Lathe practice

I recently purchased a lathe.  I’ve attended a couple of classes about how to use it, but am still a complete newbie, so I’ve practiced using wood I’m pulling off my firewood pile. Here are some of my first pieces.

This is an oak bowl I made from a log we cut down last year.  It was only partly dry when I turned it so it warped into a bit of an oval shape as it dried.

Oak bowl

Oak bowl

I was really happy to find a log of spalted maple on the firewood pile.  The black lines running through the piece are actually a fungus that has started to eat the wood.  This is a highly sought after type of wood, yet I used it for lathe practice.  Hmm…  Maybe I should have saved it for when I was better at the lathe.

Spalted maple bowl

Spalted maple bowl

I also played around with a little cedar.  Here I made a goblet emerging from a cedar log.

Goblet emerging from a cedar log

This is a large bowl I was carving out of an oak log that was still pretty green.  You can see the inside is still rough and the sides are still too thick.  That’s because the mortise I had on the bottom which my lathe chuck was holding broke.  This bowl isn’t going to be finished.

Oak bowl

I also needed a mallet.  Before making a real one I practiced on a small branch.  It turns out that branch was also spalted maple.

Spalted maple mallet

Finally, I made a real mallet.  I don’t expect it to last too long, but then again, it was firewood to start with and it can be firewood when it is too beaten up to be useful as a mallet.  The two black, accent lines on the handle are small grooves cut and then burned with my skew chisel.

Oak mallet

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