Reply by William

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9949 posts in 2842 days

#1 posted 01-24-2013 01:33 AM

I need help.
Rich, I know you do a lot of turning.
Maybe you’re the man for the job.

Ever since I turned the shallow bowl for the marble machine, that other piece of cedar that was from the same chunk has been staring at me, trying to make me feel guilty for neglecting it. So today I decided I wanted to try and do something with it.
I have a cheap lathe, but I think with practice, and some learning, I can learn to turn bowls on it. When I bought this lathe used, I also bought a four jaw chuck from the same guy (KTMM aka Lucas). I had never used it until today though.
To start with, I mounted the block on a plate that has holes in it for screws and roughed out the outside of the bowl. In anticipation of using the jaw chuck, I also turned a raised ridge on the bottom side.

I started with this setup because I thought it would be best. I read ther instructions (yes, I do that every now and then) and mounted the bowl onto these jaws. It spun up fine. Since everything was balanced good already, I spun it up to 1500 RPMs, about mid range for my lathe.
Soon after touching the tool to wood though, it threw my bowl and hit me right smack in the middle of my forehead.
So I remounted it, this time with the rubber “feet” on the outside of the ridge, since I’d done it on the inside the first time. I got a little further this time, but the bowl threw off again. At least this time it went away from me.
Each time, I tightened it up as tight as I was comfortable doing without beaking some wood.

So next I backed up and decided to try these jaws because there are ridges on it I thought would better grip the wood. This is the jaws I turned the bowl with. This one worked great, but it also mars up the wood where those ridges grip the wood.
So, I’d like to hear any pointer on using the first set of jaws I showed above. The rubber feet I think would be better for bowls. What am I doing wrong though.
I have several thoughts.
Cedar too slick? Need to rough it up some?
Need to make ridge thicker so I can tighten it up more?
Need to make the ridge taller so I can installed the feet deeper? The instructions say at least 3/16” on, I was a little more than a 1/4”.
Speed too fast?

Anyway, I did get my bowl done.
I only finished it with Danish Oil, so it isn’t fit for food. It was only for practice though. Besides, when I made the bowl for the marble machine, my wife made a comment that a small bowl would be nice on her dresser for earrings she doesn’t feel like putting away at the moment (she loves cedar). So this bowl was for her anyway.


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