Segmented Woodturning a Tall Vase
Segmented woodturning on a wood lathe evokes a curiosity in woodworkers. Generally speaking, when a woodworker first views a segmented bowl or a tall decorative vase he or she will ask the question, “How did they do that?” Often times segmented pieces have various patterns that are simply beautiful to look at and yet puzzling to figure out as to how they were constructed. While it is apparent that woodturning tools and a wood lathe were used to shape the woodturnings, what is not entirely clear is how the segments and rings are glued and fitted together to form this wood art. How can all these pieces be accurately organized and well joined? That is the beauty of this wood craft!
The woodworking techniques used for segmented woodturning are essentially basic and yet evolved. To begin with a segmented woodturner will need a design to follow. Thankfully, today there is very good woodturning software available that makes the design factor a relatively simple procedure. Keep in mind tho that complex designs can also be performed with the software. Once you have created a design you can print it out along with a cutting list. The list will show you the angles and dimensions for the segments as well as the number of segments needed to complete each ring. In essence, the math part is taken care of for you.
From this point it is a matter of dimension the woods, cutting, gluing and assembling, and then turning your piece. The actual woodturning may actually be about 10% of the process.
So, if you are looking for some good woodworking ideas why not give segmented woodturning a try. Consider starting with a basic platter or perhaps a bowl. Get a feel for it and before long you will be advancing your skill level and in time people just may ask you, “How did you do that?”