Part of Unit: Beginning and Advanced Projects
Lesson Plan Overview / Details
Step by step instruction on turning an oil lamp. This is a turning that has a hole in the top that holds a glass bottle that contains lamp oil and a wick. It is used as a candle and will burn up to 3 hours. Any wood can be used. Burl wood, stump wood, hardwoods, glued boards or even softwoods. 2" thick material is minimum and 4" dia is also minimum size.
Turning an Oil Lamp
- Approximately 1 week
- 5 Class Periods
California Career and Technical Education Standards
- BTC.A.A1.1 Know design solutions to common cabinetmaking and wood products problems.
- BTC.A.A3.1 Use portable power tools, such as single and compound miter saws, drills, sander...
- BTC.A.A4.1 Understand the proper and safe use of stationary power tools used in the milling...
- BTC.A.A6.1 Know the safety rules in the cabinetmaking work environment.
- BTC.A.A7.1 Design and create cabinet and wood products.
- BTC.A.A7.3 Use stationary and portable power tools in milling the components for cabinets a...
- BTC.A.A7.5 Use finish tools (e.g., airless sprayers, palm sanders) and techniques for finis...
California Academic Content Standards (Reinforced)
Objectives and Goals
- Students will demonstrate understanding of safety related to woodturning during the process of creating a faceplate turned project.
- Students will create a beginning level faceplate turning and build neccessary skills to produce other types of woodturnings.
Activities in this Lesson
- Professional Woodturning - Hooks / Set
The difference between being a woodturner and a Professional Woodturner is that a professional woodturner is able to sell their product to the public and make a business from their work.
Many students from high school wood shops can make a profit with their wood turning skills.
The quality of your work and reputation for producing unique interesting one of a kind pieces will determine your success as a Professional Woodturner.
Show students the American Association of Woodturner's website (attached below). Go to the Artist/Gallery section on the left and the Collector's section inthe middle. Click on the Click here to view pieces that have been listed. You can show various types of woodturners and their prices.
Explain that many of these artists have been turning and experimenting with turning as art for many years developing their unique styles.
After, show students the power point (attached below) that features a few oil lamps made by students. This is what they are expected to produce.
- Lathe Safety - Check Understanding
All students that are planning on making an oil lamp need to have completed a Safety Test and demonstrate understanding of proper wood lathe operation.
There is a Lathe Safety Lesson located on the CTE Online website that covers all neccessary safety information related to lathe usage.
- Oil Lamp Turning Demonstration - Demo / Modeling
It is highly recommended that the teacher learn how to make an oil lamp and provide a complete demonstration in front of all students. With a little bit of experience this demonstration can be done in 2 class periods.
Doing the demonstration at the beginning of the year is a great way to excite students and also show your abilities as their teacher.
I usually have beginning students do an oil lamp or bowl later in the year as one of their choices of 4 required projects.
IMPORTANT!! Only wood lathes with 1/2 horse power or more can be used to turn an oil lamp. The smaller pen turning lathes are normally only 1/4 horse power. Some mini-lathes are 1/2 horse power and med-size and larger lathes definitely have the power to turn these pieces.
Show students a completed oil lamp. Either one you make or a picture. Also, show them a an oil lamp kit - glass bottle, glass wick holder, wick and plastic funnel. Each kit cost $2.50. I charge students $5.00 for a finished oil lamp - wood and kit.
The oil lamp kits can be ordered from Craft Supplies. You can find them online or call them for a catalog.
There is a Power Point presentation (attached below) that shows the step by step process of created the oil lamp.
This should be shown to all students. Discuss these steps with students and address safety again at this time.
- Power Point [ Download ] Step by step process for turning an oil lamp.
- Students Turn to Turn - Independent Practice
Help students select appropriate piece of wood. The blank needs to be at least 2" thick and between 5" to 7"in diameter. Limit defects in solid pieces. Blank can also be glued up from thinner boards.
Glue the wasteblock on to the blank for the student.
Sharpen their turning tools for them before they begin.
Have the student attach the faceplate on to the headstock spindle.
Check the speed setting of the lathe. 800 rpm is recommended for roughing.
Have student adjust the tool rest about 1/4" from wood blank. Spin the blank to check for clearance.
Demonstrate proper stance and how to hold the tool properly.
Have the student make light cuts and get a feel for the tool on the wood.
Print photocopies of the power point presentation and put them in a folder that students can refer to quickly. Write "Oil Lamp" on the cover. This will help them answer their own question - "What do I do next". Have them refer to it to assist their progress.
After rough cutting, increase the speed of the lathe to around 1800 rpm. This will produce cleaner cuts with minimal tearout.
Have the students follow the steps in the folder.
Using a jig for support, cut through the faceplate about 1/4" from bottom of turning on the bandsaw. I do this step for safety reasons.
Have students sand the bottom of the turning on the disc sander. They need to remove the wasteblock and CA glue. The CA glue has a very strong smell. A small fan can be used to blow fumes aside.
Next, sand bottom to remove scratches created by the disc sander.
Apply finish. I like to use Deft Semi Gloss Polyurethane.
When finish is dry the glass bottle can be inserted. The oil lamp is complete.
- Photo Time - Closure
Take a picture of the students turning. Take one with them holding it and one of just the turning. Post them in class and use them to promote your class. You could also put pictures on display with a price and see if you get interest from an teacher, administrator or parent.
- Assessment Types:
- Rubrics, Observations,
Students will ask for help throughout the process. Guide them through and observe their progress. Have them refer to the step by step project folder.
Also, have students follow the rubric (attached below)to see how they will be graded on their project.
- Grading Sheet for Oil Lamp [ Download ] Use to show students how their oil lamp will be graded