The Easiest Woods To Turn On A Lathe

Requiring a large amount of effort for even the smallest pieces of wood, woodturning enthusiasts labor in selecting their choice of wood. Even if you are only a beginning turner, it's important to find the most suitable type of wood to optimize your outputs and allow yourself to enjoy the process to its fullest.

If you happen to be taking a break from using power tools to carry out large-scale projects (guide here), this is a great new thing to focus on.

So without further delays, here are the easiest and most popular woods to turn on a lathe:

1. Pine

Pine is important for learning how to turn spindles on a lathe because of its inherent softness.

After getting to the point where turning it clean for spindle work comes relatively easy, you can then start with beads and coves on a pine board.

Pine is also regarded as one of the cheapest and most accessible materials around. It requires little to no investment, so using it as a wood for your training is highly recommended.

2. Soft Maples

Commonly existing as either the Norway Maple or Silver Maple, these are some of the best woods for beginner and intermediate turners.

Ranging from plain and light to very patterned with curls or ripples, they are ideal for beginner turners who would like to add diversity to their craft.

To get the most out of it, the blanks must first be processed by rough turning them quickly - they do not save well even if you use Anchorseal on its ends.

Upon initial cutting, the sap would be running and the wood would easily get mold. In order to preserve its integrity, the rough outs must be bagged and the bags must be changed on a daily basis to seal off moisture that may lead to mold growth.

3. Cherry

Cherry is a hardwood that requires more skill than maples or pines to turn. Additionally, it is significantly more expensive, especially if you buy it pre-seasoned and in large pieces.

The cost, however, is balanced by the wood’s crisp texture and wave-like patterns which can be sheened into perfection.

One way to lessen your expenses in getting it would be to find a suitably aged tree and cut it down into uniform cylinders. This will allow the wood to dry evenly and will give you an indication of where possible cracks might lie.

Woodturning is an ancient art, and as with any art, the subject and the material can greatly diminish or enhance the apparent skill of the artist. For turning, the wood that you use is a considerable determining factor for your end product.

Choose well and enjoy turning!

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