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Shopmade Turning Tools

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Project by TheDane posted 11-25-2011 10:40 PM 1679 views 3 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I decided to try my hand at making some of my own turning tools, so I made a pyramid tool, and a chatter tool.

The pyramid tool is a shear scraper which can also be used to do beads and coves, while the chatter tool is used to put a texture in end-grain turnings.

The handles are red oak with several coats of wax, the ferrules are copper pipe couplers (from the plumbing department at the big box), and the steel rods are 1/2” stock (from the hardware department at the big box).

The pyramid tool actually has 3 facets, each side being ground to 50-degrees from the center point. The material in the rod isn’t HSS (I’m not sure what they sell at Menards), but I suspect it is more akin to mild steel and may take more frequent grinding to maintain an edge. Time will tell. People who use them say they are more forgiving and are less prone to catches. Time will tell on that, too.

I made the chatter tools so the ‘blade’ can be easily changed. I ground the teeth off a hacksaw blade for the first effort … some of the guys in my turning club have made similar tools using reciprocal saw demo blades used pieces of a hacksaw blades.

The last photo shows some of the beads done with the pyramid tool … I plan to use the chatter tool on the lids of some boxes that are in the planning stages.

Oh … and the captive ring in the last picture was done with a 1/4” captive ring tool. It just happened to be on the only thing I had that was round in the shop at the time I was making these tools.

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"





12 comments so far

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

7732 posts in 2710 days


#1 posted 11-25-2011 11:00 PM

Looks like you did a good job!

You’re saving a lot of money by making your own… Yes?

Nice work!

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: http://www.WoodworkStuff.net ... My Small Gallery: http://www.ncwoodworker.net/pp/showgallery.php?ppuser=1389&cat=500"

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

3794 posts in 2321 days


#2 posted 11-25-2011 11:36 PM

I think these cost me about $8 … hard to tell as I still have about 20” of steel left.

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

3794 posts in 2321 days


#3 posted 11-25-2011 11:42 PM

Actually … I’m thinking about using some of the left-over steel to make up a tool using the carbide cutters Brian Havens mentioned a couple of days ago ( http://lumberjocks.com/brianhavens/blog/26642 ). The cutters can be ordered from http://www.carbidedepot.com/wood-turning.htm.

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View rance's profile

rance

4132 posts in 1818 days


#4 posted 11-26-2011 10:47 PM

Nice looking work on the tools Gerry. Even with mild steel, I would think that you would benefit by tempering them.

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View BTKS's profile

BTKS

1967 posts in 2122 days


#5 posted 11-28-2011 01:42 AM

Rance beat me to the comment about hardening the steel. Tempering is usually taking brittle hard steel to a point a little softer so it doesn’t break during use. Heat it bright red, let it cool a little, then quinch it. I use water but others use oil or brine etc. If it’s too hard you can temper it back by shining, reheating, cooling until COLORS form along the tool. The appropriate colors are available on many websites and I Forge Iron. When the right color shows, stop the tempering by quinching again. Good luck!
Great lookin tools, hope this helps.
BTKS

-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

3794 posts in 2321 days


#6 posted 11-28-2011 03:03 PM

The material is Zinc Galvanized Plated Steel from Steel Works in Cincinnati, OH (purchased at Menards).

I have never done any tempering, and all I have is a small propane torch I have used to solder copper pipe. Not sure I could heat 1/2” steel rod enough to do the job.

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

15814 posts in 1524 days


#7 posted 11-28-2011 03:28 PM

Gerry, these look to be well made and I’ll bet you are very happy with them.

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View BTKS's profile

BTKS

1967 posts in 2122 days


#8 posted 11-29-2011 01:08 AM

Since the steel is Galvanized, don’t attempt this due to the off gassing and heavy metal poisoning potential!!! A propane torch would get the end and a couple inches hot enough but AGAIN don’t because of the galvanized plating.
They look good and I bet they work even better, just need more regular sharpening.

-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

3794 posts in 2321 days


#9 posted 11-29-2011 02:43 AM

Thanks for the followup!

I have a decent grinding rig, so sharpening isn’t a problem, and I made the tool long enough so it will be a long time before it can’t be sharpened anymore. And when it does get too short to sharpen, I’ll just make another one!

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View mafe's profile

mafe

9549 posts in 1747 days


#10 posted 12-14-2011 02:09 AM

Hi Gerry,
Cool tools, nothing like homemade tools.
I will have to look into this texture tool, it sounds interesting.
Best thoughts,
Mads

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

3794 posts in 2321 days


#11 posted 12-14-2011 03:04 PM

Mads—The nice thing about this tool is you can easily change the cutters … you get different results depending on the stiffness of the cutter. A piece of hacksaw blade is more flexible than a piece of a reciprocal saw demo blade. I have just been playing with it … haven’t made anything that is showable … but perhaps after the holidays I’ll get back to bowl-turning and perhaps post some examples.

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View mafe's profile

mafe

9549 posts in 1747 days


#12 posted 12-14-2011 05:36 PM

;-) look forward to see the results.

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

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