I can imagine the pile of shavings from that piece! I've turned a little on my shopsmith in my time, and that makes enough of a mess on small things. Wood is way bulkier than metal - but it cleans up easier [I think] Looks like you enjoy your work.
That's a serious chunk of wood! How did you allow it to dry out without checking more than it did. Some of the "wood bashers" around here let the log soak under water for up to a year or so and then let it dry out. I also notice in the photo that your shop features post and beam construction. What kind of sheathing is that, it looks almost like a igloo behind the structure?
Regards, Geoff Morgan
Gary - after you turn the wet wood - do you do anything to prevent cracking? Or do you like the natural shrinking/warping/cracking in your finished product?
I have a process that is working for me but my work is smaller and I have to maintain dimensional stability of the finished product. I turn it about 0.200" oversize (so wall thickness is half that), and then submerge it in alcohol for a few days. Then it goes into a paper bag (to retard drying a bit) and weighed every day on a postal scale. It loses weight for about 2 weeks. When it stops losing I turn to final dimension.