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Thread: Seated Turning

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2019

    Lightbulb Seated Turning

    My balance is getting pretty bad and my left knee is shot so where practical I'm incorporating as much seated woodworking as I can.

    Wood Turning
    I'm pretty new to wood turning but I'm lucky enough to have 2 lathes, a variable speed HAFCO full size and an old chinese made pipe bed lathe that uses belt changes for speed. I'm thinking about setting up the older lathe on top speed for smaller turning like pens. I think I should be able to do that seated.

    Does anyone have any thoughts/experience with turning bigger stuff (than pens) while seated? I see some difficulties in getting smooth cuts and consistancy.

    Any thoughts welcome.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Seattle, Washington, USA


    I could see it being difficult for some cut types and tools, particularly a skew chisel. Body positioning and angle to the cut is critical for the skew.

    For a lot of stuff, I could see it being ok, as long as you got the height right.

    I'd consider a high stool with wheels so that you were sort of "partially" seated and you still had mobility by moving your self around through the use of your legs. Not sure if that's an option, but it might be worth considering.


  4. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2002

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011


    I do most of my turning seated (wheel chair.) an adjustable height and tiltable lathe stand makes it quite simple. You just have to be prepared to cop a lap full of shavings but good dust extraction helps to keep it to a minimum. A leather apron with no pockets just needs a quick flap to put the build up on the ground. My frame is made from 100x100 SHS steel , Two inverted T's with an I beam stretcher at the base. An adjustable height bench made from 50x50steel angle supports the lathe whichis suspended between the two uprights byway of 25mm dia pivot bolts. A series of holes up the posts allows for height adjustment. A car jack is placed on the I beam and engages with the underside of the lathe bench. The lathe can then be raised and lowered by the jack then tilted to the desired position. All this can be done from a seated position.

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