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Forum topic by CharlieM1958 posted 1696 days ago 986 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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CharlieM1958

15684 posts in 2844 days


1696 days ago

As some of you may have read, I just got my first lathe. So far, all I’ve done is play around with some spindle work. I have an 8-pc. set of the most common tools, and in trying my hand with them it seems like the skews are the most versatile of the lot. I can produce a wide variety of effects by slightly altering the position of the cutting surface.

I was just interested in the perspective of experienced turners. Is my first impression valid, or will I find myself relying more on a differnt tool as I gain experience?

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"


13 replies so far

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interpim

1124 posts in 2084 days


#1 posted 1696 days ago

If your doing well with a skew as a beginner, then your doing really well… For the first 6 months after I got my lathe, I got nothing but catches with my skew.

I really like my spindle gouges though.

-- San Diego, CA

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dbhost

5378 posts in 1858 days


#2 posted 1696 days ago

I got the 8pc set, along with a set of Versa Chisels, and Roughing Gouges. From a making things round perspective, the 1.5” roughing gouge kicks tail. But… I really like the Versa Chisels… They Do pretty much the same work as a spindle gouge and a skew, all combined into one tool, with no catches on the *&#$ skew…

As you may be able to tell, my least favorite turning tool is the skew…

-- My workshop blog can be found at http://daves-workshop.blogspot.com

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papadan

1130 posts in 1994 days


#3 posted 1696 days ago

A lot of turners think the Skew is the toughest tool to use, like you that was the main one I started using when I was learning and it has always been easy and one of my favorites. I bought a 3/4” Sorby oval skew that is awesome. My favorite is a Sorby multi tip, I think it is called a shear scraper. I have the straight one and have been making some of my own tips for it.

-- Carpenter assembles with hands, Designer builds with brains, Artist creates with heart!

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cabinetmaster

10874 posts in 2184 days


#4 posted 1696 days ago

When I got my first small lathe like yours, I BOUGHT THE 3 PIECE SET OF Benjamin’s Best. I still use them along with my regular set. The thing to remember is to keep those tools sharp.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

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CanadianWoodChuck

395 posts in 2539 days


#5 posted 1696 days ago

Charlie: You’ll need everything in the set. I’m certainly not a seasoned turner, but I have made about 400 pens. I like to try different tools just to see what I can do with them. The bulk of the work is done with the roughing gouge when turning pens anyway. Enjoy your lathe! Bruce

-- Wood Chuck (Bruce) http://3dwoodworkingplans.com

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MrWoody

305 posts in 2400 days


#6 posted 1695 days ago

Charlie, what tool I favour depends on what I’m doing. The skew is a very versatile tool used exclusively
for spindle work. Bowl gouges will work on spindles but because of their greater mass are good for hollowing
bowls. Spindle gouges are usually made of thinner material and are generally not well suited to hollowing bowls. Then add in your own personal preference. As you use the tools, you will develop a personal preference. After some instruction, I rarely use my roughing gouge for spindles under 1” Dia.

-- If we learn from our mistakes, I'm getting a fantastic education.

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scrappy

3505 posts in 2056 days


#7 posted 1695 days ago

I like the skew the best. I use it a lot and have been having some prety good luck with it. Not too many catches.

-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

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Innovator

3584 posts in 2039 days


#8 posted 1695 days ago

Charlie of the most basic tools the gouge and the skew are most common and will be used the most often. They can both be used for the same things; it becomes a matter of preference by the craftsman. When I learned how to turn my mentor told me that “I need to get used to using just a gouge”, in his opinion it was the most versatile tool in your arsenal. With that being said I still use “Gouges” more often than any other tool. Here comes the interesting part I have various bowl gouges, spindle gouges and roughing gouges for various jobs. Do you need all of them, NOPE but it does make certain jobs easier having a variety.

-- Whether You Think You Can or You Think You Can't, YOU ARE RIGHT!!!

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

15684 posts in 2844 days


#9 posted 1695 days ago

Thanks for all the responses, guys. I’m starting to see how this turning thing can become addictive.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

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Innovator

3584 posts in 2039 days


#10 posted 1695 days ago

Charlie you will find it rather enjoyable when you “HAVE TO” buy that new turning tool to make your next project :)

-- Whether You Think You Can or You Think You Can't, YOU ARE RIGHT!!!

View richgreer's profile

richgreer

4522 posts in 1700 days


#11 posted 1695 days ago

I really like my Easy Rougher. It has a carbide cutter that you do not have to sharpen and it is very easy to use. It is always the first tool I grab when starting a project. It saves a lot of time. A video demo is available at www.woodturnerscatalog.com.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View ShawnH's profile

ShawnH

90 posts in 2701 days


#12 posted 1695 days ago

I just got the Sorby versa chisel, and it is great for pen turning. It is easy o sharpen, leaves a great surface behind, and the small one I bought didn’t cost very much. Turning is very addictive and a ton of fun. Tooling up to do all the project you want could break the bank though. At least my bank anyhow. Have fun and keep turning.

-- ShawnH "In matters of style, swim with the current. In matters of principle, stand like a rock." Thomas Jefferson

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2697 posts in 1912 days


#13 posted 1695 days ago

Charlie, years ago, I used the skew almost exclusively. It takes a light touch, but I rarely got a catch. When I got back into turning last year, I started using the roughing gouge and the round nose scraper for most of my work. I guess it comes down to what works for the individual.

-- She thought I hung the moon--now she just thinks I did it wrong

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