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Thread: Mahogany for handles?

  1. #1
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    Mahogany for handles?

    I've got those Doug Thompson bowl gouges that I got for christmas (yes, I know... shhh)... which are in dire need of a handle. I've got some 8/4 maple, and some 8/4 Mahogany which I can use... I know the maple would do the job, but I wonder if one might go into a chunk of the Mahogany? what say ye turners?
    -Ned

  2. #2
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    FWIW, I like a little heft in my handles. Helps to absorb vibration, especially turning through voids. So I'd go with the maple. Higher specific density.
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  3. #3
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    I agree with Carol. Mahoganey would work and probably very well. I have used it on some of my small detail tools but I would use the maple for the bigger tools.
    Bernie W.

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  4. #4
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    If you really want mahogany, why not put some weight in the handles. Drill and fill with lead shot or something.
    "We the People ......"

  5. #5
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    Make one handle out of each type of wood and try them both for a while. If you dislike either one of them, you have the technology to make another one out of some other type of wood.

    Paul's suggestion has merit too (I use lead shot in several of my Monster handles), but in my opinion, it's important for the added weight to be distributed evenly throughout the handle, and not just a few inches at either end. That would mean boring a hole for nearly the entire length of the handle.
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  6. #6
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    Mahogany for handles?

    I think what I'll do is make the 1/2 in. Gouge handles out if the maple, & the 1/4 " detail gouge out of mahogany.

    Sound workable? The smaller gouge isn't one I'm going to be hogging large bites out of the workpiece any way.. Or so I understand it.
    -Ned

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ned Bulken View Post
    I think what I'll do is make the 1/2 in. Gouge handles out if the maple, & the 1/4 " detail gouge out of mahogany.

    Sound workable? The smaller gouge isn't one I'm going to be hogging large bites out of the workpiece any way.. Or so I understand it.
    That sounds like a good plan, with good logic behind it.

    My other advice would be to not scrimp on the length. I find it's easier to use a handle that's too long than it is to use a handle that's too short. It's also easier to shorten a handle than it is to lengthen it.
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  8. #8
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    Both will work but other woods are more satisfactory, IMHO. I have used Osage Orange successfully. Heavy and very stout. Lacking that, hickory is my 'go to' choice for handles, next in line would be oak.
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