Turning Archive 2005
>decided to stretch my new lathe's legs a bit today. I had not turned anything over 8" in diameter since I got it up and running. Okay, I stretched my legs, but not the lathe's. Unlike me, it didn't even work up a sweat. Not even a little.
I had a piece of Buckeye in the shop. It was a log section about 16" in diameter. I halved it with the chainsaw and turned a 12" bowl out of one of the blanks. It was pretty wet, almost too wet.
It was a new experience for me. I had never turned any Buckeye before, much less green Buckeye. Buckeye does not have a lot of grain. In fact almost none. There was some discoloration near the center of the log to keep it interesting. In years past, Buckeye was used for dough bowls, so I left the walls thick....... like a dough bowl.
The Buckeye wanted to tear very badly, especially on the bowl interior. I kept sharpening my bowl gouge, even honing it, but the wood kept tearing. My extra heavy half-round scraper was useless, even freshly sharpened.
I finally was able to minimize the tearing with a shearing cut, starting at the bowl bottom and cutting uphill to the rim. I know it's wrong, but it worked! With some power sanding, I think it will be just fine. Now I've got two garbage bags of shavings! The Stubby performed flawlessly, though, even with a heavy, out-of-balance half log spinning between centers.