Thursday, May 25, 2017

Turning a Kitchen Spatula on the Lathe

Hi Everyone,

Today's project involved placing a piece of hardwood, in this case hard maple, on the lathe and turning the handle for a kitchen spatula and then cutting out the blade part of the spatula and finishing that by hand.

Here's the photos along with my comments:

I went shopping for some wood today and I bought some hard maple for spoons. This is a very nice clear piece of hard maple for the spatula:

Here are the measurements of this piece of wood:

And the grain direction. I'm right handed so I like to place wood on the lathe with the grain direction running from right to left. It turns more smoothly that way:

Here is a rough sketch of the spatula on the wood:

And to save myself some time and effort, I cut out the handle on the bandsaw:

Then I placed it between centers and began to turn the handle:

And  that didn't come out too bad. Most of the time the handles I make seem to look like carrots but this one is better than they usually are:

And then I cut the blade of the spatula out with the band saw and you can see it's rather thick, much more thick than I had planned to. The new blade is already dull now and it's not cutting very well, although considering the band saw issues of the past several weeks I guess I should be grateful it's cutting at all:

I thought thinning the blade out would not be a big problem but it was. I  hammered away on that thing with my big carpenter's chisel and a mallet and after about an hour, with my hands and wrists getting very sore, I decided to give up. I smoothed it with the cabinet scrapers and called it a day:

There is is all smoothed down:

  And this is it with oil. I originally thought this might be a great way to use up some of the hickory I have in my wood pile but given the hardness of that wood, I decided I'll find some other use for it:

It's a pretty substantial spatula. You could probably use it for a cricket bat.

It's a long holiday weekend here in the US so I'm going to rest my hands for the next several days and other than clean out the wood shop, I'm going to take it easy.

I'll see you next week when I go back to turning and work on a series of serving bowls and some large blue stain pine platters.

Take care,

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