The Editors Mailbox

The Editors Mailbox

UPDATE: Book Giveaway: The Frugal Woodturner by Ernie Conover

comments (102) January 9th, 2011 in blogs

BetsyE Betsy Engel, contributor
thumbs up 3 users recommend

 - CLICK TO ENLARGE Photo: Courtesy of Fox Chapel

The Frugal Woodturner: Make and Modify All the Tools and Equipment You Need by Ernie Conover  
Fox Chapel Publishing, 2010.
$19.95; 136 pp.

If you want to start turning but are afraid that it will cost too much to get going then The Frugal Woodturner: Make and Modify All the Tools and Equipment You Need by long time Fine Woodworking contributor, Ernie Conover, is the book for you. In the book, Conover gives advice about choosing a lathe and turning tools. He even devotes a number of pages to making your own spring pole lathe and making some of your own tools. The book goes on to cover sharpening, finding wood for cheap, holding the wood on the lathe, and finishes. Finally, Conover suggest 3 different woodturning setups depending on how much money you are willing to spend. Just looking through this book makes me want to get out there and start turning.

Lucky dechairmaker is the winner. His comment was chosen at random.

Check back later to see his review of the book. And stay tuned for more book giveaways - coming up: Marquetry.

posted in: blogs, giveaway, turning, woodturning, book reveiw

Comments (102)

SteveGreen SteveGreen writes: Since my first turning class is on the 29th of this month, and since I'm the proud owner of a Powermatic 45 that runs but doesn't have an appropriate diameter tool rest I think a book like this would be just fine.
Posted: 12:35 am on January 17th

keleigh keleigh writes: I'm a bit intimidated by the thought of turning. This book might help chase the "scaries" away.
Posted: 8:01 pm on January 16th

NateC NateC writes: Ernie's books and videos are a great way to learn turning. That and practice, practice, practice.
Posted: 11:34 am on January 16th

ConstantRemodeler ConstantRemodeler writes: What ever happened to the Conover Lathe? I never see a used one for sale.
Posted: 9:26 pm on January 15th

splinterdog splinterdog writes: Would like to learn to turn! This book would help.

Posted: 8:34 pm on January 15th

hareww hareww writes: Allways good frugal be able to have a chance to add to ones knowledge at the same time.
Posted: 1:47 pm on January 15th

cliquot cliquot writes: new woodworker interested in the spring pole lath plans and making my own tools . . . . . .frugal doesn't mean frumpy!!!
Posted: 6:33 am on January 15th

NoelPoore NoelPoore writes: I could sure use this book to help expand my turning skills...
Posted: 12:35 am on January 15th

jockcameron jockcameron writes: I would like to be convinced that I can & can afford to add turning to my repetoire so count me in
Posted: 11:25 pm on January 14th

woodninja woodninja writes: I wish I'd had this book before spending so much on my workshop!
Posted: 2:48 pm on January 14th

hodgie73 hodgie73 writes: Just got a lathe from santa, this would be a nice book to have.
Posted: 2:13 pm on January 14th

nanakittie nanakittie writes: I bought a used lathe and haven't been able to get started. I need all the information I can get on tools and turning. Would love to have this book.
Posted: 12:55 pm on January 14th

TedFurlong TedFurlong writes: Just got my first real lathe, and would love to learn how to use it frugally!

Posted: 11:00 am on January 14th

TedFurlong TedFurlong writes: Just got my first real lathe, and would love to learn to be frugal when using it.

Posted: 10:58 am on January 14th

BWB BWB writes: I've made a scew chisle and a bowl hollowing chisle. The first works great, the latter I threw out. I like to make my own tools and I still need a lot of help.
Posted: 7:51 pm on January 13th

woodworkertim woodworkertim writes: I'm frugal, I usually buy my books used from eBay. I'd like to win a copy.
Posted: 6:32 pm on January 13th

Sablebadger Sablebadger writes: I'm curious about the title.
Posted: 4:18 pm on January 13th

reprosser reprosser writes: Looks like a very interesting book.
Posted: 1:42 pm on January 13th

malletman malletman writes: I've always enjoyed Mr. Conover's articles and previous books so I'm quite looking forward to reading this new book. It sounds as though this new book is geared more toward the novice turner and though I'm no longer that I bet there is something for me to learn in its pages.
Posted: 9:25 am on January 13th

LakeChelan LakeChelan writes: I would love to have this book.
Posted: 12:38 am on January 13th

Benza Benza writes:
Posted: 7:30 pm on January 12th

konaman konaman writes: that would make a great gift for my brother who is just learning to turn
Posted: 6:43 pm on January 12th

Obeeswax Obeeswax writes: I think I need this book. I'll know for sure if I win it :)
Posted: 6:34 pm on January 12th

macpony macpony writes: I know how to turn but always enjoy learning how to do it for less.
Posted: 6:10 pm on January 12th

timberdoodle timberdoodle writes: its has become apparent that a lathe is a nessacary tool in ones shop. and this book seems to be a good starting point towards using one effectivly..
Posted: 5:00 pm on January 12th

rdmitchell rdmitchell writes: Woodturning can be a real money pit. No part of woodworking offers a wider array of gadgets and accessories, and no one is better than Ernie Conover at separating the must-haves from the don't-needs.
Posted: 3:54 pm on January 12th

John2012GT John2012GT writes: It looks like a great book that might convince me to take the leap into turning.
Posted: 3:19 pm on January 12th

dechairmaker dechairmaker writes: Lathes can be expensive as size does matter in turning large bowls and long pieces such as bed post. I am sure that Ernie has some unique insight in aproaching such challenges.
Posted: 12:47 pm on January 12th

rchapy rchapy writes: This book would be a great help to me and a nice addition to my woodworking library.
Posted: 12:00 pm on January 12th

Pathrat06 Pathrat06 writes: I am retiring from the Army this July and hope to have more time to pursue my woodworking hobby/obsession. I'd love a copy of this book!
Posted: 11:25 am on January 12th

deerfielder deerfielder writes: I always prefer shop made tooling over store bought. I bet this book is filled with great ideas. I'd love a copy!
Posted: 9:23 am on January 12th

EdinSD EdinSD writes: Another great book by a great author and teacher.
Posted: 9:03 am on January 12th

Alex26641 Alex26641 writes: Looks interesting. Especially the tools.
Posted: 12:31 am on January 12th

StuartE StuartE writes: i never understood the reverence with which people spoke of the Conover lathe until I read a little about the creator. Mr. Coover seems to be one of those people I would enjoy meeting. His book would be a way to learn from this great mind.
Posted: 10:40 pm on January 11th

mkarafa mkarafa writes: I must have this book!
Posted: 9:38 pm on January 11th

Toxdoc Toxdoc writes: i have found that one of the most overlooked item is availability of interesting wood. I have not seen this book and would love to add it to my library
Posted: 9:15 pm on January 11th

elhat elhat writes: This is the perfect way to improve my skills and save money at the same time! What's not to like here?
Posted: 9:09 pm on January 11th

Benzoid Benzoid writes: Mid-level woodworker, zero level wood turner---I need this book!+
Posted: 9:00 pm on January 11th

jackoheart jackoheart writes: I just had this book in my hand the other day and it is chock full of great stuff
Posted: 8:21 pm on January 11th

hansoid hansoid writes: I wish my credit card wasn't filled to it's limit,or I buy this book in a second.
Posted: 8:18 pm on January 11th

Rambler Rambler writes: I would love to learn to ideas on frugal turning, there is not much to turn where I live except creosote brush!
Posted: 7:22 pm on January 11th

jlbltd jlbltd writes: Sounds very interesting!
Posted: 7:01 pm on January 11th

jsmythe jsmythe writes: Hope I win this book. spending toooo much.

Posted: 6:30 pm on January 11th

Ledge1445 Ledge1445 writes: I am fairly new to turning and I am always on the lookout for information that can improve my skills. This book sounds like a great addition to my library.
Posted: 5:37 pm on January 11th

rodk1 rodk1 writes:
thanks, I'd love to have a chance at this book.
Posted: 5:36 pm on January 11th

bko bko writes: Looks like a great book! I would love to have it!

Posted: 5:29 pm on January 11th

woodweasel woodweasel writes: This looks like a wonderful book for the turner without unlimited funding for his hobby. As a relatively new turner and a retiree, I am continually looking for ways to cut costs. It gives great pleasure using tools you made yourself. Hope I win the book!
Posted: 3:30 pm on January 11th

CaptRandy CaptRandy writes: I ma new at turning and can use all the help I can get.
Posted: 1:55 pm on January 11th

ispcop ispcop writes: Purchased a fairly large rockwell lathe about 6 years ago... bought tools 3 years ago and still haven't turned it on. Need to move on from hand cut dove tails, but not sure where to begin...
Posted: 1:44 pm on January 11th

Spooncarver Spooncarver writes: I have a lathe and have done a little work with it but I trying to learn as much as possible. I think this book will help.
Posted: 1:27 pm on January 11th

zzBill zzBill writes: I just received my Brother's old lathe and some tools for it after Christmas, since he got a new set up. Now that's frugal. Now I need some pointers and help in the right direction to use it. This new book sounds like just the item needed. Thanks in advance.
Posted: 1:05 pm on January 11th

JeanYves1 JeanYves1 writes: I have a lathe and I love wood turning.
Posted: 12:42 pm on January 11th

root root writes: Ernie is a fine, writer and explains procedures with clarity.Would love his new book.
Posted: 12:41 pm on January 11th

GunnyH GunnyH writes: This looks great. Just the title get's my attention. The words Frugal just goes with woodworking. Woodworkers were "green" way before it caught on.
Posted: 12:16 pm on January 11th

rjwolfe3 rjwolfe3 writes: This looks like an awesome book! I love wood turning.
Posted: 12:11 pm on January 11th

knut knut writes: This has to be a good book. I know Ernie will have a lot of good ideas in it for new and inexperienced turners alike.
Posted: 11:56 am on January 11th

Yourd4d Yourd4d writes: Having just acquired a lathe, this would be a great place to begin my experiences. I have almost purchased this twice on Amazon.
Posted: 11:51 am on January 11th

woodworkz woodworkz writes: I learned my wood turning skills watching Roy Underhill and then "duplicating" what I saw. Useful but not beautiful results.
Posted: 11:48 am on January 11th

dave14159 dave14159 writes: I'm not sure if I could fit a spring pole lathe in my one-bedroom apartment, but I'd be willing to try!
Posted: 11:45 am on January 11th

AE33 AE33 writes: I retired this past year and have just started getting back into woodworking. This book sounds like just the ticket to getting started in turning.
Posted: 11:28 am on January 11th

gwbyu gwbyu writes: I love wood turning and learning more about it. SOunds like a great book
Posted: 11:20 am on January 11th

Irish95 Irish95 writes: I'll be adding this to me wish list.
Posted: 11:03 am on January 11th

topher374 topher374 writes: Sounds like a book to finally get me to move forward into turning.
Posted: 11:00 am on January 11th

Lakebob2000 Lakebob2000 writes: I have wanted to learn to turn for years. I inherited my uncles lathe but haven't had the money to purchase the tools.
Nearing retirement age I would really enjoy making my own tools and understanding how to use them.
No pension, means frugal is the way to go. I find that using scrap wood or pieces that others don't want make the projects special.
Posted: 10:05 am on January 11th

fred_1_fred fred_1_fred writes: My Grandfather used to turn bowls and pens and knife handles.

They were beautiful objects, and adorn the mantelpieces, pockets and kitchens of our family as a happy reminder of a good man.

He always used to include an accent of "bog oak" - that ancient, petrified, black oak.

As a kid, I loved the idea of the bog oak spending a thousand years in a swamp, only to pop its head up and be hurriedly snatched away to feed my Grandfather's lathe based addiction.

I have never turned anything, but now I would like to have a try, with a big log of Box Elder that I had to cut down the other week. It has an amazing raspberry coloured vein running through it.

A spring pole lathe seems to me to be the way to go. Frugal and physical. My Grandfather was a Sports Educator and Yorkshireman. I know he would have appreciated both aspects!
Posted: 9:43 am on January 11th

marty9 marty9 writes: I already have Earnie's book "Turn a Bowl With Earnie Conover". Looking forward to "The Frugal Woodturner"
Posted: 8:45 am on January 11th

JimHM JimHM writes: These Fine Woodworking emails always have useful and interesting information.
Posted: 8:42 am on January 11th

towel towel writes: I like frugal. Goes with thrifty.
Posted: 8:20 am on January 11th

RalphBarker RalphBarker writes: Frugality is the cornerstone of retired woodworking.
Posted: 8:17 am on January 11th

chips_shavings chips_shavings writes: I have been turning for some time, but it is always great to get some new ideas. Sounds like an interesting book.
Posted: 8:16 am on January 11th

backtenderbill backtenderbill writes: I am student at the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship. We will be doing our turning part of the school in February. I could use Ernie's book then.
Posted: 8:10 am on January 11th

KenHANGITALL KenHANGITALL writes: I have always been a "square " woodworker so it might be time to "Go Round" I have an old lathe and could use help getting it going.
Posted: 7:15 am on January 11th

Neil93 Neil93 writes: After turning for 50+ years I could learn some new angles on tools.
Posted: 7:08 am on January 11th

mulebone mulebone writes: I've done a little turning in the past. Time for more.
Posted: 6:51 am on January 11th

juau4 juau4 writes: I took a class at Conover Workshop about 15 yrs ago. Didn't realize Ernie was an author. I'd also love to do some turning again but need equipment, so it might wait.... but a great book will get me started!
Posted: 4:40 am on January 11th

gohome gohome writes: Sounds like a good departure from some of the other books available as not everyone has unlimited resources to get all of the good toys! Great idea Ernie!!!
Posted: 3:29 am on January 11th

Lori K Lori K writes: Great timing, I am just now starting to expand my woodturning skills, projects etc.

Will continue with pen turning and other small turnings, but feel the call of bowls, boxes and maybe even platters.

This book would be a great help to me and a nice addition to my woodworking library.

Thank you
Posted: 2:59 am on January 11th

nugrowth nugrowth writes: Have had a new Delta D50(?) long bed for ever, hoe do you use these things?

Posted: 1:50 am on January 11th

Artex Artex writes: Maybe this time.........
Posted: 10:19 pm on January 10th

Wixom Wixom writes: I have another book by Ernie Conover that is filled with a lot of valuable information. Ernie does a great job writing books. And with this one, it would be nice to learn how to make tools and a lathe. I hope I win this book! Paul
Posted: 6:44 pm on January 10th

BA3 BA3 writes: I've been getting ready to make the jump into turning and this would be a great addition to the planning/thinking process.
Posted: 5:02 pm on January 10th

Kent2987 Kent2987 writes: Thanks for the opportunity to add this book to my woodworking library.
Posted: 4:59 pm on January 10th

sk2tobin sk2tobin writes: sure count me in! I always enjoy making new tools and jigs
Posted: 1:54 pm on January 10th

oilartist oilartist writes: I could comment that I have no comment but I do. Just a starting turner but its great fun.
Posted: 1:51 pm on January 10th

BrianG BrianG writes: A lathe is the last "big tool" I need in my workshop. This book would be great.

Posted: 1:28 pm on January 10th

Toml899 Toml899 writes: Would be a very useful book
Posted: 1:10 pm on January 10th

D11RDozer D11RDozer writes: If a comment is posted that has no worthwhile content, can it still win you I book? Here's hoping the answer is yes.
Posted: 12:24 pm on January 10th

JaredEgg JaredEgg writes: The Frugal Woodturner will hopefully mean more time at the lathe, more fun, and more safety because of good tooling--great book title!
Posted: 10:40 am on January 10th

Dean7 Dean7 writes: Anything that would reduce the cost of getting into wood turning would be valuable.

Posted: 10:37 am on January 10th

JLYoung JLYoung writes: I bought a 1947 Delta Machinery lathe about a year ago and have really enjoyed turning some small furniture parts and would like to get more involved in turning since you can get so much satisfaction from a project completed in such a short period of time. I'd love to learn more and this book looks like a great source of information. please count me in
Posted: 10:27 am on January 10th

frank T frank T writes: I own several of his books, this looks like a great addition.
Posted: 10:20 am on January 10th

Larrythewoodguy Larrythewoodguy writes: Looks good thanks for the chance to win.
Posted: 10:01 am on January 10th

Joe__G Joe__G writes: I purchased a midi lathe this past summer, and it can be a costly addition. It will be interesting to read of options to cut costs.
Posted: 7:51 am on January 10th

casaheil casaheil writes: I've done some metal turning but haven't tried wood turning yet. I'd love to give it a try and this looks like a good way to get me started.
Posted: 1:25 am on January 10th

GianniB GianniB writes: This is my comment.
Posted: 6:53 pm on January 9th

BillyBignutz BillyBignutz writes: I am a great believer in recycling, modifying or building from scratch just about anything in order to meet my needs rather than buying something off the shelf that does not do the job. It is great to see a book oriented towards people like myself.
Posted: 4:38 pm on January 9th

jpat jpat writes: Thanks for the chance at a good looking book!

Posted: 3:37 pm on January 9th

jbschutz jbschutz writes: I just got a lathe for Christmas and could use the help. I am looking forward to expanding my woodworking horizons. Let the sawdust fly!
Posted: 3:36 pm on January 9th

jbschutz jbschutz writes: I just got a lathe for Christmas and could use the help. I am looking forward to expanding my woodworking horizons. Let the sawdust fly!
Posted: 3:36 pm on January 9th

jellenz jellenz writes: I love Ernies videos and other books. Hope I win this one!
Posted: 12:28 pm on January 9th

littledempsey littledempsey writes: Making tools been there.
Posted: 12:00 pm on January 9th

zeldabanana zeldabanana writes: I have always wanted to learn how to turn! Looks like a great book!
Posted: 11:20 am on January 9th

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