As The Lathe Turns #2: As The Lathe Turns........Again

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Blog entry by William posted 01-26-2013 11:10 PM 3029 reads 0 times favorited 41 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: How a Good Day Turned Bad Part 2 of As The Lathe Turns series Part 3: The Lathe Saga Continues »

I bugged the boys to get their butts over here early. We replaced the MDF top on the stand and mounted the new (to me) lathe. In case any of you don’t know, fellow Lumberjock, Eddie, gave me the lathe after mine bit the dust. Thank you so much Eddie. You have no idea how much this means to me.
So I checked everything out on the lathe. Everything seems to be in good working order. My only complaint with it was the tailstock center. It has the type that does not turn. I do not like that type because of a past experience. That was no problem though. I just took the bearing type out of the old lathe and put in this one and I was back in business.

And I wasted no time getting down to business. This is my third lathe. My first one came from Harbor Freight. It lasted for all of a total of about two hours of practice before it just fell apart. My second lathe I bought used from a fellow Lumberjock. It was a decent lathe, but I think my iniexperience and gung ho attitude quickly ruined the cheaply made lathe before I got too far on it. That lathe always had a vibration to it that I never could figure out though.
Now I come to this lathe. It’s like a whole new world has opened up to me. This lathe is almost identical in design to the last one, but just the look and feel of the parts and you can tell there is more quality in it. Another thing I like about this lathe is, being a Ridgid, I am sure I can find parts for it should anything happen to it. So far though, everything seems to be working flawlessly on this lathe.

Someone’s who’s advice has helped me greatly in this turning adventure is Bearpie. Upon that advice I also have recently took another look at my method of sharpening lathe tools. Between the better sharpening, and the lathe that actually runs true, I now am getting shavings instead of chips once my wood is rounded out. I have NEVER gotten this from any lathe. It was such a great feeling.

Being the stubborn mule I am, the first thing I done was went back to that pecan bowl I was trying to turn for Grizz. I actually done a good job on it too. My only problem was getting rid of those lines that Bearpie told me about. That was when I considered another piece of wisdom Bearpie mentioned. Maybe I am getting a tad bit ambitious with my early bowll turnings. I’m doing a good job in my opinion. However, pecan is some very hard wood. I already knew that, but it was the only thing I could find that was large enough to start with for me to turn a bowl out of. Yes, I know I could glue up material for it, but let me get used to actually turning bowls first before I dive off into segmented stuff.
I got the bowl done though, and it went well. I ran into no more problems. I think that is because of the lathe the Eddie gave me (which is of better quality than I’ve been trying to use) and the advice of Bearpie (which I’ve never had anyone help me with besides just generalized hints). So thank you guys very much.
I had to get the thank you’s out of the way before I tell ya’ll how I screwed up the bowl.

When I started this bowl, I left a round piece sticking out of the bottom as a means to hold it in my four jaw chuck. After turning the bowl down till I was happy with it, I needed to remove this circle. I considered different ways of doing this and thought I could do it on my band saw. Things were going good with that until I was almost through it. Then, I’m not sure, but I think the waste side of the wood closed up on the blade and wreaked havoc. The blade snatched the whole bowl out of my hands, up into the upper blade guide, bent the blade, then shot it back towards me forcefully, and bending the blade in the process. So I wound up ruining a thirty dollar band saw blade, ruining the bowl, and leaving myself with a sore spot on my stomach. It must have really done a number because it chewed the bowl up pretty good. So, something tells me that this is not the proper way to remove that ring of wood that I’m talking about.
Bearpie, I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. So I am hoping you’ll chime in and help me again. I need to know the proper method of removing that ring of wood without damaging equipment or causing bodily harm to myself.


So here’s where I’m at now.
I have really enjoyed this little adventure in wood turning. It is something you all will be seeing me do more of. I plan to learn a lot more and turn a lot more. However, this all started with me wanting to take one day and turn a bowl. It has lasted for the better part of a week instead though. I am desperately wanting to get to a project I was planning starting on days ago. So I have to bring this lathe adventure to a close for the time being. I couldn’t just yet though.
You see, one thing that kept me on this road this week was the fact that I told another friend, Grizz, that I would do something for him. When I say I’m going to do something, by God, I do it.
Going back and taking Bearpie’s advice (been all good advice so far) I decided that I do need to not be so darn stubborn about taking on too much in an area of woodworking that I’m just learning in. Part of that I believe is, I need to find some softer wood than pecan to turn bowl with for now. That leaves me a problem with getting Grizz’s gift. So I thought about this.

A hammer. What woodworker does not need a wooden hammer? I have made several wooden hammers for myself. I’m sure some people use them for other things, but I use my wooden hammers, the style I’ve made, for hammering on my chisels. So, since I had one more log of pecan, and I knew I could make a hammer, that is what In decided to make him.

So Grizz, I apologize, but I so broke I can’t pay attention. I spent what little money I had left going to Eddie’s yesterday to get a lathe. It will be early February before I can ship you your package. Since I have to wait though, I won’t keep you wondering. Here’s a photo of what I’m sending.


41 comments so far

View ShaneA's profile


6929 posts in 2596 days

#1 posted 01-26-2013 11:16 PM

Back in the game quickly. Nice, and congrats to you and fellow LJ Eddie.

View DIYaholic's profile


19620 posts in 2673 days

#2 posted 01-26-2013 11:29 PM

Well, you had quite the day!!! Glad you weren’t seriously hurt, during yet another incident!!!
Take your time…
You’ll get there!!!

Nice to see that you were able to “hammer” out a mallet!!!
Grizz is lucky to be recieving the mallet, let alone the first project from your new lathe!!!

William, I’m happy to are back in action!!!

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View luv2learn's profile


2763 posts in 2301 days

#3 posted 01-26-2013 11:37 PM

I wish you happy, trouble free turning with your new lathe.

-- Lee - Northern idaho~"If the women don't find you handsome, at least they ought to find you handy"~ Red Green

View William's profile


9949 posts in 2840 days

#4 posted 01-26-2013 11:47 PM

Shane, I was wanting to get back to it as quickly as possible. So when I got the message about the lathe yesterday, I jumped right on it.

Randy, I will get there one day. This was supposed to be a part time event during times when I need a break from scrolling and such. It has taken a lot of time lately though. That’s ok. I like it enough that you can bet I’ll be doing a lot more turning as time allows.

Luv2Learn, thank you. I think I finally have a decent lathe. Hopefully, my troubles are over for a while anyway.


View JL7's profile


8662 posts in 2963 days

#5 posted 01-27-2013 12:19 AM

Well, That WAS a nice looking bowl there William…..more learning going on…....If it makes you feel any better…...I had had a major shop screwup today…......that’s how we learn.

Really a nice gift from Eddie and glad to hear that it is working well…...

Nice mallet…....

-- Jeff .... Minnesota, USA

View Kreegan's profile


1452 posts in 2144 days

#6 posted 01-27-2013 12:23 AM

William you have a few different options to take the foot off the bottom of a bowl. You can put the bowl in your chuck with Cole jaws, attaching the top of the bowl to the jaws. Then just take the foot off with a bowl gouge. Make sure to make the bottom a little concave, so that it sits flat.

You can use a parting tool to part the bowl off. Basically you cut into the foot with the parting tool till it’s almost gone, then put one hand on the bowl and part the last bit off with the parting tool. You usually end up with a lil nub you can take off with a chisel and sand down. I like a thin parting tool for this. Cap’n Eddie on YouTube has a video about how to make one from an edger blade or old sawzall blade. I made mine from a sawzall blade.

You can use a hand saw to part it off, basically the same as with a parting tool. Run it on the lathe and cut most of the way through the foot. Then hold the bowl with one hand and saw the last bit off. This usually leaves a cleaner bottom, but the bowl may not sit quite flat.

Other things you can do include chucking the bowl on a recess cut into the bottom of the blank, using a glue block, and friction chucks. Hope that helps.

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 3301 days

#7 posted 01-27-2013 12:23 AM

wow William, there both so beautiful, i cant tell you how grateful i am for your generous heart, i love the hammer and the scroll saw art, the picture will go into my bedroom so i can see it when i lay in bed, and the hammer, its just what i need…and that pecan is beautiful…im sorry this has caused you so much grief, but at least you have learned some things, that scroll saw bear and mountains is just beautiful, there both so wonderful and i thank god for being so kind to me, and i will gladly wait until the time is right to send it to me…thank you William…i hope your stomach area isn’t bruised to bad..that must have hurt…enjoy your new lathe…grizz

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View Ted's profile


2846 posts in 2209 days

#8 posted 01-27-2013 12:36 AM

Now you got me wanting a lathe :D

But since I know that’s not going to happen any time soon, I’ll just enjoy watching your wild and crazy turning adventures. Nice mallet for Griz… can’t wait to see what else you turn out.

-- You can collect dust or you can make dust. I choose to make it.

View William's profile


9949 posts in 2840 days

#9 posted 01-27-2013 12:37 AM

Jeff, if we don’t screw up sometimes, we would never know for sure we were doing it wrong.

Rich, thanks for all the advice. Any and all advice I get on turning is much appreciated. I’m still learning. It seems the more I learn though, the more I have to learn.
Now, before I get a chance to go google it, what is a Cole jaw?

Grizz, I’m glad you like it. I wish I could have gotten your bowl done. In time, I will get better. I have got to keep my eyes peeled for some softer wood to practice with. I think that hard as nails pecan is going to wind up getting me hurt if I don’t heed Bearpie’s advice and stop trying to bit off more than I can chew.
I’m glad you can use the mallet. I figured that, being a fellow woodworker, you could always use another mallet.
I will get those things in the mail to you on the third. That’s when I get paid. I was doing good this month actually, well, better than usually anyway. Then I decided to make a trip to Eddies. It was a long drive, but well worth it. I enjoyed the visit and now have a better lathe. The trip took all the money I had left for the month though.


View William's profile


9949 posts in 2840 days

#10 posted 01-27-2013 12:40 AM

Thanks Ted, you can come get a lathe from here.
It has a bent shaft though. So I don’t think you want the headache, and believe me, it is a headache.
As for the turning adventures, I’ve got another project I need to get on for the next couple of weeks. Then when I do get back to turning, I hope it is mundane. I need to stop doing things that turn the turning into “adventures”. One of these day if I keep going, one of these adventures are going to wind up causing me long term pain.


View Kreegan's profile


1452 posts in 2144 days

#11 posted 01-27-2013 01:08 AM

Cole jaws are those wide jaws with the rubber feet you screw into them. They’re used to finish the bottom of the bowl.

I think I caught your lathe troubles. My new Delta 46-460 has a bad wobble and I’m thinking the spindle shaft may be bent. Gotta deal with warranty service now. Bleh!

View William's profile


9949 posts in 2840 days

#12 posted 01-27-2013 01:51 AM

Thank you Rich. I didn’t know that was what it was called, but I have a set of the “cole” jaws for my four jaw chuck.
How do these spindle shafts get bent? I can think of various ways, but I would think they’d be made sturdier because of the stresses they must go through.

By the way, I thought about scrapping my old lathe. Instead, I decided to leave it mounted where it is. When I need to turn something that starts out large and unbalanced, I’ll stick it on the old lathe to get it roughed out most of the wat before putting it on the Ridgid.
I figure that I’ll be ok as long as I’m tunring between centers, because then there’e something supporting it on both ends. Also, I figure that doing the badly unbalanced stuff there first will help extend the life of the Ridgid since it’ll take some of the initial work load off of it.

Sound like a plan?
Or a screw up waiting to happen?


View Kreegan's profile


1452 posts in 2144 days

#13 posted 01-27-2013 02:04 AM

That should be fine. Another thing you could do with it is use it as a buffing station. A lot of turners use a 3 buffing wheel system with their turnings, like these:

The wobble would’t affect buffing at all.

View Kreegan's profile


1452 posts in 2144 days

#14 posted 01-27-2013 02:06 AM

In my case, I think it might be my fault the spindle shaft got bent. My chuck was stuck on there and I couldn’t get it off, so I put a tommy bar in there and whacked it with a mallet to get it off. It’s possible that bent it. I dunno. If you don’t already have a nylon washer or something on your lathe, you’ll want to get one so that you don’t have the same problem I did.

View William's profile


9949 posts in 2840 days

#15 posted 01-27-2013 02:53 AM

This Ridgid lathe has something I really like.
I’ve never had a chuck get stuck, I’m going to look at getting that washer you’re talking about.
My problem has been the spur center getting stuck.
This Ridgid has a nut that screws on before the center. If the center won’t come off, unscrew the nut, and it pushes the center out.
I think I may have bent the shaft on the old lathe by trying to drive out the center one time with a center punch through the shaft. I don’t see how that bent it, but it’s possible.


showing 1 through 15 of 41 comments

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