|by Fred Holder
Linden Publishing: 2007
Paperback, 128 pp., $19.95
Beginners are always full of questions, and asking them is the best way to learn any new skill. Stepping for the first time into the world of woodturning quickly raises many of the same questions over and over again, so Fred Holder must have seen a good opportunity for a collection of material based on Frequently Asked Questions.
This book covers a lot of material, and is organized well enough to make finding it easy. Holder begins with necessary tools and accessories, discusses sharpening systems and a variety of jigs, and explains how to prepare and care for wood blanks for turning, including several different drying methods used to prevent cracking and distortion in rough-turned materials.
In a section on spindle turning, the author not only leads us through the 'how-to' of making coves, ogees and flats, but tells when and why they are each used and how to transition between them. In bowl turning, he describes how different figures are cut out of the log, how stacked-ring vessels are made, and explains the steps for turning segmented pieces.
Holder shows how to create spheres, hollow vessels, pens, bottle stoppers and tops, birdhouses and inside-out ornaments. He does a chapter on enhancing turnings with carving, pyrography, texturing, fluting, inlays and color-added finishing.
The book finishes off with lists of recommended books and magazines, plus a list of turning woods and a glossry of terms. This book serves as an excellent beginner's guide, with enough information to lead the reader forward into the unexplored facets of woodturning.
. . . Barb Siddiqui