Turn a Turning Spindle
Turning spindle turning, also known as turning between cross cuts, is an intricate woodturning technique referring to the process of turning a small wooden piece between cross cuts or other parallel cuts made on a turning lathe. The spinning action can be seen as the movement of two or more woodturning wheels that turn at different speeds in different directions and it is possible to achieve a spinning action by rotating two or more wheels one after the other, which is known as the “crossing”.
This type of woodturning has become so popular among enthusiasts that it has also become part of the woodturner’s toolbox. Turning spindles are used in all wood turning machines from portable to heavy duty. It is recommended that you use a combination of spinning wheels and a turner in order to produce a high-quality finish. For example, you could choose a spindle that has two turning wheels, one on each side, to get the best of both worlds.
Spindle turning is also referred to as woodturning, because it uses a spinning wheel and turning action to perform an action which turns the wood, and in the same time, creates the surface pattern of the wood, which is commonly seen in many fine pieces of furniture and wood sculptures. The turning wheel can be of different types and most of them are available in kits. The most common wheel type is the wheel on the bottom or the top of the lathe; the reverse type is the one that rotates clockwise and vice versa.
To perform this spinning action, the lathe needs to have at least two turning spokes and a spindle with two teeth. The spindle will be placed in a position where it will not block the turning wheel and in the event that the spindle gets blocked, it will need to be spun in reverse direction and the blocked end should be pulled out to avoid a jamming situation. A large turning radius, along with a smooth turner, can achieve a wide variety of effects when the wheel is spun in reverse.
Spindles are made out of different materials such as wood and metal, but there are also other materials such as fiberglass and plastic which can be used for spindles. All these materials are able to provide the right balance between strength, weight and stiffness, especially if they are made out of lightweight metal or plastic. In most cases, the wooden turning spindles are built on lathes.
Spindles are commonly used in the woodturning industry for many reasons and there are several ways they can be utilized and made. A good way to learn more about them is by visiting a hobbyist’s club or a professional woodturner’s workshop.