I was turning a small spindle for use as a tree ornament and recognized a problem that sent me searching the internet which in turn led me to this (previously unknown to me) forum.
I don't know how to describe this exactly so I will give it my best, please be patient and ask questions.
I was turning the ornament and realized that once I finished one end (tailstock end) that I would not be able to finish the headstock end of the spindle/ornament. What I did was to cut the headstock end really long and then put it into a chuck so that it was simply sticking out more like a faceplate than a spindle. I held my left hand behind it as I took EXTREMELY light cuts with my right and guided the cut with my left thumb. I then was trying to finish the long tapered end toward the chuck and the piece kept jumping around on me. I ended up doing the same at the headstock end up to the chuck as I had done on the other end and eventually got something like I wanted.
I know this was not really safe but it worked in the short run. I would like to use a method that would be safer in the future but I haven't turned spindles this small before where both ends will be showing.
I am thinking that I could use a cup center after I finish the tailstock end to help with support but I don't know.
Any thoughts, questions, clarifications?