General contractor Tom Silva tells us about one of his favorite hobbies: wood turning. While he doesn’t consider himself an expert, Tom loves to work on the lathe and has tackled small projects nearly all his life. Now that he isn’t running a contracting firm anymore, he’s able to spend more time turning, trying new things, and honing his skills.
He Plays on a Lathe a Little Bit
Tom Silva loves turning wood projects on a lathe. While everyone else considers him a lathe guy, he bows his head in recognition of the folks he believes are true experts. But, he’s been turning wood on a lathe since childhood, helping his father replace column bases and other details on his construction projects. According to Tom, however, he plays on a lathe a little bit.
One of the aspects of woodturning that Tom appreciates so much is that it relaxes him. He says he turns his lathe on at 2 in the morning when he can’t sleep. He’ll also work on the lathe when he has things on his mind that he doesn’t want to think about. Focusing on the details of turning allows him to reach his zen.
He’s Really Turned It Up in the Past Few Years
While Tom did practice woodturning with his father and brother Dickey, it wasn’t until the past couple of years that he really started to focus on it. As a business owner, he didn’t have the time required to focus on turning, but since closing the chapter on that part of his life, he has more time for turning.
He’s Turned Some Fun Projects
Tom’s had his hand in quite a few fun projects. He’s turned burls into bowls, turned a wood beam into a cookie jar for a homeowner, a baby rattle, a baseball bat, some ornate table lengths, and even Christmas ornaments. He’s even turned an engagement ring and a box to present it in.
Everyone Needs a Hobby
Tom thinks everyone should have a hobby. He says he’s known so many people who have retired and aren’t happy because they didn’t have anything to do. He says it doesn’t matter what it is, but you have to stay busy. One of Tom’s preferred outlets is woodturning, but he says anything that challenges you will help.