Tools for Hollowing Out Wood on the Lathe

Turning wood on the lathe has made a big comeback in popularity over the last 10 years. Hobbyists are drawn to the craft by all the new project kits and books available for the novice woodworker. Two of the biggest areas in wood turning are pen turning and hollow vessel turning. Each have special cutting tools designed to be used on the lathe.

Gouges

The bowl gouge is a long, wood handle tool with a deep flute and an extreme fingernail profile on the tip of the steel rod. The gouge is shaped like the end of you fingernail in profile. The bowl gouge is used to remove interior and exterior wood of the vessel quickly.

Scrapers

The straight edge scraper is a long, wood handle tool with a straight steel cutter. The cutter profile has a large bevel on a straight piece of steel. The straight edge scraper is used for removing the marks left by the gouge. The round edge scraper is a long, wood handle tool with a curved steel cutter. The cutter profile has a large bevel on a half-round piece of steel. The straight edge scraper is used for removing the marks left by the gouge in the interior of a vessel.

Hollowing Tools

The multiple tip hollowing tool is a long, wood handle tool with a interchangeable steel tip cutter. The hollowing tool can be used to hollow, scrape, or run beads and coves. A bead makes a half-round bead that runs around the item being turned on the lathe. The cove is the opposite, it cuts a half-round groove that runs around the item being turned. The cutter has interchangeable cutting knifes that some of which are similar to the scrapers above but only about one quarter the size to be used inside the vessel being turned. There are also several versions of the hollowing tool with different steel rod shapes. Some have a slight curves used for narrow hollowing similar to a tall narrow vase. While others have large curves used for wide vase with a narrow head.

Safety Gear

Safety goggles keep wood chips from getting in the eyes. The work apron helps keep clothing away from the spinning lathe.

Keywords: wood lathe tools, hollowing tools, hollowing out wood

About this Author

Jim Wildman served in the United States Marine Corps as a Communication Chief for 10 years. After his tour of duty in Desert Storm he attended Oklahoma State University receiving his Bachelor of Architecture. He worked as an architect for 10 years before starting his own design/build company. He began writing in 2009 for Demand Studios and published on eHow.

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