Segmented Woodturning Plans Using MS Powerpoint

I’ve had many request for more information on how I use Microsoft Powerpoint to plan my segmented woodturning projects. This video shows the advanced features I employ.

This video is only for those already familiar with Powerpoint. It assumes you understand basic operations and only need a little bit more of an edge so you can use Powerpoint in this manner.

This video shows how to create a master template that can be used over and over for many projects. As a master template, you will not accidentally select, move, delete the background grid while you create the drawing for your next project.

The master template contains a grid from which to estimate sizes.

After creating the template, switch to normal mode to create a drawing.

Using the freeform tool, draw multiple, connected straight lines to outline the desired shape. Do NOT hold down the mouse button. If you do, you will be hundreds of data points that make future refinements more difficult.

Then refine the drawing by making selected straight lines into curves then manipulating the sizing handles to refine the size and shape of the bowl or other project.

Finally, using the rectangle tool, draw a rectangle to represent your typical segment size such as 0.5 inch by 1.5 inch. Use the right click menu to size the rectangle to your exact measures. Also, color the rectangle your preferred color but at 50% transparency. Then duplicate, move, and stack these segments over the drawing.

Refine the position and size of segments to provide sufficient wood for the project as drawn.

From your diagram, create a cutting size of layers, woods, and segment sizes.

Then at the lathe, let the project evolve into a beautiful expression of your creativity.

If you want more specialized software, then you’re welcome to part with some cash that you could otherwise spend on tools. There are other software programs available such as at


A Natural Edge Bud Vase For Mother’s Day

Bud Vase in GumI needed to make a bud vase to go with the flower I made for Mother’s Day. I chose a wet piece of gum wood and shifted the turning axis to include a natural bark edge. I finished this little vase with walnut oil. Despite the off-axis turning, this is still an easy woodturning project.


Woodturning A Wood Flower For Mother’s Day

Wood FlowerWith Mother’s Day coming so quickly, I need flowers for my wife — wood flowers.

This flower will be of elm wood. The petals will open upward and outward – to welcome the bees to gather their pollen. Appropriately, this flower will be finished with beeswax and mineral oil.


Rough Woodturning & Alcohol Soaking Wet Walnut Bowl

Wet Turned Walnut BowlNow that I’ve return to my home shop and can again use my full sized lathe, I have an urge to turn something big — something I’ve not been able to turn on a mini lathe.

This rough turned bowl is walnut from a fellow member of the local woodturning club. The wood is wet but I had sealed it with wax emulsion to preserve it so there don’t appear to be any bad cracks.

I’ll rough turn it, leaving it oversized, then soak it in alcohol to try to dry it faster without checking. Once I can dry it, I’ll finish turn it to final size and finish. It’s not that pretty now – but just wait…


Woodturning A Multi-Tip 4-In-1 Screwdriver

Multi-Tip Screwdriver in PadaukI’ve been on location for remodeling a house in Mesa Arizona. One of the tools I found very useful was an ordinary 4 in 1 screwdriver.

In this project, I dress up that screwdriver. It is a very quick, simple project using only a cheap screwdriver from Home Depot. The handle is Padauk finished with beeswax and mineral oil.


A Segmented Solar Spring Flower

Dancing Spring FlowerIt has been a tough winter for many people; and spring is having a tough time getting underway.

Let’s help it along with a solar powered dancing flower. The flower mechanism is purchased at a local dollar store. The project is to turn a nice wood cup to hide the awful plastic.

I grabbed a hunk of segmented wood from another project and went to work. The wood could have been anything and almost any orientation.

Mine is 24 segments of oak finished with beeswax and mineral oil.


Disaster Strikes Woodturning A Segmented Bowl

Segmented Oak BowlI had grand plans for this project: a shallow bowl on a pedestal — the pedestal having a hidden chamber.

But things did not go my way. One thing after another and this project turned into a salvage operation.

In the end I have a 56 segment oak bowl that looks great — until you see the off center rings.

Oh well.


An Analog Clock In A Digital World

Clock For Counter TopDo you need a reminder what clock-wise and counter clock-wise mean? How about a nice desk or counter top analog clock?

The thought also struck me that segmented woodturning relates to solid woodturning as digital relates to analog. What do you think?

This clock consists of 3 red oak segment rings, a walnut plug and a cherry spindle; all finished with beeswax and mineral oil mix.

The movement came from a local wood crafting store and are available in numerous catalog sources.


Collapsible Baton For Musicians

Music Director's Baton

I leveraged my experience with magic wands to make this collapsible music baton for my daughter in law.

This baton takes it to the next level. A baton need to be the same length as the distance from the director’s inner elbow to the director’s fingertips. For her, this is 14.5 inches. I also made this baton collapsible so it can be put in a large bag or purse.

It’s interesting and fulfilling to leverage other projects in a new way.


Segmented Woodturning – Case For Reading Glasses

Eye Glasses CaseSometimes I need reading glasses, but they’re never where I need them. Sometimes they get squashed, bent and otherwise mangled.

Here’s a solution – a beautiful case. Make as many as you want to have one with a pair of reading glasses anywhere you may need one.

This case consists of 11 rings: 10 of maple and padauk and one of only padauk. Each maple and padauk ring has 16 segments. Add in the end plugs for a total segment count of 170 pieces. It is finished with my mix of beeswax and mineral oil.

Now I can see.