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Thread: Turning some couch legs question

  1. #1
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    Turning some couch legs question

    So i have glued up slabs of maple. Had planned on turning two legs at a time.
    BUT....just stopped myself to ask you guys if i should rather go for shorter slab and do one at a time?
    Never done this scale of what i consider production turning (got to make 8 legs) have material for 10 you know me by now.
    Here is what the slabs look like glued up
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Each is supposed to be long enough to provide for two legs now i am second guessing myself so question is should i cut in half and go one at a time. ???
    Going to make a jig to cut the corners off on saw so as to reduce rounding on lathe.
    Then comes the fun.

    All advice will be welcome ...thanks.



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  2. #2
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    PM Ed Thomas, he would be my goto guy!
    Mack C. in Brooklin ON
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  3. #3
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    What length and what diameter? Doing two at a time shouldn't be a problem as long as they are thick and not flexible. If they are somewhat thin, they can get "floppy" on the lathe.

    And as a general word of advice: Don't overthink the project. Just build it. For example, in the time it'll take you to build a jig and knock the corners off the blanks, you could have them mounted and turned round. And if you really don't want to take the corners off on the lathe, just set your tablesaw up to make a 45 bevel cut and cut the corners off that way. Doesn't have to be exact. Just relieve the corners a bit. Build the jig only if you're more interested in jig building than leg turning.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mack Cameron View Post
    PM Ed Thomas, he would be my goto guy!


    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Keeble View Post
    Each is supposed to be long enough to provide for two legs now i am second guessing myself so question is should i cut in half and go one at a time. ???
    Doesn't really matter looking at the size. If you're doing 2 on a blank I'd suggest working the pattern in the same direction on each. As in: have the foot either at the tail or headstock on each half of the blank, unless you're symmetrically ambidextrous. Probably less trouble to cut in half.

  5. #5
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    One at a time is my vote. It will be easier to visually reference them to each other that way, at least that's been my experience. The couple of times I tried turning two things in the same piece the proportions were harder to get same.

    Also plus one to Vaughn's suggestion to just turn the darn things, you aren't saving any significant time with the saw in this case.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for the input all,

    I decided to take the chicken route and cut them in half and turn one at a time.

    Cut the corners off on the TS while at it.

    Got my setup in the basement organized, made a template and got down to turning.

    First one got me, had a catch and to my suprise the wood on that part came apart, that after loads of glue on both surfaces and plenty of drying. Hope this is not going to be the way it goes , not going to let it stop me will have another go today and will glue up the one that came apart, it was a right off anyhow i made a big mistake misreading where to take material off from my template.

    As Allen says "its just wood" so we shall see how it goes today. First thing though is sharpening the turning tools i am using. Have the grinder mounted on the mini workbench next to me so that should not be an issue. Also going to add a 120 grit wheel i bought the other day in prep of sharpening plenty of tools this winter. Want to see what the difference is like between 80 and 120.
    cheers

  7. #7
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    Interesting that you had a glue joint failure. What do you think caused it? Old glue, cold glue, too much clamping pressure?

  8. #8
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    Dont know frankly, did everything right as far as i know. Only thing i can think is this was a face to face glue up on flat sawn surface that I had planned before. So perhaps not enough glue penetration. Glue was new bottle from store never been opened and not been in cold.


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  9. #9
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    Did you stick the point of a center in the glue line? (noticed you glued 4 boards)

  10. #10
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    Re: Turning some couch legs question

    Nope not the cause Thomas. Here is a pic i just grabbed of the piece.Click image for larger version. 

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