Finishing Woodturned Bowl - Classic Mahogany with Decorative Burn

Woodturning-Classic Bowl Turning
for Beginners

Lesson - 3

Picture of decorative burning on wooden bowl

Part III - 1

Finishing Woodturned Bowl - Accent: sometimes a finishing "accent" on a turned bowl gives it a more classic look. What I am doing in this first picture is a little hard to see, but I am burning the edge. You can see the dark edge around the bowl. The way you do this is just take a rag and fold it into a pad thick enough so that you do not burn your fingers and then hold it against the edge of the bowl as it turns.

Picture of decorative burn on wooden bowl rim

Part III - 2

This picture shows the edge of the bowl after it has been burned.

Polyurethane Finish on Classic Woodturned Bowl

Picture of polyurethane gloss coat on turned bowl

Part III - 3

Finishing Woodturned Bowl - Now, you start the finish. Begin with a base coat of high gloss polyurethane. I brush this coat on before I remove the bowl from the lathe. Then I take the bowl off of the lathe and remove the face plate. I let the gloss coat dry overnight. Next, I brush on a coat of satin polyurethane and let it dry overnight. Then, I put two more coats of satin, letting each one dry overnight so that, in all, I have four coats of polyurethane brushed on the bowl.

On some of the bowls, after I have finished the coats of varnish, I take pumice stone and motor oil or finishing oil and, using a piece of burlap sack, rub the bowl really hard. This gives the bowl, I think, a refined look.

NOTE: I use MINWAX Fast-Drying Polyurethane Clear Gloss for the base coat and then MINWAX Fast-Drying Polyurethane Clear Satin for the finishing coats.

Picture of polyurethane satin coat on turne bowl

Part III - 4

This picture shows the inside of the bowl with the base coat of high gloss polyurethane.

Picture of polyurethane finish on turned wooden bowl

Part III - 5

In this picture, I am putting the high gloss polyurethane base coat on the outside of the bowl.

Picture of polyurethane finish on turned mahogany bowl

Part III - 6

I have removed the bowl from the lathe. Next, I will remove the face plate from the screw block. In this picture you can see how the bowl looks with the wet base coat.

Picture of two turned mahogany bowls

Part III - 7

Here, I am holding two mahogany bowls that I have completed. The one in my right hand is the bowl that I created while demonstrating how to turn. You will notice that the screw block is still attached to the bottom of the bowl.

Picture of removing screw block from turned bowl

Part III - 8

Finishing Woodturned Bowl - remove screw block: When you remove the screw block, you will see that the purpose of gluing the brown paper between the bowl blank and the screw block was to enable the glue joint to come apart. Using a hammer, drive a chisel right where the paper is and the block will just peel up off of there. Then, sand off what is left and put varnish on the bottom of the bowl to seal it.

You have now completed your classic bowl!

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