Wood Turning: Types of Wood

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Types of wood used in wood turning can include soft maple, myrtle burl, Amboina burl and mazer birch. Choose a type of wood with tips from an expert wood turner in this free video on wood crafts.

Part of the Video Series: Wood Turning Basics
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Video Transcript

Some of the wood you can find or even buy is very, very spectacular. We're going to take a look at some of these woods here that we've got, and they're kind of from all around the world. First one I want to show you here, is a piece of wood from here. It was, actually, it was in the river bottom close to my house. And this a piece of box elder. It's a soft maple, but it's a box elder burl. And how you can tell the burl is, all the little spikes that are on the outside of the tree. And this usually has bark on it. But that's what makes all the pretty, wonderful eyes in here. Even this little piece of found wood, we can turn into a little bit...a bowl, and have a nice, little project out of it. Here's a piece of myrtle burl. Now this comes from Oregon, and it's a bigger piece, and you can...it's hard to see, but you can see all the figure that's in this. And very, very, very nice woods. There's burls from all around the world. One of the most expensive is Amboina burl. Comes...and Amboina is one of my favorites. It comes from the far East, and it's just a gorgeous burl. And it costs probably almost twenty to thirty dollars a pound. Very expensive. This is a fun piece, this is called Mazer birch, comes from Finland. You can see the little lines, you can see a little bit of wax on the end. All the figure in it. Some of the exotics that you can turn, tulip wood, very fun. King wood. Now most of these exotics, you have to go to a specialty place that sells exotics, but, the exotics are a lot of fun. And it doesn't take much to make a...you know, this one you can get two pins out of easily. Even though it's quite expensive, you can get two projects out of it. If you want to do a plate, here again, here's a...this is babinga, and it's actually...you can see the figure in this. It's just going to be a gorgeous platter when we get it done. One of my favorites is birds-eye maple. Has all the little tiny eyes. Just a gorgeous wood from here in the states. Now as you can see, we're going to have a lot of fun with this lathe, and you can turn anything, even found wood. You know, in the firewood pile, I found some great pieces of wood. Just take it in on your band saw, cut it up and see what you've got.


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