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Thread: hard maple between points giving me problems

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    hard maple between points giving me problems

    I hate to bother you guys with beginner questions again, but Im hoping I can be steered in the right direction.
    I have alot of 3 inch thick 8 inch wide maple pieces. some 6 inches long, some 20 inches, so I cut them square and spin some of them for bowls, just for fun, I gave a few to friends, others I keep for change, keys, etc.
    I keep having a similar problem.
    I put the big piece between ends and start to spin it round.
    alot of pieces dont hold well on the headstock, the 4 teeth, even when I cut out grooves on my bandsaw, eventually strip and make a hole in the stock, where the headstock wont hold the piece. I end up having to glue a block on there and waiting. I want to spin it between centers then cut down a tenon to chuck and turn it around and spin. Not having much luck, the headstock rips through the maple and then spins freely, doesnt grip.
    I tried changing speeds, doesnt seem to be the problem eventually, from the chisel pressure, it breaks free then I cant spin it anymore. the teeth just cut through the wood also.
    any suggestions, besides glue block or buying a face plate(but Id still need a glue block.)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Escondido, CA
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    Why not a glue block? Use medium CA on both the block and blank. Then a quick short spritz of accelerator and mate them quickly together. Set aside for just a few minutes.

    My mentor is Wally Dickerman and that is how he taught me. There does need to be a dead flat surface on both the block and the blank. He uses a screw chuck on both to face them off and a straight edge to make sure they are flat. You can continue with the screw chuck and block, or round the block and then chuck it. 5 or 6/4 alder, soft maple, or poplar make good blocks and you can cut a bunch ahead of time. Cut around any defects, of course.

    Just another way to do things. Wally's been turning for more than 70 years, beginning way before there was such a thing as lathe chucks!

  3. #3
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    Hot glue will do that job, too - and it's REALLY EASY to peel off later. Then you can use a glue block on a faceplate to turn 'em. It won't withstand bludgeoning, but it's plenty strong enough for ordinary turning & sanding.
    -- Tim --

  4. #4
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    Harrisburg, NC
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    In my opinion from what you said..
    Can’t understand how you cut the grooves on a bandsaw?
    Have you or do you…
    Drive the spur into the wood before you mount it on the lathe (make sure you use a deadblow or non-marring hammer). You can also use a chisel (once you have a small indent from the drive spur) to deepen the four teeth area about 1/8 then drive the spur in.
    Most spur drives have one flat side, leave the appropriate side flat if you chisel out a small area.
    If the teeth are stripping the wood it must not be tight (or it very soft wood)
    When you lock the tailstock and tighten it up are you also locking the quill? For almost all turnings I find play will develop as you turn (especially at the first). Stop fairly often and retighten the tailstock as necessary. If it starts to get loose then each cut will just make it worse.
    I agree with what Carol said about a glue block. I just use standard 2X4 and a faceplate.
    Here is a link for inexpensive faceplates. http://www.donpencil.com/ Look at the “blems” to see if he has one to fit you spindle. Regardless I would buy one somewhere.

    A faceplate is the safest way to turn. From what you say, the wood is loose and that is very dangerous. I almost always use a faceplate. Maybe not the size or speed your are turning at but with a 10” blank at 1,000 rpm the outside edge is coming at you at about 30 mph. That’s pretty fast if that 3 pound chunk of wood comes off. Be safe.

    With a faceplate use a very good quality screw (do not use drywall screws). They only need to go through the faceplate ¾ inch or so. With 3” thickness you will not need a glue block to start with since the holes will be turned away when you do the inside.
    Sounds like you already have a chuck so you won’t need a glue block when you turn it around either.

    Mike
    All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent. Thomas Jefferson

  5. #5
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    I was kinda suprised the jet didnt come with a faceplate.
    Mike-I hammer the spur into the wood with a hard rubber mallet.
    Driving it home in hard maple that is very dry, to let the teeth have a better grip, I draw lines into center, then hold it to bandsaw and just lightly touch those lines so when I drive the spur into the center, the teeth have a good groove to catch. I didnt bandsaw this piece.
    I guess if I want to make my spinning easier, Ill have to get a faceplate.
    Ill have to look up what faceplate threads onto the jet.....my first cheap lathe came with one.
    (a good item to pickup at the wood show tomorrow I think)

    hey, my tool guy said he believes it came with a faceplate, and ya know what, maybe it did, where on earth did I put it? Now IM going to have to buy a cheap face plate and jot down where I hide it so it might lead me to the jet one.
    Last edited by allen levine; 11-14-2009 at 09:28 PM.

  6. #6
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    I know hard maple is difficult to seat the spun into and that is why I suggested the chisel. It may not matter but using the bandsaw will result in the loss of that much (height) of the finished item?
    If you still have your old faceplate you should be able to get an adapter for $6-8. The jet should have came with one also, hope you find it as it never hurts to have two. If the lathe is new I would complain to Jet...probably send you a new one, they may have forgot to include it.
    I used the spur drive for about a year. Then I turned a punky piece of wood and the spur wound up buried in the wood (the wood even over the threads on the spindle). It doesn't take any longer to mount the faceplate and I feel much safer if I want to start at a higher speed.
    Mike
    All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent. Thomas Jefferson

  7. #7
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    How about a screw chuck until you cut the tenon, then chuck the tenon.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Rodekohr View Post
    How about a screw chuck until you cut the tenon, then chuck the tenon.
    Thats the way I do it.
    "There’s a lot of work being done today that doesn’t have any soul in it. The technique may be the utmost perfection, yet it is lifeless. It doesn’t have a soul. I hope my furniture has a soul to it." - Sam Maloof
    The Pessimist complains about the wind; The Optimist expects it to change;The Realist adjusts the sails.~ William Arthur Ward

  9. #9
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    I put the faceplate away when I unpacked the lathe, in a drawer. I put a bunch of rags in that drawer to keep them out of the dust one day, and never remembered I had put some spare parts in the drawer.
    I found the 3 inch faceplate tonight, and knocked the glue block off and screwed the maple onto the plate.
    The bowl is almost done, Ill shape it a little better tomorrow.

    My problem is Im very new at this and dont think ahead.
    I bought the nova chuck for this reason and failed to use it.
    I didnt want to put holes into the maple from screws, not realizing Im going to turn a tenon on the other side and hollow out where the screws were anyway. Simple dumb stuff, but all this lathe stuff is so new to me.
    I also think my lathe table/base is a bit too light, because when I spin a heavy piece of wood like the maple bowl, I get enough vibration that if I have a pen or pencil on the table, it will roll off.
    I might have to think about the metal base, or do something to beef up the table I built.(is it a good idea to add weight to the underside of the table top?IM not sure how to make it more stable, its 2x4s and 2 sheets of plywood for the top, it will hold 1000 lbs easily, but still vibrates and I have it screwed into the studs in the wall)

  10. #10
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    Any bit of weight you can add to it will help - rough bowl blanks, spalted log sections, bags of gravel, anything.
    -- Tim --

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