Woodworker's Central
Woodworker's Gazette
Gazette Archive 8/13/00

A book review: By Judith Mattart

Title: Woodturning: A Fresh Approach

Robert Chapman

Published by: Sterling Publishing Co. Inc.
387 Park Avenue South
New York, NY 10016-8810
ISBN 1861081197
Price Softcover: $17.95 (Canada $25.95 )
224 color pages

Robert Chapman has written a wonderful book called "WOODTURNING: A Fresh Approach". He bypasses all the business of learning to use the lathe and turn spindles. He writes with the assumption that anyone who buys the book has learned to use a lathe with some small degree of expertise. He takes you from simple little bowls to lidded containers to natural edge and "turning air." The pictures are plentiful and beautifully done. This book is a work of art as well as an interesting text book for the turning devotee.

I was especially impressed that Robert takes us not only step by step through the turning process for each type of bowl, he also takes us step by step through the process of harvesting the wood for those bowls. He talks about the drying process, how to cut and seal, how to plan which bowls to turn from which pieces of wood; but best of all, he drops a little known secret about producing "SPALTED" wood. I just laughed when I saw what he did. Spalted wood is so beautiful when turned, and we pay a huge price for spalted pieces. No longer will we pay through the nose for our spalting. A plastic bag, some planning, and a cup of plant food will give you exactly what you want. "Do it yourself spalting" What a concept!!

Judith Mattart

Editors Note: Judith, otherwise known as the Lumber Lady, sells domestic and imported hardwoods in Yuma Arizona.

Editor's Note: Sterling Publishing has graciously donated several books for review which are passed on to our members free of charge in exchange for thoughtful, honest reviews. Thank You! And you can usually find their titles at a discount from Amazon.com

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