Lathe Cylinder / Checkers

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Forum topic by USCJeff posted 08-14-2011 03:43 AM 3437 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1063 posts in 4090 days

08-14-2011 03:43 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question tip

I have much less turning experience when compared to other methods of work. Pens, tool handles, and Mills mostly to this point. I’m about to turn some checkers to go with a chess set I just completed (Turned almost every piece twice do to mistakes, duplicator would have helped). I’m hoping for some insight on how you would go about making them. Here’s my set-up, I use a Barracuda Jaw with several faces as well as the standards drive and tail. I turned a 1.75” cylinder of Mahogany long enough for a dozen 1/3” thick checkers with a little waste room for kerfs. I made a “V” block and attached it to a miter gauge for my band-saw. I had some blade tracking issues and gave up there. I used a stop block on my miter saw and had ok results, but the piece is so small, it tended to get thrown by the blade. What has worked for you all out there. The table saw and miter saw with a V block works, but it has it’s downsides. I need to trouble shoot my Rikon 14” Deluxe Band-saw. I’m having trouble getting the tension and tracking the way it has performed prior. Likely the tires or wheel alignment.

-- Jeff, South Carolina

5 replies so far

View rance's profile


4258 posts in 3182 days

#1 posted 08-14-2011 05:33 PM

Jeff, I’d start with a scrap 4×4 block. Drill a 1.75” hole from the end. Mount it to your Miter Saw.

Mark your Mahogany with evenly spaced marks the thickness of one checker plus your saw kerf. Insert that in the left end and line up a mark and make your first cut.


Set your MS so it won’t cut all the way through the block though. Move your rod to the next mark and repeat. It both keeps it from flying across the room but also helps to prevent tearout.

This is but one way. You could adapt this to most any other wheapon of choice.

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

View sedcokid's profile


2733 posts in 3620 days

#2 posted 08-15-2011 04:23 PM

USC Jeff,

I agree with rance, there are other ways to do this on the table saw also but this is probably the best for your miter saw.

-- Chuck Emery, Michigan,

View USCJeff's profile


1063 posts in 4090 days

#3 posted 08-18-2011 08:27 AM

Wow Rance, nice jig. I’ve been trying to use my lathe more to get more practiced. I ended up ditching the lathe attempt and simply using a circle cutter on the drill press and then ripping them on the table saw to 1/4”. Worked well. The rosewood I used just about choked me to death though. The circle cutter would make some smoke very fast on that board. Apparently burnt rosewood and me don’t agree.

-- Jeff, South Carolina

View buckles's profile


24 posts in 2563 days

#4 posted 08-20-2011 02:16 AM

Set up the band saw so it does not wander and cut the blanks on it. There are lots of tutorial on how to do this. I run a lot more tension on the blade than is recommended and I cut straight with it. The blade that came with the saw is not a quality blade either and need to be replaced if it is still the original.

I make my checkers on a CNC machine and this is how they come out .

I did these for a fellow up in Va.
Sorry about the gloat, couldn’t help myself.

-- Politicians are like diapers. They need to be changed for the same reasons.

View hairy's profile


2717 posts in 3553 days

#5 posted 08-20-2011 02:25 AM

I use a sled to cut round pieces on the bandsaw.

-- My reality check bounced...

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