Woodturning Kit Projects

Small Kaleidoscope

Woodturned Small Kaleidoscope project

Step by step procedure

Woodturning doesn't always involve expensive or large pieces of wood.  Often, you can make many beautiful and functional things from just limbwood. That's right, just from your trees' limbs!

Here is a great example and can be a project done by novice woodturners.  It's a mushroom!

Let's see how a friend of mine, Joe Traynham, does it.  Credit goes to Bob Baker for taking the photos.

Kaleido1.jpg (76419 bytes) Joe is cutting off a section of some nice African Bubinga (the rest of which I later bought by the way) to the length that he needs for this project.
Kaleido2.jpg (69539 bytes) Next, a hole must be drilled through down the center in order to mount the wood in the mandrel.
Kaleido3.jpg (46366 bytes)  
Kaleido4.jpg (30984 bytes) Now you see the blank mounted in the mandrel.  The tailstock is now going to be pulled up to support the end of the mandrel.
Kaleido5.jpg (32673 bytes)  
Kaleido6.jpg (78750 bytes) Roughing down the wood to round.
Kaleido7.jpg (86040 bytes) Don't you just love chips flying?
Kaleido8.jpg (98486 bytes) Just about round.
Kaleido9.jpg (74344 bytes) After it is round and down to about the thickness you want, you need to mark your center point on the wood (see the line?).  You can see that he's tapering the ends down to provide a smooth transition to the brass ends he'll put on later.
Kaleido10.jpg (53095 bytes)  
Kaleido11.jpg (67657 bytes) Marking the center again.
Kaleido12.jpg (53235 bytes) A closeup view of some beads.
Kaleido13.jpg (45434 bytes) Cleaning up the taper at the ends to form a nice curve and getting the ends down to size.
Kaleido14.jpg (75221 bytes) It's time to sand!
Kaleido15.jpg (44032 bytes) A closeup of the sanding
Kaleido16.jpg (56072 bytes) Joe doesn't spend that much time sanding.  He just looks like he's concentrating so much on it here, right?
Kaleido17.jpg (39409 bytes) Ohhhhhh That's SMOOTH, Joe !
Kaleido18.jpg (48035 bytes) A little friction polish makes that Bubinga shine, baby!
Kaleido19.jpg (44209 bytes)  
Kaleido20.jpg (28608 bytes) Look, MA!  No tailstock !!!    He's just about to take the project off the mandrel right now anyway.
Kaleido21.jpg (42343 bytes) Tada !  But it's not done yet, folks.
Kaleido22.jpg (59304 bytes) You've got some hardware to install first.  Here you can see it all laid out.  * The kit hardware is very much like the "mini kaleidoscope egg-type" kits you'll find in catalogs and online stores.  About 2.5" to 2.75" inches long.  It's not actually from any of those places, however.  It came from a (now defunct) store called Woodworking 101.  But the basics are the same as what you'll find these days.
Kaleido23.jpg (70205 bytes) Put that in there ... this over that ... but not before you put this thingy in here.  Hey, Joe, where's tab A suppose to go?  And what about slot B?  I really wish these things were labeled <sigh>
Kaleido24.jpg (58827 bytes) A closeup of what makes a kaleidoscope a kaleidoscope.  Pretty beads.
Kaleido25.jpg (55467 bytes) NOW ..... TADAAAAA !   Nice. Very nice.  I'm going to enjoy the rest of that African Bubinga.