Video: Woodturning a bonsai pot (not mine, but one day?)

I was at the Gatlinburg Craft Fair this past weekend. This is not a good place to visit if you suffer from the mental disorder “I Can Do That”. Otherwise, it is a fantastic place to visit. There is nothing to do with bonsai for sale there at all, but that does not make it safe. Two crafts in particular, wood turning and Lichtenberg burning, caught my eye. I may be on the verge of buying a used lathe and building my own death-trap Lichtenberg device.

This video puts it all together for me. Now I’ve GOT to get a lathe!


Damn it Bill. I know that I am at the beginning of a very strange rabbit hole, and I am 3:04 into this video.
Also do you have the name of a doctor for our shared affliction?

1 Like

Hah, I’ve been toying with the idea of a turned bonsai pot for a while. I don’t own a lathe (yet, anyway) but every time I see a nicely turned live edge bowl I think “what if…?”

I am also curious if anyone has played around with casting pure resin containers yet.

1 Like

First we’re going to need a better name than “I Can Do That” disorder. ICDT doesn’t roll off the tongue.

Second, we’ll need a spokesperson. Martha Stewart comes to mind, but she has yet to admit she has a problem. As soon as she enters rehab, we’ll hit her up for sponsorship.

Third, a national convention. It’s going to be the worst national convention you’ve ever seen. Hundreds or thousands of craft booths. Whenever you go up to the booth, the person in the booth will shout “NO!” at you in a stern voice.

“Pottery kilns!”
“Carpentry tools!”
“Fertilizer applicators!”
“Drone photography!”


@BillsBayou, I’ve actually been contemplating wooden pots for a while now. Specifically burned and then coated somehow to keep them from deteriorating. I did make one so far, and I’m happy with how it turned out, but I still need to coat it with some sort of clear resin or something to make it stable. I didn’t turn it myself, it’s made from a thrift store find that I then torched significantly and incorporated copper filings around the rim and edges from pieces of bonsai wire. It gives a nice detail in the light. I’ll post some photos when I’ve “finished” it…

1 Like

“But it looks easy AND fun!”

1 Like

The first sign of “I Can Do That” syndrome. We need to find you a support group.

I have not used it yet, but I plan to use Smith’s CPES (clear penetrating epoxy sealer). I’d caught wind of it on YouTube, then I saw it in use in Mirai’s deadwood video. Smith’s is used on boats. The drier the wood, the further the penetration.

I thought this was my support group

1 Like

No. This is the “I Can Do That” co-dependency group.

You need to go buy a glass kiln, a cotton candy machine, and a kayak. You can do that!


I have 2 Kayaks and a buddy with his granddad’s lathe. I also bought a kreg jig to make painting canvases and frames. I do not paint. I am a great group member to know.

1 Like

I’ll have to give CPES a try. Sounds like it would work. Thanks, @BillsBayou

1 Like

Let me know how it works