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Woodworking with Diego de Assis

  Using Lathe for Stool Making 1 of 6  

Diego de Assis



The lathe is a tool used to make a rounded geometric solid shapes such as a sphere, cylinder, or cone, all of which share the characteristic of being rounded or turned.

A shapes are made by dragging a cutting tool across block of wood that spins around its own axis.  It is different from a mechanical turnery in that the cutting tool is held in the craftsman's hands, with the blade supported on a rest.


Many different cutting tools may be used for the finished product. The most commonly used tools are the gouge and the mortise-chisel, the mortise-chisel being as important to a lathe turner as it is to the cabinet-maker.  Practically all types of wood can be turned, depending on the dimensions and intended use of a piece.  However, it is generally preferable to work with woods that have straight grains, especially when center-turning. The wood should be dry, otherwise it can split or become warped.

Turned furniture pieces represent most common technique of wood carving, and is seen in any furniture with completely or partially rounded edges, such as chair and table supports.  Turning can be used to add decorative touches such as spirals, stanchions and columns, which in turn contain segments such as coils, lace bobbins, and threads among others.  Turned pieces can also be applied on the surface of furniture or frame, splitting the piece into two longitudinal halves.

The turnery is therefore notable for the diversity of objects it can produce, as well as the speed with which it produces them from a block of wood to an entirely finished product, something which makes it unique amongst other woodworking techniques.

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Stanley Planes

Block Planes


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