I started turning wood in High School shop class and at the neighbors store. I drifted turning for a time due to college, military service, family and career. My profession is harvest, management, Forestry and construction. I was able to acquire plenty of different types of timber and store them.
My first lathe was a bench mounted Montgomery Ward wood lathe and the pair of instrument that came with the lathe. I realized, as turners do that there are larger and better turnings to perform, after using this lathe for years. All that’s required is larger and better tools.
During the next few years I started to upgrade my equipment. My lathe was a X 42. You will find higher grade tools and specialty tools. There are tools for spindles, tools for bowls, tools for equipment and texturing for supporting turnings that are bigger or your spindles. Believe I now have turning tools and continue to search for more. For are for special usage. I make them myself and will design.
There are face plats, chucks with all their various jaws and attachments. There are spur drives and centres that are live. All these tools have programs and if you are like me where you do many different unique turnings you may use them alland special requests are being made by customers. I constructed so the bottom of my bowls could turn a vacuum chuck, improves the appearance by roughly 100%. You can buy accessories, all ready installation with vacuum pump and the vacuum chuck. I purchased of the parts separately and then constructed the vacuum chuck, I saved about $250.
A buddy of mine and I are in the process of design for hollowing big vessels, and making a boring bar. I bought them with the larger headstock requirements and used an insert to attach them to a lathe when I purchased the chucks for holding the turnings. The smaller lathes require a 1″ X 8TPI and the larger 1 1/4″ X 8 TPI. If you have dreams of bigger lathe spend some time looking at different lathe brands and their specifications, then it can save money in the long term.
The expense that you will incur is finish and sanding. There are a large verity of sanding methods and finishes and I have spent hundreds of dollars trying things out; my garbage can is full. Without getting really deep into this topic I will tell you what works for me.
Sanding; I will sand the finish to 320 grit to sand and 250 grit down and use power sanding. Finishing compounds have a sanding requirement in their directions over sanding can create a surface that the end won’t adhere too.
Having a finish that not only looks great but feels good is critical. I use water foundation grain filler to smooth the surface and then use a gloss, rub on rub oil finish. Complete bottom same as the bowl and turn off the bottom when the finish is dry. Last step buff and wax.
To sum it up; Wood Turning, Fishing, Photography, Camping, Boating and most other pursuits whether they’re professions or hobbies, appears to be a good place to spend all of your extra money. There’s on limit your fascinating only limits you.