How to Turn Wood Balusters on a Wood Lathe How to Turn Wood Balusters on a Wood Lathe

What You'll Need
Sandpaper
Milling unit
Woodworking lathe
Template
Wood
You will find that knowing how to turn wood balusters on a wood lathe is something that is not very difficult to do. It is important that you understand how a wood lathe works before you attempt this project. You will find that a wood lathe is something that can help you to do a lot of things with any wood projects that you may have. As long as you have a basic understanding of how a wood lathe works, then turning wood balusters on one is something that is not going to be very difficult to do.
Materials Needed:
Sandpaper
Milling Unit
Woodworking Lathe 
Template
Wood
Step 1 – Wood
The first thing that you are going to have to do is determine what type of wood that you plan on using for your baluster. If you plan on having these balusters outside, then a pressure treated lumber is something that you should consider. However, if your balusters will be only inside, then something that is soft and decorative such as maple is something that you should get. 
Step 2 – Style
You will need to think about what style you want your baluster to be. There are going to be several different types that you will be able to choose from. You should base your decision a lot on how much experience that you have using your wood lathe. The more that you know about it, the more complex of a design you can choose. 
Step 3 – Router
Once you have chosen the wood as well as the style, you are now ready to get your router out so that you can make designs on the sections of the wood that you plan to choose. A router will allow you to round any edges or cut any designs into the wood. 
Step 4 – Template
You will now need to make a template of the actual baluster profile that you are planning on working with. Take time as you make this as it will determine what your baluster ends up looking like. The template is going to be mounted on the backside of your lathe as well. What this will do is it will allow the lathe stylus to trace out your template. This template is something that is going to be traced through the cutter head. It will do this by closely following the profile of your template. 
Step 5 – Milling
After you have turned your baluster, you are now going to need to get a milling unit inserted. This will allow you to put in any designs that you wish to put in. 
Step 6 – Finish Up
The last steps that you will need to do are sand down your baluster to make it completely smooth and free of any gashes. You can sandpaper the baluster by hand or spin it on your lathe. If you sand it by hand, then you will be able to make corrections that are more precise. Once you have sanded up the baluster, then stain or seal it. 

You will find that knowing how to turn wood balusters on a wood lathe is something that is not very difficult to do. It is important that you understand how a wood lathe works before you attempt this project. You will find that a wood lathe is something that can help you to do a lot of things with any wood projects that you may have. As long as you have a basic understanding of how a wood lathe works, then turning wood balusters on one is something that is not going to be very difficult to do.

Step 1 – Wood

Determine what type of wood that you plan on using for your baluster. If you plan on having these balusters outside, then a pressure-treated lumber is something that you should consider. However, if your balusters will be only inside, then something that is soft and decorative such as maple is something that you should get. 

Step 2 – Style

You will need to think about what style you want your baluster to be. There are going to be several different types that you will be able to choose from. You should base your decision a lot on how much experience that you have using your wood lathe. The more that you know about it, the more complex of a design you can choose. 

Step 3 – Router

Once you have chosen the wood as well as the style, you are now ready to get your router out so that you can make designs on the sections of the wood that you plan to choose. A router will allow you to round any edges or cut any designs into the wood. 

Step 4 – Template

You will now need to make a template of the actual baluster profile that you are planning on working with. Take time as you make this as it will determine what your baluster ends up looking like. The template is going to be mounted on the backside of your lathe as well. What this will do is it will allow the lathe stylus to trace out your template. This template is something that is going to be traced through the cutter head. It will do this by closely following the profile of your template. 

Step 5 – Milling

After you have turned your baluster, you are now going to need to get a milling unit inserted. This will allow you to put in any designs that you wish to put in. 

Step 6 – Finish Up

The last steps that you will need to do are sand down your baluster to make it completely smooth and free of any gashes. You can sandpaper the baluster by hand or spin it on your lathe. If you sand it by hand, then you will be able to make corrections that are more precise. Once you have sanded up the baluster, then stain or seal it. 

 

 

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