At the Lathe: From Wood Chunk to Chuck

The best way to process logs into blanks and avert future headaches.
By Judy Ditmer
Pages: 81-83

From the June 2006 issue #155
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Ideally, your turning wood comes to you in one of two ways: as fresh, sound green wood, in reasonably sized sections that you quickly rough-turn into bowls and/or cut into smaller, sound pieces to suit your particular needs; or as nicely cut-up, already dry (or wax-coated and therefore stable), sound pieces in sizes that suit your particular needs.

In real life, however, you’ll most likely end up with a hodgepodge of wet, damp, semi-dry, somewhat-damaged, dry-but-with-cracks, and other categories of wood, some of it in nice tidy logs or squares, but more of it in odd chunks and shapes that don’t even make sense as firewood. In consideration of the fact that you don’t necessarily know right now all of the types of turning you will ever want to do, you may legitimately choose to leave some of this wood in its original format, just in case you might someday want an odd-shaped piece, or one with bark on one side and a saw cut on the other, or whatever.

From the June 2006 issue #155
Buy this issue now