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Thread: New Curved Tool Rests

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    ABQ NM

    New Curved Tool Rests

    I got the Powermatic "S" curved bowl-turning tool rest when I bought my lathe, and it hasn't seemed to fit anything I wanted to turn. I also don't like the large flat area to work from, especially in the tight parts of the curve.

    I did a bit of asking around locally, and it was going to cost me nearly as much to have some bowl rests made at a welding shop as it did to buy this one on closeout at CSUSA.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    It's the adjustable length modular setup from BestWoodTools. It's comprised of a post, a support block, and two curved bars (soon to be three, when the third one gets here). So far I have the 3" and 4 1/2" radius bars, and the 6" radius bar has been ordered. CSUSA was out of it, so I ordered it from the manufacturer. I can also add straight rests to the post (which I'm already pretty well set up with), or flat box-turning rests (seriously thinking of getting one of those).

    The whole setup seems to be well built, and things stay put when you adjust them. The support block is well designed and reversible, so there are a variety of ways you can set up the different bars.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    And a couple action shots working on an ash root ball tonight. BTW, before anyone busts my chops for having the tool rest so far away from the wood, the first pic was taken when I was using my Monster beatin' stick (the Indexer w/handle, plus the 3/8" straight bit from the Monster hollowing rig) while roughing things out. Because of the 3/8" cutting tip and its holder, I prefer to keep the tool rest a couple inches away from the wood. By the time I took the second shot I was using a bowl gouge.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    So far I like it. It's the first time I've experienced a tool rest with a smooth, even curve like that. Glad I got it, but still wish I had the tools and resources to make my own like some of you guys do, though.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Tokyo Japan
    Those look really good.

    I think for straight rests, it is easy (for me) to just make them, but the curved ones, well it is not easy to get a nice curve, so I might have to break down and buy one
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Goodland, Kansas
    Looking good Vaughn. You are going to like those.
    Bernie W.

    Retirement: Thats when you return from work one day
    and say, Hi, Honey, Im home forever.

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

  4. #4
    Congrats Vaughn! I bought a similar set of Sorby's last summer while in Houston. When I upgraded from the Jet Mini to the PM, it was just a matter of buying a new $12.99 post of the larger diameter.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    San Antonio, Texas
    Those look like just what the Dr. ordered, Vaughn. Please PM me with the source.
    Billy B.

    "It has been said that politics is the second oldest profession. I have learned that it bears a striking resemblance to the first." - Ronald Reagan

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