Groesbeck Woodturner Janice Levi Offers Insight on the “Poplar” Hobby
For more than 15 years, Groesbeck resident Janice Levi has been perfecting her craft of woodturning: creating jewelry, bowls, purses, Christmas ornaments and more from her home. During a visit to her workshop, Levi explained how woodturning differs from woodworking and how the hobby has become an important part of her life.
"There's a table saw over there, a joiner and a sander over there," Levi said, gesturing around her workshop. "Those are all woodworking tools, but the lathe is necessary to be a wood turner."
For those unfamiliar with what a lathe is, Wikipedia defines it as a machine for shaping wood, metal, or other material by means of a rotating drive that turns the piece being worked on against changeable cutting tools. Levi has amassed several tools in her time woodworking, from sanders and planers to handheld tools used for shaping wood on the lathe.
"The large lathe I use, new, runs probably about $6,000. The tabletop lathe runs under $1,000,” Levi said, noting that this hobby can be a pricey one. “There are some less expensive small lathes, but I bought this large one used and that's how I was able to get it.”
Though Levi fondly remembers holding a turning tool to a piece of scrap wood mounted on her father’s old Sears lathe as a child, she didn’t take up the hobby until later in life.
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