I picked these up for $35, I haven't started turning yet, are these any good?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Woodturning forum

Forum topic by JoAnneN posted 06-28-2016 10:52 PM 1458 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View JoAnneN's profile


16 posts in 147 days

06-28-2016 10:52 PM

Topic tags/keywords: craftsman lathe

6 replies so far

View Madrona's profile


14 posts in 318 days

#1 posted 06-28-2016 11:56 PM

Those look like a basic set of spindle chisels. Hard to read the label but I think it says Craftsman? They are probably high speed steel so that’s good.

Looks like, from the top, you have a 1/2” round nose scraper, maybe a 3/4” gouge, 3/4” skew, something I don’t recognize and a 1/8” parting tool.

The scrapers should be OK for spindle or faceplate turning, the parting tool is always good, the gouge, well, some people do well with that type.

I suppose if you walked into a Sears store and bought them new they would probably cost $60-80 bucks, so yeah, you probably did alright.

I will say, those are just about the exact same tools I used for my first 20 years of very occasional turning and I made some decent stuff in that time.

They are certainly up to the task of getting you started and learning how to sharpen.

Good luck and start turning! :)

-- Living In The Woods Of Beautiful Bonney Lake, Washington

View Wildwood's profile


1854 posts in 1558 days

#2 posted 06-29-2016 07:56 PM

I think they are carbon steel, and okay to learn to sharpen tools & turn with. Yes they are spindle turning tools and not really good for bowl turning.

-- Bill

View Underdog's profile


879 posts in 1459 days

#3 posted 06-29-2016 08:07 PM

I’d probably only use the parting tool, the skew, and the scraper. I might use the gouge for roughing.

I’d buy a decent spindle gouge and bowl gouge, and probably a roughing gouge if you didn’t use the big gouge for that.

And get a knowledgeable turner to show you how to slice, not scrape.

Turning is the closest thing to instant gratification in woodworking.

-- "woodworker with an asterisk"

View putty's profile


972 posts in 1030 days

#4 posted 06-29-2016 08:09 PM

Defiantly carbon steel, I have a similar set. By the logo they are probably from the 1940’s

-- Putty

View dhazelton's profile (online now)


2293 posts in 1720 days

#5 posted 06-29-2016 10:01 PM

If you poke around you’ll read that the problem with Craftsman chisels is not the steel but the length of the steel itself – you can’t really put your hand on it for leverage. But use them and you may like them.

View Rick M.'s profile

Rick M.

7729 posts in 1803 days

#6 posted 06-29-2016 10:10 PM

I have the same set. Sears sold them both in carbon steel and later in high speed steel (HSS). Mine are carbon steel, they don’t wear as well as HSS but they are easy to sharpen and take a keen edge. They are fine for domestic hardwoods. They dull in a second on anything super hard (3500+ Janka). The trickiest thing is sharpening takes a very light touch or you will blue the steel in the blink of an eye. The HSS versions usually say that on them somewhere.


Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics