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Forum topic by lumberjoe posted 751 days ago 3592 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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lumberjoe

2833 posts in 881 days


751 days ago

I’ve now entered the world of wood turning. This is worse than crack. Holy crap is turning fun! My wife actually enjoys it more than I do. She is very into making pens, and made 4 last night after dinner. I have a question about drilling blanks. I have a drill press, but it doesn’t have enough quill travel. I just flip the blank and hit it from both sides, but I get questionable results and do not want to continue doing so.

My choices now are:

1 – Larger drill press with more quill travel.
2 – This:

Plus this:

I am leaning toward using the lathe for a few reasons. One is I just bought this drill press not too long ago. It’s small, fits nice in my shop, and I really like it. It’s great for everything else. Another is Drilling the blanks on the drill press is kind of a pain – especially with segmented blanks and trying to drill dead center in each of them.
Also I really don’t have the space for a bigger drill press. Has anyone used the pen blank drilling chuck from PSI? Are there other options to bore the center holes on a lathe?

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts


15 replies so far

View richgreer's profile

richgreer

4522 posts in 1707 days


#1 posted 751 days ago

I don’t see the need for a special pen drilling chuck. I use a regular lathe chuck (One Way Talon) and it works just fine.

If you don’t already have a regular chuck for your lathe, I am sure you will buy one someday. Most regular chucks have 4 jaws and that is what you want. (A few only have 3 jaws.) Once you have a regular chuck, this special pen drilling chuck will serve no purpose in your shop.

With respect to chucks there is a wide variety available from $50 to $300+. In my opinion, you can get a pretty good one for about $200. If you decide to pursue this, help is available on this board to help you decide which chuck is best for you.

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

View lumberjoe's profile

lumberjoe

2833 posts in 881 days


#2 posted 751 days ago

richgreer, I was planning on getting a 4 jaw chuck but wasn’t sure it was right for this purpose. You make a good point though. Maybe I will just go that route.

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

3740 posts in 2296 days


#3 posted 751 days ago

I went for a drill press with a longer quill travel (3 1/8”).

I made my own drilling jig …
Click for details

A Jacobs chuck is still a good investment for the lathe … I use mine with Forstner bits to drill out the bulk of the waste in bowls.

I bought the 4 jaw utility chuck from PSI for $89 … so far, I’m satisfied with it.

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View richgreer's profile

richgreer

4522 posts in 1707 days


#4 posted 751 days ago

I’ve never had a problem drilling holes in pen blanks with my lathe and chuck.

In my opinion, you want a mid sized chuck and mid sized jaws. If you want a recommendation, here it is – -

http://www.pennstateind.com/store/CSC3000C.html

I do not own this chuck but I have used a friends on occasion. This is probably what I would buy if my One Way ever wore out – - of course, that will never happen.

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

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lumberjoe

2833 posts in 881 days


#5 posted 751 days ago

Does the old delta 12” drill press have a 3 1/8” quill travel? Someone told me it does but I cannot confirm. There is one for sale in my area pretty cheap and that wouldn’t eat up much more room in my shop.

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

View b2rtch's profile

b2rtch

4318 posts in 1681 days


#6 posted 751 days ago

I personally much prefer to drill on the lath, this way the hole is perfectly centered every time and you are only limited by the length of the drill and of the bench.
In addition you save the cost of another drill press.
You can buy a chuck for less than $15.00 at hf.
http://www.harborfreight.com/1-2-half-inch-mt2-mini-lathe-drill-chuck-42340.html

This is the way I do it.

-- Bert

View lumberjoe's profile

lumberjoe

2833 posts in 881 days


#7 posted 751 days ago

Thanks Bert. I have a bunch of those already (my dad is a machinist). I just need a jawed chuck for the head stock.

Rich, you like that PSI chuck over the Nova G3? The One Way Talon looks awesome, but I think that is a little too much chuck for my needs.

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

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b2rtch

4318 posts in 1681 days


#8 posted 751 days ago

b

-- Bert

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

3740 posts in 2296 days


#9 posted 751 days ago

lumberjoe—What lathe do you have? If you have a mini or midi, drilling on the lathe may not be so much fun. I have a Delta 46-460, which is a great machine, but the quill in the tailstock only has a 2” travel. If I need to drill anything deeper than that, I have to back the quill out, reposition the tailstock, and go for it again.

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

2797 posts in 1876 days


#10 posted 751 days ago

There are two types of four jaw chucks. One has a scroll that automatically centers the work and the other type is called an “independentl” four jaw chuck. The latter chuck jaws are each adjusted individually and requires the use of a dial indicator to center the work. You wand the former type chuck.

View lumberjoe's profile

lumberjoe

2833 posts in 881 days


#11 posted 751 days ago

Seriously, people center their work with a dial indicator? Thanks for the heads up. I would get sick of turning real quick. To me a dial indicator means many many many tiny adjustments until I get it close enough

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

View Raymond Thomas's profile

Raymond Thomas

180 posts in 851 days


#12 posted 751 days ago

Drill on the lathe by using a regular chuck and bell hanger drill bits – these come in 12”, 18”, 24” and longer lengths. Or you can use the 12” bell hanger drill bit in your drill press if your table is adjustable.

-- Raymond, Charlotte, NC -------- Demonstrate the difference!

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lumberjoe

2833 posts in 881 days


#13 posted 751 days ago

My drill press only has 2 1/3” quill travel. No matter how long of a bit I use, it’s not going through a 2 5/8” blank. Gerry, my lathe only has 2” of travel on the tail stock, but moving the tail stock closer to finish is easier than flipping the piece on the drill press (and a lot more accurate)

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

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lumberjoe

2833 posts in 881 days


#14 posted 750 days ago

I ordered the Barracuda2 from PSI last night. After looking at a lot of different chuck options, that seemed to be the way to go unless I want to spend double for a one way. I have a feeling this will open a whole new world of turning possibilities that are not possible with just my faceplate and spur center.

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

View mtenterprises's profile

mtenterprises

818 posts in 1326 days


#15 posted 750 days ago

Well again I didn’t read all posts here but the easy way to drill all the way through is to just drill as far as you can, stop the drillpress with the bit in the wood, raise the quill and put a board under the blank and restart and continue drilling. This works well untill you get the proper drillpress or chuck.
MIKE

-- See pictures on Flickr - http://www.flickr.com/photos/44216106@N07/ And visit my Facebook page - facebook.com/MTEnterprises

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