Turned Stool

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Func­tional for shop use, yet el­e­gant enough for any room in the house, this steady stool com­bines face turn­ing and spin­dle turn­ing. Along the way, you’ll learn how easy it is to break down a spin­dle pro­file into smaller seg­ments to turn three du­pli­cates.

First, take a seat

1 Band­saw a 2"-thick blank (we used cherry) to 14" di­am­e­ter. On the best face, drill a cen­tered 1∕2"-deep hole to fit your screw chuck. If your screw chuck ex­tends far­ther than 1∕2", shim with a scrap of ply­wood [Photo A].

2 Mount the blank on the screw chuck. With the lathe at about 500 rpm, use a 3∕8" bowl gouge to flat­ten the face and turn the cir­cum­fer­ence round.

3 Shape a round-over along the edge [Photo B]. Then mark the leg lo­ca­tions [Photo C]. 4 With a squarenose scraper, turn a cen­tered re­cess to fit your 4-jaw chuck. Sand the face, leav­ing the punch marks in­tact. 5 Re­verse the seat, mount­ing it by the re­cess on the bot­tom face. Flat­ten the top face, then mark a di­am­e­ter on the face 11∕8" from the edge. With a bowl gouge, round over the edge be­tween the lines [Photo D]. 6 Shape the seat work­ing from the line to the bot­tom of the hole drilled for the screw cen­ter. Sand the seat, then re­move it from the lathe.

Set up for drilling

1 Make the drill-press jig [Drawing 1]. With the two an­gled cleats at­tached, place the seat on the jig, align­ing a cen­ter­punch dim­ple with the cen­ter­line on the jig. Po­si­tion the jig on the drill press, and drill [Photo E]. Re­peat at the other punch marks.

2 Cut three 2×2×23" legs. At­tach the straight fence to the jig and drill a hole in each leg 61∕2" from the bot­tom [Photo F].

Turn to the legs

1 Mount a leg be­tween cen­ters with the rung hole clos­est to the head­stock. With the lathe at 2,000 rpm use a rough­ing gouge to round the blank to a 2" cylin­der. Then mark lines 1–11 on the blank [Photo G, Drawing 2].

Re­fer to the blue cir­cled step num­bers in Drawing 2 as you fol­low the in­struc­tions be­low.

Step 1. Us­ing a part­ing tool, turn a 1"-di­am­e­ter tenon with a 1∕8" cham­fer on the end. Test the tenon’s fit in a hole in the seat as you go.

Steps 2–4. With a skew chisel, cut a 3∕16"deep V 3∕16" wide cen­tered on line 3 [Photo H]. Form a half bead from line 2 to line 3 and a par­tial bead from line 4 to line 3. Us­ing a spin­dle rough­ing gouge, shape an ogee from line 2 to the shoul­der of the tenon, leav­ing the pen­cil lines in­tact.

Steps 5–7. At line 5, part to 11∕4" di­am­e­ter. With a rough­ing gouge, re­duce the di­am­e­ter be­tween lines 4 and 5 to 13∕4". With a skew chisel, cut 3∕16" wide Vs 3∕16" deep cen­tered on lines 7 and 10 [Photo I]. Make sure you don’t re­move lines 8 and 9.

Step 8. Roll a half bead from line 6 into the V at line 7 [Photo J].

Steps 9–10. With a rough­ing gouge, form the half cove from line 4 to line 5. Then shape the ogee from line 6 to line 5.

Step 11. Switch to a skew to form a par­tial bead from line 8 to line 7 and from line 9 to 10.

Steps 12–13. Re­duce the di­am­e­ter be­tween lines 8 and 9 to 13∕4". Make a part­ing cut cen­tered be­tween the Vs to 11∕4" di­am­e­ter. With a spin­dle de­tail gouge, shape a cove be­tween lines 8 and 9 to the depth of the part­ing cut [Photo K].

Step 14. With a skew chisel, form the half bead from line 11 to line 10.

Steps 15–16. Part the left end of the leg to 1" di­am­e­ter. Then ta­per from line 11 to the part­ing cut. Check the ta­per for true with a straight­edge. Form a 1∕8" cham­fer on the end of the leg. Sand the leg smooth, re­mov­ing the pen­cil lines.

2 To repli­cate the pro­file on the two re­main­ing legs, re­peat this process, us­ing a con­tour gauge as needed [Skill Builder].

Watch a video of the stool be­ing turned. wood­magazine.com/ turned­stool

A The 1∕2" hole depth marks the bot­tom of the dish on the seat, so make sure your screw chuck ex­tends no far­ther.

D Work­ing from the face to the line on the edge, round over the top edge of the seat. Main­tain the line on the face for use in the next step.

B On the face of the blank, mark a cir­cle 1∕2" from the edge. Mark an­other line around the cir­cum­fer­ence 3∕4" from the face. Leave the lines in­tact as you round over the edge— you'll need the mark on the edge later.

C Lay out a 10"-di­am­e­ter cir­cle. With­out ad­just­ing the com­pass, place the point on the di­am­e­ter, and make a mark along the line. Move the com­pass point to the new mark and re­peat un­til you have six marks. Make an in­den­ta­tion at ev­ery other mark with a spring punch.

F Re­po­si­tion the jig. Cen­ter each leg un­der a to the deep­est por­tion of the hole. 3∕4" Forstner bit, and drill 1" deep, mea­sur­ing

ECen­ter a 1" Forstner bit on one of the punch marks on the seat bot­tom. Clamp the jig in place and drill 11∕4" deep, mea­sured at the deep­est por­tion of the hole.

G Tip! Use cen­ters less than 3∕4" in di­am­e­ter so you can turn the tenons with­out dam­ag­ing your part­ing tool. Story stick To mark lines 1–11, make an 18"-long story stick with a short hook on the right end to regis­ter against the end of the leg. Hand­saw a short kerf at each of the eleven di­men­sions shown in Drawing 2.

H Line 4 Line 2

I Line 11 Line 9 Line 8 Line 6

K

J Line 8 Line 6

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