Home page

Video Clips

The first six of these videos clips have been provided to amplify the text in the Introduction To Woodturning. They are meant to be adjunct to the text in the relevant chapters in the Introduction and not a substitute. So I would urge users to read the text as well.
  1. The 'V' cut
  2. Cutting a bead.
  3. Cutting a cove.
  4. Squaring the end of a spindle turning.
  5. Rounding the end of a spindle turning.
  6. Cutting a pummel.
  7. The Raffan Cut

On all the videos the viewpoint is that of the turner making the



The 'V' cut

Points to note:

  1. To begin with a very small notch is cut with the point of the tool.

  2. Each cut begins on the outer surface of the work-piece just to the side of the previous cut, ie to take off only a small amount of material.

  3. See how the tool is rocked from one side to the other for each cut.

    View: The 'V' cut

    Back to top

    Cutting a bead

    Points to note

    1. The tool is held so that the trailing point of the tool is just clear of the wood when the leading edge begins to cut.

    2. The tool is held well up on the wood so that the bevel at the leading edge is just rubbing.

    3. Watch to see the position of the tool at the commencement of each cut.
    4. See how the tool slides along the rest.

    5. Note that the wood is slightly burnished by the bevel rubbing behind the cut.

    6. I turned the bead with just 5 cuts. Do not be worried if you take a lot more than that to begin with.

    View: Cutting a bead

    Back to top

    Cutting a cove

    Points to note

    1. Note how the attitude of the tool is altered just after 29 seconds of play. This is described in paragraphs 14.7 and 14.8 of The to Woodturning.

    2. Note how the light catches the burnished surface on the left-hand side of the cove. This shows that the bevel has been rubbing.

    View: Cutting a cove

    Back to top

    Squaring the end

    Points to note

    1. The large amount of waste shown in the video was created to allow me to get the camera in the correct position. Normally only enough waste is required to enable the depression created by the tailstock centre to be turned away.

    2. See how the trailing edge of the tool is leaned slightly away from the surface being cut. If the video is paused towards the end this can be seen more clearly.

    3. As usual the bevel must rub but, because of the above point, it is the lower corner of the bevel that rubs. See Diagram 15.6 in The Introduction to Woodturning.

    4. Only a very small amount of material should be removed on each cut.

    5. The description of this cut is in Section 15.7 (Chapter 15) of The Introduction to Woodturning.

    View: Squaring the end

    Back to top

    Rounding the end

    Points to note

    1. I ought to have created a little more waste before commencing the cut!

    2. This cut can be made with a chisel but it is easier with a gouge.

    3. The technique is very similar to that used for cutting a bead . The only difference is that in the final stages the tool handle must be moved further round so that the bevel ends up more or less square to the axis of the lathe.

    4. The description of this cut is in Section 15.6 (Chapter 15) of The Introduction to Woodturning. (In this case the description does not add anything to what is noted here.)

    View: Rounding the end

    Back to top

    Cutting a pummel

    Sometimes it is necessary to leave a section (or sections) of a spindle turning square. This is usually when the piece is to be joined to others, eg the rails on a table. This square section is the pummel.

    As with many things in wood turning there is more than one way of cutting a pummel. Two of these are described in Sections 15.3 and 15.4 of The Introduction to Woodturning

    The method shown in this clip entails cutting a 'V' at the point where the transition from the square to the round is required.

    Points to note

    1. The first step is to mark a pencil line all round the workpiece where the 'V' cut is to be made.

    2. The 'V' cut itself is made in exactly the same way as a 'V' cut in a round section (as described in Chapter 12 and shown in the video above).

    3. Making the cut in the square blank is much more difficult because the edges cannot be seen clearly. As a consequence there is a danger of chipping the corners of the 'V'. It may help a little to put something white, such as a sheet of paper, on the bed of the lathe behind the workpiece in the line of sight.

    4. The 'V'must be stopped immediately the bottom of the cut forms a continuous circle around the workpiece.

    5. Having made the 'V'cut the corners on the section of the workpiece beyond the pummel can be removed with a gouge. The shape of the side of the 'V' which remains can be altered if required. (This is not shown here.)

    View Cutting a pummel

    Back to top

    The Raffan Cut

    Points to note

    1. I believe this cut is generally known as the Raffan Cut although I think it possible that he would not claim to have invented it.

    2. It is a useful for quickly making small hollows for items such as egg cups and scoops. I understand that some turners use it for hollowing bigger items such as bowls. It should be used as a roughing cut to be followed by conventional finishing cuts.

    3. In order to save on bandwidth the clip is not continuous but shows 3 stages in making the cut.

    4. Notice that the cutting tip is positioned at 12 o-clock. The rest is used as a fulcrum for the upward cut. The back of the tool may also rest against the rim of the hollow.

    View: The Raffan cut

    Back to top