Making wood rings using stepped bushings (similiar to pen turning)

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Forum topic by sgtsprout posted 12-28-2011 06:41 AM 4280 views 0 times favorited 0 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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71 posts in 2734 days

12-28-2011 06:41 AM

Been awhile since I posted anything but been in the shop laltely and could use some help.

So I am looking for some feedback on the process/methods making rings. I have reviewed several posts and projects for turning on lathes. I may have not found what I am looking for though. I am looking for those who turn them down similiar to making pens using bushings. I have tried a tapered mandrel and just wasn’t happy with that method. The wood material was just never perfectly concentric plus it had no method to hold positive pressure on the ring from the tailstock end.

I figured even from the start for me the best method would be using stepped bushings. I made some wood bushings and these pictures are of the 1st protoype bushing and 1st completed ring (just waxed it and sanded slightly for now, afterall just my protoype). Figure I’ll make a nice finished product once I figure out the process that will work for me.

Anyway the bushings are made of dowel wood. Drilled 1/4” and then turned down the dowel to fit a size 9 ring. The bushings simply slide onto a 1/4” pen mandrel. The bushings OD of the working end fits the ID of the ring size. I place each bushing back to back which creates my positive pressure similiar to how 8mm and larger pens are held on to the mandrel using stepped bushings. See pics below.

Here is my second prototype design and my protoype stepped bushing with a different size on each end of one piece of rod. This is basically one of my ideas to create a more permanent method using toleranced bushings as a repeatable process.

I’d really like to make these out of a metal maybe aluminum or some kind of steel. I understand it may have soome cons. For example hitting the metal bushings with my turning chisels. But I have been using the carbide Easy Wood Tools and figue a little metal shavings off the bushings from time to time will be fine. If using wood bushings I will have to make bushings more often. (Not necessarily against that either). So what’s your thoughts? Is the metal bushings really overkill? Does anyone else make bushings for these types of turnings? Are there any bushings sets out there for US Stanard ring sizes? Is there anything out there that may work that would be ideal?

I have several thoughts on how to make the bushings including sets for every US (metric etc) ring size.
Including using the web link style mandrel with a 1/4” throughhole with matching bushings for each size that would go on the tailstock end to hold the positive pressure. The whole purpose of this is to find a repeatable method that maintains concetricty on the ring and holds positive pressure. I am not necessarily looking to re-invent the wheel. Just haven’t come across what I thought so far would work for me.

Thanks in advance for reading my long post.

-- "There are no gains without pains." -Benjamin Franklin

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