In this video we learn how to apply flutes (or reeds) to wood turnings. These decorative flourishes are notable design elements incorporated into many historic furniture styles including the Federal, Hepplewhite, and Sheraton schools. But even contemporary makers employ fluting and reeding within their work. You can too.

If you aren’t already familiar with the terminology, flutes are concave grooves cut along the length of an object. Reeds are cut similarly but their profile is convex. Flat moldings and trim can be reeded or fluted, but, in this video we focus on embellishing “round things” like bedposts and table legs. Johnathan Sanbuichi, turning specialist at Irion Company Furniture Makers, demonstrates how he uses a router mounted in a shop-built jig, a custom made indexing tool, and his massive lathe bed to accurately, quickly and repeatedly produce beautifully flowing carved lines. Learn and enjoy. — Keith (10 Minute Woodworking Video)

Johnathan Sanbuichi is a cabinetmaker and turning expert at the The Irion Company, specialists in the restoration, conservation, and hand-made reproduction of American antique furniture from the 18th and 19th century. Irion is based in Christiana, Pennsylvania.

(19) Comments   


Tim Dahn

So glad to see you’re back! Another exceptional video Keith. Thanks so much for keeping this up.

Matt Hogan

I really like these videos from Irion. Thanks for doing them. That’s quite the lathe! Matt

Richard Scott

Very Cool, Thanks.

Bob Simmons

Keith, Great posting! This technique can make an ordinary turning extraordinary. Much appreciated. Now I’ll have to make a jig for my router.


Great to see you posting again!

Cool video from Irion too. A very nice bit of jigging by Jonathan and awesome production by you!

Mark — The Craftsman’s Path

Keith – So very glad to see you posting again! I missed WoodTreks . . .

Eric R

Thank you so much !

Becky Cummings

This is great information. Thanks

Eric R

Thanks again Keith.
These sure are helpful, and you are the master at production.

Just what I’m looking for! A simple set-up that works for straight or tapered spindles. Will try on small scale jewelry boxes (“Classical Columns”). Thanks much.

I love your videos. Very educational. I’m 59 years young and have been working with wood since (I was) 10 to 12 years old, but never had anyone to educate me. Then, thanks to computers, I can (now) learn something right. It’s a shame to see that some (of these) experiences will never be passed on to the younger gen.

Johnathan, your dad would be proud. Congratulations. Great video.

Great site, loads of tips, the turning video great. The planer section helped alot, the whole video is fantastic.I am glad I found this site, keep up the great work.

Great video. Loads of tips in both planner blade sharpening, wood turning, joints – the whole site is fantastic – so glad I found the site.


It looks great and I built most of it until I realized that, on a 14 inch lathe, the router will not stand beside the turning below the center. You must make sure that your lathe is big enough to accommodate the router height with the bit inserted. Back to the drawing board.


I’ve been turning for awhile but always shied away from flutes. This was a great video. If I can fashion the degree wheel and router jig, I’ll replay it and try myself. Thank you so much.

RD Wolff

In the old days they turned GRANITE and stone columns- including tapered columns on huge steam driven lathes, and they also fluted them!

Jonathan sanbuichi

@Ron, I would turn your router right side up (the way you would normally use it) and run in the other direction!


What bit would you use if you were making reeds instead of flutes?

Comment: I’m sorry but I’m no longer able to reach the artisan to ask him.