Woodturning Tips Library

Steve offers numerous woodturning tips
on the proper use of the "Irish" ground
bowl gouge at The Woodworking Shows

Welcome to our Woodturning Tips Library. As a professional studio woodturner, teacher and writer, I have written numerous education articles for international woodturning magazines, which have been published in more than 78 countries around the world.

This collection of tips and techniques is intended to assist woodturners in advancing their skill level in various aspects related to woodturning. For in-depth articles on woodturning, please visit our main library. For definitions to common woodturning terms, visit our Multimedia Woodturning Glossary Library. New articles will be added to our tips library frequently, so check back often!

Woodturning Tips: Finishing

Long-Term Finish Storage
Test Results

Finish storage test results from a professional woodturner's perspective. New Content!

Enhanced and Blended Finishes…
Is the Juice Worth the Squeeze?

Learn how blended finishes can enhance your woodturnings.
New Content!

Surface Preparation

Learn the surface preparation steps needed before finishing your woodturnings.  New Content!

Oil Finishes - Reducing Color Change in Light Woods

Oil finishes can dramatically change the color of light woods. Learn how to use sanding sealers prior to application of your oil finishes to reduce this color change. Liberon finishing oils

Using Buffing Wheels with Oil and Wax Finishes

Buffing an oil finish Learn how buffing the finish on your woodturnings can greatly enhance the quality of your finish. Whether you use oil or wax, buffing can improve the quality of your woodturnings.

The Magic of Microcrystalline Wax

Learn how to use microcrystalline wax to enhance the finish on your woodturnings. Microcrystalline waxes offer superior protection over traditional waxes like beeswax and carnauba. Renaissance microcrystalline wax

Using Wood Dyes for Decorative Embellishment

Concentrated spirit stains Learn how to use wood dyes to enhance the color of your woodturnings. Includes tips and tricks for using spirit based dyes.

Buffing Epoxy Finishes

Learn how to buff epoxy finishes using various techniques. Includes tips and techniques specifically designed for woodturners. System Three clear coat epoxy

Preventing Paste Wax Creep

Paste wax can showing creep Learn how to store paste wax finishes to prevent creep (seepage) from the tins during storage.

Woodturning Tips: Homemade Finishes

Woodturning Tips: General Techniques

Dealing with Torn Grain

Learn how to effectively deal with torn grain and tear out on your woodturnings. Includes simple strategies to reduce or eliminate torn grain. Shear scraping platter rim

How to Apply End Grain Sealers for Success

End grain sealer dip tank Learn the proper techniques for applying end grain sealers to fresh cut green wood to prevent checking. Includes tips for numerous application methods.

Drying Green Wood Roughouts in Paper Bags with Forced Air

Learn how to use ordinary paper bags for drying green wood roughouts. Includes advanced protocol to reduce overall drying time with forced air circulation. Loading green wood roughout in paper bag

Cabochon Stone Buying Tips

Cabochon inlaid bottle stoppers Learn how to buy cabochon stone inlays for your woodturning projects. Includes buying tips and recommended sources to get you started.

Woodturning Ergonomics Save Your Body!

Learn how proper ergonomics while woodturning can help you save your body and reduce injuries. Steve Russell hollowing with the Jamieson system

Using Diamond Abrasives to Sand
Crushed Stone Inlays

Sanding turquoise inlay Learn why diamond abrasives are a good choice for the initial sanding of crushed stone inlays on your woodturnings.

Processing Green Wood Logs

Learn some tips about processing green wood logs processing that will save your time and money. Green wood logs

Woodturning Tips: Woodturning Tools

The Kelton Center Saver System:
Getting More Value from Your Bowl Blanks

With a Kelton Center Saver system, you can core out the centers of your bowls as a solid block of wood. This saved core can then be remounted and turned into additional bowls. Nested bowl set made using Kel McNaughton center saver

Micro Turning Tools: Elegant Tools for Fine Detail

Henry Taylor micro turning tools Micro turning tools are very useful for many tasks on the lathe. Learn the benefits of these tools and how they can become an essential tool in your woodturning studio.

Using a Wood Burner to Thermally Transfer
Photocopied Images Onto Wood

Learn how to use a wood burner to transfer photocopied images onto the surface of your woodturnings. The transferred image can be used as a guide for burning, carving or other embellishment work. Razortip wood burner

Pen Mandrels: Maintaining Accuracy

Using PVC pipe to store pen mandrels Learn how to properly maintain and store your pen mandrels to preserve their accuracy. Includes mounting, turning and storage tips.

Mastering Shear Scrapers

Learn the advantages of using shear scrapers to perfect the surface of your woodturnings. Includes tips for Irish bowl gouges, traditional scrapers and dedicated shear scrapers. Henry Taylor shear scrapers

Cryogenically Treated Turning Tools

Cryogenically treated bowl gouges Learn the benefits of cryogenically treated woodturning tools. Using cryo treated turning tools reduces the amount of sharpening needed when turning large volumes of wood or abrasive timbers.

Measuring Tools for Woodturners

Learn how measuring tools can make your woodturning easier and more accurate. Woodturning calipers

Using the McNaughton Center Saver On A Mini-Lathe

Using the McNaughton Center Saver System Learn about using the McNaughton center saver on mini-lathes with the new micro and mini center saver systems.

Using Profile Scrapers

Learn how profile scrapers can benefit you when working on faceplate projects. Includes sharpening tips for better performance. Using the McNaughton Center Saver System

The Versatile Irish Grind

40 degree Irish ground bowl gouge Learn why the Irish grind is becoming an increasingly popular bevel profile for woodturning bowl gouges and spindle gouges.

Reducing Vibration When Using Scrapers

Learn how to reduce vibration when using scrapers on the lathe. Includes tips for using different kinds of scrapers and tool rests to effectively mitigate vibration and achieve a smoother surface. Round scrapers

Random Orbit Sanders

AirVantage random orbit sander Learn the benefits of using random orbit sanders to finish sand woodturnings. Includes advantages and disadvantages.

Using The Sanding Solution to Sand Inside Hollow Forms

How to use The Sanding Solution inertia sander to simplify sanding inside deep hollow forms. The Sanding Solution

Faceplates: Choosing the Right Type

The Sanding Solution Learn how to select faceplates for various woodturning projects. Includes tips, tricks and recommendations.

Woodturning Tool Handles

Learn how to choose tool handles for various woodturning tools. Includes pros and cons for metal and wood handles. Woodturning tools with timber handles

Drilling Accurate Holes

Adjusting x-y vice Learn tips and tricks for drilling accurate holes in your your woodturning projects for turning on the lathe.

Ball Bearing Live Centres

Learn about various types of live centres used with woodturning lathes, including ball bearing, dead, and multi-tip. Oneway revolving live center

Easy Wood Tools

Easy Wood Tools carbide tipped woodturning tools Learn about Easy Wood Tools and how you can use these carbide tipped woodturning tools in your studio.

Woodturning Tips: Woodturning Related Equipment

Central Station Dust Collector Upgrade

Learn about various central station dust collector upgrades to consider for your woodturning studio.
New Content!

DIY Mobile Bases for Equipment

Learn how mobile bases on your woodturning equipment can improve your overall productivity.
New Content!

Dry Grinder Wheel Maintenance

Learn how to maintain the wheels on your dry grinder for optimal sharpening performance. Maintaining your dry grinder is an important step to keep your woodturning tools sharp. Baldor dry grinder

Chainsaw Tips: Getting the Most from Your Saw

Chainsawing logs Learn how to get the most from your chainsaw when you're processing green wood logs and turning blanks. Includes tips for chainsaw maintenance and cutting.

Preventative Maintenance On Woodturning Equipment

Learn the basics of preventative maintenance for your woodturning tools and equipment. Includes lathe, dust collector, bandsaw, drill press and others. Oneway 2436 lathe

New Products from Tormek

Tormek T-7 wet grinder Tormek has introduced several new products for their wet sharpening system. Learn about these products and how they can help you in your woodturning studio.

Air Compressor Tips

Learn how to select and maintain an air compressor for use in a woodturning studio. Coleman Powermate compressor

Cordless Drill Batteries

Cordless drill batteries Learn about my deliberations on whether to rebuild or replace my dead or dying rechargeable drill batteries for several drills.

Stihl Chainsaws: Repairing the 026 and 066 Models

Learn some tips for repairing and maintaining Stihl 026 and 066 chainsaws. Stihl 026 chainsaw

Bandsaw Tips

Laguna LT18 ACM bandsaw Learn how to choose the best bandsaw blade for cutting green wood and how to improve the dust collection efficiency of your bandsaw.

Lathe Tips

Learn some basic lathe tips for woodturners. Steve Russell, Eurowood Werks Studio

Sharpening Jig Tips

Kelton sharpening jig Learn how using a sharpening jig can help you improve your sharpening skills in your woodturning studio.

Tips for Chainsaw Repair

Chainsaw Repair: Learn how to upgrade and repair two Stihl chainsaws that are useful in a woodturning studio. Stihl 066 chainsaw

Woodturning Tips: General Woodturning

Finding Artistic Inspiration for Woodturnings

Spalted Water Oak hollow form Learn how to find the right kind of artistic inspiration for your woodturnings and overcome the creative wall and keep your work fresh.

Wood Stabilization Techniques for Woodturners

Learn simple wood stabilization techniques using lacquer, CA and wood hardeners for spalted and soft woods. Minwax wood hardener

Super Glue: Tips and Tricks

Super glues Learn how to use and store super glue. Includes tips and tricks for applying super glue, storing, and preventing tip clogging.

Tips for Working With Deer Antler

Learn how to turn deer antler writing pens. Lots of tips and tricks are included for working with this alternative material on pens. Deer antler

Lathe Drapes Make Your Life Easier!

Oneway 2436 lathe Lathe drapes can protect your lathe and make clean up easier. Using these simple drapes makes your lathe clean up at the end of the day a snap.

Tips for Preventing Splits in Pen Barrels

Learn techniques to prevent splits in pen barrels during drilling, sanding, finishing and assembly. Turned wood pens

Options for Inlay Materials

Crushed stone Learn about various inlay materials for use in woodturnings including crushed stone, wood shavings and metal dusts.

Storing Anchorseal Green Wood Log Sealer:
Long Term Test Results

Learn the results of my long term storage tests for Anchorseal's green wood log sealer. Anchorseal Green Wood Sealer

Metric Conversion to Fractional to Decimal-Inch Cross Reference Table

Drill Bits for Woodturners Use this handy cross reference table to quickly convert your drill bits to any metric, fractional or decimal-inch equivalents.

75 Woodturning Tips and Tricks

75 woodturning tips and tricks from Steve Russell to save you time and money in your studio. Steve Russell

Art and Craft Shows: Tips for Success

Kiawe tree Learn how to get started selling your work at art and craft shows with these handy tips.

Woodturning Tips: Specialised Woodturning Techniques

Subscribe to Steve Russell's "Lathe Talk"

Want to read more woodturning education articles? Our free monthly newsletter for woodturners is chock full of woodturning techniques, as well as valuable tips and tricks. Fill out the form below to subscribe to "Lathe Talk". Your email address is kept confidential. Click here for more information.

Enter Your E-mail Address
Enter Your First Name (optional)

Don't worry — your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Steve Russell's Lathe Talk.

Learn more
about Steve

Steve Russell's Bio