Midnight Woodworking


Tracie’s cherry rolling pin

My wife Tracie has been learning to use the lathe in my shop. She has made several pens and magic wands, and she is starting to branch out. She wanted me to find her a nice piece of wood to use for making a rolling pin. She thought it would make a nice wedding gift for our friends Diana & Ryan.

I have a few big chunks of 4″x4″ cherry that were used as fork lift skids. They have been drying in my garage for a few years.

I cut off a piece 21″ long and trimmed off any bad spots.

I cut the post down to about 3″X3″ and marked off some chamfers in the corners.

I tilted my table saw blade 45 degrees, and showed Tracie how to cut away the excess in the corners.

Using a straight edge, she connected all of the opposite corners with a line, to find the center of the post.

I tapped the drive center in place, then loaded the blank onto the lathe.

Cutting off the corners made it quick and easy to cut the blank down to a cylinder.

We laid out a 4-1/2″ mark from each end, and used the parting tool to set the desired diameter of 2″. The last 4-1/2″ on each end will be tapered, and the middle will be straight.

After roughing out one taper, she worked her way back towards the drive side.

After some time, she had the shape worked out to her satisfaction.

After a bit more scraping, she was happy.

While sanding, Tracie noticed a few pitch pockets that would need filling in.

Just a drop or two of CA glue into each hole and some fine cherry sawdust, pressed in, and it was back to sanding.

The little holes filled in nicely.

After most of the sanding was done, we used the parting tool to square off the ends by taking off the last 1/2″ or so, leaving just enough to hold the rolling pin in place.

She shaped and sanded the ends.

Then it was time to apply three coats of cutting board oil.

Tracie cut off the ends with a razor saw, and we sanded down the saw marks.

A little hand sanding, and she was able to finish coating the ends with oil.

This was a neat weekend project. I think my wife enjoyed it, because she wants to make another one for herself. I completely forgot to take a final picture before the gift was wrapped, but it looks great.

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