This past Christmas, my workshop gained a new piece of equipment: a lathe! It’s a Grizzly T25290, 12×18 and boy do I like it. The day after Christmas I drove down to Rockler and Woodcraft and quickly learned how much other stuff you have to buy – turning tools, sharpener, sharpener stand, chuck, adapter, safety gear, etc!
I decided to avoid the much quicker route of using carbide tools and opted for the traditional High Speed Steel ones which also required I learn how to sharpen. I was a little hesitant with the sharpening but I think I’m doing a good job at it – the tools are cutting well at least.
For the first week or so I had the tool sitting atop my work bench. Since then, I have cobbled together a little cart that is serving me well. I’ve avoided adding accessory racks or other adornments until I get some time on it and learn what will be useful and what will not.
I’ve stuck with small spindle turnings for now: practice blanks; seem rippers; lip balm holders; needle/toothpick holders; and pens. And it is an absolute blast.
Here’s a small selection of what I’ve turned so far.
I was hoping that by the end of this year I’d be able to turn a pen. Mission accomplished, I guess. I have so many pens around here that I don’t know what do do with them all 🙂
If and when this gets tiring, I’ll turn my attention to larger things like bowls, bottle openers, and wine stoppers. But for now, it’s incredibly enjoyable doing pens.
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