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Pole Lathe Turning

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Course Overview

Turning wood on a pole lathe—a wonderfully simple, hand-built machine that needs only your leg and a wooden pole to power it—is a challenging and empowering experience. Your whole body must work together to make a usable bowl or cup. Over three days, we will axe out blanks from green wood and turn bowls with pole lathes. We will cover the basics of turning, cutting techniques, and bowl design. Experienced students can move to more challenging projects like nesting and end grain turning. We will also discuss handling and storing green wood, sharpening, axe skills, and how to dry and finish your bowls with oil, paint, and decorative carving. Students should be prepared for a very physically demanding class that requires a certain level of stamina, coordination, and physical strength as well as the ability to follow precise instructions with regard to safety. Students must be able to stand on one leg for extended periods of time and have the hand strength to open a sealed jar or swing an axe or hammer repeatedly. If there are questions about this or if students have injuries or physical limitations, please contact the school before registering.

Required Tools

  • All tools will be provided

Optional Tools

  • Turning hooks
  • Hook knife
  • Axe


Fri, Nov 8th, 2024  –  Sun, Nov 10th, 2024

Course Details

Hours: 9am-5pm each day
Tuition: $345.00
Materials fee: $45.00
Latest Update: View recent changes →

Meet the Instructor

North House Folk School photo of instructor, Jarrod Dahl
Jarrod Dahl
Ashland, WI

Meet the Instructor

North House Folk School photo of instructor, Derek Brabender
Derek Brabender
Stoughton, WI

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Pole Lathe Turning