Health and Safety

Woodturning should be an enjoyable and safe hobby but care needs to be taken when working with power tools, especially lathes and other powerful woodworking machinery. Here are a few simple rules to help you keep safe in the workshop (courtesy of the AWGB):-

Safe Steps

1. Safety visor or goggles must be worn

2. Solid Shoes must be worn

3. Secure loose items eg long hair & sleeves. Remove ties & jewellery

4. Speed – ensure the lathe is set to a speed suitable for the job. (Generally the larger the workpiece the slower the speed, at least until it is in balance)

5. Security – check that the work piece is properly held

6. Set the correct tool rest height and position

7. SPIN the mounted workpiece by hand to ensure it doesn’t foul the tool rest

8. Support – always ensure that the tool is on the tool rest before engaging the timber

9. STOP the lathe if at any point you are unsure of what you are expected to do

In addition to the above:-

  • Gloves should not be worn while operating the lathe
  • Soft paper towels only should be used for applying finishing products (not woven cloth) while the lathe is in operation
  • When starting the lathe stand well clear of the workpiece
  • Do not leave the lathe running while unattended
  • When sanding remove the tool rest and use dust extraction equipment, and/or wear a dust mask.