Finally got the contractor-saw-base-turned-lathe-base done today. There just isn’t the room in the dungeon workshop for two table saws. Eventually I will haul the Skilsaw onto the upstairs porch and hang it out of the way. Getting back to the base, I measured the height I needed to fit the formula I gleaned off the Web: that magic height the centers should be off the floor in relation to where your elbow is. I added the five inches to the top of the base and boards along the bottom of the base to give additional shelf space, seeing as I won’t need the dust collection trough anymore. As with all the construction in the dungeon, I build it sturdy and let only a mother love its looks.
Back side of the contractor saw base. Small pallet will provide the side rails for the top.
Front and left side of the base.
Once the lathe was mounted to the base, it was time to try my hand at turning. I took the largest roughing chisel (~ 3/4”) from the Harbor Freight Windsor Design kit (item #61794) I bought with the lathe and spent just enough time on the WS-3000 to get a semblance of sharpness. I had no idea what I was going to make. After a short search I settled on a rectangular cross-sectioned short length of seasoned oak I had planed last year. This is really hard stuff.
It wasn’t until I got into the turning that I decided what I wanted make, and I wanted to see if I could do it using only the one chisel. What you see is the result with a little 80 grit sanding to take out the small ridges I left behind. More sanding tomorrow, then a finish before I take it off the lathe. I don’t want to screw this up, so I I’ll use the band saw to cut off the ends and work them into shape by hand sanding, then add finish.
I surprised myself. I was sure it was going to look like I used a chainsaw for a chisel. There may be hope for me yet.
-- -- Paul Bucalo, Upstate NY USA