On lathe buffer

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Project by hairy posted 08-14-2012 05:44 PM 18748 views 20 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I wish I had thought of it. This is in the Oct 2012 Wood magazine, a tip from Tony Finlay from South Penrith, NSW, Australia. Thanks, Tony.!! Great idea using paint rollers as buffing pads.

He used a dowel between centers, I turned a taper to be held in a chuck and cone live center. Everything needed was here already. Quick and easy!

I used White Diamond compound on a walnut chisel handle as a trial run. I’m satisfied enough to get a better roller. I’m sure I bought the cheapest one in the store when I got it. It was on hand so I used it .

My only experience buffing is on motorcycle fork tubes and metal parts, messy work. This wasn’t. I did use dust collection to catch the lint and hopefully the compound flying off the roller. If I notice a mess from this, I’ll rig up a cardboard box as a shield around it to contain the mess. I’d recommend using reverse if you have it, to have anything coming off the roller going away from you.

-- My reality check bounced...

17 comments so far

View AJswoodshop's profile


1057 posts in 2425 days

#1 posted 08-14-2012 05:47 PM

Cool beans!


View ddockstader's profile


157 posts in 3410 days

#2 posted 08-14-2012 06:11 PM

I saw the same tip, but I like your solution better. Gotta go get some paint rollers right now. Thanks.

View mtenterprises's profile


933 posts in 2841 days

#3 posted 08-14-2012 06:32 PM

Why not tale the mount off the roller handle and put a bolt on one end to chuck up and put the live center in the other end.

-- See pictures on Flickr - And visit my Facebook page -

View Bagtown's profile


1739 posts in 3879 days

#4 posted 08-14-2012 08:09 PM

lol I saw this and read it as “on lathe butter”
and the picture looked vaguely like a piece of butter on your lathe.

Really need to get my eyes checked. lol


-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

View Roger's profile


20949 posts in 2953 days

#5 posted 08-14-2012 09:26 PM

Very interesting Hairy. For reverse, all we gotta do is stand on the other side o the lathe, if possible. :) I’ll bet this works like a charm.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View marines087's profile


23 posts in 2462 days

#6 posted 08-14-2012 11:48 PM

Slick, i like it

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 3821 days

#7 posted 08-15-2012 12:27 AM

Interesting peice, Hairy.

View Daniel Wise's profile

Daniel Wise

107 posts in 3108 days

#8 posted 08-15-2012 04:09 AM

Great idea. Especially if you don’t want to buy a dedicated buffer or take a wheel off you grinder. I’ll have to try this.

View tomd's profile


2167 posts in 3919 days

#9 posted 08-15-2012 04:15 AM

Very inovative, great idea.

-- Tom D

View crashn's profile


528 posts in 2614 days

#10 posted 08-15-2012 04:38 AM

Can I send some shoes your way for a fantastic buffing job ? hehe

-- Crashn - the only thing I make more of than sawdust is mistakes

View mafe's profile


11741 posts in 3238 days

#11 posted 08-15-2012 09:37 AM

Great idea.
I think I would buy a paint roll with natural hairs so they will not melt and burn into the metal if used on metal.
But if the rpm are low it might work fine.
Have to try this one day.
Best thoughts,

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

View ronbuhg's profile


121 posts in 2297 days

#12 posted 08-15-2012 11:14 AM

Hairy, you seem like the go-to-guy for my question… it possible to use this idea in a drill press,since I do not have a lathe maybe put some sort of support on the bottom side of the roller for support and for making it stable a lazy susan modified to work with this or something else you think will work better ? great idea !!....thanks for sharing this with us !

-- the dumbest question is the one you dont ask !!

View mtenterprises's profile


933 posts in 2841 days

#13 posted 08-15-2012 11:50 AM

ronbuhg – Take the roller cover mount off a paint roller insert a threaded rod in the center, tighten down 2 nuts on each end. Chuck one end of the threaded rod in the chuck. At the other end drill a hole the size of the rod you used into a thick piece of hardwood, lightly grease the hole and insert th threaded rod then clamp the wood to the drillpress table and go to town. Slow speed to start then try other speeds.

-- See pictures on Flickr - And visit my Facebook page -

View DaddyZ's profile


2475 posts in 3189 days

#14 posted 08-15-2012 06:58 PM

Nice Idea !!!!

-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View Jeffery Mullen's profile

Jeffery Mullen

355 posts in 2966 days

#15 posted 08-17-2012 07:27 AM

I like it cool idea.

-- Jeffery Mullen

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