Turning Archive 2007

Couple Questions for spindle turners

Joe in a Cleveland suburb

What is the correct way to use a skew chisel to obtain a really smooth surface?

I'm making a couple tool (bowl gouge) handles out of walnut and cherry scraps. I have the basic shape I want. I kinda recall seeing Norm using his lathe making spindles and using the skew chisel as the last step to get a really smooth surface. I also remember seeing (can't remember where!) a video of Ernie Connover doing it and he had his one hand behind the piece he was turning and that hand was also supporting the chisel(?). Maybe I am way too cautious but I didn't want the chisel to did in. So I was barely touching the wood.

I guess this question could dovetail into "How do you get that perfect cylinder or taper?" for a table leg for example. I ask that too because I'm supposed to be making a table for my MIL. I might try turned legs. I usually make tapered legs.

I tried it last night and was ending up with high spots that looked something like spirals. Very faint, not very noticeable, but there. I'm able to get a smooth surface with a regular gouge but I'm trying for that super smooth feel. Like a board I just hand planed vs. sanded. Remember, I'm a flatwork guy. I like using hand planes, not sand paper. Well, when I can get away with it... :)

Sorry for so many questions and wordy posts... I can't help it! Geez, I think my wife talks too much?... :)


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