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Thread: stopper development

  1. #1
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    stopper development

    I'm wanting to develop a quick and dirty stopper turning technique so I can turn them out fast and sell at reasonable prices. The walnut one shown earlier ain't braggin' material. I grabbed a strip of maple out of the scrap bucket, ran through the bandsaw and cut into blanks for my latest idea. The blanks are 1 1/2"X3 1/2". That leaves enough length to chuck up and enough meat to turn into a small but grippable stopper. I plan to drill the dowel hole on the lathe after turning. I'll probably use a wipe or dip poly for finish. Doing all the same and with a minimum of time involved, selling at $5.00 each (my gross) should make a decent profit.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails stopper blank.jpg   maple stopper.jpg  
    "Folks is funny critters."

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  2. #2
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    Wish I knew how to explain what an expert showed me, but I still havent mastered his technique yet. But what he is showing me is how to turn a piece on the lathe that requires little to no sanding. I have seen him turn some stuff that actually required no sanding. Its all in how you approach the wood with the tool. My way was to hold the tool at a 90 degree angle to the wood while turning and run it back and forth to achieve the desired shape. Then sand starting at 80 grit and work my way up till smooth. His way is to turn the tool on its side at a 12 oclock attitude to the wood, then adust the tool to either 1 oclock or 11 oclock depending on which you you are running the gouge ( or whatever tool you are using), til the tool towards the bevel and run it out on the wood. I may not be explaining this properly, probably not, but it certainly saves time. And when you are turning for profit, anything you can do to save time equals out to making more money.

  3. #3
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    Looks like a plan Frank but I must say I wouldn't sell for less than $15.
    Bernie W.

    Retirement: That’s when you return from work one day
    and say, “Hi, Honey, I’m home – forever.”

    To succeed in life, you need three things: a wishbone, a backbone and a funnybone.

  4. #4
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    One other thing I would suggest is using CA glue for a finish. Its quick and easy and waterproof. So there is no splotching of the finish when it gets wet

  5. #5
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    when i do my stoppers, now that i've settled on a standard design, is to sand from 150 - 2000 grit, then hit them with the same finish i use on my pens and pencils.
    benedictione omnes bene

    www.burroviejowoodworking.com

    check out my etsy store, buroviejowoodworking

  6. #6
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    The MinWax spray poly did not give a glossy finish to this maple stopper.
    Bernie, as much as I appreciate the compliment and encouragement, I don't see $15.00 or more in this. I might try around $8.00, with commission added it will be about ten or eleven dollars retail.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails stopper.jpg  
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  7. #7
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    Frank, The stopper is nice but. I think if you'd have used some BLO to pop the grain it would look nicer. Now keep in mind I don't get to turn much but I do a large amount of maple in my flat work and with a light wood like maple, BLO makes all the differance in the world.
    "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

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don Baer View Post
    Frank, The stopper is nice but. I think if you'd have used some BLO to pop the grain it would look nicer. Now keep in mind I don't get to turn much but I do a large amount of maple in my flat work and with a light wood like maple, BLO makes all the differance in the world.
    For small projects, a lot of guys use a BLO/CA combo. I may get over my stubborns and try using glue as a finish one of these days.
    Straight BLO is problematic for something that is handled a lot. I have seen many rifles that were OK with BLO finishes, others felt like they had been dipped into molasses. I keep seeking a finish that is compatible with my KISS principal of doing things.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  9. #9
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    For making a bunch of these at once have you thought of turning 4 or 5 on a piece of long stock and than parting them off. Use a shape that is easy to chuck so you can drill them. Maybe that would be more work than one at a time, I don't know, just trying to think.... You would have less waste of wood also.

    If you are mass producing, the spray finish is the way to go. The CA or CA/BLO finish is a better finish for sure, but more time consuming.
    Last edited by Paul Douglass; 06-03-2010 at 02:33 PM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Douglass View Post
    For making a bunch of these at once have you thought of turning 4 or 5 on a piece of long stock and than parting them off. Use a shape that is easy to chuck so you can drill them. Maybe that would be more work than one at a time, I don't know, just trying to think.... You would have less waste of wood also.

    If you are mass producing, the spray finish is the way to go. The CA or CA/BLO finish is a better finish for sure, but more time consuming.
    I have tried that with other items, like snowmen. Problem is, when you start removing wood, particularly at the part-off ends, the whole thing becomes very flexy and hard to turn. Plus with stoppers, you have to have holes for the dowels, not really possible to drill after item is turned.
    Thanks for thinking, I have a lot of trouble with that these days.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

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