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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My wife wanted some wood mushrooms for decorations and gifts so thought this should help me finish the tops. The only decent plywood I had lying around was some 3/4 oak plywood cutoffs so used that. We'll see if that was a good choice later.

David, thanks for the inspiration and knowledge these things existed. I only turn occasionally so not super knowledgeable on lathe stuff.
 

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Mike
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It looks good to me, ready to add hardware.
 

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Its 9 inches. My mini lathe only has a 10" capacity and my larger lathe has a 12" capacity so I'll be able to use on either one.
I made one a few months back, bought the rubber stoppers and put it together with 3/8" bolts that were too big, 1/4" were too small. What's the width of the slots supposed to be? Thanks.
 

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Success after a miss.

On my first try I hand tightened the head stock thinking it would be fine. It started out great until I caught some grain.

It torqued the head stock to unscrew itself due to the weight of my Longworth chuck. Using 3/4 inch material probably not the best choice. Chuck flew off the lathe and my turned piece shattered into a few pieces.

Chuck itself was fine other than one rubber stopper was a little tore up and a small ding due to it bouncing off the cement. I replaced the stopper and grabbed another chunk of red cedar and turned another mushroom top.

Red cedar really sucks to turn by the way.

For the second piece, I tightened the head stock correctly with a wrench and tightened the chuck around the piece as tight as I could get it. Worked pretty well. Turned a chunk of really dry oak for the mushroom bottom and finally success. Got my first wood mushroom done.

Joe, I would imagine you could carve your slot to whatever hardware you are using. I carved mine at 1/4" and with a little bit of sanding the screws fit really well.
 

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David - Machinist in wood
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I made one a few months back, bought the rubber stoppers and put it together with 3/8" bolts that were too big, 1/4" were too small. What's the width of the slots supposed to be? Thanks.
1/4" is the way to go. I cut my slots 0.260" wide.

It torqued the head stock to unscrew itself due to the weight of my Longworth chuck. Using 3/4 inch material probably not the best choice.
I figured you might experience that, Oscar. I've read of people using 3/4" MDF or plywood and the chuck being so heavy that it caused issues.

I cut all ours, over 300 now, out of 1/2" Baltic Birch (actually 12mm). Even that in the larger sizes has some serious inertia when it gets spinning. Next time we have our Woodworking Club meeting at Mike G's house ask him about the 20" chuck I cut for him and what it does to the electronic control when he turns the lathe off.

David
 

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Like your mushroom. Coincidentally, I found this photo of a more rustic design on the internet today, and was thinking that my wife would probably like something like this to sit in her flower bed. I have a friend who has a stack of firewood out back of his house, maybe I need to root though it to see if he has something that would work. They really look good with the little bit of bark on them, anybody know if the bark is likely to fall off over time?

BTW There was a nice article on making a Longworth chuck in the May 2010 edition of Woodturning Magazine - they used 3/8" plywood and 5/8" MDF to make the discs.
 

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