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Thread: fired up the Lathe

  1. #1
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    fired up the Lathe

    Finially after a year of a lot of STUFF I'm back at the Lathe turning strikers from Blackwood and getting some surprisingly beautiful results.
    I had a little talk with Vaughn about a slight problem, chatter marks. I need to slow it down. Ive got the sharpening gouges part down but the chattering marks and breaking turnings. Blackwood shatters easy, I'm hoping slowing it down will help.
    It get expensive breaking the stocks. Time and material's.
    Last edited by Dave Hawksford; 12-01-2015 at 03:22 AM.
    I dream a lot. I do more painting when I'm not painting. It's in the subconscious.
    ::: Andrew Wyeth :::
    colonialrestorationstudio.com

  2. #2
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    Looking good!

    I've had some luck slowing down the chatter by raising the tool rest more as well so you're just barely skim cutting the work piece. Are you having more problems on the flat(er) part or the beads and coves?

    Haven't used blackwood yet, although a friend had some tap handles made from it that were simply stunning and I have two pieces I've been saving for .. something (they're about bottle stopper sized, but might make a salt shaker perhaps).

  3. #3
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    Beautiful looking piece. I've not heard of blackwood, where's it sourced from?
    Darren

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word “boo.” – Robert Brault

  4. #4
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    Good-looking stuff, Dave. Ryan has turned more spindle pieces like this than me, so any advice he has is based on more experience than I have.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  5. #5
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    Your strikers are long and thin enough to get some vibration/whipping. To help reduce resulting chatter you can lightly support the back of the spindle behind the cut with your fingers. You don't need to press hard, just enough to dampen any vibration. Also you could build/buy a small spindle steady or build a string spindle steady. For crisping up small spindle details and making small beads I like my home made pyramid/three point tool. Looks something like this, but mine has a more acute angle:
    http://aroundthewoods.com/three.shtml
    Last edited by Ted Calver; 12-01-2015 at 03:51 PM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn McMillan View Post
    Good-looking stuff, Dave. Ryan has turned more spindle pieces like this than me, so any advice he has is based on more experience than I have.
    I've been "stuck" on skew work though and the behaviour seems a bit different with spindle detail gouges[1] so take what I'm saying with a wee grain of salt. It seems easier to do like what Ted is talking about with supporting the work-piece with your hand with the skew, at least for planing cuts. The detail work is perhaps another ball of wax but doable with a bit of practice. I think that the detail gouge is easier to use for the detail work in that fashion once you have the nack of it down.

    Honestly I've been struggling a wee bit with detailed spindle work with gouges, I know its largely technique but I'm also thinking I might need to tweak the grind a bit... A lot of them come with a fairly steep angle and watching a bunch of people who are waaay better than me I see they have ground a lot of their detail gouges to be a lot shallower (sharper) and end up using them more skew like. That obviously makes them a bit grabbier if you're not spot on with where the edge and angle is but also seems to make a better cut when you are.

    With the skew (I believe that most of this follows through to most gouge work):
    • Faster is sometimes (but not always) better, the main exception seems to be that you can apparently hit a "resonant frequency" with the piece and it will chatter horribly.. then raising or lowering the speed a smidge helps. I know this is contrary to Vaughns advice... I think the difference is that slower allows you more control so you have less chatter whereas faster allows you to skive off thin layers somewhat easier IF you know exactly what the tool is doing (otherwise you can end up further in the weeds). I guess I'd say try slower (slower is always better when learning anyway, I practice most cuts I'm not sure of with the lathe off and turn by hand to see what the tool will do) and if that doesn't help try faster
    • Raise the tool rest higher than you feel comfortable. The thinner the workpiece the more I'm wanting to be cutting basically on the top of it. You want to approach the cut so it skims the wood off but doesn't "grab" it at all. Often this feels like you're flirting with a spiral back catch (probably because you are ).
    • Remove wood from the tailstock end first and leave as much bulk on the headstock side as long as you can. This sometimes doing all of the details on the tailstock and then never revisiting it (which often requires more planning than I'm capable of..).
    • On really thin stuff I use a collet chuck and just expose a wee bit at a time as I go, in that case the tailstock end is completely unsupported. Obviously this means the piece has to fit in the headstock hole which isn't always possible with things with variable size.
    • Don't put to much tailstock pressure on otherwise it will cause the piece to flex and then you're in the mud. I've seem some people use the tailstock in expansion mode where they actually use a chuck on the headstock and a chuck on the tailstock (something like this although there are others: https://www.pennstateind.com/store/LDC2MT.html). I haven't tried the expansion theory but for really small stuff the idea seems sound (if perhaps unnecessary for 95% of things - I'm quite sure you can solve your problem without it).
    • If you're getting ripples they can propagate out from the bevel riding on them. You have two options in that case; either take a deep enough cut to get "under" them in one pass or raise up the tool so you have less bevel contact (or grind away more of the heal to avoid contact or both). The first solution has the problem that it can grab the piece and cause new ripples or more exciting results. The second solution has the problem that you're more likely to get back spiral catches. Personally I've been heading more towards the second solution because it tends to give a better cut anyway.


    Of course not all of those will work in all cases and some of them might not work for you in any of them

    [1] I started by forcing myself to work on the skew and neglected the spindle detail gouge.. and am now trying to backfill the skill gap. My theory that "learn the skew really well and all else will follow" seems to be not exactly wrong but not exactly right either

  7. #7
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    I notice a lot of nicks on your tool rest. Take a file and file it down smooth. I think your will find that working with a skew or spindle gouge will work a lot better.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Matchett View Post
    I notice a lot of nicks on your tool rest. Take a file and file it down smooth. I think your will find that working with a skew or spindle gouge will work a lot better.
    That's a great piece of advice, I've not considered that before and mine is pretty dinged up...Thanks
    Darren

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word “boo.” – Robert Brault

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darren Wright View Post
    That's a great piece of advice, I've not considered that before and mine is pretty dinged up...Thanks
    That's one of the advantages of the rests with the hardened steel rod for a top like the Robust rests (or DIY versions made with drill rod epoxied to the top).

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