How to Turn a Spinning Top

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Blog entry by thewoodwhisperer posted 07-03-2013 04:47 PM 2941 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

A few weeks back, I visited professional turner and instructor Matt Monaco’s shop in Phoenix, AZ. I was there to film a segment for a recent Wood Whisperer Guild project but Matt also offered to show us how he turns a spinning top in under ten minutes! He does it all with a roughing gouge and a skew chisel.

During the little interview section at the end, Matt mentions a turning tool company that he really believes in. Here’s the link in case you want to check them out: Thompson Tools

-- For free video tutorials and other cool woodworking stuff, check out

5 comments so far

View rfusca's profile


155 posts in 1810 days

#1 posted 07-03-2013 05:08 PM

Very cool! I just turned my first two tops out of walnut last night. Didn’t look as nice but they ‘work’!

-- Chris S., North Atlanta, GA - woodworker,DBA, cook, photographer

View Roger's profile


20923 posts in 2770 days

#2 posted 07-04-2013 01:24 PM

Nice way to put a spin on things.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View timjr's profile


28 posts in 2793 days

#3 posted 07-04-2013 05:05 PM

Unbelievable how quick and efficient he is!

View Jim's profile


120 posts in 3964 days

#4 posted 07-09-2013 01:53 AM

I quit smoking by turning and using the tops I made almost 5 years ago I still enjoy making them.

-- Jim in Cushing Oklahoma

View lizardhead's profile


651 posts in 2808 days

#5 posted 03-10-2015 05:26 AM

Did you know that Lignum vitae was used as bearings in bygone days? I use it for the tips of my tops. It holds up quite well and you can use softer materials for the body.

-- Good, Better, Best--Never let it rest---Always make your Good be Better & your Better Best

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