price of the carbide tools I bought I just couldn't justify their cost, at least not as a rank beginner. I'm not knocking Craig's tools at all; they appear to be worth every cent. It's just that since I am starting from scratch (and don't really know what the heck I am doing or getting in to) I figured I'd go with the most cost-effective stuff I could find.

For the regular turning tools I thought it best to start out with a relatively inexpensive set, with the belief that I'd probably mess them up and also learn which ones I really need. I also wanted to have something inexpensive to practice (actually develop) my sharpening skills. 

Doug's tools look like they are great quality at a very good price and I will likely get some when the time comes.  Thanks for pointing out his site - I had not seen it before.
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Birk Binnard
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Chuck Beland
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Re: Turning bamboo countertop stock
Reply #6 - Jul 10th, 2011 at 5:36am
 
Birk,
Your reasoning makes total sense. You got to find out if you really like turning. Remember the only dumb question is the one not asked. So any questions jump right in.  smiley=beer.gif
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Andrew Henderson
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Re: Turning bamboo countertop stock
Reply #7 - Jul 10th, 2011 at 9:26am
 
Nice looking turnings.
My only experience with bamboo are red and black pen blanks, and some 5-6" cubes of it. Hard material to turn and finish well, at least from my experience, limited as it is. 
Shame as it is such a renewable resource. Your material seems to hold promise. My niece's husband installs counter tops, cabinets, etc for a living and is saving me his scraps, cut offs, cut outs, etc. and said he has some bamboo counter material in "my" box. He still can't picture WHY I want the "scrap crap"... I wasn't too excited about the bamboo but after seeing your pictures... hmmm...!
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Birk Binnard
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Re: Turning bamboo countertop stock
Reply #8 - Jul 10th, 2011 at 10:56am
 
W Henderson:

The bamboo countertop material is really tough stuff. So far the biggest problem I've had with it is getting all the toolmarks off the finished piece. They don't show on the photos on my site, but if you hold the pieces at just the right angle so the light reflects off the bottoms you can still see some toolmarks.

So far I've found that sanding with 50-grit sandpaper to start with will get most of them out. 50 is not a typo. I also think using a square-end scraper will help; at the time I made the website I only had the round-end one I showed on the carbide tool page. Since then I have ordered the square (flat) end one and the 55 degree pointy one but have not used them yet.
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Birk Binnard
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